Is that countertop made of money? As a matter of fact, it is

Written By: Kathy Price-Robinson - Oct• 21•07

ShetkastonemontageIf you want to go really green with your kitchen counters, consider ShetkaStone, a durable and sustainable material that I found mentioned on Susan Serra’s excellent blog, the Kitchen Designer.

Made in Minnesota, ShektaStone is made from various types of paper that are shredded, broken down and processed using hydrogen bonding, which does not require the use of formaldehyde or toxic glues. It is then polished to a lustrous gleam. Phone books, cardboard, magazines, newspaper and other post-consumer fibrous waste are used. And the latest material to be used is decommissioned paper money. The product, which you see here on the top, is appropriately called "Counterfeit." (Click photo to enlarge.)

The process was developed by Stanley Shetka, a professor of art at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minn. The plant is in Le Center, Minn., and Shetka wants to open plants on both coasts so the material won’t have to be shipped so far to the end user. See the full story in Waste News. According to the story, a ton of paper makes 400 square feet of material that is an inch and a half thick. The price for countertop material is said to be somewhere between the cost of Corian and granite. In other words, not cheap, but doable.

Some other products are seen here in the sample kit you can purchase for $25. From top left, clockwise, they are: Latte Brown Dark, Publisher Grey Dark, Publisher Grey Light and Latte Brown Light. Samples are 3-by-3 inches with a matte finish.

I like the idea of the money product. Imagine the karma in those bills. They could have been used to buy tickets to Disneyland, or pay rent for a family, or buy a Starbucks nonfat latte, or tip a good waitress or pay an allowance for a kid who did his chores. However you feel about money, I think it’s mostly a positive thing, and using it for a kitchen counter sounds good to me.

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One Comment

  1. anne carr says:

    I have also seen countertops made by 50-100% recycled post-consumer paper. What is interesting about these is that the color depends on where the paper came from and what was on the paper originally.

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