Archive for the ‘custom tiles’ Category

Porcelain Thins – Your New Tiling Choice!

Porcelain thins are the tiles on every designer, architect and artists radar, and quite frankly, we are slightly obsessed too. Unlike regular tiles, porcelain thins are a lot larger and significantly thinner.

‘Won’t such a large surface area with a thinner depth be more prone to damage?’

Not at all.

Weighing half as less than conventional 13mm tiles, the reduced thickness allows for the larger tile size, while still maintaining durability and quality.

Not only does this reduced weight allow for less handling, they also enable faster coverage and fewer grout lines, saving both in time and in materials. With less weight comes less worry, and by using these tiles, it eliminates the overall loading in building construction and eliminates the need to compromise an image or design with messy grout lines and gaps.

Now, you may be wondering why we are so passionate about this new tiling phenomenon. Well, although you may already be familiar with our incredible ability to print designs onto high quality and versatile tiles, we are now able to custom print onto porcelain thins.

For use indoor or outdoor and able to withstand heat, water and frost, no matter what the project is, we work closely with each and every client to ensure that we find the perfect fit in all situations. We can also guarantee that they will not deform, crack or fade.

Not only do our porcelain thins allow for so much versatility, save on labour and introduce a completely new tile option for your project, they can also be cut using conventional tiling tools and can be applied directly over existing tiles saving on removal costs and a lot of hard work.

Tried and tested worldwide, why not join the rest of the porcelain thin converts and make a change for the better? Contact us on +44 (0)1782 512843


blue tiled porcelain thin

brown and red porcelain thin abstract-porcelain-thin-tiles

Posted in custom tiles, Uncategorized

The Surface Design Studio at London’s The Surface Design Show 2017

The Surface Design Show recently took place in London’s very own Business Design Centre earlier this month and The Surface Design Studio were lucky enough to display our custom printed tiles there.  With various stalls and stands showcasing everything from internal and external surface materials to architectural lighting, it truly is the must-attend event for designers, architects and designers.

With such a great opportunity to showcase our product and services to such a vast and diverse audience, we certainly jumped at the chance to present here! Not only would we meet a fantastic array of potential clients, we would also have the opportunity to generate new business, which is always on our radar.

 The Surface Design Studio Exhibition Stand

The Surface Design Studio Exhibition Stand



Colourful, Custom and Conspicuous: Show-Stopping Tile Designs

Not only was our stand vibrant, current and totally on trend, it also completely showed our product off to its fullest. Our tiles covered all sides of the stand and with their jazzy patterns and complimenting colours, we were one of the most inviting and intriguing stalls there. (We’re not bias, we promise!)

Visitors to the show commented on how our stand was ‘right on the money’ and how the colours and designs were perfect for this year’s trends. So much so that we have already had a notable tile company ask to stock our tiles! Over the two days of the show, we have made over 100 contacts and have been asked to quote on some live projects with interior designers and architects. Not a bad few days we say!

Tailored Tiling for Our Unique Customers

Our aim was to let visitors know about our new and innovative technology, which allows designers and architects the chance to print onto a new range of materials, such as wood, glass and acrylic. This original concept will now allow the chance for The Surface Design Studio to become a one-stop shop for clients, thus eliminating the need to visit any other businesses to get the job done. No matter how big or small the project, no matter how niche the brief may be, The Surface Design Studio work closely with each client to work out a budget, which material would be best suited for the job, all the while promising a high-quality finish.

Want to see some more examples of the work we’ve done in London? Check out our tailored table top tiles at ultra-chic restaurant Saucer and Spritz.

Posted in custom tiles

Creating a statement for HUS – printing onto wooden panels

From first passing glance, you wouldn’t think to look up from your morning paper or Instagram feed. What with its office like exterior and uniform windows. But look a bit closer and you’ll see it. The neon sign proudly illuminating the letters, HUS, with an arrow beckoning you to look further in.

Peer through the glass panels and double doors, to see a bustling new cafe, rooftop bar, underground basement, all in one, all encapsulating one thought; a gathering place, a hangout, a place to feel welcome. With a motto like that, we couldn’t pass up the chance to offer a piece of our expertise and product now, could we?

A modern idea for an exciting restaurant in Liverpool – printed wooden panels

When we heard of a new eating and drinking space opening up in Liverpool, we thought, how will this differ from the rest? Well, it was an inspired trip to Scandinavia that brought the story to life.

From their Swedish wooden stools delicately dotted around the floor and their cosy and homely twist on just about everything, this cafe couldn’t get more welcoming if it tried. Not forgetting their specially imported and commissioned Ercol day beds, acting as comfy couches and their help-yourself book shelves to enjoy with a coffee, you’ll feel like you’ve never left home.

