A classical French damier with lush borders c.7.5m2 to 9m2
A classical French damier of a mid grey and white ceramic tile, stamped MCM, manufactured by Manufactures de Ceramique de Maubeuge and a same size ceramic border manufactured by Octave Colozier in 1913.
Both the field and border tiles are 14cm square and 15mm thick and we include a scan from the Octave Colozier period catalogue in our possession showing the original presentation of the border. The presentation shows also an alternative way of laying the border though we have opted for the one in the photo gallery of its original lay.
The tiles have been reclaimed from a house close to Maubeuge in northern France and have cleaned well. The photo gallery shows a random sample of c.1.25m2 of the floor which is a quality ceramic displaying on a small number of tiles groutable edge nibbles and the occasional small chip which delivers a charming antique patina as the high resolution photographs show. Among the Colozier borders there is some tonal variation in slip colour on a small number, the result of having been hand made in small batches, and we have included side by side an example of where this has occurred showing black against a dark burgundy.
The design is classically chessboard with a fluid and lush border that delivers an impressive frame.
There are no corner tiles available for the borders as the original lay in a hallway was of parallel runs but these can easily be mitre cut by the tiler should they be required.
There is the option to increase the size of the floor with a 14cm x 7cm antique ceramic half border tile, for which 140 pieces are available, providing for a top and bottom double lay, above and below the full size border.
Tile quantities, give or take one or two:-
Field tiles – 320 - 6.4m2 / 69 sq ft
Small Border tiles - 140 - 1.4m2 / 15 sq ft or 9.8 linear metres / 32 linear feet as a double lay
Large Border tiles – 55 – 1.1m2 / 11.8 sq ft or 7.7 linear metres / 25.2 linear feet
Antique tiles were most commonly made in single or two tile moulds. Before current computer automation methods their moulds were made my hand and the colour slips mixed by eye. Kiln temperatures could also be variable, as could the firing time. The result is that often tiles display subtle size and thickness variations and there can be tonal variations in colours, owing to the slip mixing and/or firing time. All of this makes these handmade tiles unique and adds to their charm. Some floors display their subtle variations in size and tones, some not, but when photographing we always take a random section of the floor so that it is representative of the whole. A tiler should always dry lay a section of the tiles to familiarise himself with them before starting to fix lay.