We spoke to sustainable tile company, Bert & May, about yuletide interiors...
Bert & May was born to help consumers create timeless spaces. Each high quality tile is handmade and designed in their sustainable workshops by highly skilled artisans. With a colour palette that is inspired by reclaimed tiles and unique to Bert & May, you can find timeless tones throughout their collection. With the hosting season upon us, we caught up with the talented team about how to style kitchen spaces that can withstand the festive footfall, whilst still being robust, sustainable, and beautiful...
TR: What are your tips for sustainably decorating a bustling kitchen space for Christmas?
BM:"We absolutely love bringing nature indoors at Christmas. Make the most of greenery in the kitchen, whether that’s with bunches of herbs, foliage or snippets from your Christmas tree branches!
Go antique – isn’t just an important thing we can do for the environment, but they have the added bonus of injecting instant character and a rich patina to the interior. If used well, it’s impossible to over-use them!"
TR: Why is sustainable design so important to you?
BM:"We all have a responsibility - irrespective of wealth - to be kind to the environment and make good decisions on the materials we use. Our business was started with a focus on reclaimed and salvaged tiles, because these were built to last and designs have stood the test of time, and this underpins everything we do at Bert & May to this day.
I do not want to underestimate how important it is that we focus on the ‘good’ we are doing by using these materials and items that have stood the test of time - and will continue to do so. Reusing is simply win-win for the environment and you as a homeowner."
TR: What is a tradition that you look forward to every festive period?
BM:"We love cooking for friends and family; spending time in the kitchen should always be a joy."
TR: What is your favourite Tom Raffield design?
BM:“Tom's Tor Twist Shelf is pure craftsmanship and creativity. We are in love with its twisted design, showcasing the beauty of steam-bent wood. The use of natural materials and handcrafted touch resonates with our passion for artisan craftsmanship and sustainable design. It's not just a shelf; it's a beautiful blend of art and functionality.”
TR: How would you describe the perfect Bert & May Christmas in three words?
BM:“Music, merriment and Manzanilla.”
TR: Do you have any unusual tiling ideas for kitchens?
BM:“Use reclaimed ties around a feature fireplace or on the wall as a piece of art, tiles don’t have to have a practical use. They can be a statement of beauty.”
TR: What’s the secret for creating a timeless space that suits every season?
BM:"Creating the bones of your home, the surfaces and materials that you layer on top of, is the most important thing so take time to think about what feeling you want to create. We let the materials do most of the shouting. Centring the interior around the architectural foundations of a design is, in our view, critical, and whilst the layering often gets the headlines, we believe it's the material choices that are the most important and indeed create that opportunity to layer in so many ways. Layering the interior over a period of years/decades is what gives the space that magical vibe many of us search for."
TR: What can we expect to see from Bert & May in the new year?
BM: "We continue to look back at the timeless designs which have lasted a lifetime and will continue to focus on reclaimed tiles. We are however very excited to be launching some exciting new collections with a different aesthetic to our iconic geometric designs; think more organic, abstract and learning from nature’s palette."