A unique handmade Boch Freres ceramic - c.1881 - 4m2

In 15 years of trading and several hundreds of floors later, this is one we have never come across before.

This ceramic encaustic floor was manufactured by the acclaimed award winning house of Boch Freres, in this instance in Maubeuge, France and the reverse of each tile is stamped Boch Freres, Maubeuge. The field tile is presented in their 1881 catalogue, scans of which we include in the photography gallery. The border is not in the catalogue, nor has it appeared in later versions so we can only conclude that it is a pre-1881 production (as the 1881 catalogue makes reference to that version cancelling all prices in previous publicity).

A geometrical field tile in charcoal and cream is framed by a most exquisite and ornate same size border, laid back to back and, as such, is 34cm / 13.5 inches wide.

The tiles are large, 17cm sq and at c.1.4 kgs each a quality ceramic.

The floor totals 4m2 / 43 sq ft. comprising of 82 field tiles and 60 large borders.

Displaying a charming antique patina, some tiles have small chips or the occasional surface capillary crack which formed when the tile was cooling after firing. All are groutable.

There are no border corners with the border run but we have computer simulated and included in the photo gallery how they can be mitre cut by the tiler from the regular borders.

A unique and charming floor.


Tile size, thickness and tones
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.

Can we help?
If you can provide a technical drawing, or a simple sketch with key dimensions, we are happy to assist in evaluating and recommending the best layout of the floor in your area of choice..



Ref Code:

MAD110-9 MAD110-7



Floor Size:

To 5m²

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