We were intrigued on how we could add our modern ideas to this great space. What with homely comforts oozing from the freshly baked cinnamon scrolls to the then dimly lit, boudoir esque feel when night time hit. The owners wanted something that could transition from morning right through to evening..

Not only do we specialise in ceramic tiles, we also print designs onto wooden panels. Adding a statement, wooden-panelled backdrop to the space, was something that would really give it some extra va va boom and something that would work well with the Scandinavian styled furniture. With
the colour pops from the teal couches, the owners decided on something a little more subtle and went with an almost watercolour inspired leaf piece.

Being part of a such a unique and versatile project was an exciting experience. With its charisma and quirk, alongside some lip-smackingly good food, we were glad to be able to put our stamp on a beautiful space.

Thanks HUS!

Posted in custom tiles, Grand Designs

Top 10 Things to Consider for a Perfect Floor Tile Project

1. Choosing your floor tiles

Whether you choose a patterned or a neutral floor tiles think about how your tiles will coordinate with the room colours and scheme. Natural stone tiles such as slate or granite work with many different styles.

But why not go for something unique such as digitally printed tiled mural or your own bespoke pattern tile design?

A particularly unique floor tile design was this one produced by The Surface Design Studio when we worked with Armatile to create a golf themed design for a hotel bathroom!

Golf themed bathroom floor tiles
Image courtesy of Rayanne Guest House, Belfast


2. Get a flat surface

If the floor is not level, then you may need to pour a self-levelling compound which gives you a flat, smooth base for tiling

3. Consider your knees!

Talking from experience, knee pads are a must especially if you’re are laying tiles over a large area.

4. Start off straight

Before you start laying the tiles, fix a straight edge to work from. This will ensure that you won’t run off in the wrong direction and the rest of the tiles will follow on in a straight line. Remove the edge later and you can trim tiles to fill the gap.

5. Tile layout

Think about the layout of the tiles before you start. There are many tile patterns to choose from. Straight lay is the more most common, but why not think about something a bit more interesting such as brick effect, herringbone, diagonal or versailles tile pattern, (a more random layout made up of small and large tiles.) If it is printed tile mural you are installing, then a plan will be provided with numbered references.

tile patterns

6. Spacers

Floor tile spacers are usually 3-5 mm wide. Choose a wider spacer for larger floor tiles, this allows for any movement.

7. Make it Stick

Make sure to choose the right type of adhesive for your floor. A flexible adhesive when tiling onto wooden flooring, or a strong (high bond strength) adhesive for tiling onto concrete or screed floors. Also check the expiry date on your adhesive, I learnt the hard way once when I found all the tiles popped off the next day!

8. Keep it Level

Use a spirit level to check the tiles are level, if they aren’t level lightly tap the tiles with a rubber mallet until they are.

9. Grout Colour

Grout colour will have a big impact on the final look of your tiles. You can go for a matching colour blending into the tile, or make a statement by using a contrasting colour that can draw attention to the layout of the tiles.

We love this bright blue grout against the white tiles, proving coloured grout can give a fresh look to tired tiles.

Coloured grout for tiles

Image courtesy of

10. Finally

Make sure to clean any residue of grout off the face of the tiles. If you opted for a natural stone tile, then it may be a good idea to use a tile sealer afterwards to protect the tiles.


Contact The Surface Design Studio on +44(0)1782 512843 to discuss your tiling project, we specialise in bespoke printed floor and wall tiles and we would love to help create your unique tiled space.


Posted in Ceramics, custom tiles, Murals, Uncategorized

Our Top Ten Favourite Summer 2016 Swimming Pools

  1. Albion Barn Swimming Pool by Artist Richard Woods

Swimming Pool_Albion Barn

Albion Barn Swimming Pool by Artist Richard Woods

Absolutely our number 1 favourite, is this custom designed, outside swimming pool designed by artist Richard Woods for Albion Barn (and manufactured here at the The Surface Design Studio!). It was so exciting for us to be part of this project. Each large format swimming pool tile is like a floorboard, with a wood block print effect in stunning bright colours. Here are some more images of this unique swimming pool in progress,

  1. Indoor Swimming Pool with Photographic Tile Mural

Indoor Swimming Pool with Photographic Tile Mural

Indoor Swimming Pool with Photographic Tile Mural

We were thrilled to be able to give a home owner in Oxford the luxury of having their own personal panoramic view of the Seychelles every day! Digitally printed and hand decorated by the The Surface Design Studio, these tiles are extraordinarily beautiful.

