As we close this year, we decided to highlight our top 10 products of ’20! Most of these launched late in 2019 or 2020. As always, feel free to reach out for samples. We are still shipping to any address provided since many of you continue to work remotely.
It’s our hope that the end of 2020 will bring people together, whether in person or virtually, to celebrate the holidays. May we recognize joy in the small things and feel loved this season. And may 2021 bring new milestones, accomplishments, and reunions for all of us!
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We wish you all a healthy and happy new year! We’re truly grateful for each and every one of you. We could not have made it through this difficult year without the dedication of our interior designers and the persistence of our contractors! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your commitment to GIO.
In 2017, when Pinterest searches for terrazzo increased 316 percent, Pinterest suggested the Italian flooring option would be a major trend in 2018. Indeed, the prediction was spot-on, with authentic terrazzo flooring making a big come-back to become one of the hottest flooring trends of the year. It wasn’t long before digital printing techniques enabled tile manufacturers to create realistic (and much less costly) porcelain look-alikes of the composite material. But terrazzo looks weren’t relegated to flooring.
As the terrazzo trend exploded, the look spread beyond flooring to include furniture, luggage, dinnerware, fabrics, wallpaper, you name it…terrazzo is now everywhere. A quick hashtag search on Instagram reveals nearly a half-million hits for #terrazzo. Search on Pinterest, and you will be rewarded with seemingly infinite scrolling of terrazzo looks.
What is Terrazzo?
Traditionally featuring a medley of marble chips, terrazzo is a costly and laborious dying art. Terrazzo originated several hundred years ago in the Mediterranean region. Back then, terrazzo, which is the Italian word for “terrace,” was made by pressing marble or other stone chips into the surface of natural clay and then sealing it with goat’s milk for a mosaic look. Eventually, cement replaced clay, and bits of glass and painted tile found their way into the surface.
Today, most of the terrazzo installed includes resin, polymers, and epoxy. Natural stone chips, such as marble, quartz, and granite are top choices for a terrazzo finish, but you’ll find other types of aggregate such as glass pebbles, synthetic chips, and silica bits. While stunning in looks, durable, and relatively easy to maintain, authentic terrazzo is extremely labor-intensive to create and install, making it one of the most expensive types of flooring available.
How is Terrazzo Made?
To give you an idea of the labor (and mess!) involved, here are the basic steps for creating a terrazzo floor:
The existing flooring is removed, and the concrete surface is roughed-up to ensure the terrazzo mixture will adhere. Cracks are filled in, and a leveling compound is applied if the substrate isn’t flat.
If you’ve opted for a design, the pattern will be transferred to the substrate using metal strips to separate each section of the design.
Next, a sandy cement base is applied, and while it’s still wet, the terrazzo mixture is spread on top and leveled out (one section at a time). At this point, extra bits of aggregate may be sprinkled on top and smoothed into the surface.
As the mixture hardens, the surface is compressed and flattened with a heavy roller.
Once the terrazzo mixture has completely cured ( at least 48 hours), a large grinder is used to smooth the top. It’s a messy, dusty process because the stone and cement are ground into a fine powder.
Tiny pinholes on the surface are filled with a pigmented slurry.
For the final step, the terrazzo surface is brought to a gleaming shine with a polisher that uses very fine diamond-grit pads to give the floor a glossy, smooth finish.
With all these laborious steps, it’s no wonder that real terrazzo is so costly. Porcelain terrazzo-look tiles are a beautiful (and typically more affordable) alternative for floors and walls, offering superior performance, lower maintenance, (heavily soiled terrazzo should be cleaned with a buffing machine, but no need for that with porcelain tile alternatives!), and better slip-resistance (newly installed and polished terrazzo floors are very slippery).
Check out Terrazzo by GIO, available in two finishes and a range of colors and styles — Aggregate, Fleck, and Deco Mix.
GIO is your gateway to beautifully designed, strategically selected collections of floor and wall tile sure to fit your demanding specification requirements and unique style. We look forward to working with you!
As one of the most sanitary surfacing choices available, ceramic tiles—including the exceptionally high-performing porcelain tile category—are the unequivocally right choice in a post-COVID world, especially in a commercial environment. When it comes to commercial surfacing, tile is truly a no-brainer for floors, and it should be for walls as well. The advantages of tile over paint, wallpaper, wood, brick, and many other materials for walls in commercial settings are many.
Aside from being hygienic, porcelain tiles are extremely durable, easy to clean and maintain, fireproof, and resistant to fading, moisture, and odors. Tile is also environmentally friendly because it emits no VOCs, doesn’t require the use of caustic cleaners, and doesn’t require the destruction of other natural resources like wood or plant material.
And as for the cost compared to these other materials? When you consider the life cycle, long-term performance, durability, and easy maintenance of tile over paint, wallpaper, and the like, tile is actually very cost-effective in the long haul. So what’s not love about tile for walls? Tile design has come a very long way from the bland commercial looks of the old days. When you factor in the extraordinary array of colors, patterns, and designs available that rival the detail of many traditional wall covering materials, there is absolutely nothing not to love about tile for walls.
Here’s a look at some of our tile styles for achieving fashion-forward looks with the performance characteristics your commercial design projects demand.
Rich, Indulgent Colors
Make a statement on a wall or any vertical surface with vibrant, bold hues, like these selections from m our Rombo, Hex_Leonis, Moda, and Retro, collections.
Subway Tiles with a Twist
There’s no denying that subway tile is still a classic. But as with many classics, it’s often a new twist given to the “expected” that makes the designs endure. Here’s a look at some of our fun and exciting takes on subway tile: Arté,Rivel, Pigment,Barista,Handmade, and Argille.
Thanks to the Art Deco revival going on now, this three-dimensional geometric surface trend has resurfaced. This form of trompe l’oeil is not new — it’s been around since Greek and Roman times — but it has experienced waves of popularity throughout history. Our Canvas collection in Cube or Polygon mosaics and our Rombo collection answer to this trend to create big wow factors in both retro and modern design schemes.
“Artsy” Wood Looks
Wood-look tiles have become so realistic since they first arrived on the scene that even touching them often does not reveal their porcelain secret. And while we still love a traditional wood look, tile designers are reimagining and designing new wood looks to bring us artful, edgy renditions that offer the back-to-nature warmth we crave with something new and unexpected. Here’s a look at our Harmony,Char, and Neolith collections that go beyond the realistic and traditional.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this look at some of our commercial-grade tile products for walls! Click here to see all our collections suitable for vertical surfaces. Samples for these lines, in addition to all our tile collections, are available free to the trade. Contact us anytime – we’re here to work with you!
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