Fireclay Tile


When most kids were learning to ride a bike or climb a tree, Paul Burns was making tile. Paul made his first tile at age ten and in 1986 Paul set out on his own and founded Fireclay Tile.

Twenty-eight years later, Paul is still making tile and is guided by the same vision—to make beautiful tile for people the way they want it. Each tile is custom made in their California facility using recycled materials and sustainable manufacturing practices.

Fireclay invited the Character team to tour their manufacturing facility, and after a tile-painting class and an award-winning BBQ, we were quick fans. You don’t have to spend much time with the team to realize that Fireclay Tile is a very special company run by extraordinary people who genuinely love what they do.

Character was engaged to help evolve the Fireclay brand.

“Tactile. Yummy colors. That’s what Fireclay is about and that’s what we wanted to capture.”

Tish Evangelista  / Partner + Creative Director


Fireclay prides itself on preserving “old world” methods while actively developing new ceramic technologies to deliver the best, most durable products. Character’s studies explored the tension between the old and new, the contemporary and the traditional.

Strategically our goals were threefold: (i) position Fireclay as fresh and innovative, yet rooted in methodology; (ii) express Fireclay as an iconic and confident brand; (iii) and communicate a sense of warmth and approachability.


“From early on we got a real insider’s view of Fireclay Tile which made the project pretty effortless.”

Meghan Berckes  / Art Director


The new Fireclay logomark builds on simple, interlocking tile shapes that simultaneously serve as a monogram. The mark is both solid and delicate. The new logotype was custom drawn–unique to the Fireclay brand. The color palette was comprised of earthy and neutral tones that could support Fireclay’s wide selection of colors.

Product photography played a large role in the new visual language. The photography art direction was derived from three goals: (i) to capture the beauty and variety of materials, colors, finishes and product ranges; (ii) to accommodate a variety of colors, usage scenarios, and seasonal stories; (iii) and to showcase the beauty of the tiles in a new, unexpected way.

Character extended the new identity to Fireclay’s website, samples packaging, merchandise, and signage.