How & Why Our Tile Shop Was Created
I unexpectedly fell in love with tile in 2007 after visiting several tile showrooms. My intention was to be a good sister and help my younger brother, Loring, who was living in California, introduce a line of tile he had designed to the showrooms in Maine.
In 1998, Loring had been ill and almost died had it not been for the City of Hope hospital that saved his life with an experimental stem cell transplant.
His tile line was designed to raise money for City of Hope to help fight AIDS in Africa. It was called Legacy. Being his big sister, I wanted to help him on the East Coast. I knew almost nothing about tile.
And, so begins my love affair with tile. Over the past 10 years, I have come to truly appreciate and love what tile can do for living spaces. It can add so much “depth”, “durability” and “beauty”.
Audrey Leeds Miller
My husband, Jeffrey H. Miller took a 2-car garage in the building where we run, Cottage Connection of Maine, Inc. (Vacation Rentals), and turned it into a wonderful 500 SF space to display tile. It was that year that we met Loring at Coverings, THE big international tradeshow for the tile industry. As we were walking around the show, the Tile Magazine cover of the May Issue was enlarged and poster size around the room and at the entrances.
Loring did a double take and realized that an artist had chosen to graphically create a woman’s dress made from tiles. All of the tiles on the dress and the Cover of the magazine came from a collection that Loring had designed! It was extraordinary! I was so proud of him! These tiles were made by Gainey Ceramics in California. They even put “designed by Loring Leeds” on the back of the animal head tiles.
Over the years, my passion for tile continues to be an obsession. My husband and my daughter are used to me pointing out and searching out tile everywhere we go. I do not create the tile myself but I get really excited when I find beautiful tiles and love working with people to incorporate them into their projects. Living near water, ocean and lake, evokes blues and greens and “watery” accents. We have a lot of them.
My brother passed away on April 25, 2018. Thanks to him, I continue to meet wonderful people and find beautiful tile.