Take a walk


Netherlands-based Bolefloor chose Domotex 2011 to debut a new, fluidly curving hardwood flooring collection. The company and its product take their name from the word “bole,” or the trunk of a tree, and the soft lines of the floor planks mimic a tree’s natural growth. This is the result of proprietary scanning software developed by a Finnish engineering company, which uses custom algorithms so that no two curved boards are alike. Measuring 240 cm long, 15 to 30 cm wide, with a thickness of 21 mm, planks are currently available in oak, but other species will be available this summer.    bolefloor.com 


Esprit Home partnered with Vorwerk Carpets and launched a new line of domestic carpet tiles at Domotex 2011. Called Home Islands, these basic geometric tiles can be laid individually or combined into larger patterns. And by leaving gaps in the pattern to reveal the flooring beneath, a fascinating interplay between the floor and the structure of the tile surfaces is created. This new line is currently available in 16 colour variations, and comes with a new, environmentally friendly non-slip backing of polyester fleece made from 60 percent recycled materials.    esprit-home.com


In the wood world, longer means better, and British vinyl flooring manufacturer mFLOR followed that idiom when launching its Langster Plank line at Domotex 2011. Measuring 137.16 cm long by 18.42 cm wide, it is – mFLOR claims – the longest PVC plank in the industry. To support this length-to-width ratio, Langster utilizes the Stabilon glass-fibre reinforcement system, and is also designed to be hypoallergenic with ultra-low VOC emissions. The collection comes in a range of nine designs based on European hardwoods, including walnut, cherry and wild pear (shown).   mflor.eu


Winnipeg-based Global Access Distributors introduced Symmetry Bamboo Flooring at IIDEX/NeoCon Canada. This engineered bamboo product uses a German-made flexible resin mix and a dense 4-mm strand woven top layer, which prevents surface scratching that is common in engineered flooring. A 6-mm cross core, which resists cupping and warping, and a three-phase drying process make this sustainable tropical species suitable for harsh Canadian climates.   bambooaccess.com 


St. Georges, Quebec–based Mirage has added African Mahogany to its Exotic series of prefinished hardwood floors. Reminiscent of sapele, a fine-textured wood with an interwoven, wavy grain, and offered in three colours – Brass, Terracotta, and Bronze – meant to evoke impressions of the dark continent, these new floors are available in engineered 5-inch boards
with a semi-gloss finish.   miragefloors.com


Torlys is continuing to expand its Smart Floors offerings with the new Largo Collection of 7-foot long, extra-wide engineered-wood planks, launched at Toronto’s Interior Design Show in January. Like other Smart Floor products, the Largo line is made of 74 percent pre-consumer recycled wood fibres and chips from sustainable sources, and by utilizing the same high density fibre “smart core” and Uniclic joint system, can be “un-clicked” and reused as many as three times and still remain under warranty.   torlys.com


InterfaceFLOR has added two brand-new modular carpet tile patterns to its vast array of offerings. Sew Straight (shown) features a simple tailored line with a low profile face and fine threads of complementary hues in varying widths, while Primary Stitch’s bold colour combinations insert energy into commercial installation. Both patterns come in a shared palette of 12 neutrals and earth tones, and following the company’s environmental ethos, these tiles are constructed of between 46 and 50 percent recycled content from other carpets, which includes the backing material.   interfaceflor.ca


Tandus Flooring’s District carpet made quite a splash in 2010, winning Antron Carpet Fiber Product Innovation Awards, and INVISTA’s second annual People’s Choice Award. Designed by Suzanne Tick, the District collection features three patterns and 17 colourways in clean, deliberate strokes and rectangles reminiscent of Piet Mondrian, and come in both a modular carpet and Powerbond hybrid resilient sheet flooring in Antron Lumena solution dyed nylon. District is SCS and NSF-140 Platinum certified for its recycled and environmentally friendly materials.    tandus.com

