By Jacky Parker
What’s Otto Tiles all about?
It’s a contemporary design studio that supplies ceramic, cement and porcelain tiles from Europe, North Africa and Turkey. It’s the brainchild of Damla Turgut, a young designer from Istanbul who came to London in 2015 clutching 10 catalogues and 20 tile samples determined to make Otto Tiles the next big thing.
What’s the creative concept?
Damla’s father had a ceramics company exporting plain tiles out of Turkey and she saw the potential for moving things on. Inspired by her country’s heritage (it’s been a style influencer from the early Christian Byzantine days right up to today), Damla has created a brand that celebrates historic craftsmanship and contemporary aesthetics.
How are the tiles designed and made?
Some of the more intricate patterns are inspired by the Iznik pottery in the V&A and Istanbul’s Topkapi Palace – a great example of 15th-century Sultanate architecture. Damla’s own designs include geometric versions of old Turkish decorative motifs. Master craftsmen in Istanbul create moulds, which are then used to produce the tiles in small batches.
We hear Otto Tiles has done some cool collaborations?
It has! Damla has worked closely with Nick Jones and Soho House, kitting out six of its members’ clubs, including the rooftop pool at Soho House Amsterdam. The brand also teamed up with Idris Elba to supply the tiling for his new bar, The Parrot, at The Waldorf Hilton in London’s Aldwych.
Any favourite tiles?
The Istanblue collection has a striking palette of chalky white and weathered blue in a simplified Turkish pattern. For a pretty, feminine look we love the Fish Scale tiles, which come in white, bronze, pink, green and blue. The tiles start from around £4 each – an affordable way of injecting a style update.
The brand has just launched Terrazzotto, a design studio service that will work on further restaurant projects. There’s also a new showroom in Istanbul, with more to follow in the UK.
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