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best tile manufacturers and tile brands

In a world with no shortage of tile companies, some manufacturers and retailers are destined to rise to the top.Numerous small artisan tile companies produce truly original and unique products. While these tiles are sure to make your bathroom or kitchen a one-of-a-kind showstopper, many of these tiles may be difficult to obtain. At the other end of the spectrum are large tile companies whose products are as easy to find and purchase as making a quick trip to your local home improvement store. These tiles tend to be far less expensive than the artisan makers, but they also can be ordinary or plain. Any list of the best tile companies and brands would have to balance style, price, buying convenience, and quality, and these companies all hit that mark.

Ann Sacks began her tile design career in 1980 when she discovered a box of colorful Mexican Talavera tiles being sold as trivets while shopping for a wedding dress in Portland, Oregon. The company remained largely in the Pacific Northwest for years, but then began slowly spreading its showrooms across the United States and now has locations in many metro areas. If you are looking to go beyond the typical tile found at the big companies, Ann Sacks might just be your ultimate destination.

This Binghamton, New York-based maker and retailer of distinctive tiles has only been in business since 2000, but it has made a strong impact on the designer tile landscape. Owner Susan Jablon, in conjunction with daughter Emily, produces custom mosaic glass tiles, available online, designed to dress up a kitchen, bathroom, or any part of your house that needs unique tiles.

If you want to break away from the pack, Arizona Tile offers unique, gorgeous tile. It's the go-to place if you're looking to break out of a tile rut. John Huarte and wife Eileen began Arizona Tile in 1977 in San Diego and now serves primarily the Western United States. While Arizona Tile does have a healthy range of porcelain and glass tile, it also excels in granite, marble, limestone, travertine, slate, and onyx slabs and tile.

It makes sense that Florida Tile, Inc. would be located in the state of Florida, except it's not. Its corporate headquarters are in Lexington, Kentucky, with a manufacturing and distribution base in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. For a half-century, Florida Tile, Inc. has been making porcelain and ceramic floor and wall tile, as well as natural stone, decorative glass, and metal tiles.

Unique hardly describes the products found at Pav Tile, Wood & Stone Inc. Founded by husband-and-wife team Franois and Emmi Micallef, this Massachusetts-based tile company, in business since 2000, imports premium French, Italian, Belgian, and Spanish handmade terra-cotta tile.

Hakatai is an importer and distributor of glass tile and has been in business since 1997. Hakatai offers recycled glass tiles, totally carbon-free green shipping, and obscure specialty tiles. More recently, Hakatai has expanded into other tile materials such as stone and metal. But glass remains Hakatai's stock in trade. If glass mosaic is your interest, Hakatai just might be able to supply you with a product that works for your home.

Based in the Portland, Oregon, area, Clayhaus Ceramics is a very personal, hands-on, and labor of love created by founders Jason and Megan Coleman. As is befitting a smaller tile studio, Clayhaus Ceramics does not have a massive quantity of products. But the tile it does have is uncommon and well-thought-out. You might just love Clayhaus Ceramics after you check out its Matte White tiles installed on stair risers.

Both a tile manufacturer and distributor, Bedrosians Tile & Stone has been in business for well over half a century, mainly on the West Coast. Bedrosians has a brick-and-mortar presence, represented by showrooms in about a dozen states. It also has a strong global customer base. Bedrosians is truly a tile business success story that has gone from being purely a brick-and-mortar operation to a familiar online presence. Bedrosians has managed to shift from being a small tile operation to a major player, without losing its small company-style customer service. It has also upped the ante with its robust and easy-to-use online tile store.

In recent years, Modwalls has become a force to be reckoned with in the world of tile companies. This online-only Aptos, California-based company designs and manufactures its own ceramic and porcelain tile, all with a modern bent. With most tile companies you have to do a deep dive to find cool tiles. But with Modwalls, cool and distinctive is business as usual. Colorful subway tile, glass, and unusual shapes are specialties at Modwalls.

Headquartered in Vicenza, Italy, Bisazza has more than a dozen flagship stores across the world with an equal number in the United States. Even if you are not in the market for architect-quality mosaic tile, Bisazza's site is well worth consulting to see tile designs from internationally well-known designers.

