We talk a lot about stone countertops because that’s the most efficient usage for stone. In the case of natural stones like granite and marble, they are quarried and cut into huge slabs; when it comes time to work with them, it’s much easier if they only need to be cut down slightly in size for large, one-piece countertops. (Engineered stones like quartz don’t share these same concerns, of course, because they can be molded into any size or shape.)
However, that doesn’t mean we can’t use stone for smaller cuts other than countertops. A dream house wouldn’t be a dream house without customisations and personal touches, which means lots of fine, detailed work. With the rising popularity of bringing back more stone into interior design, doors have opened up to a wider variety of uses for stone.
Here are some ideas to make stone the focus of your next renovation project:
Stone and fireplaces have always gone hand in hand with each other since fireplaces were first invented. Stone’s natural ability to absorb and radiate heat without burning up is a perfect pairing for early fire pits and, later on, fireplaces. With your fireplace, you can extend the use of stone to the mantle and the surrounding floor area. This is where you can really go to town choosing the stone type, colour, and patterns that make the fireplace the centrepiece of your living room and still complement the rest of the room’s décor.
Stone accents are a versatile way to highlight and bring out the best elements of your home. If you have an area of the house you want to draw the eyes to, stone accents do that job marvellously. They’re also used if you want to subtly create a certain ambiance in a room; depending on the colour and pattern of the stone you use, you can give a room an air of rustic, polish, or even chic. The sky’s the limit when mixing and matching stone accents.
The vanity in your bathroom is an important piece in your house because it’s often your first stop after getting out of bed in the morning and is your last stop before calling it a night. You’re there to brush your teeth, wash your face, shave, or put on and remove make-up. Needless to say, the vanity goes through a lot of activity throughout the day and pretty much all those activities involve splashing water. Sure, you can always wipe away the water from the vanity top after each use, but there’s going to be some days where you miss some spots. What’s the safest is installing a vanity top that won’t absorb all that moisture and warp one day – and that’s where stone vanity tops come in. Stone vanity tops are not only practical, but they also add a touch of elegance in your bathroom that’s hard to achieve with any other material.
With everyone’s busy lives these days, many people opt for taking quick showers rather than baths. If that sounds like you, you’ll also know that when you do decide to take the time to draw a bath, it’s because you really need a truly relaxing hour or two to yourself lounging in the bathtub’s hot, bubbly water. Bathtub surrounds are built around the bathtub from the floor to the top, essentially extending the rim of the bathtub about at least a foot or two outward. This makes getting in and out of the tub much safer as you have a wider surface area to hold on to; steps can even be built in to the bathtub surround to make the bathtub even more accessible. One of the common problems with bathtub surrounds is the risk of water seeping through unseen cracks in the surround and eventually causing mould to grow. With a stone bathtub surround, however, that risk is significantly reduced because of the minimal seams in its installation. A stone bathtub surround is also much more sturdy and durable than other materials. Plus, stone has a natural calming effect and that’s exactly what you need when you just want to forget about the world for a bit in your hot bath.
There’s nothing that speaks luxury like a stone staircase, especially if your staircase is a sweeping one. Whether it’s marble or granite, you’d probably even step differently when you go up and down the stairs – perhaps a smooth, refined glide with noble grace. In addition to aesthetics though, another advantage of using stone for your staircase is that it gets rid of one of the most annoying things in houses: creaky stairs. The weight of stone automatically rules out staircases with wooden framing, which is what causes the creaking as the wood warps over the years. The final result you get with a stone staircase is quiet splendour held up by enduring strength.
As you can see, there’s more than meets the eye when it comes to using stone in your home. Who knows, you may even dream up new ways to incorporate stone in your home that’ll set off a new design trend!