Monday, June 02, 2008


until some months ago, i didn't even know about the world of tiles. well, i knew tiles, simply as they are part of every bathroom and kitchen. but i never gave them much thought.
then came the idea to renovate the bathroom here. which developed first hazy shapes in January, with reflections on oldnew, followed by a tile of thought in February, when i visited some bathroom studios and tile galleries.
those first visits, they left me clueless, with the myriad of options on sale: aubergine wash basins and glass tiles. square bathtubs and granite plates.

then i saw them. those natural stones. they don’t even have a proper name, just a code: “MJ9W". but they are amazing. they are produced in Italy, and were delivered like fashion designer dresses, in huge white boxes, with silk paper between mosaic layers, together with their companeros, white tiles for the wall, and dune-structured tiles for the floor.

yesterday, i prepared the natural stones for the laying. it felt like opening a box of candy. those stones, they hold so many facets, so many variations to lay them: in strings of flexible height. or in a column.

that's what we tried today, the tile workers and i. it felt good, to join the little work crew for some time. to be part of the cutting and laying, of this process that turns an idea from a sketch on paper to walls in stone and mortar.

"this will look like a designer bathroom when it's finished," i said to the tile layer, still all excited. he smiled, and corrected me. "this is a designer bathroom," he stated. which made me think that seen like this, even the tile factory fits in, with their name that sounds like a designer label. Marazzi.

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