Feel the difference! Nine inspirational textures that prove laminate has depth

Introducing the eye-catching way to raise the performance and style of your next surface installation.

Honed_2 920x600

Think laminate is flat? Think again. Choosing laminate today goes well beyond the décor: a huge variety of different textures are available – and the results are stunning.

As well as helping to intensify decors, Formica® laminate surface textures offer new options in both design and functionality. At a stroke, they extend the possibilities for surfaces in a range of environments – from creating a sense of warmth through to aiding functionality and improving an environment’s allure.

“With wellbeing and mindfulness at the forefront of design, tactility plays a key role by awakening our senses of touch and sight,” says Nina Bailey, Formica Group’s Design Manager.

“Texture can enhance a design space, bringing it to life while helping to convey a style and mood. Soft and matte textures with minimal depth offer calm and relaxed ambiances, while high gloss and deep textures create sharp and energetic vibes.”

Specifying premium textures to complement your décor choice offers three main benefits:

1. Aesthetics

When chosen well, textures create a remarkable final product. Gloss, for example, brings out the depth of a solid colour, while textures that complement stone (such as Honed) and woods (such as Linewood) can help to create a premium, realistic look.

2. Performance

The hardness, roughness, depth or gloss level of a texture is key to its ongoing performance. AR Plus® (abrasion resistant high gloss laminate) for example, is twice as resistant to scuffing and mar abrasions than a standard gloss laminate, while textures such as Plex and Matte58 are perfect for horizontal and vertical applications in high traffic environments.

3. Emotion

How a surface feels has a profound emotional effect on the user and can deeply change perceptions. Some finishes (such as MicroDot) also create unique visual sensations.

Satin NDF_1 920x600

How are textures incorporated into laminates?

During the laminate manufacturing process, kraft papers and décor papers are initially treated separately. Resins are used to give flexibility and strength to the layers of craft paper, while a melamine surface gives wear and surface performance to the décor paper.

Sheets are then cut and “packs” created by putting the décor and kraft papers together. A steel texture plate then presses the packs under high pressure and heat, fusing together the board while imprinting the texture on the surface of the finished laminate sheet.

Through its own plate-making facility in Quillan, France, Formica Group is entirely free to create any texture imaginable. MDJ Kuu, a bespoke laminate texture designed by artist Matthew Day Jackson and featuring to-scale lunar textures from NASA images, is just one example of what is possible.

Textured treats: nine inspirational Formica laminates

AR Plus Gloss 1 350x300

AR Plus High Gloss

Create a sense of glamorous elegance with this gleaming surface. “The reflective qualities of gloss can open up any environment,” says Nina. “It gives surfaces a precious look and distinctive appeal and is twice as resistant to abrasions as standard gloss laminate.”

MicroDot 2 350x300

MicroDot

Slightly indented small dots in a geometric grid, MicroDot was originally inspired by metals and tooling. “As well as providing extra sensation, its subtlety can really encourage dynamic rhythm within a space,” says Nina.

Linewood 2 350x300

Linewood

Inspired by soft woods like pine and cedar, Linewood’s roughened surface delivers exceptional visual impact across plain colours and wood decors. “It offers a real sense of nature,” says Nina. “Use it to create a soothing environment with echoes of the outside world.”

Naturelle 2 350x300

Naturelle

A directional, matte wood pore finish, Naturelle gives a natural touch to wood decors. Nina says: “This discrete and luxurious texture brings out the natural beauty of wood. It adds instant elegance, while the subtle low gloss level creates a relaxed environment.”

Plex 1 350x300

Plex

A striking alternative to the ‘old’ brushed finish in metals, Plex has an award-winning small-scale structure with a crisp touch and silky sheen. “There’s no doubt this surface is beautiful and incredibly tactile,” says Nina. “The canvas-like touch is incredibly calming.”

Puregrain 1 350x300

Puregrain

Energise your environment with this raw wood touch surface. “Puregrain is a highly tactile interpretation of a deeply brushed rustic timber surface,” says Nina. “It’s particularly suited for oak patterns and soon brings a space to life.”

Satin NDF 2 350x300

Satin NDF

Flat, smooth and ideal for horizontal surfaces, this texture works well with plain colours, stone and marble decors. Nina says: “It doesn’t matter which environment you place Satin NDF: it creates a modern, slick ambiance that mimics engineered stone surfaces. It’s a real show-stopper.”

Honed 1 350x300

Honed

Get the appearance of natural slate and brushed stone with Honed, the ideal solution for decors of marble, travertine, slate, and river-washed granite. “There is so much depth and movement within this texture,” says Nina.

Matte58 1 350x300

Matte58

Don’t overlook our most popular, multi-purpose, hardwearing texture. This non-directional surface is smooth to the touch and offers low levels of light reflection. Nina says: “Matte58 is suitable for every decor, bringing a timeless look and feel to hard-wearing, easy-to-clean surfaces.”

You're using an unsupported browser and some features may not work properly. Please upgrade to a modern browser, such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Safari.