Yoga Joes!

Dan Abramson created Yoga Joes in the spirit of getting more people to try yoga. As he puts it, “T

Choctaw Health Center: A particularly unique installation of palm.

One of the more notable installations for Smith & Fong this year is the Choctaw Health Center, l

Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito

My daughter and I recently visited the Marine Mammal Center located in the Marin Headlands just nort

 

Our Hardest Floor Gets Glamourous

December 8, 2011 in Bamboo Flooring

There are six color offerings for Stiletto Strand Bamboo Flooring listed from left to right: Brushed Havana, Brushed Sahara, Cerused Eclipse, Cerused Espresso, Cerused Pearl, and Cerused Taupe.

Your boots were made for walking all over our Stiletto strand bamboo floors.  Stiletto is as fashion forward as you are, and it’s just as tough. Its timelessness, however, doesn’t end with its attractiveness. Stiletto is built to stand up to whatever you put down.

The need to design a bamboo floor that shattered the stereotypes has arrived.  Being strong wasn’t enough, this new floor had to be striking.  On one hot New York City day, Stiletto was born.  This floor takes bamboo flooring to the next level with its color, texture and style.

Stiletto is a 100% bamboo floor made using strand technology.  It’s more than 2 times the hardness of red oak.  Don’t let Stiletto’s luxuriousness fool you. It’s urea formaldehyde-free for better indoor air quality

Product Attributes:

  • Strand bamboo composite flooring
  • 7 Coat Poly and Seal Finish
  • No added urea formaldehyde resin system
  • Dimensions: 9/16” x 5” x 72”
  • Weight: 70lbs/box
  • Strength: 3500 psi
  • Passes CA Section 01350 Emissions Standards
  • See CSI for ASTM Test Results
  • Visit www.plyboo.com for warranty details

Good things come in pairs.  Combine Stiletto with an underlayment system to fit your installation needs.

Stiletto is commercial grade flooring, ideal for your business. Stiletto flooring is the toughest around. When this tough as nails floor is paired with PlybooFit for Retail underlayment system, incredible things happen. The system’s ¼” recycled rubber pad absorbs shock which will give your employees relief when in long-standing situations. Stiletto paired with PlybooFit for Retail subfloor system is a popular choice in salons, cafes, and retail establishments.

Living in a condo or shared space? Stiletto is for you.
Stiletto flooring is twice as strong as your old floor, and 5 times as stylish. Whether you like entertaining guests, have a family, or pets, Stiletto can stand up to whatever you toss at it. In multi-family living situations, we suggest pairing Stiletto with PlybooQuiet, an acoustic reduction subfloor system. PlybooQuiet absorbs the pitter patter of not so little feet, and all the knocks of your busy life.

 

From Haiti, Day One

November 30, 2011 in Bamboo Flooring

The following post is from Dan Smith, the President and CEO of Smith & Fong Co., the makers of Plyboo.

11/28/11

Photo taken by Sue Rooks. Please click to view her Flickr Photo Stream.

Haiti gets a bad rap. I have to say that. With as much hardship as Haiti now experiences, it is a greatly hopeful country with some of the world’s most inspiring minds within Haiti and around the world imagining the possibilities for positive change. I have been cohort to Haiti by Alice an inspired, big-hearted creative from Parsons design school in New York. “Haiti needs bamboo, you need to come, she says.” And so I am…. happily here. The “Invest in Haiti Forum hosted jointly by the Inter-American Development Bank, the Clinton Foundation and the Haitian Government is running and I am here to listen and learn.

I arrive in Port au Prince from Miami at 1pm in the afternoon. It is hot and the airport is casual. Flying in over the Haitian landscape I was curious to see the terrain. I had read that Haiti has lost most of its native forests. I see a mountainous landscape only sparely covered in green and imagine a time when lush tropical forests might have covered the hills and ravines that I now see. And then, what it would take to return it to a verdant landscape.

We are met by a Haitian five-piece band and after claiming my luggage and being processed, we are bussed to our lodging. The drive from the airport to our hotel on the hill, the El Rancho, tells the story of today’s Haiti. The roads are wrecked and at time uncertain. Trucks, buses, cars and foot traffic compete to get to their destinations. Large and small groups of people line the streets sharing space with makeshift stands, selling food, cloths and essentials. Buildings in various states of collapse, construction or reconstruction compete with tent villages labeled by the organizations that provided them.

When we finally arrive at the hotel it is more of the same. The hotel was badly damaged during the earthquake some years back and is still only half back to its former glory. The swimming pool is broken and contains only a small amount of rain fall, a sign of the ongoing draught. It is clean though and the staff pleasant. A heliport graces the lot just above us over the wall. The streets are narrow and stonewalls are very much part of the landscape. From poolside the ram-shackled sprawl that is port au prince stretches to the left and right below with more mountains in the far distance.

