“I’m done with limestone,” says David Prutting of Prutting & Co. Custom Builders. “All the vagaries of natural stone—who needs it?” He found a color-true, consistently sized, and easy-to-install alternative in Porcelanosa tiles, which he recently used in a spec house. He laid the tiles over the floor, the walls—anything he could spread with adhesive.

Porcelain tiles can be used anywhere, even a home’s exterior, Prutting says, and the sizes are just as versatile: “They can make tiles 2-feet-by-4-feet and larger.” Tiles by Spanish manufacturer Apavisa are another of Prutting’s favorites. He notes that both companies are masters of mimicry. “They make them look like granite, like glass tiles, like burnished steel and rusted steel,” he says, adding that tile is “an absolutely spectacular product.”

Porcelanosa. 201.995.1310. www.porcelanosa-usa.com. / Apavisa. +34.964.701120. www.apavisa.com.