I’ve been attending Coverings for over a decade, it’s a yearly pilgrimage for me. Although Avente Tile is an online retailer of niche products like hand painted ceramic tile and handmade cement tile, I always enjoy the show and think it serves as a vital forum to understand and see what the larger players are focused on. Understanding the trends that are driving sales in the US market makes good sense for anybody in this business. Coverings makes it easy with one stop!
Bill Buyok at Coverings 2012
Coverings consistently provides insight on what’s hot in tile and stone with a well-curated and tightly managed show. You can’t afford not to exhibit at Coverings because it is essential in finding new markets. Additionally, I find the show’s well-balanced approach to education is critical for growing my business with current information on marketing and design trends.
Colorful Impressions from Coverings 2012
As a distributor and retailer of tile, here’s some of what I found memorable at Coverings 2012. I’m a big proponent of color and pattern in design. One of my biggest frustrations has been the ubiquitous sea of beige and white tile. This year, I saw something very different at Coverings 2012. I saw color! A lot of color! There was accent color, bold color and a strong emphasis on patterns.
For the pattern addict who’s seeking something unique in bold, contemporary colors; go talk to Oscar & Izzy. They premiered their new quarter design line, Organic Origins. Their style is fun, unabashed and original. I’m glad to see tile artisans embracing color.
One of my passions and core business is cement tile. I was very fond of this traditional cement tile pattern (left) in a bold blue. It was a floor installation by Aguayo Cement Tile from the Dominican Republic. Geometric patterns were common in both ceramic and cement tile. Geometric patterns are a strong trend in both commercial and residential applications this year.
Cement Tile by Aguayo
ARTO Tile & Brick executes Spanish and Colonial looks with élan. They use classic patterns in fresh colors to create a timeless look. Their Malibu Tiles add interest with the right amount of panache. They pair well with the entire line of Artillo colors and finishes and are available in both concrete and ceramic tiles.
Arabesque 4 in Mission Red & Tuscan Mustard with Malibu Deco
The line of cement tiles from Sabine Hill is impressive. The patterns are exquisite in their simplicity while the colors are interesting without being brash. Sabine Hill brings modern and organic designs to the tradition of cement tiles. The tiles exhibit a sense of texture that I can’t quite explain.
Sabine Hill Cement Tile – Weave Colorway 4
I also saw an emphasis on texture. Stone, cement, or ceramic tile in neutral colors were spiced up with a punch of texture. Texture is a great way to add interest and depth, and it’s a trend I like.
Galrão Group’s Wave Stone Tile
An Opportunity to Network, Learn, and Grow
Despite everything you find on the floor at the show, I have to admit that Avente Tile wouldn’t be where it is today without all of the exceptional educational programs that Coverings provides each year. Year after year, I always leave the show jazzed. It’s more than the trends in tile. I leave with new knowledge, resources, and networking contacts that the event provides. It’s a great opportunity to network with vendors and understand how we can work more effectively together.
In the countless educational programs, I have learned how to market my business online and with traditional methods, too! I’ve learned how to use blogs and social media from presentations from Simple Marketing Now. I’ve found new places to showcase my tiles, like the online design resource, Modenus. This network of professionals provides support and resources for just about every aspect of my business. With over a decade of attendance, I have to admit, I really enjoy the people at Coverings and appreciate the family of support I’ve found. Thanks, Coverings!
After a decade of learning, I was able to give back to the community with a short presentation in the Coverings Central on How a Social Media Presence Improves Retail Sales. This was a real highlight for me, and it was thrilling to connect with other business owners and share my knowledge with them. I also was fortunate to be part of a special twitter chat, KBTribeChat, discussing what was hot at Coverings 2012. Both opportunities gave me a chance to reflect on how much my business has changed in the last decade.
Don’t Miss Coverings 2013 in Atlanta
If you’ve never exhibited at Coverings, I look forward to seeing you on the show floor in 2013. Take the advice of a Coverings veteran: there isn’t a better way to showcase your tile style and find new markets than this event. I always enjoy the hospitality that Orlando provides. However, I am really excited about attending Coverings 2013 in Atlanta. It’s a new venue and Atlanta is a fun and colorful city. You’ll be sure to find me there from April 29 through May 2, 2013; networking with new exhibitors, learning and re-connecting with my Coverings friends and family!
Until then, if you are looking for hand-painted ceramic tile or cement tile, please visit Avente Tile online or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest. If you love hand crafted tiles, read our weekly blog Avente Tile Talk. See you at Coverings 2013 in Atlanta!
Bill Buyok is the man behind the online retailer, Avente Tile. Avente Tile specializes in handmade and cement tile. They find exquisite tile from the world over and can ship nearly anywhere. Check out Avente Tile’s website and look through some of the amazing products they sell.