What does it take to get started in Designer-friendly sustainable flooring?

Showercork shower base.tifWhen a business names itself "Sustainable Flooring," you might think that name tells you everything you'd need to know. What the name doesn't give away is the stunning array of beautiful wood flooring you'll find among their selections. Pete Nichols, the company's owner, says that his goal is to supply better, more durable, and more attractive flooring options that will even appeal to people who aren't interested in green building.

Just the same, every product that Sustainable Flooring sells will qualify for LEED credits. "That's one of our major marketing thrusts," said Nichols. "We offer some certified wood flooring from FSC certified sources, and we have products made from bamboo, cork, and reclaimed post industrial wood fiber. And we can supply all the documentation anyone needs to prove our low-VOC, no-added formaldehyde, and rapidly renewable claims," he told us.

The certified product mix ranges from the familiar American woods - such as oak, maple, hickory, and cherry - to the popular tropical varieties such as ipe, Brazilian cherry, and tigerwood. SF also features 9 different varieties of bamboo flooring, plus bamboo millwork, bamboo plywood, and bamboo veneer - all sourced from properly matured stalks, according to Nichols. Cork flooring is offered in 10 colors, as both tiles and planks.

Sustainable Flooring supplies some very unique signature products as well. "Our Strandwoven Bamboo™ has been popular for many years, but we started manufacturing Strandwoven Timber™ and MSB™ (morus alba) about 6 months ago and they are gaining in popularity," said Nichols. "The Strandwoven Woods use similar technology to what we emply for the Strandwoven Bamboo, but for the MSB we use one species of wood and for the Timber we use a combination of 7 species." Their Strandwoven Timber is a multi-species composite made from post-industrial wood fibers. The Strandwoven Aspen™, made from area 'weed trees,' is supplied in a pale natural color and a deep carbonized shade.

Showercork™ is another striking choice. It's made of post-industrial cork pieces that are 1/4 inch thick and mounted to a paper backing. The Showercork is installed like a mosaic tile: you can either glue it down or thinset it down, and then grout it when you're done. "To my knowledge, it's the only wood suitable for a wet application," said Nichols. "It marries the bounce and memory of cork with the durability of the cementitious grout." In addition to use in home bathrooms, Nichols has seen Showercork in commercial applications such as restaurants, public restrooms, and warehouse floors.

Sustainable Flooring's Gymboo™ Sports Flooring system is a bamboo based alternative to maple sports floors. It has similar characteristics in terms of hardness, shock absorption, and safety. "But the interesting thing is that it's significantly more stable, in terms of expansion and contraction," said Nichols. "That's why we think it's a better choice than maple." A related product, Gymboo Float™, is designed for less rugged use in corporate or residential workout rooms.

Sustainable can supply dealers with samples or make display boards for them while also providing an ample supply of information and literature to help them tell their story. But Nichols would like prospective dealers to understand his company, too. "We didn't get into this solely because we thought we could sell something green. It's more that we're really interested in this and the business side came in second," he said. "A lot of people are hopping on the bandwagon because they think they can move a green product. That's fine, and I have nothing against that. But what differentiates us is that this is something we really care about."



Archived Content:
Crossville's “SpeakEasy” Porcelain Tile Collection

Archived Content:
Zandur Sustain

Archived Content:
"Truck Deck" flooring

Archived Content:
Total Flooring Succeeds With Mirage Hardwood Floors

Archived Content:
Sustainable Underlayments

Archived Content:
Cool new looks in flooring

Archived Content:
Cork & Rubber are attractive options in resilient flooring

Archived Content:
Flooring • May09

Archived Content:
Pioneer Millwork's Reclaimed Flooring

Archived Content:
Flooring Innovations Dec08

Archived Content:
Ram Board Floor Protection

Archived Content:
TerraMai Recycled Teak Flooring

Archived Content:
Osmo Wood Floor Finish • July 2010

Get inside info on top green building products

e-newsletter today!


GBPN Newsletter





Dealer Links:

Amicus Green

Atlas Lumber

Austin Lumber Co.

Alternative Bldg Center

Bingham Lumber

Colt Industries

Dean Hardwoods

Ecohome Improvement

g Green Design

Green Design Center

Mwanzi Supply

Sustainable NW Wood

Links we like:

Sippican Cottage

Greenbuild Expo


© Copyright 2013,
Green Building Product News
Re-publication or re-use without
specific permission is prohibited