Slate tile is a fine-grained metamorphic stone that has been a part of Americana, as a paving material, for centuries. Of course, it functions wonderfully as a countertop, flooring, and wall coverings. Country Floors presents an interesting array of modern slate for your consideration.

History

These tiles offer an opportunity to tap into a centuries-old design tradition. Unique among natural stone used in the design, slate has a mineral structure that allows it to break cleanly into thin layers. For this reason, it is an inherently good material for tile. To complement the ease with which slate can be made into the tile, slate also typically possesses a remarkably low porosity, protecting surfaces under it from water. 

These factors combined to make this type of roofing a staple of European vernacular and urban architecture, especially from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Famous quarries in Wales and Spain provided the slate for much of Europe. The production in Wales is so old, in fact, that there is evidence for Roman slate floors and slate roofs in the area as early as the third century

It has also played a major role in American architecture since at least the seventeenth century. With so many centuries of history, it’s no surprise that a group of specialized tradespeople called slaters developed, skilled in slate tile installation, especially in roofing applications. 

Contemporary Home Use of Slate Tile

Slate, however, doesn’t have to be defined by its historical roots. It’s true, many love Country Floors slate tile exactly for its rustic look and historical interest that calls to mind the gorgeous and weathered slate roofs of Wales. For those seeking this look, Country Floors offers natural cleft tiles that recreate the texture of traditional slate. 

But slate can also be extraordinarily elegant. In the right context, even the striking texture of natural cleft slate floor tiles or wall tiles complements a modern design. Country Floors also offers honed slate tiles with a fine-textured smooth surface for those seeking an even sleeker look. 

Slate’s famous gray color lends itself to both indoor and outdoor applications. Beautiful and warm in daylight, outdoor slate tile is perfect for your next patio project! In the low light of a bathroom or dining room, slate’s dark and stormy gray feel alluring and luxurious. Try slate shower tile, for example, in your next bathroom remodel!

Commercial Use

Slate is elegant but simple, luxurious but matter-of-fact. This means the slate is extremely versatile in its commercial applications. Slate wall tile in well-lit office space lends an element of sophistication to the workplace. Slate sets the mood in restaurant dining rooms as a wall tile or in visible restaurant kitchens as a striking slate backsplash. 

Because it is naturally water-resistant and can be especially so when the well-sealed, slate floor and wall tile is perfect in pools and spas where wet surfaces are expected. 

Not just practical but beautiful too, the opulence of slate’s dark gray heightens spa users’ feelings of luxury. Don’t hesitate to get creative with it either! Though we think our slate looks great in such classic applications as hotel lobby floors, it can also, for example, be integrated into an inventive water feature!

Comparison with Other Natural Stone

Typically falling in the 3-4 range on the Mohs scale, slate tile is comparable in hardness and durability to other classic natural stone tiles, such as marble and travertine

Installation and Maintenance

Slate tile can be put down over any sturdy, dry cement or wood floor. Use thinset and follow with a clear sealer. Slate is already incredibly durable and, installed correctly, will last a very long time.

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