Cement tiles are made by hand, one at a time, using only natural pigments, cement, a mold, and a hydraulic press.
- COPPER DIVIDER: A copper divider is used to create the design of the tile. They are hand sculpted to fit into the mold.
- MOLDS/FORMS: The Copper divider is then placed carefully into the mold/form. The divider is used to separate the colors to create the design.
CREATING THE DESIGN: Each empty space is filled with a fluid color paste composed of minerals such as marble dust and cement. Each is placed carefully regarding each design.
DESIGN COMPLETE: Once the outer layer containing the design is complete, the copper divider is removed quickly and the mold is moved back and forth to connect the fluid color paste design.
REMOVAL OF DIVIDER: When the copper divider is removed, the first layer is covered with dry plaster. The grey layer will become the strength of the tile. This grey layer is composed of ground Portland cement and a more coarse layer of sand, cement, and natural stone ground into powder.
PRESSING: A Hydraulic compressor is used to compress the mixture. The pigment layer is hydraulically pressed into the surface and becomes part of the tile.
REMOVAL FROM MOLD: Once the pressing of material is complete, the tile is removed by a skilled hand.
CURING PROCESS: Tiles are placed in water tubs for 24 hours to allow the cement to properly cure. The process is essential to achieve higher strength and decrease permeability.
AIRING OF TILE: The tile is fully finished after weeks in open air.
FILING/PARAFFIN: Extra hand filing is done in the last stage and tiles are smeared with paraffin and mechanically buffed on the facial area of the tile for extra care and handling.
Video of the process: