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Stagetecture Interview: The Artisan Appeal of Avente Tile

Guest Blog Entry #35, Entry #351,  December 8, 2010

Growing up in Colorado, and Arizona my mother always had a southwestern decorating style. From the beautiful rust and golden yellows on our walls to the Native American hand crafted pottery, rugs and jewelery that she admired and adorned our home in, I’ve always been exposed and loved artisan culture and home decor. One year I remember my parents renting a U-Haul trailer to drive to Sante Fe, New Mexico to purchase one-of-a-kind hand painted floor tiles for our Colorado mountain home. At the time, I thought they were crazy! Today, I realize what a passion they had for gorgeous, handcrafted home decor.


Avente hand painted tiles

Today, Bill Buyok, owner of Avente Tile (Avente LLC) and primary contributor for the company’s blog, Avente Tile Talk, joins me to discuss his tile showroom that specializes in hand painted tile from Spain. I’m in absolute awe of Bill’s timeless attention to detail in his blog and have come to love his great passion, Avente Tile. I interviewed Bill to see how he started Avente and how he hopes to help you with your home tiling needs.


Why did you start Avente Tile LLC, and how did you come up with the gorgeous name?


I started Avente Tile because I was looking for hand painted tiles with an old world design similar to some I had seen from Spain.  I couldn’t find any designs in local showrooms, tile stores, or online.  Once I found the right tiles, I fell in love with them and decided I would start a company to sell them.

Our namesake, Avente, is derived from the Latin abante that means “before” or “at the forefront.” Avente LLC (“Avente Tile“) is dedicated to providing handcrafted tiles that are at the forefront of their class.


Gorgeous Barcelona Tiles


There are so many varieties of tile on your site, what is your suggestion to Stagetecture reader’s who are trying to find the perfect tile for their home?


Start with what you love, define your style and make it your own.  We can’t help you get to your destination, if you don’t know where you are going.  Begin by writing down the goals for your project including a budget.  Then define and express your ideas using photos of installations, design elements and ideas you like.  Modify the idea to complement your specific color scheme and neighboring surface treatments.  We offer hundreds of design ideas to help.  If you’ve thought about what you want and written it down, a professional designer, architect, or tile vendor should be able to assist you in finding tiles.  You can always call us toll-free (888.739.4972) to discuss your project.


What is or would you like to be the main purpose of Avente and who is your target demographic that purchases tile?


At Avente Tile, we want to share our passion for handcrafted field and decorative tile of incomparable quality and design. Our mission is quite simple: to provide the finest, most extraordinary tiles you will find anywhere with excellent customer service.  Our demographic includes anybody looking for hand painted ceramic or cement tile.  Our customers include homeowners, designers and architects that require unique patterns and field tiles for backsplashes, borders, and accent tiles for wall and floor applications.

B_Avente_Wall Tile

Avente tile in a variety of wall applications


Is this modern day of DIY’ers, do you find that online access has improved your success for providing inspiration and information to your customers?


I think online access is critical for success. It’s how customers get ideas and communicate.  If you aren’t online, you almost don’t exist. To help you understand how strongly we feel about building community and providing customer information using these channels, here’s a summary of our efforts.  Our cement and ceramic tile product catalog is online including the ability to place orders. We have project installation and concept boards in our design ideas and post photos to Flickr.  We discuss DIY tips and practical guidelines for choosing and installing tiles on our blog, Tile Talk, and YouTube.  We share tips, design ideas and specials with our fans on Facebook and Twitter.


Avente also has a great blog! How do you and Sunny go about finding topics and keep it evolving with new information?


I love tile and can’t stopping talking about them – just ask my friends.  Our list of topics grows faster than our ability to get the articles written.  I don’t anticipate running out of topics because there are so many facets to tile like design, manufacture, and installation. Additionally, there is information to share regarding new products.


Corner detailing of Avente tile


What is your favorite part about Avente, and where do you hope to see it grow to in the future?


I love everything about my job. Honestly!  I do have two favorites.  I enjoy getting to tour the factories and meet the factory owners and artisans that create our handcrafted tiles.  And, there is nothing more satisfying than hearing from a customer that is thrilled with the installation – that’s what it’s all about.

Our goal is to keep growing while providing the same level of service to our customers.  We are always looking for new tile lines to include in our collection and our excited about the growth in cement tile sales.

Bill Buyok is the owner of Avente Tile (Avente LLC) and primary contributor for the company’s blog, Avente Tile Talk.  Avente Tile sells hand painted ceramic tiles and cement tiles created by artisans, one at a time.  Our tiles are ideal for backsplashes, borders, floors and accent tiles for commercial and residential applications in interior and m exterior locations.  Bill started the company in 2003 because of his love for hand painted tile and fulfill a need in the lack of availability he saw for this niche product.  Bill has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Texas Tech University.  He worked as an engineer and transitioned into web design and sales before starting Avente Tile.

For more holiday decorating ideas on Stagetecture, click here.

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  1. jb @BMoxieBMore

    great to learn more about you Bill and your influences << really comes thru in what you do. Thanks goes to Ronique for initiating. great project tips here too. goals, goals, goals — finding I am running into even still with my misses. . . gotta keep the eye on the prize.

  2. Post author

    Thanks Jb for your comments. I think you should give yourself credit for recognizing what you need to do! Everyone doesn’t always come to this realization – we are all a work in progress, and I think you are doing great Jb. :)

  3. Gosia

    Oh My God! I’m literally drooling over these beautiful tiles. I know exactly what Bill is talking about regarding the lack of accessibility of these beauties. Spending time in Spain this summer, I almost cried every time I would find vintage hand-painted tiles in some antique store – cried over their beauty and their enormous price tag. Congratulations to Avente Tile for filling that market void.

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