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Every stone has its own beauty, texture, colour or pattern. From the timeless veined marble, through the rustic travertine and versatile granite and slate tiles, there is a stone for any room and every taste. What is even better, is that there are various natural stone tiles in one colour family so if you are fan of a certain shade, you can easily decorate your home with it. 

Today, we are going to focus on the black varieties of natural stone tiles and how you can use them for various interior and exterior projects. One of the tendencies for 2018 is to have your kitchen decorated in black, so if this is your favourite colour, you are on the right track. Here are some of the most popular black stones that you can incorporate in your design: 


Black Extra Granite 


One of the popular dark stones is Black Extra Granite. If you choose these tiles for your bathroom, you will end up with a gorgeous luxury retreat. The combination with white bathtub and sink is an eternal classic, however, you can also choose a more dramatic shade – such as red. The overall look of the black granite tiles is suitable for a contemporary décor. In addition to the bathroom, this stone is suitable for the kitchen – both for a counter top, kitchen island or flooring; for the living spaces or for the entrance. Depending on the purpose, you can also choose a specific finish of the tiles. Polished is a good idea for walls or counter tops, while honed or antiqued is perfect for the floor.  


Minster Black Antiqued Limestone 


Limestone is more often associated with its tanned, creamy colour and rustic look. Nevertheless, the Minster Black Antiqued Limestone is another excellent option for those who prefer darker shades. The best surface finish for this type of tiles is antiqued as it adds to the natural beauty of the stone. The tiles are perfect both for walls and floors and can be used for interior and exterior projects. The black limestone will add charm and mystery to your bedroom and will become a perfect accent wall in your dining hall or living room. The stone is also a smart idea for your patio design that will make your house look rather different. Strange as it may sound, the black tiles are also a good solution for smaller premises like utility rooms, toilets or entrance areas. If properly combined with a lighter stone, be it of the same type or different. The pattern is also of great importance, so make sure to choose the right one depending on the purpose and size of the room.  


Nero Pizarra Riven Slate 


Slate tiles are quite versatile and can be utilized in many projects both indoors and outdoors. The Nero Pizarra Riven Slate comes in different shades of grey and black and is the perfect wall tile. The riven finish accentuates the natural look of slate. This stone can be used all around the house – from the bathroom to the bedroom and is one of the most suitable options for patio flooring as well. Each tile incorporates different shades, which breaks the monotonous look of an all-black room.  


Nero Pizarra Riven Glacier 


If you are looking for an interesting accent wall, then the Nero Pizarra Riven Glacier is for you. These tiles are perfect for both interior and exterior projects. Their riven texture makes them an unique addition to your kitchen or living room and an interesting bed overboard for the bedroom. 


Mezzanotte Honed Marble 


Even though the Mezzanotte Honed Marble cannot be described as classically black, it is a perfect option for those who prefer mixed darker shades. A beautiful combination between grey, black and white, this perfect stone is suitable for virtually any renovation project in your house. Turn your bathroom into a cozy retreat or add a bit of nuances to your black and white kitchen. The honed surface of the tiles makes them great for flooring even in wet premises. Add to that the longevity and timeless beauty of marble and you have a luxury finish for any of the rooms in your home.  

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When speaking about a monochromic design we generally think about black or white natural stone tiles that can be used to decorate any room in our home. There is another possibility and that is to use tiles that are in the beige spectrum – anything that is gold, tan, light brown or cream will do miracles for your home décor.  

The advantage of using natural stone tiles in these colours is that there are numerous combinations between the various shades and the different types of stone. Almost all of the natural stones come in one of these nuances, so there is a combination to choose for each room of your house depending on its usage and your preferences. 

Below you will find a great range of tiles in the beige spectrum that you can choose from for your next home renovation project. 


