START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x

Eco-Friendly Counter Tops

Eco-Friendly Counter Tops

By Erica Sofrina, Feng Shui Teacher, Speaker and Author and Founder of the West Coast Academy of Feng Shui

Feng Shui embraces the art of conscious living which aligns our inner space with our outer environment. It is called mindful living.

Green design is in complete alignment with Feng Shui. Both promote honoring the Earth and leaving a lighter imprint and acknowledge that the earth is a living organism with finite resources and must be protected and honored as such. Feng Shui was the original purveyor of reduce, recycle, reuse, which is exactly what green design is about.

In this second article of my series on  the Green Home Remodel, I continue my conversation with  Diana Zamudio, Owner and Founder of of eco-6 design,  to talk about the elements that make a product eco-friendly. I also asked her for some recommendations for eco-friendly counter top materials. Diana is a specialist in Green Design as well as Feng Shui and is the teacher for the Green Design Program at my Feng Shui Academy.

I asked Diana what makes a product eco Friendly and to give her recommendations for the best eco-friendly materials for  counter tops on the market.

According to Diana, eco-friendly products should be:

  • Made out of recycled content
  • Can be recycled
  • Do not have toxins in them
  • Are sustainable (last a long time)

Recycled glass counter-tops are a wonderful example. These are made out of recycled glass and concrete and are not only environmentally friendly but are sparkling and beautiful. These durable surfaces are a non-toxic and sustainable alternative to mined or engineered stone which are beautiful, but are also depleting the earth of it’s valuable resources.

They are resin and plastic free and will not fade with exposure to direct sunlight or UV rays.  You can use them for  for kitchen counter tops, back splashes, bathroom vanities, tabletops, conference tables, reception areas, and any other surface where stone could be used. Each pre-cast slab can be cut, shaped, inlaid and mounted like natural or engineered stones.  They can be honed or sandblasted to add extra texture to the finished product.

What I love most about these gorgeous eco-friendly counter tops is that they add a wonderful Feng Shui element to any interior. Every time you walk by your counter top made out of these materials you will be reminded of how your decision to use this particular item helped prevent it from hitting our land fills and save our precious natural resources.

This is where Feng Shui and green design are so compatible.  A lot of Feng Shui is about positive affirmations. i.e. having things in our space that make us feel good when we look at them. When you look at these lovely counter tops you will be reminded that your decision to use these products made a positive impact on our environment.

For those of you who are looking into recycled counter tops, I can recommend some wonderful products you may want to look into.

Here are a few different companies that make recycled glass counter tops.  They are all made out of recycled glass and concrete, the difference is simply in the look.

Vetrazzo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vetrazzo- I think this company has the most dramatic look because it is made with large pieces of glass. The top picture of this article is also a Vetrazzo Counter top used in a kitchen setting.

 

Ice Stone

 

 

 

 

 

Icestone-  Seems to appeal to most of our clientele because the look is less dramatic and busy and coordinates with more finishes and textures. The picture here shows the various color choices.

Fuez

 

 

Fuez in another Application

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fuez- Has a similar look to ice stone, although their counter tops tend to have a more honed look.

Trinity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trinity-These counter tops have more of a ‘homogenized’ look.  The pieces of glass are ground very fine. It is not as obvious  but this is also made of recycled glass.

 

Squak Mountain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Squak Mountain-This counter top looks the most like concrete.  It is made of recycled glass ground up very fine along with  concrete and recycled paper. This material weigh half the weight of concrete and  yet has twice the strength.

All of these materials withstand heat and are perfect for kitchens and bathrooms. The prices range depending on the company and the colors selected.

Not only will these counter tops green, they can also be used to balance the five elements in the home, an important component of a Feng Shui consultation for a home or business. Use the colors to bring in the five elements of   Earth, Water, Metal, Fire and Wood. (See Erica’s article on Applying the Feng Shui Five Elements to your Home)  Glass is the water element, so these counter tops can be used to balance or enhance this element.

As you can see, green building products can help bring peace, harmony and health into one’s life. I like to use these beautiful counter tops as the focal point in many of my interiors. I tend to design around them to create a harmonized balance feeling which will make any one feel good.  Isn’t that what we all want.. to feel good?

I know that is what I want!

Next week I will interview Diana about the best recycled flooring materials, so stay tuned!

