on tour: Matrix Z


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A visit to the offices of Ft. Lauderdale FL based tile company Matrix Z to see some of their new products.

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on tour: Matrix Z

  1. 1. matrix z 1 on tour: Matrix Z Our recent trip to Florida proved the perfect opportunity to visit the showroom of Matrix Z, LLC. and meet the artist behind the company. Based in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Matrix Z was founded in 2001 by Barbara Zigann with the intent to create a sustainable alternative to quarried natural stone. Since then she has developed three lines, one a jewelry collection, with strong usage of recycled material. The current collections are: • SeaStone: tiles made from a proprietary cementitious mixture that incorporates 70% to 75% recycled content. • SeaTile: tiles and laminates made from oyster and abalone shells recovered from the waste byproducts of the fishing industry. • SeaGems: iridescent jewelry and craft assemblies using the same fishing industry byproducts. For our purposes, we were most interested in the SeaStone collection. At first glance, it is easy to look at the tiles and think that they were mined. Their color is so natural, and the variation from tile to tile so evident, that it makes perfect sense to believe they are a completely nature-made creation. But they are not. Even though during our visit we were not able to tour the manufacturing facility, it lies within miles of the showroom, and it is the place where all of these materials are created. What we did see, however, were the raw ingredients: a wide variety of bivalve shells, recycled tumbled glass, beautiful nautilus shells, resplendent conchs, and opalescent abalone shells. These are all aggregates that, either alone or mixed, combine to create the following lines: ShellStone, GlasStone, ReefStone, LimeStone, and Custom. The Custom line is where anyone can become a designer. It is specifically geared toward bolder aesthetic statements, and can incorporate any number of colorful shells in a variety of shapes. The matrix for any of these lines can be integrally colored in either natural white, buff, or gray. The resulting tiles can be used in vertical and horizontal applications, for both interior and exterior purposes. To date, it has been used as stair treads, flooring, wall surfacing, countertops, table tops, and even in showers and pools. The tiles emit zero VOCs. An independent assessment by a LEED AP with the Natural Capital Group, an entity that www.threadcollaborative.com ➜ threadcollaborative 11250 morrison street no. 201, north hollywood ca 91601
  2. 2. matrix z 2 specializes in funding commercial green projects, has concluded that SeaStone can contribute a possible 8 points toward LEED certification in a local project, or a possible 6 points for a project beyond 500 miles from Fort Lauderdale, FL. Thank you, Barbara, for your time during our visit! www.threadcollaborative.com ➜ threadcollaborative 11250 morrison street no. 201, north hollywood ca 91601