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Kohler Unveils The Abstra™ Collection by Kohler WasteLAB™

An artistic convergence of patterned and plain field tiles rendered from recycled factory waste

Published 03-24-22

Submitted by Kohler

Image of multicolored tiles behind a table
The Abstra™ Collection by Kohler WasteLAB

KOHLER, Wis., March 24, 2022 /CSRwire/ - Kohler Co. has debuted The Abstra Collection by Kohler WasteLAB, a stunning new series of bespoke brushed and matte tiles for residential and commercial installations, made from nearly 100 percent recycled waste materials. This is the second tile collection by KOHLER WasteLAB utilizing the company's pottery refuse to create sustainable products for the home.

The Abstra Collection by Kohler WasteLAB evokes the appearance of carved or sculpted clay with two different styles from which to choose: Abstra Feature, which is a series of abstract patterned tile with raised and relief designs and an undulating surface; and Abstra Standard, an unadorned field tile with the same undulating surface detail. Taking an avant-garde approach to design is one of the spirited strengths behind Kohler and is clearly represented throughout the Abstra collection. A feast for the senses, these works of art lend visual and textural nuance that is sensual and engaging.

Kohler WasteLAB is comprised of a talented group of designers, ceramicists, and engineers at Kohler Co. that rely on factory waste as their primary medium. When developing the Abstra Collection, the WasteLAB decided to take waste conversion one step further, exploring a radical new avenue in their sustainability efforts. The WasteLAB pioneered a way to leverage the Kohler WI Pottery's wastewater stream for Abstra's tile body. Consisting primarily of pottery waste clay and glaze, the material is dewatered and processed into a useable base material.

"Abstra has a fluidity that is continuous, yet ever-changing in its contrasting surface details," said Dana Morales, Senior Designer – Kohler Co. "There are the raised and relief patterns, multiple geometric shapes, a soft, matte color palette based in nature, and subtle surface undulation that create complexity and depth. Through these new WasteLAB designs, we provide the tools to create an imaginative canvas and explore new ways to express yourself."

Featuring an organic palette of colors based in nature, Abstra Feature and Abstra Standard are offered in the Cloud, Ash, Storm, Buff, Sage, Marigold, and Velvet matte finishes, and Linen, Crete, Terra Cotta, and Slate brushed finishes. The Feature and Standard designs can be used alone or mixed and matched to create a one-of-a-kind design statement.

Image of a tile wall in a bathroom
The Abstra™ Collection by Kohler WasteLAB

The Abstra Feature and Abstra Standard tiles can be purchased in the U.S. and Canada through ANN SACKS Showrooms. Both are available in 3"x12", 4"x4", 6"x6", and 6"x12" field sizes. Abstra is ideal for any vertical dry interior applications. The matte shades are also able to accommodate wet spaces, such as showers and submerged areas, and dependent upon method of installation, have passed freeze/thaw climate testing making it an exceptional candidate for the outdoors. The Brushed finishes are not recommended for wet surfaces due to the porous nature of the finish. Sold by the box, suggested lay-ups for those preferring some direction assistance with their installation will be available. The tiles can also be laid in any artful, imaginative combination for a personalized design statement. 

"The new collection is proof that with creativity, ingenuity and an innovative spirit, we can turn waste into something truly beautiful and functional, leaving a positive impact on the world around us," said Ratish Namboothiry, director, Innovation for Good & Sustainability, Kohler Co. "From its humble, sustainable roots as a start-up business in Kohler's Innovation for Good program, the WasteLAB is helping Kohler deliver on its commitment to a better planet in that we are mitigating waste to landfill. In turn, there remains a thoughtful flexibility to Abstra that encourages individual creativity, and a uniqueness that makes it unlike anything currently in the marketplace."

About Kohler WasteLAB
At the Kohler WasteLAB, we look for ways to see the world differently. Specifically, we look to nature as a model for sustainable processes. Through nature's cycles of growth and decay, waste simply doesn't exist. The WasteLAB applies such an approach in its manufacturing process, using landfill-bound pottery, wastewater sludge and other forms of waste to design and produce stunning products. The Kohler WasteLAB is just one of the several success stories to come out of Kohler's innovative start-up Innovation for Good (IfG). For more information, visit

About Kohler Co.
Founded in 1873 and headquartered in Kohler, Wisconsin, Kohler Co. is one of America's oldest and largest privately held companies comprised of more than 40,000 associates. With more than 50 manufacturing locations worldwide, Kohler is a global leader in the design, innovation and manufacture of kitchen and bath products; luxury cabinetry, tile and lighting; engines, generators, and clean energy solutions; and owner/operator of two, five-star hospitality and golf resort destinations in Kohler, Wisconsin, and St. Andrews, Scotland. Kohler's Whistling Straits golf course recently hosted the 43rd Ryder Cup. The company also develops solutions to address pressing issues, such as clean water and sanitation, for underserved communities around the world to enhance the quality of life for current and future generations. For more details, please visit

Robin L. Richter
Kohler Co. Public Relations

Vicki Valdez Hafenstein
Kohler Co. Public Relations

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