This eco-friendly, speckled material is typically used to make tiles. But it’s making a comeback in new ways like side tables, vases, planters, and more.

Concrete Collaborative
Nicole Franzen, courtesy of Concrete Collaborative

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You’ve seen terrazzo. Enter a home built in the last century, and you might find yourself standing on a speckled design, the signature terrazzo look. Typically known for its use on the floor, the material is now resurging in new and modern ways as a green alternative in construction due to its low-waste composition. Let’s take a look.

Invented in the 15th century in Venice, terrazzo began as a zero-waste method to use leftover shards of stone and marble. It’s often made with those materials or ceramic, glass, or rocks mixed with concrete or epoxy to create a colorful, speckled look.

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The eco-friendly material first gained popularity in the U.S. in the 1920s, used as tiles in buildings such as hospitals, airports, and apartments. Currently, companies like Terrazzco offer both pre-designed tiles and the ability to custom design your own with materials including glass, shells, marble, and mirror. Tile terrazzo flooring stands out because of its antimicrobial, easy-to-clean, sustainable, and smooth qualities, let alone its potential beauty with the right color combinations. 

If you’re not ready to change your flooring, terrazzo is making a comeback in other ways. Due to its variegated structure, the material is highly customizable to fit your home decor style. It now comes in the form of multiple decor items, including planters, vases, tables, countertops, and more.

To spruce up your kitchen, use terrazzo storage jars or a molcajete for added color. In your living room, add accents with funky planters and modern clocks. For outdoor decor, get furniture with a concrete base so it’s fully waterproof and heavy-duty, like great side tables

Here are some products to incorporate terrazzo in your home in new ways:

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