A 3.75m2 French damier floor with fluid borders c.1930
A small c.3.75m2 French ceramic floor using two 15cm field tiles, a motif tile and a plain off-white tile. Framed by a fluid same sized border, the tiles bear the reverse inscription 'B W', an abbreviation for Usines de la Croix de Pierre, Boucquey et Winckelmans, Lomme pres de Lille. Winckelmans are one of the great French heritage tile producers who, rarely, are still manufacturing today, and from their original factory in Lomme, Lille.
The floor has cleaned well of its old mortar and years of wax revealing a quality c.13mm thick tile with a good slip and no surface wear. As the field tiles were laid at an angle to the borders (as shown in the photographs in the gallery) we have recovered 34 off-white triangle tiles as well as 55 motif and 50 off-white field tiles. Additionally there are 42 same size border tiles. The border corners will need to be mitre cut by your tiler and we have shown in the photo gallery a computer simulation of how they will look.
As this is a small surface area it is likely that economical shipping is only possible if the floor is part of a larger order. But we are happy to provide a quote for whatever you require.
Click here to visit the Winckelmans website, which includes a brief history of the company and its current work.
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.