Native Trails’ new concrete sinks, made of a groundbreaking cement and jute fiber mixture called NativeStone™, are poised to spur the concrete trend in home design and energize the kitchen and bath industry. By adding jute—a natural, renewable vegetable fiber—to the proprietary concrete blend, Native Trails has reinvented concrete as we know it. These new concrete sinks are 40 percent lighter, much stronger, and far more sustainable than traditional cement sinks since they make use of natural resources, generate less waste, and require less energy than ordinary concrete production. Less heft also makes them easier to install and less expensive to ship than traditional concrete.
In developing NativeStone™, Naomi Howard and Native Trails President Tim Blair visited artisans in Vietnam, where they spent weeks hiking to remote villages, exploring cities both ancient and modern, researching factories and workshops, and coming to appreciate the country’s strong handicraft tradition and deep-rooted artisan culture.
“We were looking for a material that could translate to both a kitchen and a bath sink,” says Native Trails President Tim Blair. “It needed to be artisan-made, with our Eco-Social PositiveTM philosophy and story behind it. It also had to be sustainably crafted to fit with our core beliefs and be viable for business—not an easy thing in reality. Once we saw one of the NativeStone™ prototypes and felt the smooth, cool texture, we fell in love with it. That’s how it goes: if we love the product, it’s a pretty good bet that designers and homeowners will as well.” The result is a product line inspired as much by nature as it is by modern life and by concrete’s naturally industrial appeal. [Photos and information provided via e-mail by Native Trails]