Earthy Chic A current trend interlaced throughout fashion and home wares can be loosely referred to as Earthy Chic. This style is based on the principal of recycling, reusing, and repurposing to reduce the negative effects on the planet and encourage using organic and renewable resources. It encourages purchasing vintage finds instead of buying brand new and using natural materials such as wood, stone, cotton, and linen instead of man-made materials like plastic and rubber. This style has greatly contributed to the home design industry, both in new construction and renovations. Architects, builders, and homeowners are thinking outside the box to create creative ways to repurpose products and use natural materials. Finishes such as a salvaged wood floors, recycled glass mosaic shower, and travertine countertops are popular examples. Travertine is a Perfect Fit In the stone industry, travertine is the most popular choice in modern architecture. Besides the Earth’s abundance and softness that make it easy to manufacturer, travertine has an appearance that many customers are looking for today. Although it is available polished and unfinished, the most popular is finish is honed, which has an eggshell sheen, and is manufactured into tiles, slabs, and cladding for endless possibilities. The smooth, eggshell finish allows the stone to be easily cleaned and useful in wet areas such as kitchen countertops and bathroom shower surrounds. The color of the stone is within a narrow range of earth tones including cream, ecru, tan, mocha, and gray. Due to travertine’s natural looking sheen and color range, it has become an extremely popular stone in the Earthly Chic style. Common Uses of Travertine In homes, travertine is commonly used as floor and wall tiles that are either “filled” or “unfilled”, where the pits are left rough for an organic or rustic look. The stone tiles are naturally resistant to water absorption, but should be sealed to prevent staining and mildew growth when used in showers and around tub decks. Travertine countertops make the ideal choice when trying to achieve the natural look. The stone wears gracefully and is easy to maintain and keep clean. Travertine compliments wood (stained or painted), metal, and other natural materials well and is pleasing to the eye since the combination of stone and wood reflects how they are authentically found in nature. Travertine is Modern Another defining characteristic of the Earthy Chic design trend is to create a space using natural and repurposed materials in a modern and creative way to keep them from looking outdated or rustic. This can be a difficult to achieve since the products and materials are typically either antique or organic by nature. Here in lies the challenge that keeps this style at the forefront of current design and is continuing to evolve. Combining the raw nature of a material with a modern approach keeps it looking fresh and current. One example would be installing travertine countertops with a wide mitered edge profile that gives it a modern feel. Installing a shower surround with seamless travertine slabs instead of tiles is another unexpected way of accenting the stone. Travertine is a highly versatile and good fit in the current Earthy Chic design trend.