There was a time in tile-making history, not too long ago, when mosaics were ignored in favor of large format tile.Today mosaics represent a fertile creative ground for true tile artistry.Case in point:Minneapolis-based Mercury Mosaics, with its inventive cookie-cutter shapes such as diamonds and Moroccan fish scales, made exceptional by combining lush, rich colors.Mercury Mosaics sells tile sample packs of all of their tile products so that you can see how they would look in your own bathroom or kitchen.

Del Conca is an Italian tile company that has placed roots in the United States in the form of a large factory in Tennessee. One of its innovations is Del Conca Fast Collection, a system for laying their porcelain stoneware plank tile without grout, adhesives, or joints. Each tile plank has grooves on both sides, unlike tongue and groove, which has grooves only on one side. An insert is placed in a groove as a kind of tongue and then a mallet is used to tap in the adjoining board. Besides the Del Conca Fast Collection, the company offers a huge assortment of alluring and colorful Euro-style tiles.

Mission Stone & Tile is based in Tennessee and boasts extraordinary tile offerings such as its Curve Appeal scallop-shaped tiles and Hex Appeal hexagonal Carrara Basalt tiles.Besides those two stores, Mission Stone & Tile sells its products online, with free shipping on all regular-priced materials, although there are some exceptions.

Nemo Tile, based in New York, sports a generous variety of tiles, from porcelain and ceramic to stone and engineered flooring surfaces. Nemo began small, but now it has several showrooms in New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

Marazzi has its roots in Italy, and today it provides porcelain stoneware, glazed porcelain, through-body porcelain, glass, and glazed ceramic tile for both commercial and residential use. While Marazzi is not a direct retail operation, it does distribute to both independent retailers and to the big home improvement centers.

Florim USA, formerly called American Florim, is based in Clarksville, Tennessee, and is an American offshoot of Italian tilemaker Florim Group. Florim USA's mission is to combine age-old Italian craftsmanship with modern production processes. In 2010, Florim USA made a name for itself as one of the first U.S. companies to bring HDG (High Definition Graphic) technology to tile manufacturing.

StonePeak is an Italian company with headquarters in Chicago and dealers scattered across the country. StonePeak offers gorgeous ceramic and porcelain tiles revolving around commercial and high-end residential installations. One claim to fame is that StonePeak was the first United States-based manufacturer of giant-format tiles.

As the name says, Oceanside Glass & Tile is all about glass tile. Since 1992, it has supplied glass tile for high-profile commercial and residential tiling applications. No mass producer of ordinary tiles, one of Oceanside Glass & Tile's specialties is art glass.

Based in Scottsdale, Arizona, but distributing in other states, Villagio Tile & Stone features ultra-swanky tumbled stone and travertine, among other types of tile. Villagio Tile & Stone does not have an online store, but if you are ever in the Scottdale area, it is surely worth a visit if you are in the market for tile.

American Olean is a subsidiary of Daltile. In 1995, Daltile acquired American Olean. Both Daltile and American Olean are owned by Mohawk Industries, a conglomerate that touches on many home remodeling industries, mainly flooring-related. Because American Olean is a favored brand of Lowe's home improvement stores, it tends to be less expensive than other tile offerings. If you want a good, inexpensive tile that does the job for bathtub surrounds, walls, floors, and backsplashes, American Olean can help you bring your project in under or at budget.

Daltile manufactures tile in the United States, with several operations in the United States and Mexico. The company offers options including glazed and unglazed tile, glazed and unglazed ceramic mosaics, glazed porcelain tile, unglazed quarry tile and a variety of stone products. In terms of availability, Daltile is one of those few tile manufacturers that you can find everywhere. You can findDaltile in more than hundreds of dedicated retails sales centers, as well as at Lowe's and Home Depot. Also, Daltile is a huge enough operation that it can offer popular favorites as well as a number of unusual product lines.

Floor, wall, medallion, natural stone, and resin borders can be found at this California-based tile company, which has branches in Texas, New Jersey, and Illinois. One of its innovations is contemporary, elegant prefabricated porcelain tile countertops.

Merola Tile provides porcelain and natural stone tiles for kitchens, bathrooms, walls, and floors. Merola Tile is a wholesale distributor of tile to brand-name retailers, so you cannot purchase tile through the company directly. You can find much of Merola Tile's offerings at Home Depot.

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