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Posts Tagged ‘art wall’

Glass Blocks are not Dead! 5 Ways a Classic Material has Evolved

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Glass Block

 - new products and contemporary glass block designs

Warning – This article may be controversial to some.

I have to admit with many designers, decorators and architects I hear the following comments:

  • Glass blocks are dated.
  • Glass blocks are an old school material.
  • Aren’t those blocks just for basement and factory windows?

While the use of glass blocks for functional (not too sexy) projects like basement,  bathroom or factory windows makes sense for security and  improved energy efficiency, the material has evolved dramatically with some cool designer products no one seems to know about. Why are glass blocks seen as dead or dated? Why is this product the “Rodney Dangerfield” of building materials (i.e. it gets no – or minimal – respect)?

I would contend the marketing of these cool products has been woefully under-promoted. With this lack of promotion a common refrain of designers is often, “glass blocks are dead.”  They aren’t dead – the problem is no one really knows what’s cool and hot with them.

In this article I’m going to take you on a journey to see how this classic material has evolved into a contemporary element which can fit into a home or business with a modern design aesthetic. Let’s take a look at 5 specific ways glass blocks are being resurrected right now “from the dead” into a new modern design-forward building material.

 

Using Italian Design Inspired Glass Blocks to Create Extraordinary Wall Window or Shower Projects

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Commercial Remodeling & New Construction, Glass Block

Glass block wall design with Italian inspired designs
Glass block wall design with Italian inspired designs
Exterior fluted glass block wall design
Exterior fluted glass block wall design

If you look at design trends in floor or wall tiles you need to first look to the European markets (and Italy in particular) for inspiration. In the glass block wall industry the drivers of style, texture and design leadership are also being driven by the Italians.

 

Most of what people are used to seeing in the United States are glass blocks of standard shapes and sizes that have smooth flat faces on the front of the glass units. While these blocks may be mass produced and are cost effective they may not inspire the wow factor in a contemporary or modernistic design project.

Well leave it to the Italians once again to innovate (and in this case these cool designs are now becoming available in the United States markets) with unique glass block designs.

 

Some of the new designs available today include:

 

  • Trapezoidal glass blocks that are shaped in a pyramid form to create a sleek design.

 

  • Exterior fluted glass blocks (called Doric) for residential or commercial interior walls which have a unique texture to the outside of the block.

 

  • Angular (called Fiero Milano) glass blocks that appear to jut out from the wall – if these don’t capture your attention nothing will!

 

The good thing is if you’re looking for inspiration these blocks are now becoming available in the U.S. markets.

 

What do you think about the look of these blocks? Please give your thoughts below.

 

If you need any help with the design and/or supply of these unique blocks contat Columbus Glass Block (614-252-5888), Cleveland Glass Block (216-531-6363), or Mid America Glass Block (513-742-5900) of Dayton and Cincinnati. For a complete remodeling projects using these materials contact Cleveland Design & Remodeling (216-531-6085), Columbus Design & Remodeling (614-252-7294) or Bath Doctor of Cincinnati (513-742-6674).

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