Seneca Tiles express the warmth of the human hand
By utilizing historic beehive kilns, old glaze recipes, carefully sourced materials, and trained craftsmen, Seneca has become the largest producer of authentically handmade tiles in the United States. As an importer, Seneca offers a collection of handmade Venetian glass mosaics created in the ancient Murano tradition.
Some of the kilns Seneca uses today were originally used by the St. Stephen Tile Company founded in 1906 to manufacture clay field tile. These field tiles were used to drain the surrounding rich farm land. For over 100 years, small factories were built near rich clay deposits that dot the Midwest. This heritage was the inspiration to turn the historic kilns and traditional techniques to the task of creating Seneca Handmold and Quarry Paver tiles.
These historic tile kilns are now used to impart the timeless look of these remarkable tiles.
Seneca Tiles’ unique practice of “flashing” these kilns creates a rich and varied coloration that cannot be duplicated by modern kilns. The unique “heart” shadings and natural ironspots in Seneca Quarry Pavers are the result of soaking in this long, slow process – they embody the best characteristics of a functional quarry tile while maintaining the warmth of handcrafted brick pavers. The many choices in color ranges and standard sizes and shapes further the design possibilities of these beautiful, durable tiles.
Using generally abandoned techniques imparts a unique character to each and every tile. These valuable techniques were discarded by virtually all tile manufacturers for mass production, sacrificing the natural, desirable characteristics of the clays and glazes. This has resulted in a limited selection within most tile lines.
Seneca Tiles has chosen a different approach – to resurrect the traditional methods, providing handcrafted, intrinsically interesting tiles… tiles that express the warmth of the human hand. Instead of masking the natural variations of the tiles with highly refined ingredients made under laboratory-like conditions – the Seneca Tiles philosophy celebrates the inherent characteristics of naturally made tiles. It is this difference that inspires architects and designers to include Seneca Tiles in some of their finest creations, as well as in their own homes.
Seneca Tiles produces a truly remarkable group of products unlike any other found in the mainstream marketplace today.