Eco-6-design is an eco-friendly showroom in the N. California specializing in eco-friendly and green products for home and business. Diana Zamudio is both a Certified Green Design Specialist and a Certified Feng Shui Consultant and also teaches the Green Design Program at my school, the West Coast Academy of Feng Shui To find out more about Diana you are invited to go to her web site at www.eco6desgin.com

Find our more about Erica Sofrina, Feng Shui teacher, speaker and author at www.ericasofrina.com

Read more: Bed & Bath, Feng Shui & Organizing, Home, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, , , , , , , ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Erica Sofrina

Erica Sofrina is an Internationally recognized Speaker and Teacher and Author of the book Small Changes, Dynamic Results! Feng Shui for the Western World. She is also a life coach and motivational speaker and is the founder of the West Coast Academy of Feng Shui. She has run a successful business as a Professional Organizer, Interior Designer and Certified Feng Shui Consultant for over a decade and resides on the charming coastal town of Half Moon Bay in Northern California. Find out more at www.ericasofrina.com.

Go to the Source

Small Changes, Dynamic Results! Feng Shui for the Western World

By Erica sofrina A simple and easy guide to Feng Shui for our contemporaty life stylesbuy now

53 comments

+ add your own
1:10PM PDT on Oct 28, 2011

Dear Molly F.
I looked into your comments about glass counter tops not being sustainable and not holding up. They are in fact very sustainable... Here is a quote from a prominent article on them regarding this:According to a study completed by the U.S. National Park Service; Mote Marine Lab in Sarasota, Florida, a glass bottle can take over 1 million years to decompose in the environment. i According to the EPAii, recycling one glass bottle saves enough energy to power a 100-watt bulb for four hours, a computer for thirty minutes and a television for twenty minutes. Over a ton of natural resources are saved for every ton of glass recycled. Among the added benefits of up-cycling waste glass into a new product is that it allows designers to demonstrate their commitment to the triple bottom line of sustainability. You can find the rest of this article at : http://continuingeducation.construction.com/article.php?L=161&C=833
I also spoke with Diana Zamudio of eco6design who has installed hundreds of these counter tops, here is her answer : My experience is that they do hold up and people are very excited to be putting these kinds of materials in their kitchens and countertops. I have never heard of this being a problem and neither has my fabricator. We both have many years of experience in the industry.
They are more pricey than other eco un-friendly products. This is true. Hope this helps answer your concerns.

12:57PM PDT on Oct 27, 2011

I will look into this for you Molly and check with Dianna Zamudio who sells these products and has put them into hundreds of homes, it is important to check your source and do your own research. More coming to your answer soon.

11:16AM PDT on Oct 27, 2011

I looked into "green" countertops for the home we are renovating. We were told they are $80/sq ft and up, going up to as much as $115. If we had chosen it would have been a lot of green. In addition, we were told that the glass in the counters in not very stable and there have been numerous complaints, to the point where they are going to stop carrying them.

10:54AM PDT on Oct 25, 2011

So glad to have this info before proceeding with our kitchen remodel!

3:25AM PDT on Oct 21, 2011

Thanks for this information.

12:54PM PDT on Oct 11, 2011

great resource, I am waiting to reno my kitchen, for better access to green options... will keep these all in mind.

10:31AM PDT on Oct 1, 2011

Yes Melinda, the problem is that they are not carried at the main stream stores, but you can get them from Diana at her store eco6design. If the public starts asking for them,they will carry them.

1:50AM PDT on Oct 1, 2011

The counter tops also look great and are very stylish, but without this article I wouldnt have had a clue they exist. We had a kitchen remodel a few years back and it was so disappointing because of the toxic materials used and the outgassing which still continues years later, I was really devastated but I just hadnt realised that building materials were so toxic and harmful to health. I would definitely go for something like that, recycled material that is non-toxic is another bonus, thanks for posting.

2:06PM PDT on Sep 15, 2011

Makes sense. It seems like these same problems attend all sustainability issues!

11:43AM PDT on Sep 15, 2011

Dear Sam,
I think people are not aware of them and they are not found in the main stream stores where everyone goes. I think there should be a 'green' option in every store that sells counter tops. They are also more expensive, and you won't find the sales and bargains people are always looking for.

add your comment



Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

I am Lydia Fred i lives in united states and i was in a serious relationship with my Ex Guy for 3 go…

All very pretty, thanks.

Hmmmm.....nice. Thanks.

The patchwork of state and local "conscience" legislation, plus anti-women's rights campaigns have e…

CONTACT THE EDITORS



Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.