Friday, August 21, 2009

What’s your surface?

We watch a lot of HGTV at our house. Maybe I should rephrase. I watch a lot of HGTV, Dr. Jay tolerates it. I don’t consider it a complete waste of time since it is my business, so to speak, but it’s pretty much a waste of time. This morning I happened to catch part of a show I hadn’t seen before (when I got back from my run and needed to stretch, you know, multi-tasking!) called Red, Hot & Green. Corny title, but good concept. And one of the hosts is that dreamy Carter Oosterhouse, and who can resist him? I really liked how they helped clients make wise design choices while they remodel. The episode I saw today featured a solid surface counter product that is new to me: concrete and recycled paper.

recycled_concrete_countertop concrete-countertop-by-sonoma-4

It’s called Recycled Concrete, which is a bit deceptive since the concrete itself hasn’t been recycled, just created from recycled components. It looks like straight-up concrete, which I love, but is lighter because much of the aggregate is recycled paper. The light-weight is important since often when remodeling a home, using something heavy (like traditional concrete) isn’t an option because the floor can’t support the extra weight. Concrete and Paper countertops are made from fly ash, recycled glass, recycled paper, Portland cement and non-toxic mineral pigments for color. It has greater stain resistance than soapstone, which it also resembles. On the show they said that it costs between $60 and $80 a square foot, so a little more than granite, but that it's cheaper and easier to install than granite. There is no steel reinforcement, so it can be modified on-site.

Has anyone used this material in their home? Let me know what you think. I love the look of concrete, so I am wondering if this is easier to work with.

Here’s a link to a run-down of other counter-top surfaces made from sustainable materials: The Perfect Countertop Surface

Last night we went to the Nationals game with friends (N & R!) and I’ll soon be writing about the Nationals Stadium, which is the first major stadium in the country to be not only LEED-certified, but gain enough points to be LEED Silver. I intended to publish this post last night and one on the stadium today, but due to an unexpected Metro-related fiasco last night, I’m glad I am still awake to get this one out today. Many apologies!

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