A touch of terrazzo


Terrazzo is set to make a comeback as a design trend in 2020. Think floors, walls, tiles and even decorating touches like plant pots.

Terrazzo is one of the oldest and most versatile sustainable flooring options on the market. It is made from a composite material poured in place or precast consisting of marble chips and/or other aggregates combined within a binder material, which is ground and polished to a beautiful finish.

Terrazzo is incredibly durable and can be used outside or indoors as a flooring material and is great for high traffic areas such as hallways, patios and lobbies. If cared for properly, a terrazzo floor can last well over 100 years.

Terrazzo can be slippery but can be made non-slippery dependant on the type of sealer used once the surface is polished.

Derived from the Italian word terrace, the history of terrazzo goes back more than 500 years when Venetian construction workers began mixing scraps from the homes of the wealthy with clay to create inexpensive flooring for their own homes.

In fact, the history may go back a lot further with archaeologists finding evidence of terrazzo-like floors in Turkish ruins that date back 8,000 years.

Production became much easier in the 1920s with the invention of electric grinders and other power tools according to the North Central Terrazzo Association.

The 1960s and 1970s saw the development of thinset or epoxy terrazzo. This modern terrazzo provided more variety in colour, a different thickness and was faster to install.

Today, terrazzo can consist of durable materials such as marble, quartz, granite, recycled glass, porcelain, concrete, and metal aggregates. These materials are mixed with cement or epoxy and polished to produce a sustainable, smooth, and uniformly textured surface that will last for years to come.

In 2020 watch out for terrazzo in bathroom splashbacks, bench tops and home wares, with the chips becoming larger and colours becoming bolder.

If your flooring has already been decided use terrazzo pots for plants to be on trend this year.