Leather floor tiles: luxurious indulgence and insult to the planet, or eco-friendly alterna-floor?
Not unlike milk paint, leather floors are an ancient trick, dating back to the House of Caveman. At that point in history, recycling (or at least efficient use of limited resources) was just part of the deal. Before they could warm their floor with hides, Caveman and Cavewoman had to slay and eat many very scary beasts. There was no garbage pickup, so making the hides into floors was kind of a given. Good thing the rich, warm look was always fashionable.
EcoDomo leaves the slaying of beasts to other, less enlightened industries. They start with leather scraps from furniture, shoe, and other factories. The tile production process is similar to paper production: they shred the scraps into a pulp that's bound with acacia and natural rubber, and then form sheets of leather pulp which are dried and cut into tiles. The tiles themselves are 65% post-consumer industrial waste, low-VOC and score plenty of LEED points.
How do they wear, you ask? Apparently better than regular leather tiles, which are famously long-lasting, and at less than half the price. The recycling process makes them denser, so they are highly abrasion-resistent and can be maintained with occasional applications of liquid wax.