These designs work well in a variety of interior styles. The resulting patterns are fresh and groovy. One can use the tiles alongside brighter pop-coloured walls and it will give a classic-modern vibe. If used sparingly in a small space, the tiles can add life and character. In larger spaces, the tiles create a great patterned texture for the flooring. Similarly, the tiles work well with a ‘metallic + industrial look’ or ‘classic + wood look’. They complement colourful or neutral surroundings, be it for a residence, restaurant, cafe, bar, office, studio or the outdoors. Kulavoor can develop any letter on request.

Bombay Duck Designs’ founder Sameer Kulavoor’s design for the Bharat Floorings & Tiles company. Inspired by the Art Deco architecture of the Fort precinct in the city, here is the design ‘A’ that can be arranged to create multiple designs.
Bombay Duck Designs’ founder Sameer Kulavoor’s design for the Bharat Floorings & Tiles company. Inspired by the Art Deco architecture of the Fort precinct in the city, here is the design ‘A’ that can be arranged to create multiple designs. 

Q. Mumbai/Bombay has always been a palpable source of influence in your work. How did the Art Deco inspiration emerge for this project?
A. One important facet of Bombay/Mumbai architecture is the Art Deco style of some of its buildings, which I have been lately fascinated with. Art Deco is not unique to our city — it was first seen in France and then travelled to the world — but Mumbai has the second largest number of Art Deco buildings in the world after Miami! For this project, I thought it might be a good starting point to look at Art Deco buildings, particularly around South Bombay for inspiration. I was inspired by the likes of the Eros cinema building and the buildings that line one side of Oval Maidan. I was working around ideas using Art Deco patterns and felt that combining typography with it might produce some unique results.

Q. Tiles unlike walls have strict uniform dimensions to them. Were there certain alphabets or ideas that you felt would not be manageable in the given context?
A. Well, it may be limiting for some. But I feel that the unique feature about tiles is that you can arrange them to produce some stunning patterns. As a graphic designer you can  take advantage of this unique characteristic of tiles when you design them — and that’s what I did.

Sameer Kulavoor
Sameer Kulavoor Designer

Q. How long did it take for you to work on this? How did the project originate? Did you bounce off your ideas with the rest of the designers?
A. I had been toying with the idea of working with Art Deco patterns for a while and when I connected with Bharat Floorings & Tiles (BFT), I thought it was a perfect outlet. We (Bombay Duck Designs) created tiny cardboard tile samples with our (Art Deco
+ type) design to explain the concept and the permutations/combinations to Bharat Tiles and...they were on board with the idea.

Q. What about challenges or euphoric moments?  
A. When we made the tiny sample tiles to try out the combinations of patterns, we were very excited to see the number of variations one could create using the same tile in different arrangements. The unique feature of our designs for BFT is that when you look at a single tile, you can read the letter. But when tiled together, some groovy new patterns are born! I guess the euphoric moment for me will be when I see these tiles bring life to a cosy corner of a tiny home or a sprawling industrial café/restaurant!

Available at: BFT outlets in Mumbai, Pune, Goa, and Bengaluru.
Log on to: www.bharatfloorings.com