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  • The lobby of United Capital was transformed to give it a fresh, modern vibe, which was achieved by exposing the concrete floor and embellishing it with images of the company’s logo.
  • After a cement-based resurfacer was applied to the existing concrete floor, it was colored with dye stains in a combination of brown and burnt orange. Custom-cut stencils and blue dye stain were then used to jazz up the floor with the three-ring logo design.
  • Before the decorative treatment could be applied, the existing concrete floor required a lot of prep work to remove carpet glue and grind down trench cuts and uneven spots resulting from multiple concrete pours.

When financial counseling firm United Capital wanted to give their office space in Alpharetta, Ga., a hip, more modern image, they decided to start with the floor in the lobby. Out went the old carpeting, exposing the concrete floor underneath that would become the canvas for their fresh, new look.

Stained concrete was chosen over more traditional flooring materials because of the uniqueness and customization. The design goals were to create a natural looking surface with mottled, soft color hues. Obviously ease of maintenance and wearability were also very important,” says Michael Jensen of Atlanta Concrete Artist, a decorative concrete firm specializing in creating unique finishes. In addition to staining the floor, Jensen added a special design treatment by embellishing it with images of the company’s logo.

The project began by grinding the existing 400-square-foot concrete slab to remove the residual carpet glue and the trench cuts from the electrical wiring in the floor. After the slab was ground and cleaned, Jensen’s crew applied an acrylic primer and allowed it to dry overnight. The next day, one coat of a cement-based resurfacing compound was applied using a magic trowel and then allowed to dry. After sanding the base coat, the crew applied another coat of resurfacer the same day and left it to dry overnight. The next day, they lightly sanded and cleaned the surface, creating a flawless canvas for their decorative treatment.

The first step was to cover the entire floor with a coat of Westcoat Fast Stain, an environmentally friendly, solvent-soluble acetone dye. A combination of burnt orange and brown dye stains were used, applied to the floor randomly with acetone sprayers to achieve a subtle mottling effect. After the stain was dry, the crew was ready to apply the stenciled artwork. “We used Surface Gel Tek Flatoos as the stencils, which were custom designed from the company’s logo,” says Jensen. “We applied the stencils to the concrete surface in a random fashion. The coloring process entailed painting the negative area of the Flatoo, then removing it. The color was then sealed in using two coats of water-based urethane.”

Although Jensen’s company also installs standard concrete floor finishes, such as stains, epoxies and overlays, he prefers to tackle more artistic projects such as this one. “My business specializes in creating more unique flooring for our clientele; it has become our niche here in Atlanta,” he says. “It's always fun when I’m challenged to create something unique. It’s what makes us grow. Thinking outside the box drives me and is why I love decorative concrete -- a new canvas on every job!”

Materials used Floor primer: Colormaker CP1000
Cement-based resurfacing compound: Colormaker Sgraffino
Concrete stencils: Flatoos, from Surface Gel Tek
Concrete dye stains: Westcoat Fast Stain SC-36
Concrete sealer: Westcoat SC-65 WB Polyurethane

Flooring contractor Michael Jensen
Atlanta Concrete Artist, Alpharetta, Ga.
www.atlantaconcreteartist.com

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