Posts Tagged ‘kentile’

I didn’t think I had Olympic fever. I’m not watching much TV coverage, and the sound is usually off because I can’t stand the yammering of the announcers, and yet, when I took this picture, what did I think of, but men’s gymnastics, the pommel horse! (Krisztián Berki of Humgary was the gold medal winner.)

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Taken from the 3rd floor of a building across the street, this is the closest I’ve been to the Kentile Sign. It’s ironic that it’s endured as a landmark for this part of Brooklyn, since the factory closed down in the late 1980’s.

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Pulling into the Smith and 9th station on the F and G lines, the Kentile Floors sign is what you see on the right. The factory, at 2nd Avenue and 9th Street, made “super resilient floor tiles” for almost 90 years and closed in 1988 because of asbestos lawsuits and labor issues. The landmark sign went up sometime in the 1940’s; the purple neon was turned off when the business shut down. For a neglected structure, it appears to be in pretty good shape.

kentile adThis ad is from 1959.

I like to think that had I been alive and decorating in the 1950’s, I would have avoided the faux-fancy look and used my Kentile in a more modern way. Except for the zebra rug and maybe the couches, this decor steers clear of any references to the mid-century revolutions in art and design.

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