Patti Fasan of Professional Attention to Tile Installation (p.a.t.t.i.) received the Joe A. Tarver Award from the NTCA during Coverings 2011. She is the first woman to receive this award.

For the first time in its history, Coverings was held in Las Vegas. According to show organizers, the move led to more than 100 first-time Coverings exhibitors appearing at the show, along with a 71 percent increase in attendees from West Coast states and an 82 percent increase from the Rocky Mountain region. The show overall saw a slight dip from 2010, with around 19,000 attendees and more than 800 exhibitors.

Eric Astrachan, TCNA executive director, together with Opportunity Village’s Laura D’Amore (left) and Rachel Allen (right) present tile artisans with an appreciative plaque created by Motawi Tileworks for benches that will benefit Opportunity Village residents. Accepting her award is Barbara Schmidt, B.A. Schmidt Arts & Enterprises.

“Being a new exhibitor and introducing a new product to the industry, ForzaStone had high expectations for the show and we’re happy to report, Coverings delivered,” said Lindsay Rider, ForzaStone marketing and PR manager. “We met with everyone from large, well-known distributors to expert installers, which was our main initiative as we develop nationwide distribution.”

The Tile Council of North America (TCNA), which said that U.S. tile consumption has seen a slight increase of 6 percent from 2009, unveiled several additions to the 2011 TCNA Handbook, and announced that research had begun for a hypoallergenicity standard to evaluate ceramic tile and installation products. TCNA research scientist, Dr. Jyothi Rangineni, is developing a protocol to test the hypoallergenic qualities of tile and installation products.

At the Coverings Tweet-Up are Ryan Fasan (p.a.t.t.i.) and JoAnn Locktov (Bella Figura Communications).

On the show floor, attendees witnessed companies stretching the possibilities of size, including the aptly named The Size, which measures 12’ by 4’ by 1/5”.

Geometry played a large role in developing the latest collections from Lea’s triangular Gouache collection and Apavisa’s hexagonal façade, as did textures for Tagina’s Wire System, and hand-carved curves in Artistic Tile’s Ziva collection.

Jose and Aida Garcia of Alcalaten Ceramicas with Gaudi Mosaic in the background.

Nature-inspired creations were popular among exhibitors with BonTon’s sepia-toned Botanical series; natural stone motifs from Marazzi with Archaeology, Mediterranea’s Essence, and Casa Dolce Casa’s Belgique; as well as high-gloss marble looks from Grespania, Florida Tile, StonePeak and Iris.

The number of manufacturers using recycled pre- and post-consumer content has increased from previous years, as has the amount of antibacterial tile offerings, including the newly launched bios collection by Casalgrande Padana.

At the CTEF’s Certified Tile Installer (CTI) testing area with the candidates up for certification. Scott Carothers of the CTEF (far left) and Stephanie Samulski (far right) administered the two-and-a-half-day written and hands-on test.

In terms of color use, the palette of choice has moved from beige neutrals to bold accent tiles surrounded by the new neutral: Gray.

Also featured at the show were visually appealing mosaic tile applications, including products from Sicis, Onix Mosaico, Mosaico+, Bellavita, and Stone + Pewter Accents.

Tile Council of North America (TCNA) presented its 2011 Tile Person of the Year Award to Quarry Tile’s Richard Baiter. TCNA’s exec. director, Eric Astrachan (right) presents him with a framed mosaic tile mural handcrafted by Brigid O’Connor of Artfind Tile.

As in previous years, more than 500,000 pounds of surplus tile and stone were diverted from the landfill thanks to the show’s ongoing collaboration with Tile Partners for Humanity. TPFH was aided in the collection by Mountain Re-Source Center.

Coverings 2012 will be held April 17-20 in Orlando, Fla. For more information, visit