Beige and cream marble  


Marble is an eternal beauty in all its forms and nuances. Black and white marble creations can rule our home and turn it into the most spectacular place, however, there are also the beige and cream nuances of this stone that can steal your heart. The tiles can be used both for interior and exterior projects and will add luxury to your home décor. Here is a list of the most popular marble tiles that come in these shades: 

  • Crema Marfil Select Marble – it is best used for interior floors and walls and can be installed in almost any room of your home. The finish of the tiles can be either honed or polished, depending on your preferences and on its use.  
  • Lunar Shadow Marble – it comes both as polished and honed tiles and its colours vary from beige and cream to gray. It can be used for walls and floors for indoor projects around the house.  
  • St Lucia Marble – these tiles come with polished and honed finishes, so that they can suit more interior projects. You can opt for this marble for any place in your house.  
  • Ottoman Silk Marble – these polished tiles are perfect decoration for interior walls and floors in your home. The shades vary from beige/cream to brown/tan.  
  • Emperador Light Marble – this stone comes only in polished finishing and can be used for walls and floors inside the house.  


Gold and yellow limestone  


Limestone is another natural stone that has many applications around the house. It is often seen in the bathroom or in the kitchen, but its gold and yellow shades are also a perfect addition for an accent wall in your dining room or bedroom. You can choose from: 

  • Sledmere Limestone – the tiles come with a unique tumbled or sandblasted finish and are perfect for those, who prefer warmer colours at their home. It can be found in different sizes, which makes it suitable for both big and small renovations and projects  
  • Golden Beach Limestone – these honed mosaic tiles are perfect for wet rooms and bathrooms and allow your imagination to create different shapes. It combines well with other shades or different types of natural stones.  
  • Nova Gold Limestone – yet another type of honed mosaics that has an array of uses around the house, including wet premises and feature walls.  
  • Napolina Oro – these herringbone polished mosaic tiles are excellent for interior walls and floors.  
  • Gold Blend – this limestone comes in the form of hexagon honed mosaic tiles that are perfect for creating a contemporary setting in any home. An occasional splash of quartz lining makes them suitable for accent walls as well as for amazing flooring solutions.  
  • Golden Fossil Limestone – the tiles come with a tumbled finish and are suitable for both interior and exterior projects. They are good for walls and floors for every room in the house, including wet rooms.  


Brown and tanned travertine 


Travertine is known for its longevity and is associated with bathrooms since the time of the Romans. It comes in various beige nuances but its brown and tanned shades are an exclusive addition to any room in the house. The most popular type is the Moca Noce travertine that can be: 

  • Mocha Noce Honed & Filled – these tiles are a superb option for interior walls and floors. They can be used in any room – from the kitchen to the toilet and will add unique beauty and warmth to your home.  
  •  Mocha Noce Tumbled Travertine – this is another version of the tiles, which has depth of the colour due to the tumbled finish. It will make a good choice for any interior project.  


Yellowish granite  


Granite is popular for its strength and weather resistance in addition to its beauty. The most common colour of this natural stone is gray, however it comes in various shades. One interesting option are the yellowish nuances of the stone. Mainly, there are three types of tiles to choose from: 

  • Sunrise Granite – these tiles give a contemporary look to any indoor and outdoor project. The stone can come in polished, bush hammered or flame textured finish and can be applied in bathrooms, kitchens, living spaces and externally.  
  • Juperana Columbo Granite – these tiles come with a polished finish and are suitable both for interior and exterior projects. They will look stunning both in your kitchen and on your patio.  
  • Shivakasi Ivory Granite – you can choose between polished and letano finish depending on the project you have started. The tiles are perfect for internal and external use.  


Glacier cladding in the beige spectrum  


Glacier cladding is an excellent way to introduce some decorative tiles to your home interior. Depending on the stone, the glacier cladding comes in different nuances and one of the most functional shades are in the beige spectrum. Here you can select between two main options: 

  • Classic Travertine Split Face Glacier – the natural split of the tiles is very suitable for interior walls. It can be used everywhere in the house.  
  • Crema Marfil Marble Split Face Glacier – these tiles are suitable for both walls and floors if used inside the house. An excellent decoration for any space at home.  


