Material Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Terrazzo
During the midcentury era, terrazzo became a popular flooring and could be found in commercial spaces including airports, cultural institutions, schools, and hotels. While it was loved for its durability and low-maintenance, it was also easily customizable and could be poured into different patterns and shapes.
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Recently, terrazzo has seen a major resurgence, but with a bit of a modern twist. Bolder and brighter colorways are being employed, larger pieces of stone are being used as aggregates, and it's now being used to make furnishings and home accessories. It's important to note that the process presents the chance to incorporate color—a fact that modern-day manufacturers have been taking advantage of.
What is terrazzo and how is it made?
Terrazzo, which is Italian for terrace, is the name it was given by the Italians who developed it. It's a composite material made of chips of marble, quartz, granite, glass, or other stone, and is held together with a concrete or epoxy-resin binder. A weighted roller finishes the material, and the terrazzo is ground and polished to produce a smooth surface.
Today, most terrazzo is epoxy terrazzo, which allows for a wider selection of colors, faster installation, and a stronger, thinner material with an impermeable finish, making it less susceptible to cracking.
Where is terrazzo installed?
Although terrazzo is currently considered to be a luxury finish, it was actually created to be a budget-friendly solution. Current technological advances have taken terrazzo beyond just flooring and into countertops and backsplashes—a logical extension.
What are the advantages and disadvantages?
In addition to its distinct look, terrazzo is durable, low-maintenance, and can add a luxurious feel to your space, but what makes the material so special is its customizability. However, it can be a pretty pricey flooring option and installation requires a professional.
What are the different uses of terrazzo?
With the speckled material becoming more and more popular, we've seen it used to make furniture, lighting, and decor. Some designers have also come up with their own special creations that are clearly inspired by the material.
What is marmoreal?
Marmoreal is an engineered marble for architectural surfaces developed by the British company Dzek in collaboration with the British designer Max Lamb. Offered in either a black or white finish, it uses marble as the aggregate. However, it contains much larger pieces of rock than terrazzo does, giving spaces an even more modern look.