I am anxious to make contact with Alice and Maryline who are my unofficial hosts here in Haiti. Maryline is Haitian, bubbly, fun and dedicated to everything that Haiti can be. We drive to the karibe where the forum will be held the following day. I meet Alice face to face for the first time. We all fall into conversation on what is going on, what can be done, what needs to be done, who is doing it, who needs to meet and connect with who. Wonderful people join us in conversation. Everyone is involved in something, so many are interconnected and everyone absolutely everyone is infected with infinite possibility.

Throughout this magical evening I meet and shake hands with Bill Clinton, have a warm exchange with Donna Karen and hear Michel Martelly the President of Haiti
talk about the Haiti to come. I finish my evening in the company of my hosts, a mangrove restorationist, a PhD. in aquaculture, goat stew and the stars that blanket the night skies in this Caribbean country unlike any other.

Tomorrow is the first day of the forum.

What is SoyBond? Part II

November 17, 2011 in Bamboo Flooring

Although, Smith & Fong Co. has been manufacturing with soy for some time Plyboo SoyBond was formally introduced at GreenBuild 2011 in Toronto this year. To help customers understand the benefits of Soybond, the company created this helpful visual explanation of Plyboo Soybond:

Why Are Strand Bamboo Floors So Thin?

November 3, 2011 in Bamboo Flooring

PlybooStrand is not only the brand’s hardest bamboo floor (3 times as strong as oak!), but is it’s thinnest floor offering at 3/8” and 9/16” compared to the standard Plyboo flooring product at 5/8”.

Strand bamboo flooring is a composite floor, using  great compression and tremendous force to mold and sharp both the look and the durable quality of the product. This allows  the flooring  to be manufactured at a thinner thickness while still retaining it’s great density and hardness. PlybooStrand bamboo flooring has been very popular and its strength and beauty are the reasons.

Thinner thicknesses also have other benefits for both residential and commercial spaces.  For residential environments where ceiling heights are limited or door heights have been adjusted for thinner flooring products the 3/8″ can save ceiling heights and possibly eliminate the need to adjust doors to accommodate a thicker flooring product. For commercial spaces a thinner floor is idea for pairing up with other thin flooring surfaces such as tile, carpet or vinyl. This can minimize or eliminate the need for transition strips between flooring products and make the installation go much more smoothly.  Along with PlybooStrand’s superior durability  and easy glue-down characteristics, the PlybooStrand product at 3/8″ is idea for commercial uses.

The PlybooStrand 9/16″ flooring is great where a thicker flooring is desired and where a nail down application is appropriate. Whether for commercial or residential this product will be there for the long term. As Smith & Fong continues to advance strand bamboo technology and explore applications, you can be sure to see new and exciting additions to the PlybooStrand flooring line.

Image: Danilo Rizzuti / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

How to avoid denting your bamboo floor

October 25, 2011 in Bamboo Flooring, Maintenance Series

If you have kids, dogs, a kitchen, or an active lifestyle, then you may have experience with how well high activity melds with flooring surfaces… NOT VERY!  However, don’t despair; there’s no need to wait patiently on those empty nest days to save your floor. With a few considerations, your floor can be well maintained for years to come.

If you’re building new or remodeling, there are so many options to consider when bamboo floor shopping.  Is bamboo flooring “green?” How hard is bamboo flooring? Is bamboo flooring sustainable? The most important question however may be: Which bamboo floor is right for me?  Honestly answering this question could save you lots of time and extend the useful life of your flooring choice.

Situation 1: The neighborhood coffee shop

The neighborhood coffee shop is pretty popular. There are several regular and new customers coming in and out daily. Since it’s a business, it’s unlikely they’ll leave their shoes at the door, so dirt and grit gets regularly tracked in.  The best flooring choice in this higher traffic situation would be a strand bamboo floor, such as PlybooStrand or Havana or Neopolitan.

Adding a PlybooFit or PlybooQuiet underlayment pad system could help absorb some of the impact of dropped items as well as the tired feeling from standing on a hard surface all day.  Instituting a regular cleaning schedule would be appropriate for this situation and will add life to the product and prevent additional scratching and indentation from hard debris left on the surface.

Situation 2: The Nuclear Family

Throw two hard-working adults, a kid or two and a dog and you’ve got one floor that had better deliver.  This is a situation ripe for a darker tone strand bamboo floor with great durability.

In the kitchen, simply putting a mat down by the oven and by the sink would spare these “drop zones” from the constant pummeling of dropped kitchenware. Also, putting a mat near the entrance would lesson the likelihood of scratching from accumulated debris from outdoors.

For families with an upstairs, installing a padded underlayment, like PlybooFit or PlybooQuiet will lessen the noise of tender feet over head.

Situation 3: The Quiet Couple

If there is only one or two adults living in a residence, without children, pets, or a constant barrage of guests, then most flooring choices will would be ideal. Limiting the use of shoes indoors and a regular cleaning regiment will help things stay looking good and performing well.

Of course, using the same precautions as the nuclear family, plan for the worst, hope for the best, for both the kitchen and entryways, is the best plan for your well loved and hard-working friend-under-foot, your floor.

Image: photostock / FreeDigitalPhotos.net