You would think that a tile show in Bologna, Italy, has nothing to do with your home building or residential design business. Guess again. Cersaie, the international exhibition of ceramic tile and bathroom furnishings, is one of the tile industry's most important shows and where manufacturers decide what you--and your customers--will be see in showrooms in the coming months and years.

As happens at every trade show, multiple design trends emerged at Cersaie this year. The Italian Trade Commission says buyers can expect looks that are reminiscent of delicate fabrics and muted metallics, as well texture, and more texture. Stone-look tiles aren’t new, but manufacturers now use digital printing that create porcelain tiles with the true look of stone.

“The 2011 style forecast calls for everything from Renaissance-inspired looks to patchwork patterns to what Patone is calling ‘the mosaic of color,’” the trade commission’s trend report says. “Thanks to technology, all these archetypes have a new modern twist.”