All the latest outdoor decorating trends have one thing in common: comfortable furnishings and surfaces.
A few carefully chosen items in a practical and harmonious arrangement make it easy to recreate the level of comfort we enjoy inside the home in the garden or on the terrace.
While collections of furnishings and accessories for outdoor living include simple and artistic forms, almost always centring around use of wood, what makes the difference in surfaces is increasingly often ceramic materials such as new generation porcelain.
The key to the success of porcelain in outdoor spaces may be found in the material’s technical properties, combined with an aesthetic range that has recently expanded considerably in terms of the available proposals, effects and colours.
Like balconies and terraces, gardens can be paved to suit specific requirements, with very few limitations, over surfaces of all kinds, such as grass, gravel and sand.
The light weight and easy installation of high-tech ceramic allows the material to fit naturally into any kind of setting.
In vacation homes with open spaces, high-tech ceramic slabs represent added value, optimising and underlining the beauty of the surrounding landscape.
All the principal features of technical performance required for ceramic materials for outdoor use find their best expression in FMG materials, the product of decades of expertise of the Iris Ceramica Group
, of which FMG is one of the leading brands
It is of course a matter of resistance, an essential feature for outdoor use, including not only resistance to deep abrasion, water, stains and tread; in outdoor projects, what is required is resistance to temperature excursions, frost, direct sunlight, and tensile stress, including the passage of mechanical vehicles.
While resistance and easy installation represent two of the most important aspects of high-tech ceramics, it is worth nothing that FMG’s Twenty system also permits an equally important aesthetic value, that is continuity between indoors and outdoors.
The vast Twenty range makes it possible to design homogeneous indoor and outdoor spaces, expanding our perception of living space and going beyond the visual limitations of the building.
Twenty ceramic slabs also offer other benefits, making them an optimal solution for anyone wanting to make the most of outdoor spaces in their home or business, in the case of the hospitality industry.
This performance includes a non-slip finish (a quality making them ideal around the swimming pool) and easy cleaning, using either regular cleaning products or a pressure washer.
Ceramic slabs are resistant to mould and moss, and do not suffer in the event of contact with garden products such as fertilisers or insecticides. They are not even affected by prolonged contact with salt, making them perfect for use by the sea (in contact with salty sea air) and in the mountains, where salt is spread as an anti-freeze in winter.
The Twenty system is easy to install and replace, and can be applied with no need for specially trained personnel.
It can be laid over grass, gravel or sand: all three are dry laying methods requiring no substrate or adhesive. It can also be laid using the traditional method of gluing over a screed or as raised flooring. This method offers the benefits of a gap underneath the floor and raises the level of the surface above the ground with special adjustable supports to make the surface perfectly flat, even in the presence of architectural or natural differences in level.
The benefits of raised flooring include easy installation of electrical systems and piping, as well as excellent drainage of water: elements which can make all the difference in outdoor areas fitted with utilities.
With a view to optimising use of outdoor spaces, the Twenty range also includes special pieces for public and private swimming pools (such as grids and pool edging, including both straight and corner pieces), or customisable pieces, in which to “freely follow the shape of the pool and find just the right edge finish to match the surface around it".
Product customisation, a much sought-after feature offered following a feasibility study conducted by technicians, is also extended to accessories for outdoor use such as flower beds, bicycle holders and bench seats.