Sustainable roundups: 10 eco-friendly surfacing materials

in Sustainable Roundups

Countertops, backsplashes, vanity tops…surfacing materials are used in a myriad of places in interiors.
And there exists a myriad of options to choose from!

In this episode of Sustainable Roundups, we’re discovering 10 planet-friendly options, all sourced – as usual – from SforSustainable (opened in a new window/tab), the sustainable interior design platform I curate.

Stone debris

The natural stone industry generates plenty of leftovers, from bigger stone chunks to stone powder.
These can all be reused in surfacing materials that owe their beautiful terrazzo texture to nothing less than waste.

Product selection:

Close-up of a worktop with flowers and food on top of it.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Altrock (opened in a new window/tab)
Contemporary bathroom with back wall finished with recycled stone surface.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Coverings Etc. (opened in a new window/tab)

Still speaking of stone debris, a lot of it is created during building demolitions. And a circular design mindset suggests those too should be upcycled into something useful!

Product selection:

Samples of recycled stone surface.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: TFOB (opened in a new window/tab)

Discarded textiles

Textile waste is a major problem in our world. If fast-fashion is one of the main offenders, slow-design can be part of the solution.

An example? Take denim scraps, mix them with acrylic resin and get a low-emitting surfacing material!

Product selection:

Cabinet door made of discarded demin material.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: TorZo (opened in a new window/tab)

Wood

Wood serves many functions in interior design. But what to do with offcuts and wood dust? And what happens when a wooden furniture piece is discarded?

Both questions find an answer in sustainable surfacing materials made with recycled wood!

Product selection:

Close up of kitchen cabinet with recycled wood front.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: SAIB (opened in a new window/tab)
Kitchen with recycled wood backsplash.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Foresso (opened in a new window/tab) – Photo by Luke A Walker

Recycled glass

Moving on to another waste stream, let’s tackle glass.
Dipping recycled glass shreds into resin creates a sturdy and sustainable surfacing material. Another modern take on terrazzo, with tons of colour combinations available.

Product selection:

Kitchen worktop made with recycled glass surface.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Resilica (opened in a new window/tab)

Recycled plastic

Plastic waste is another material that’s available in large volumes. And solid surfaces are one of the many ways of reusing it. The resulting materials range from speckled terrazzo designs to subtle patterns, providing an option for more or less graphic applications.

Product selection:

Store interior entirely finished with colorful recycled plastic surface.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Plasticiet (opened in a new window/tab)
Close-up of recycled plastic surface styled with a sunflower.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: The Good Plastic Company (opened in a new window/tab)

Organic waste

What about organic waste? Sure that too can live again in the form of a surfacing material! Lentils, onions, artichokes, oranges, and beans are just some of the elements that can lend their unique colour and texture to interior surfaces.

Product selection:

Welcome hall of an office space with back wall finished with a surface made of organic waste in a rusty colour.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>
Credit: Ottan (opened in a new window/tab)

Roundup

Click on individual names for a detailed explanation of what makes each material a sustainable choice

Moodboard displaying samples of the 10 sustainable surfacing materials.<span class="sr-only"> (opened in a new window/tab)</span>

1.Altrock - by Altrock (opened in a new window/tab)
2.Ecoterr - by Coverings Etc. (opened in a new window/tab)
3.Urban Terrazzo - by TFOB (opened in a new window/tab)
4.Denim - by TorZo (opened in a new window/tab)
5.Rewood - by SAIB (opened in a new window/tab)
6.Foresso - by Foresso (opened in a new window/tab)
7.Resilica - by Resilica (opened in a new window/tab)
8.Blizzard - by Plasticiet (opened in a new window/tab)
9.Good Plastic - by The Good Plastic Company (opened in a new window/tab)
10.Ottan Wall - by Ottan (opened in a new window/tab)

 
To sum up, all of these surfacing materials are produced starting from some sort of waste, thus challenging the very use of this word.

Besides emptying overflowing landfills, these materials provide an alternative to natural stones – whose extraction is heavily disruptive to the environment.
Yet one more proof that we can design beautiful interiors without weighing on the environment!

Silvia's signature

Share this post

Comments

Don't be shy, let me know what you think!

On Chiara said:
Ciao Silvia è sempre bello leggere il tuo blog ed è una grande fonte di ispirazione per me. Grazie !
>
On Silvia - DforDesign said:
Ciao Chiara! Mi fa davvero tanto piacere essere tra le tue fonti d'ispirazione! E grazie mille per avermelo fatto sapere, vuol dire molto per me! A presto! Silvia
>

Newsletter

Join 100+ biophilic and sustainable design enthusiasts on the monthly newsletter.
I'll never share your email with third parties and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Sustainable Product Picks
Scroll