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Kitchen Renovation: Finis
At last! My kitchen renovation is complete. I have survived the insanity and am the proud owner of a simply fabulous, almost green kitchen.
Almost green? I tried in earnest to be flawlessly green but, inevitably, some things just slipped; my backsplash, for example. I struggled with the balance between aesthetics, practicality, cost and sustainability. Some of the greenest options--recycled content glass, ceramic or porcelain tiles--were not the look that I wanted. I also considered recycled content metal tiles and found one made from salvaged airplane fuselages. It seemed cool but very pricey.
A designer friend suggested I use recycled leather tiles, and though a respected manufacturer assured me they would stand up to cooking oil splatters, I was skeptical.
Just when I was about ready to settle on a perfectly ordinary ceramic tile, I fell in love--with a marble mosaic made, supposedly from scrap material scooped off the factory floor, mounted on 12-inch square sheets and given new life as a wall tile. It was exactly the look I wanted, extremely well suited for its application and in stock at a very good price.
I placed the order and then began verifying the environmental claims first made by a sales rep, which is not, dear reader, the correct order of things. Despite repeated attempts to document the product's origins, I have not been able to confirm that the tile on my kitchen wall is anything other than virgin marble imported from Spain.
But it is stunningly gorgeous and, literally, makes the kitchen. The material perfectly compliments my wonderful cabinets, will stand up to the abuse of my reckless cooking habits and will last forever with no maintenance. That's something, isn't it?
My other big failure was construction waste management as I wrote in a previous post. Too much stuff left here for the landfill and next time--oh wait, there won't be a next time--I'll know better.
All in all, however, I'm enormously pleased with this kitchen. Many, many thanks to the manufacturers whose products made being green very easy: