Kiln fired ceramic products have always had a degree of shade variation between tiles and different production batches due to the natural ingredients and small variations in firing temperatures, it’s this variation that makes tiles so unique and beautiful. After firing, tiles are graded, separated and packed into like shades and given a batch number. What this means is that if you need more tiles, you'll need to ask for tiles from the same batch number so you’ll know that they will look great together.
The ongoing development of digital glaze and ceramic printing has more recently enabled manufacturers to replicate variation between tiles to emulate; the many looks and faces of natural stone, the gorgeous natural variation in natural timber, antique brick looks, as well as replicating and celebrating all the different shades that are a feature of traditional, hand-made tiles. These stunning replications, in our world, is named ‘variation’.
The following ratings have been developed to help you understand the level of unique variation you can expect from your tiles. Any tile rated V2 or above will show distinguishable colour, shade, texture or pattern differences between tiles. The higher the number, the more variation between individual tiles, like you’d see in nature.
We always recommend you check the full variation of tiles, especially tiles rated V3 and V4 during your selection, and ensure you dry lay V3 and V4 tiles before installation to ensure you’re totally happy with the variation range. It’s amazing how different the first tile can look to say tile six of the same range!