9—Bucking the rule that says carpets should be laid so patterns connect, Shaw Contract Group is encouraging clients to install its new No Rules collection of Cradle to Cradle carpet tiles in the most random configuration imaginable. The three patterns of Byline (pictured), Linage, and Link blend geometric shapes with intersecting lines and colours to create truly abstract compositions. All use EcoWorx tile backing, which contains 40 percent recycled content, and are themselves completely recyclable.    shawcontractgroup.com


The Interior Design Show in Toronto is where Roya Manufacturing & Supply Canada Inc. launched its new Primeflors commercial-grade modular carpet collections. Among them is Ibiza, with eye-popping geometric patterns inspired by the shadows, pleats and creases of origami paper-folding. These patterns are animated even more when adjacent tiles are rotated a quarter turn when laid (as shown here).    royacanadainc.com


Toronto-based custom carpet manufacturer Creative Matters has reached far across the globe for new carpet inspirations and presented its findings at Domotex 2011 with the Terra Collection. An example is Lumina Silver (shown), in 100-per-cent hand-spun Tibetan wool and Chinese silk hand-knotted by adult artisans in Nepal. The inspiration goes beyond just product finds: Creative Matters supports the GoodWeave program, which works to end illegal child labour in the carpet industry and give educational opportunities to children in South Asia.   creativemattersinc.com


New Ravenna has introduced a line of marble mosaic tiles called the Silk Road Collection, which blends Eurasian materials with contemporary design elements. A palette of five colours – Thassos, Calacatta, Carrara, Bardiglio, and Nero Marquina – can be used to individualize a collection of 30 patterns that evoke the romanticism of this legendary trade route. Tiles can be tumbled, honed or treated to create reflective and matt surfaces, and are durable indoors or out.     newravenna.com


This past January, Ceramic Tiles of Italy made its first Canadian trade-show appearance at the Interior Design Show in Toronto, representing a handful of Italian tile manufacturers anxious to introduce new flooring product to the Canadian market. 

14—Tracce, a new collection, is from Fap Ceramiche. This line of porcelain stoneware floor tiles is imbued with both the look and feel of real wood, and comes in warm gastronomic-inspired colours such as butter, honey, walnut, coconut and almond.  fapceramiche.com 

15—Lab_21, a collection by Mirage, is an evocation and interpretation of the art of cocciopesto – which dates back to Phoenician times, when flooring material was created by crushing roofing tiles, lime mortar and stone granules. The collection is availabl
e in four sizes and comes in seven basic neutral shades.  mirage.it 

16—Bios, a new collection by Casalgrande Padana, has special antibacterial properties ideal for health facilities, schools, restaurants, and other areas where sanitation is extremely importance. It also helps contribute to LEED certification. Instead of just a surface treatment, new technology blends antibacterial mineral particles directly into the raw material used to manufacture the tiles, thereby extending its effectiveness.   casalgrandepadana.com


Armstrong is continuing to champion the transition to fiberglass vinyl sheet flooring with its new Duality collection, which combines ultra-realistic, three-dimensional visuals with the company’s ToughGuard Flex backing. Organizing the collection into three basic groups – stone, wood and alternatives – visuals are achieved using Armstrong’s MasterWorks Technology printing, which captures the depth, definition and dimension of natural materials, so that stones look like stones, and woods look like woods.  armstrong.com


Nora has just introduced noraplan degree, a high-performance rubber flooring covering with a textured, modular look. The line features a colour palette versatile enough to ensure a wide range of design possibilities across a variety of applications and environments; named after U.S. state capitals, the palette encompasses 30 coordinating colours separated into 10 colour families. Available in both tiles and rolls, noraplan degree is extremely dirt- and stain-resistant, and never needs waxing or sealing.   nora.com


LSI Floors of Toronto continues to turn the floor into a blank canvas ideal for corporate branding by further refining its large-format digital-image vinyl tiles and planks. Starting with the highest-resolution-possible large-format digital image, photo processing software segments it into 12-inch squares. These are then printed and numbered as vinyl tiles via a direct-to-press computer, packaged in order and delivered to site.   lsifloors.com