  1. ArtDeco Craig Bragdy Swimming Pool Design

ArtDeco Craig Bragdy Swimming Pool Design

Art Deco Craig Bragdy Swimming Pool Design

We also love the stunning swimming pools by Craig Bragdy Design, who create ultra-unique mosaic murals. Highly decorative, handmade and painted, these intricate custom swimming pool tiles are amazing.

Image courtesy of Craig Bragdy Design Ltd via Pinterest


  1. Not Strictly a swimming pool…

swimming pool illusion

swimming pool illusion designed by artist Leandro Erlich

This miraculous swimming pool illusion designed by artist Leandro Erlich, is created by a piece of glass with running water rippling over the top of the pool, allowing visitors to both peer into the pool and walk around the bottom of the pool whilst keeping completely dry!

Image courtesy of The 21st Century Museum of Art of Kanazawa via Pinterest


  1. Violin Shaped Swimming Pool

Violin Shaped Swimming Pool

Violin Shaped Custom Swimming Pool

Commissioned by former Goldman Sachs banker, Jay Dweck, this custom designed, violin shaped, $1m swimming pool complete with glass tiles, fiber-optic and LED lighting and an underwater sound system is like no other and just shows what is possible.

Image courtesy of


  1. Mediterranean Style Tiles

Mediterranean Style Tiles

Mediterranean Style Decorative Tiles

A fresh contemporary look for decorative swimming pool tiles with a Spanish twist. Extremely popular and something we are often requested to produce.

Image courtesy of


  1. Ultimate Relaxation Swimming Pool

Relaxation Swimming Pool

Ultimate Relaxation Swimming Pool with Waterfall

We just want to slip into this glass walled swimming pool, it looks so relaxing and even has a stunning waterfall feature built into the stone wall.

Image courtesy of


  1. Geometric Monochrome Floor Tile Design

Geometric Monochrome Floor Custom Tile Design

Geometric Monochrome Custom Floor Tile Design

We love this geometric pool floor tile design. This look can be achieved by waterjet cutting black and white tiles into custom shapes, to create unique patterns.

Image courtesy of


  1. Mosaic Swimming Pool Tile Design

Mosaic Swimming Pool Tile Design

Mosaic Swimming Pool Tile Design

Like fabric, this fluid mosaic tile design flows around pool edges and beneath the water –  stunningly beautiful and simple to reproduce.

Image courtesy of


  1. Stainless Steel Spa Pool

Stainless Steel Spa Pool

Stainless Steel Spa Pool

Stainless steel swimming pools not only look super stylish, but are also durable and virtually maintenance free (and completely the on trend thing to have!)

Image courtesy of


Contact The Surface Design Studio on +44(0)1782 512843 to see how we can help you create your perfect luxury space – our swimming pool tiles are fully vitrified, protected from frost, UV rays and abrasion.

Posted in Ceramics, custom tiles, Murals, Uncategorized

How to create a stunning swimming pool – custom tiles!

Beautiful tiles can be found in all sorts of swimming pools (here’s one we’ve just completed).

Swimming Pool_Albion Barn

At The Surface Design Studio, we believe that custom, digitally printed tiles can transform any swimming pool into a visual treat. Imagine jumping into a pool with decorated tiles, creating the illusion that you’re leaping into the coral reef, a pool full of mermaids, or maybe even joining dolphins for a swim?

But how are beautiful custom tiles created?

There’s a number of methods available but we use the best digital printing technology at The Surface Design Studio, based in the Creative County of Staffordshire, and the world capital of ceramics, Stoke-on-Trent.

Our innovative technology is patented and is designed with longevity in mind. This ensures that the tiles are resilient and will always look great (swimming pool tiles often fade over time). The high-fired tiles are also safe to use with chemicals such as chlorine and significantly, are resistant to mould.

When choosing swimming pool tiles for any project, it’s important to check that the tiles ensure that mould is not likely to find a new home in your pool!

Examples of creative swimming pool tiles

The Surface Design Studio supplied and printed the tiles for a “wooden swimming pool” for well-known artist, Richard Woods. We’ve worked with a number of clients to create bespoke tiles – our creative team can design the tiles themselves or work with artists to bring an exciting vision to life

Bespoke tiles are not just for swimming pools

If you’re looking to inject some creativity into a project, it’s not just swimming pools that allow for beautiful bespoke tiles. Steam rooms, spas, floors and ceilings have perfect surfaces for custom tiles too!

Should you require any information about our digitally printed tiles, please contact us on 01782 512843.





Posted in custom tiles