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Living room tiles: 5 compelling reasons to choose the contemporary option

Individual fashions may come and go but practical, stylish solutions to the problem of interior design endure. Take the idea of using tiles in your living room: those canny Mediterranean Romans and Greeks have been using tiles to decorate the floors and walls of their homes since before Archimedes started overfilling the bath.

This elegant and modern lounge features Porcel-Thin Paris leaf pattern floor tiles and Bloom black and white floral photographic wall art tiles

While here in the UK they've always been traditionally associated with kitchens and bathrooms the idea using of tiles for the living room is fast gaining popularity - not  least because of the contemporary design idea of 'bringing the outside in' - but also due to the host of benefits offered by modern floor and wall tiles.

Let's take a look:

1. Living Room Tiles for Every Taste

Gone are the days where your only choice was a plain white tile to put round the shower or a beige effort to act as a splashback to the cooker. Today's modern tiles are available in staggering range of patterns, finishes, sizes and appearances - delivering almost unlimited design possibilities throughout your home. And the tiling trend is growing!

Sandstone effect living room tiles and an amazing sea front view.  This contemporary lounge has it all

When it comes to floor tiles for the living room the natural look is a popular and contemporary theme. Modern stone effect tiles are simply breathtaking in their realism and detail: from porcelain tiles that perfectly mimic simple sandstone or beautifully intricate marble you can now enjoy the gorgeous good looks of natural stone without any of the drawbacks of the real thing.

For those who prefer, tiles that look like wood are also fast growing in popularity. Highly realistic in appearance, colour and even texture these porcelain tiles certainly put laminate flooring to shame!  Finding it hard to believe that a porcelain tile really looks like wood? Well, hold onto your hats - digital printing technology and revolutionary manufacturing techniques have resulted in living room tiles that not only look and feel like wood but are also available in sizes and formats which also perfectly imitate planks and even parquet flooring!

So how about tile walls in your living room? Firstly, you can forget the whole idea of rows of blank, featureless colour. Today's modern living room wall tile designs are a thing of absolute beauty. The concept of "bringing the outside in" is an increasingly popular design idea for living rooms and one way of accomplishing this is through the use of nature prints and pattern wall tiles. Again, state of the art printing techniques have produced subtle and highly detailed prints which bring a real sense of the outdoors to your interior spaces - a fine example of these are the leaf and tree pattern porcelain tiles from Porcel-Thin's Paris collection.

Or how about something a little more adventurous? Abstract tile art or even photo tiles are a fantastic way of creating a striking lounge wall. Used sparingly these can also produce a much more subtle and understated effect for a chic, stylish and effortlessly elegant look. For those looking for something truly different in living room tiles then your first port of call must be the increasingly popular metallic tiles. Far from being 'heavy metal' the warm, rich tones of copper, rose gold and other hues can add a feeling of decadent luxury and opulence to the tiled walls in your living room.

2. Long Lasting Living Room Tile Luxury

Your living room is likely to see a lot of use - use means traffic - and traffic means wear and tear. Whilst natural materials such as stone or wood look great after being freshly installed they can quickly succumb to damage unless you're prepared to pay for a lot of expensive maintenance. Carpets are even more vulnerable - their colour quickly fading in sunlight or undergoing a drastic (and unplanned) change of shade when the inevitable glass of red wine is spilt.

This practical and stylish modern living room features sandstone effect porcelain floor tiles by Porcel-Thin that extend out onto the adjoining patio

Living room tiles, however, are far more durable, happily enduring years of high traffic abuse, spills and accidents without complaint and maintaining their good looks.

3. Living Room Tiles: The Easy Clean Option

Going hand in hand with their durable nature is the fact that living room floor and wall tiles are simplicity itself to keep clean and looking as good as new. A brush, a little vacuuming, the occasional wash and the job is done. Stains and spills are easily cleaned away with just the wipe of a cloth - ending the need for all that mucking about with expensive stain removers or professional carpet cleaning.

4. Living Room Tiles: The Hypoallergenic Alternative

Just as floor tiles for your living room make cleaning a breeze they also have another distinct advantage over carpets - namely the fact they are an excellent alternative for family members who suffer from allergies. Carpets, by their very nature, are prone to trapping dirt, dust, mites, pollen, pet hair and dander deep down in the pile, where only the most determined of professional cleaning can get at them - resulting in a miserable time for anyone with sensitivity to these common allergens.

This amazing London penthouse features China Clay coloured thin porcelain living room floor tiles from the Porcel-Thin Mono collection

Floor and wall tiles provide a much cleaner, healthier environment for the many children and adults who endure the seasonal onslaught of hay fever or the year round affliction of pet or dust allergies. If combined with a good quality antibacterial grout both floor and wall tiles will also resist both mould and mildew - the spores of which can be hazardous to even healthy individuals.

5. Living Room Tiles: Warm feet and Cold Cash

Forget the idea that living room floor tiles will be cold comfort on your feet. Ultra-thin porcelain tiles are actually far more efficient at conducting the heat from modern underfloor heating systems than either carpet or wood floorings. Being thinner these floor tiles both heat up quickly and use less energy to maintain a comfortable temperature - meaning you not only gain toasty feet but consume less energy. Better for the environment and cheaper bills? What's cold about that?

This warm and inviting lounge features golden toned Indian Sandstone effect wall and floor tiles with electric underfloor heating

So there you are: 5 great reasons to choose tiles for your living room. Patterned or plain, floor or wall, today's tiles are the natural choice for comfortable, contemporary living.

Split level lounge featuring living room floor tiles from the Porcel-Thin Florence porcelain tile collection
This feature tiled living room wall features Blossoming Plum art tiles by Porcel-Thin
Kandla grey sandstone effect thin porcelain tiles have been used to create an attractive feature wall in this modern and light tiled living room
A tiled living room feature wall called Starry Night from the Porcel-Thin Art tile collection
This modern lounge features marble effect living room floor tiles from the Porcel-Thin Ferarra tile collection