I used them in this kitchen, above, that was installed in a 1920’s Spanish style renovation. It is still one of my favorites. Note: the floor tiles weren’t properly sealed the first time (if at all, I don’t remember and it wasn’t my contractor) so they got really dirty really fast. I had to have them professionally scrubbed and then resealed but they definitely still had a lot of wear from those couple days of no-sealant days. It actually looks great because its an old house but if you had a new house you might not be so into it.

clé celebrates this historic cement tile with our own modern take on a 150 year old tile crafting legacy. each encaustic cement tile is painstakingly hand crafted, one tile at a time, to create solid or patterned tiles formed from pigmented cement. the tiles are not fired in a kiln, but are cured in water for a lasting cement surface that is as stunning in its finish as it is good for the environment.
Additionally, encaustic tile works best in certain environments. It does not work well in seasonal climates with freeze and thaw cycles because the shift in temperature can cause lifting of the tile. Encaustic cement floor tiles also shouldn’t be used near chemically-treated water, like pool surrounds because the chemicals can fade and damage the design.
"Creating an emotional connection with the materials is really important as each line has a story that often draws on a long history of experience and tradition. Tile has been used for centuries around the world but here in the U.S. it has been used sparingly and confined mostly to the bathroom and kitchen. Helping people expand their horizons and think of tile in a new way is always one of our goals at clé."
clé creates one of the finest cement tiles in the world. each tile is hand made, one at a time, beginning with natural pigments hand-poured into molds then reinforced with concrete. the hand-crafted tile is then left to cure creating a silky, matte surface. available in a variety of shapes and patterns it is the tile’s variegated colors that sets it apart and makes clé’s cement tiles one of today's most sought after for both walls and floors.

While kitchen backsplash materials typically consist of glass, wood, metals and stone, cement tile backsplashes have become popular due to several benefits. They are environmentally friendly in that they are comprised of natural components, and since they are not fired, no fossil fuels have been burned in their production. They have also been created with natural pigments. They are customizable since each tile has been hand crafted. If you do not see a color combination, shape or size you like in stock, the manufacturer can simply create one to fit your needs. The tile backsplash creates a protective shield over the wall in your kitchen which helps prevent damage from spills and splatters. Tile is so much easier to clean and keep clean. Tiles come in a handy size for relatively simple installation.
Some tiles are hand-pressed, others machine pressed. The hand-pressed can be more delicate or fragile because the pressing can be inconsistent. I'm not saying all hand-pressed are to be avoided, you can simply get better consistency when they are hydraulically pressed. If you're getting them from a large manufacturer, they are likely hydraulically pressed.
The craftsman house involved in the project is over 100 years old. It’s a brown shingle craftsman very typical of the local homes and the owners are bringing it back to life little by little. The owners are both wonderful cooks (she’s French so of course!) and spend a lot of time in their well-used kitchen. The home was updated sometime in the 80’s and was ready for a serious face-lift. The clients wanted to incorporate a French/Moroccan style with the architectural elements of a craftsman. We think they succeeded!

Are you ready to begin designing your kitchen refresh and want to choose your cement backsplash tiles? You’ll see that our Echo, Minis, and Andalucia Collections are most recommended for backsplashes. If you see something that you love but you’d like a different color, we can help you personalize the concrete backsplash tiles. And if you have a completely different design you don’t see on our website, our sales team will work with you to create your own custom backsplash tile!
Thanks, Julia. I think it feels traditional too. Right now, I think I will just leave the backsplash painted rather than add anything else. I may change my mind down the road. The area behind the sink is actually too narrow for any sort of backsplash at all. There is a window right there, and the apron goes down within an inch or two of the countertop.
If you’re the DIY kind of home or business owner, installing cement tile yourself may be a great option. Tiling a floor is one of the most common DIY projects. While doing it yourself can save money down the road, if you don’t know how to install them properly, concrete tiles won’t add the kind of value you’re hoping for. Cement tiles look incredibly stylish and high-end, but if they are improperly installed and begin to stain or warp over time, or just look uneven, they’ll only end up costing you more money, time, and headaches down the road. Learn how to tile a floor using cement tiles with these tips and professional advice.
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