It was the summer of 2020 when I found myself in front of a concrete mixer, shoveling cement and marble pebbles into the drum. Just a few weeks earlier, I would have called anyone crazy who told me that this would be my new job.
But how did it all come about?
Beginning of the year I had moved to Düsseldorf for my new job at a startup company. After several years as an employee at one of the largest German fashion companies in Munich, I was looking for new challenges in a small team. Little did I know that my new responsibilities should end much sooner than expected. The Covid19-virus began to spread only a few weeks after I had started, forcing all employees into short-time work. The future of the young company became unclear.
In the beginning, all of us underestimated the situation completely. I used the time to focus on furnishing our new apartment - one of my greatest passions from an early age.
For our living room I was looking for a side table made of natural materials. Despite hours of online research I could not find any design that I like. For quite some time I had become more aware of terrazzo and was quite fascinated by its endless design possibilities. A cube-shaped table made of terrazzo would have been perfect for our apartment.
After my failed online research, my first idea was to ask various stonemasons if they could manufacture the table as it already existed in my head. I received 99% rejections and two offers - far too expensive.
Parallel to my private and professional challenges, the global situation became much worse and my employer had to face the fact that the company will not survive the crisis. All employees received their termination.
That was a shocking experience. To receive a notice of termination had always been unimaginable for me. I think my generation in particular is very spoiled when it comes to the job market. This time, also separated from my loved ones was really hard for me.
But after a short period of feeling low and having a lack of orientation I developed dedication and thirst for action. Inspired by my original idea of the terrazzo side table I formed a vision that I could not let go of: Luisa + Terrazzo = Luizzo
During my research for the side table, I was lucky enough to meet a stonemason from Düsseldorf who offered his help. He himself had never worked with terrazzo but offered me to use his workshop for a few self-experiments. The following weeks I spent all my days in the workshop and learned a lot about mold making, mixing ratios and color combinations. Despite some minor successes, this time included many frustrating experiences, sweat, tears and sore muscles. My first table took me more than 12 hours of manual polishing in order to receive an acceptable result. The construction market became my second home and I dragged countless bags of cement from A to B.
Even if my creations got better I became more determined about my wish to work with a manufacturer in Italy. Italy is considered as the birthplace of terrazzo, it is where the greatest wealth of experience can be found and also the source of the most relevant part of our terrazzo formula: marble.
Countless emails and phone calls later my "perfect match" was found: a 25-person family business that has been manufacturing terrazzo for more than 100 years. Luizzo came to life and my vision became reality: lovingly handcrafted one-of-a-kind pieces that clearly stand out from the mass market with their timeless design and premium quality. Made under fair working conditions and with remarkable expertise.