Recycled Glass Countertops


Kitchen with recycled glass countertopRecycled glass countertops use somewhere around 85% post consumer glass and were invented by materials scientist Don McPherson in 1995 when he combined recycled glass and a cement binder. These stunning design pieces are the latest in cutting edge style with an eco-friendly twist. Crafted using commercial and domestic waste glass, the counter tops come in a variety of colors and styles. In addition to counter tops a host of other kitchen and home products are also available including tiles, splash backs and glass panels.

Eco-friendly Glass Countertops

Glass is accountable for about 7% of household refuse resulting in millions of tonnes being added to landfill every year. Choosing recycled glass counter tops for your home is a smart choice with the added benefit of helping Mother Nature. By opting for recycled glass you are helping save energy and reduce landfill and emissions, plus recycling reduces the need for sourcing new raw materials – for every tonne of recycled glass used, 1.2 tonnes of raw materials are preserved.

Here’s a video about Vetrazzo, one of the major producers of recycled glass countertops.


recycled glass topWhen comparing recycled glass counter tops to other materials, the benefits to the environment are outstanding. Recycled glass can be recycled forever without any loss of quality plus there is no need to consume any new raw materials therefore no additional damage to the planet. Glass materials that would otherwise add to the ever increasing landfill sites is re-routed to recycling plants with no Co2 or other harmful glasses emitted during the recycling and manufacturing process. The end result reduces the amount of energy by a huge 1/3 per tonne of glass.

Custom-made Cool

Recycled glass products are custom made according to your needs, with designs and colours to suit all tastes. Glass wall tiles and glass light diffusers add a stunning personalized touch to any home, with a wide range of shades available including classic white, amber tones, delicate minty greens, blue sky shades and leafy greens in a varying kaleidoscope of textures and richness.

When creating recycled glass counter tops and other products it is imperative that designers work in tangent with interior designers to ensure the glass is tailored to their design requirements. Today’s savvy consumers are already opting for energy efficient light bulbs therefore it makes sense for consumers to also opt for eco-friendly recycled glass light diffusers. As with recycled glass counter tops and other items, the glass used is utterly unique and unlike any other merchandise on the market today resulting in a custom-made, cool look.

Long Lasting Benefits

Reusing glass is not only green and chic, recycled glass is also remarkably strong and durable. Other added benefits in selecting products such as recycled glass counter tops is that they are non-porous and are very easy to keep clean and maintain. When using tiles you will notice that no two are identical, adding to the overall aesthetic appeal resulting in a long lasting dream product for those seeking the ultimate designer air in their homes.

Recycled Glass Products

Recycled Glass Vases

Recycled Glass Vases

Recycled glass is now used to produce an impressive array of home products to brighten up you residence both inside and out. In addition to eco-friendly counter tops and work surfaces you can now also purchase tiles, splash backs, lighting diffusers, art glass and bathroom glass. All recycled glass products can be lit from behind for a striking effect, plus their finish makes them superb in bathrooms as well as kitchens.

Did you know?

Recycling two bottles saves enough energy to boil water for five cups of tea.

Recycled Glass Colours

Recycled Glass Colors & Products

Recycled Glass Colors & Products

Each piece of recycled glass is a slight variation on the one before, all products are however available in a choice of shades with the option of being lit from the front or behind

Amber A yellowish brown colour

Mint A light green hue

Vine A very dark green shade

Olive A golden green effect

Ice White with a hint of blue

Ornaments & Other Items

In addition to the recycled glass finishes that you can bring into your home by installing counter tops, tiles and splash backs, you can also go further with some beautiful art pieces. Recycled glass is increasingly being used to create stylish ornamental items with dramatic effect.

Finally, you can now purchase inexpensive home sundry items including drink ware created using recycled glass. Tumblers, water glasses, champagne flutes and wine glasses make great everyday items to bring into your home whilst helping save the earth!

Recycled Glass Serving Bowl

Recycled Glass Countertop Suppliers

Cool and innovative, opting for recycled glass counter tops in your home is not only good for the planet; it’s also great for bringing a stunning and unusual look into any home. They come in a stunning array of colours including Amber, Ice, Leaf, Mint, Olive and Vine. Each counter top is unique and made just for you; you get to choose both colour, finish and thickness. The designer will then shape the glass adding drainer grooves and more as required.

