Concrete is used more than any other manmade material in the world and the industry is worth a staggering $37 billion in America. Although we may be familiar with its traditional applications — on our vast highways and roads, strong and tall buildings, and smooth showroom floors — concrete seems to be making the leap to interior design. With the help of channels like HGTV, the industrial look has made a comeback in recent years.
“[Concrete companies] are doing more interesting things like trough sinks, entire shower stalls, staircases, really large fireplace surrounds, wall panels, or furniture pieces,” says designer Ana Cummings. “The possibilities are pretty endless.”
Now, even workplace environments are considering using the durable, inexpensive material to set the mood for their employees. Let’s take a look at the two ways your business could take advantage of concrete.
- Flooring: A concrete floor can make a pretty big statement, though it’s important to be aware of its lack of sound absorption; you’ll need to consider the other materials that the sound may bounce off of (such as the ceiling and walls) to determine if your workplace is going to be too noisy. Fortunately, you can be selective in your placement: perhaps only the most trafficked areas will receive concrete floors since they’ll be able to withstand the constant movement.
- Walls: The stark sight of a concrete wall can add a bit of personality and drama to a business environment as it is textured and engaging. However, the coolness of its color will need to be balanced with warm accents to prevent the space from looking or feeling cold.
Though concrete can make an existing business environment stark and interesting, HomeGoods style expert Mike Harrison says that you don’t need to go overboard.
“It’s all about balance. In general, 2018 décor is moving toward more fresh, natural materials, so I think it’s important to mix concrete with other natural elements like stone, copper, or granite to make it tasteful.”
Finding competent concrete companies or concrete contractors is the best way to make the most out of your design experience. If you’re looking to build from the ground up, a concrete company can perform all the work and offer advice on care to keep your workforce surrounded by the strength of concrete for years to come.