Sometimes, Mother Nature does it best, and there’s no better example of this than durable natural stone building materials. You can use refined rocks to decorate your home inside and out, and every little addition will have a huge impact: the gorgeous colours and textures not only look great but will last you for decades. Here are seven rock-solid ways to make stone part of your home’s design scheme.
1. Stepping stones.
Your love for decorating with natural stones can start outside. Lead guests toward your front door or into your back garden with an inviting stepping stone pathway, a project that’s simple enough to carry out on your own. You can simply place the heavy slices of slate or other rock varieties right onto the grass or clear a pathway so that they’re easier to maintain. You’ll want to lay stones a pre-measured distance apart from one another so that the final product is even, clean and professional-looking.
Stone crazy paving can also make for attractive garden pathway or flooring for an alfresco area, like the stunning bluestone example below.
For sale: 4-6 Brook Crescent, Portsea, VIC
2. Fireplace façade.
Whether it’s a rainy autumn day or a chilly and dark winter evening, there’s nothing quite as cosy as curling up by the fireplace. This automatically makes your fireplace a focal point in your home, but, visually, it might be lacking in the looks department. That’s where natural stone comes in.
For sale: 15 & 17 Robertson Road, Scotland Island, NSW
You can easily place stone over a brick fireplace façade on your own, but it may be best to complete this project with the help of a professional stonemason for the best result possible. If you’re in a budgetary pinch, you might also consider a stacked stone cladding, which goes over drywall and brick easily, to get that rustic stone look for less.
3. Slate flooring.
You may think of slate flooring as coming in one colour — dark grey, the shade often referred to simply as ‘slate’. But it turns out this rock comes in a variety of different hues, all of which can be a gorgeous addition to your home’s design scheme.
On top of that, slate flooring is the perfect accompaniment for a radiant heating system, which sends warmth up through the floors. The stones not only radiate heat well, but they also retain the warmth longer than other flooring options. Slate’s also very durable and easy to maintain. Just make sure you weigh all of the pros and cons before investing in a brand new flooring system.
Image: Koko Architecture + Design
4. Sinks & tubs.
The dimensions of most powder rooms are small, which means you have a tiny amount of space in which to make a visual impact. Installing a custom soapstone sink basin would be the perfect focal point.
A stone vessel-style sink is a modern twist on the traditional, countertop-imbedded sink. The cubical or spherical stone basin sits on top of your bathroom counter, catching eyes and standing out amongst the crowd of traditional powder room and master ensuite pedestal and undermount vanity sinks.
Check out the awesome handmade concrete and volcanic rock bath and twin basins below, so sleek!
If you’re after something a bit more modern and minimalist in style why not consider an elegant floating plane limestone vanity (pictured below).
5. Stunning shower.
Another room in your home that’s just begging for a stone-centric makeover? The master ensuite. Your ensuite should be a relaxing getaway from the rest of your home. A stunning stone shower with all the bells and whistles — rain showerhead and massaging nozzles, for a start — would certainly help you to relax.
It turns out that, while it’s an incredibly durable flooring option, slate isn’t the best option for a shower tile. It can show wear and tear from constant exposure to water, as well as to the acidity of shower soaps and shampoos. You can still have a stunning, natural stone shower if you use a more suitable stone: options include onyx, travertine (pictured below) and sandstone.
6. Kitchen countertops.
If you don’t have them already, a set of stone countertops will completely change your kitchen. The sleek, shiny addition will be much more durable than manmade options: you can place extra-hot beverages or use extra-sharp knives on them without fear of damaging granite or marble. This means your stone countertops will last a lifetime, even with a rambunctious family using the kitchen day in and day out.
Stone countertops are also special in terms of their design qualities. No slab of stone is the same, which means your kitchen’s countertops will be a unique design element. Plus, experts can slice slabs to fit atop any counter size and within any kitchen, so you’ll always be able to add stone to your home with no problem whatsoever.
7. Stone planters.
You could go to the store, choose a trio of ceramic planters, lug them home and adjust them just so, thus completing the look of your home’s front porch or entryway. Or, you could spend a weekend building a stone planter and never have to landscape again. Plus, you’d have an even more eye-catching, one-of-a-kind planter than any store-bought option.
Building a taller stone planter would even save your back and allow you to avoid having to get on your hands and knees to see to your garden beds. With a raised planter you can comfortably stand on two feet while you plant and harvest flowers and edibles as the seasons come and go.
Now, get rocking!
With these seven ideas alone, you could transform the look and feel of your home with a stunning natural material that’s long-lasting and always in style. All you have left to do is get rocking: you have a stone floor, fireplace or planter to install!