Unique Pieces

Each recycled glass counter top is different resulting in a unique effect and a designers dream, plus by blending colourful glass together a beautiful prism is created resulting in a glimmer of lights. The final look is very individual and utterly stylish. Prices are usually very affordable and vary according to the size and finishing required.

Finding a Supplier

There are a host of suppliers and stockists all over the place, most can send you samples directly so you can test them in the chosen envronment. We’ve drawn up a shortlist to get you started.

Vetrazzo (US)

A pioneering business that’s become very well know in the field in recent years. Stunning designs in a wide array of patterns and colors.
http://www.vetrazzo.com

The Green Building Center (US)

This company has a diverse range of ‘green’ building products including roof tiles, floorings, paints, carpets, and of course, counter tops.
http://www.greenbuildingcenter.net

EnviroGLAS (US, Canada, Mexico)

Most of the companies have their own patented methods and this company is no exception. In addition to kitchen and bathroom recycled glass countertops, makes extremely durable flooring ideal for public buildings. http://www.enviroglasproducts.com

Resilica (UK)

Owned by Gary Nicholson, a pioneer in the field of recycled glass counter tops, Resilica has been producing recycled glass surfaces to the highest standards for over twelve years. They remain the UK’s original and leading recycled glass surface supplier. http://www.resilica.com/about/history/

JW Smith Masonry (UK)

Based in York, JW Smith has been crafting stone items for over 25 years. Comprising master stonemasons, they are very experienced in working with recycled glass to produce bespoke pieces for your home. http://www.jwsmith-masonry.co.uk/kitchens/

Glass Eco (UK)

Recently presented with four environmental awards, Glass Eco creates work tops that are pieces of art. Blending high end design and green living, the recycled counter tops offer the ultimate in individual design. www.glasseco.co.uk

Bottle Alley Glass (UK)

Manufactures of a stunning range of recycled glass products including recycled glass tiles, recycled glass lighting diffusers, recycled architectural glass and art glass. Not to mention kitchen glass worktops and glass splash backs. http://www.bottlealleyglass.co.uk

Recycled Glass Supplier Videos

More info aobut Vetrazzo recycled glass products:

Ice Stone covering the benefits of recycled glass over granite:

Gilasi Featured by ABC

ABC local in Chicago made an interesting piece on Gilasi, showing how one person’s waste can be another’s gold.

Gilasi, which means ‘glass’ in Swahili, started when developer Garrett Obluck was building some ‘Green’ condominiums, he had trouble sourcing environmentally friendly countertops, eventually Garrett and his wife Jenna (who’s now President of Gilasi) decided to supply the the demand. Gilasi gets it’s glass from local glassmakers and also from Italy.

“So much energy goes into creating glass that to throw it, just to throw it away you’re just throwing away hours and tons of energy that went into the making of it” says Jenna. Gilasi recycled glass countertops cost a similar amount to mid-range granite countertops, so they are commercially viable, many people even prefer countertops in recycled glass over granite as well.

Here’s a video of the piece. You can read the original article here.

Recycling Glass

Recycled glass products, including counter tops, art glass and tiles, involves the use of domestic or household glass and commercial glass waste. The glass is firstly recovered and then transformed to cullet which is a combination of broken or scrap glass which is ready for melting down and recycling into new glass.

how to recycle glassThis new glass then undergoes finishing steps including cutting, edge polishing, fusing and kiln forming. More processing follows such as sand blasting and laminating before the final decoration touches are applied. The reused, recycled glass is then ready to be shaped into a number of different products.

The end result is utterly unique and no two pieces are the same in colour although differences are usually quite subtle. A variety of different colours are available along with a range of different thicknesses, resulting in items that can be selected specific to your desires.

Your Part in the Process

Before the glass products can be recycled, we can all play a part in helping the process along in the following ways:

  • Rinse and clean out the bottles or jars, removing any corks, metal rings and so on, as these can damage the furnaces used in recycling.
  • Take your glass bottles to a bottle bank, but do not take Pyrex dishes or light bulbs as these are not made in the same way and will contaminate the other glass being recycled.
  • Place your bottles in the bottle bank according to colour. Clear glass is worth more and should therefore never be mixed with other colours.
  • Don’t forget to take any other recycling items to the recycling plant in order to save on energy by having to make a return trip at a later date.

Watch Glass Recycling in Action

Most recycled glass counter tops are custom made specifically to your requirements for either interior or exterior use, to see how the process of glass recycling works then please watch one of the videos below:

The Smashing Story of Recycling Glass:

A Bottle’s Journey: