On the show floor, attendees witnessed many previously unthinkable applications of tile and stone, such as ceilings, to stretching the possibilities of size, including the aptly named “The Size.” Geometry played a larger role than in the past in developing the latest collections from Lea’s triangular “Gouache” collection and Apavisa’s hexagonal façade.

Sicis’ “Window” mosaic mural - part of the Skyline Collection.


Patti Fasan of Professional Attention to Tile Installation (p.a.t.t.i.) received the Joe A. Tarver Award during Coverings 2011 for her dedication and service to the tile industry. She is the first woman to receive this award!

First-time attendees and veterans alike had planned for months to attend the 2011 edition of Coverings. And, for the first time in the show’s history, this edition was held in Las Vegas. As a result of the move, National Trade Productions (NTP), the show’s organizers, said “More than 100 first-time Coverings exhibitors appeared this year.” Further, this year’s edition saw a “71% increase in attendees from the West Coast states, including a massive increase from California alone, plus an 82% increase from the Rocky Mountain region states. Overall attendance was pegged at 19,000, a slight dip from 2010, with more than 800 exhibitors lining the aisles,” NTP added.

Lindsay Rider, ForzaStone marketing and PR manager, said “Being a new exhibitor and introducing a new product to the industry, our ultra thin, natural stone panels, ForzaStone had high expectations for the show and we’re happy to report, Coverings delivered. We met with everyone from large, well-known distributors to expert installers, which was our main initiative as we develop nationwide distribution. The Coverings Show was the international venue we needed to reach the next level of growth for ForzaStone.”

Kaos by Refin incorporates textured surfaces. Designed by Luca Nichetto, Kaos emulates, “A state of zero that means complete disorder and potential infinitesimal possibilities of creation.”

Additional good news came from the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) who reported that U.S. tile consumption had increased 6% from 2009. Further, the association unveiled several additions to the 2011 TCNA Handbook (glass, stone, large format tile installations, underlayments, etc.), as well as the news that research had begun for a hypoallergenicity standard to evaluate ceramic tile and installation products. TCNA research scientist, Dr. Jyothi Rangineni, is developing a protocol to test the hypoallergenic qualities of tile and installation products and to test if they induce allergic reactions in people who use them.

On the show floor, attendees witnessed many previously unthinkable applications of tile and stone, such as ceilings, to stretching the possibilities of size, including the aptly named “The Size,” which measures 12-ft. x 4-ft. x 1/5-inches.

Geometry played a larger role than in the past in developing the latest collections from Lea’s triangular “Gouache” collection and Apavisa’s hexagonal façade, as did textures for Tagina’s “Wire System,” and hand-carved curves for Artistic Tile’s “Ziva” collection.

The Perlamarmi collection by Artistic Tile combines natural stone with mother-of-pearl. Water-jet technology is utilized to achieve the collection’s intricate pattern.

Nature-inspired creations were popular among the exhibitors with BonTon’s sepia-toned “Botanical” series; natural stone motifs from Marazzi with “Archaeology,” Mediterranea’s “Essence,” and Casa Dolce Casa’s “Belgique”; as well as high-gloss marble looks from Grespania, Florida Tile, StonePeak, and Iris.

To further attest to the current environmental concerns, the number of manufacturers using recycled (pre- and post-consumer) content has markedly increased from previous years, as has the amount of antibacterial tile offerings, including the newly launched “bios” collection” by Casalgrande Padana. In terms of color use, the palette of choice has moved from the “safe” beige neutrals to bold accent tiles surrounded by the new neutral - gray.

Onix Mosaico’s collections feature 98% recycled glass. Pictured is the “Fused” glass series.

Also enjoying a resurgence in appreciation were the visually appealing mosaic tile applications, such as those from Sicis, Onix Mosaico, Mosaico+, Bellavita, Stone + Pewter Accents, and many more.

Lastly, more than 500,000 pounds of surplus and used tile and stone were ultimately diverted from the dumpsters thanks to the show’s collaboration with Tile Partners for Humanity. Collected from exhibitors after the build of their displays and at the conclusion of the show, these discards are being “recycled” for use in Habitat for Humanity and other building projects undertaken by non-profit community organizations and public agencies benefitting the disadvantaged nationwide. TPFH was aided in the collection by Mountain Re-Source Center.

Coverings 2012 will be held April 17-20 in Orlando, FL. For more information, visit Coverings.com.