While carpet covers nearly 70% of American floors, Chicago-based carpet company FLOR brought carpet out of homes and into the streets. According to a recent report from the Chicago Tribune, FLOR distributed 5,000 free carpet squares to the audience of the Pitchfork Music Festival, which were used by the concertgoers as soft spots to sit and protection from muddy walkways.
The free carpet was an attempt by FLOR to show millennials that it’s hip to be square. With all the grime of a music festival present (cigarettes, mud, booze, food) the carpet was proven to be durable and long-lasting. FLOR digital marketing director Kim Brannigan says that “it’s a new market for [FLOR]. We’re just pushing to show we’re affordable to Millennials, and we have a lot of options.”
Their push wasn’t free, either. FLOR paid the $15,000 vendor fee, as well as the cost of the squares themselves. Altogether, the assorted colored carpet pieces would have retailed for around $60,000. But it was worth it to get people talking. Some concertgoers liked the idea of keeping their square as a reminder of the festival, while others decided to recycle their squares. The squares that were left in the park were shipped back to FLOR’s manufacturing plant, where the eco-friendly company will make them into new carpets.
While some of the concertgoers sneered at the tiles, saying they wouldn’t want to sit at the festival at all, many people appreciated having their own space. Peter Michalik, 29, said he and his friends ditched their blankets in support of the squares, which he claimed felt very durable. He did say that he wouldn’t want to carry the carpet square around for several days, making the concert-wide recycling an efficient choice of disposal.