first 5 samples are free!
first 5 samples are free!

Cement Tile: Past and Future

03 / 03 / 2020


Cement tiles have a rich history that reaches across continents from Europe and North Africa through the New World and South East Asia. Originally crafted in Catalonia in the 1850’s, they have long been a favorite for bold, creative interiors. 


Handcrafted cement tiles were first popularized in the grand public buildings of Barcelona, and quickly proliferated throughout France, and on to Germany and the Mediterranean. Although Spanish style cement tiles have been popular for centuries, the variety of patterns and designs have evolved significantly. Early cement tile designs focused on small tiles covered in ornate patterns with a limited variety of pigments. Today, there are no rules for decorating with Encaustic Cement Tile – and this is why we are ABSOLUTELY OBSESSED with cement tiles – there is complete freedom to create one-of-a-kind color combinations and designs. These range from crisp, modern lines like Zion, to intricate Moorish patterns and traditional Catalan motifs, and colors range from understated and neutral to gorgeously saturated.


8x8 square 'Zion' encaustic cement tile , 5/8 inch thick, 5.28 square feet per box (12 tiles in each box)
Zion Black and White Cement Tile from Zia Tile – Los Angeles


Beyond the vast range of intricate designs and colors, there are a multitude of possibilities for how to lay cement tile. Patterns are highly customizable and the options for where and how to install them are practically endless. Whether you’re using your tiles as the base for your remodel concept, or matching them to an existing interior, our marvelously matte cement tiles are a distinct departure from mass-produced ceramic tiles. 




Classic versus Contemporary



Cement tiles are most commonly used as flooring in bathrooms and kitchens, but we love thinking outside the box and using encaustic cement tiles in less common areas. Get creative and decorate your patio or fireplace hearth with vibrant cement tiles. If you’re really feeling bold, use them to cover an entire accent wall. Our favorite thing about encaustic cement tiles is their limitless versatility. If you can dream it, we’re down to help you create it!


How Cement Tiles Are Created



Cement tiles are a standout material for interior design, but their unique quality starts in the early stages of production. No two cement tiles are exactly alike, and that’s what makes them so cool! They are made using a combination of white Portland cement, fine sand, marble powder, and mineral pigment. A hydraulic press and a brass tile mold are then used to craft each individual tile.





Another huge bonus is that cement tiles are an eco-friendly design option with a small carbon footprint. Unlike other tiles, encaustic cement tiles are not fired or glazed. But don’t worry about durability, the dehydrated cement is combined with a coarse sand/cement layer to strengthen the tile. For the last step, the pigmented layer is pressed into the base of the tile. Voila! You have an energy efficient, one-of-a-kind piece of art.





The Quality of Cement Tiles


The quality of cement tiles is dependent on the skill of the craftsmen. We’re proud to say that our artisans work carefully to hand-make the perfect cement tile for your renovation.



Here are some factors that make a quality cement tile:


  1.         Experienced Artisans

Each and every tile we make has years of skilled craftsmanship behind it. From the exacting fit of our tile molds, to the correct color formulation, and . Hydraulically pressed cement tiles are physically durable and vivid in appearance. You can see and feel the difference yourself. We’re in love with the natural variance created using this handmade method.



  1.         Materials and Pigment Layer


We know that you want a cement tile that can withstand the test of time and stay beautiful through everyday wear and tear. The highest quality cement tile has a colored layer ranging from 2.5mm to 3mm. What does this mean, exactly? Well, each cement tile has two parts. The top part is a colored layer with a white cement base, and the foundation is a grey cement base. The two layers are then hydraulically pressed together to create and complete the perfect cement tile. 



2x8 cement tile colors from Zia Tile
Signature Solids 2×8 Cement Tiles from Zia Tile, Los Angeles


Range of Cement Tile Available Today



Zia Tile’s encaustic cement tiles come in both traditional and customizable patterns, as well as a wide range of colors. We also offer different sizes and shapes that include squares, rectangles, and hexagons. We are thrilled to feature an extensive variety of designs. If you don’t see the exact pattern or color you were searching for, we can also help you create a personalized design. Let your imagination run wild with endless décor possibilities.


Whether you are interested in one of our in-stock cement tiles or would like to design a customized tile, consider purchasing from our extensive in stock collection. From bathroom and kitchen floors to creative accent walls, Zia Tile offers geometric patterns and styles with integrated color palettes. Our team in Los Angeles is always available to assist you in creating a truly unique space.


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