New ceramic tile design trends at Cevisama

2 March 2015Categories: Printheads, Ceramics, Exhibitions

In mid-February Xaar visited Cevisama, Spain's design show for the ceramics sector and the place to discover the latest trends for ceramic tiles. 

Although the demand for tiles produced with a natural material effect such as wood, marble and stone is set to continue, there is a stunning new trend for creating even more amazing textures which combine these natural looks with modern over-patterns.

Tile manufacturers continue to embrace digital printing technology and are now no longer producing tiles with only one type of printhead; they are combining different types of printheads such as the Xaar 1002 GS12 with the Xaar 001, or Xaar 1002 GS40 and Xaar 001 to achieve a far more creative design using optical or texture effects.

There are numerous benefits to this enhanced level of creativity: manufacturers are able to produce high value ceramic tiles, and the flexibility of the technology means they can produce tiles to follow local trends and fashion without wasting stock. This technology is helping them to differentiate themselves from their competitors. ​ ​

Many of Xaar's ink partners – Colorobbia, Ferro, Fritta, Smalticeram and Wanxing – showed how their inks and glazes using the Xaar printheads are able to produce tiles with a variety of remarkable patterns with effects including metallic gold and silver, white and yellow, as well as gloss, matt, sinking and glazing effects. ​

Below are some of the types of tile designs we saw that were produced using our printheads.  

Natural material effects


​​Tiles produced with the Xaar 1002 GS12 showed recreated natural effects like stone that are indistinguishable from the real thing. ​​

Ink: Smalticeram

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS12


Tile manufacturer: Cicogres

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS12 & Xaar 1002 GS40

Here we see how natural wood effects are more faithfully reproduced when combining the Xaar 1002 GS12 and Xaar 1002 GS40 printheads.

Reproduction of a photograph ​

We also saw an example of how digital inkjet can be used to reproduce large scale photographs on ceramic tiles.

Ink: Smalticeram

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS12 ​

RAK Ceramics and Smalticeram displayed a fabulous reproduction of a photograph of an ancient stone monument using the Xaar 1002 GS12. You can see the sharpness of the white text stand out on the dark background. This tile was produced using Sacmi Continua and decorated by a Sacmi digital inkjet printer using Xaar printheads. ​

​Expanding the range to recreate traditional designs​

Many tiles featuring glazes and vibrant colours were produced using the Xaar 1002 GS40 because it can laydown a wide range of high pigment, large particle inks and fluids, not previously possible. ​

Ink: Fritta

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS40

Fritta's inks were used with the Xaar 1002 GS40 to recreate very traditional tiles that look like mosaics. You can see how the heavy-pigmented inks were able to produce intense colours, particularly the yellow and white.  ​

​Layered natural & over-patterns

Ink: Ferro

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS40

This tile shows a stone effect produced using the Xaar 1002 GS40. You can see how a glaze effect is applied to create the natural features of a worn stone's surface, with the white glaze bringing out the detail. This produces a "shabby chic" effect, blending natural looks with over-gloss to produce a fusion of designs.

Metallic effect ​

​​Ink: Fritta​

Printhead: Xaar 1002 GS40

We can see the beautiful combination of gold and silver metallic effect on a ceramic tile. The intense gold stands out at the darker end of the tile, and towards the lighter end you can see how shiny the silver becomes when light reflects over the tile. ​

​​Adding relief with the Xaar 001 ​

​​​​​Ink: Fritta

Printhead: Xaar 001

This tile shows how a glaze pattern with smooth curves and contours is layered on top of a natural stone pattern, producing a wonderful optical effect when the light reflects from different areas of the pattern. ​

​Cevisama was a great way to see a how digital printing is opening up the boundaries of creativity. We expect to see an increase in the combinations of Xaar printheads used to produce those fusions of modern and natural designs in more innovative ways in the future. Things are getting really exciting now in the ceramic tile design world. ​​

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