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You’ll Never Guess the ‘70s Flooring Trend That’s Back in Style

Fanny packsflocked Christmas treesmom jeans: part of the joy in following trends is seeing which delightful old ones resurface. 

To that end, we’ve been noticing a certain much-maligned ’70s mainstay on the ups for the past few years. And now the official word is in from Pinterest’s 100 Report: Terrazzo is back, baby (up approximately 316 percent in search this year).

Bold, nuanced and more than a tad retro, turns out terrazzo also pairs downright gorgeously with today's modern lines. Here’s your primer, friends. 

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A Little History

By some accounts, terrazzo (Italian for “terrace”) dates back 8,000 years, to the Venetians. As a cost-cutting measure, construction workers would take smashed marble chips and set them in clay—rather than outfitting an entire floor in the pricey marble. (An ancient money-saving DIY, if you will.) In more recent history, terrazzo saw a huge surge in popularity in the American 1970s, when thin-set terrazzo (resin rather than cement) was invented before quickly falling back out of style by the end of the decade. 

Why It Works

Today, terrazzo is typically comprised of an epoxy resin laid with chips of marble, quartz or granite. With modern setting methods, it can be used for a backsplash, a tuba sink, a stairwell, countertops and, of course, the floor, its place of origin. It’s a smooth, long-lasting hard surface that’s super easy to clean, as well as a visually unique alternative to poured concrete and tile. 

Why We Love It

With its busy patterning and mix of color, terrazzo is an innately maximalist choice—which is why it makes such an amazing complement to modern, minimalist interiors. It’s riotous, it’s unabashedly nostalgic and it’s anything but boring. What’s more? It’s also practical. Cheers to seeing more of this medium in the months and years ahead. 

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