Mosaics in earthen tones  


Mosaics are loved by many for their home renovation or initial décor since they give a lot of freedom and set no limits for the imaginations. Depending on the stone they are made of, mosaic tiles can have different finish and colour. If you want some peace and comfort at your home, we suggest the warm earthen tones that can be found in: 

  • Classico-Giallo-Noce Mix Tumbled – the mosaic tiles are suitable for internal walls and floors for all of the rooms in your home.  
  • Olympus Crème Tumbled – these mosaic tiles can be used for home décor projects both inside and outside to give a warm finish to every project.  
  • Ottoman Silk Polished – these mosaic tiles are good for internal wall and floor decorations. 
  • Premium travertine – these mosaic tiles come in two different finishes: honed & filled and tumbled. They are best used for interior projects all around the house.  
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Image Source: Stylecaster

Have you been wondering why marble is so commonly used both for private and public buildings, as interior and exterior stone. While it is true that it is a very durable natural stone that has been used since ancient times for construction and decoration, it is also a fact that today it is one of the expensive stones on the market. So, the secret of its common use lies in the fact that part of the marble we see is actually not authentic. Faux marble is gaining popularity, especially for bigger public projects, where costs need to be curbed or among homeowners, who cannot afford the real stone. 

If you are curious to learn a bit more about the different types and techniques used to create faux marble, check the article below. 


Types of faux marble 

Marble is probably the most imitated stone by far. Generally, there are three main types of faux marble that are used for home refurbishment: 

  • Faux stone – this is a polymer made of resin and marble pieces. It resembles the natural stone but lacks its depth and shine. On the other hand, it doesn’t scratch or etch so easily as the real natural stone and is therefore preferred for areas as kitchen tops.  
  • Painted laminate – the laminate tiles are painted in a way that mimics the look of marble. If you want a fabulous floor resembling that made of natural stone, this is one of the options. Laminate is cheaper and easier to install compared to marble tiles.  
  • Faux marbling or marbleizing – this is a special technique for covering the surface with paint that resembles marble.  

You can choose any of the options above, depending on the project you have in mind. It is possible to combine the different techniques in order to achieve the result you are looking for.  


What is faux marbling? 


It turns out that faux marbling or marbleizing is the most common technique used to replace real marble. This is special faux painting that turns the surface into a “polished marble” slab. It is most often used on wooden furniture and is actually quite easy to achieve. 

The first thing you need to do is sand the wooden surface so that it becomes rough. Thus, the paint will adhere to it easier. Then you need to clean it from the dust using a tack cloth. Afterwards, you can create the marble surface in just three steps, using only sea sponge, paint and a detail brush. Here is how to achieve your polished marble table in no time: 

  1. Paint the faux surface 

Choose the colour of marble you want to mimic. Then use at least three different nuances in order to make it look real. You need blobs of each shade on a plastic plate so that you can dip the sea sponge into them. Once the sponge is wet, dab it onto the surface of the table. Smear the paint to recreate the look of the natural stone. Let the paint dry.  

  1. Add veins 

Once the faux surface is ready, use a detail brush to draw the veins. Dip it into diluted white or black paint (depending on your main surface colour) and add lines that mimic the marble veins. Let the paint dry.  

  1. Seal  

Make sure that both the surface paint and the veins are dry before proceeding with sealing the table top. In order to make the faux marble shine you can apply a coat of high-gloss polyurethane. It will protect the surface and give it the depth and sparkle of real stone.  

You can apply faux marbling to almost any surface and even have entire walls painted in it. The advantages of this technique is that it is easy to do and will not cost you much. It is an excellent way to renew your old furniture and add a classy feel to your interior.  


How to choose between real and faux marble? 

Based on the above said, both real and faux marble have their pros and cons. So, the question of whether to choose the natural stone or its replica cannot have just one simple answer. The two main factors that will play a role in making the decision are price and purpose. 

  • Price 

Real marble is more expensive than faux marble. It will also require some additional maintenance and regular sealing in order to keep it in its best form. It is also better to hire professionals to install your marble tiles rather than do it yourself and this will add costs to your overall project. On the other hand, however, marble is a timeless classic and once your house is decorated with it, the stone will increase its overall value. Besides, marble is extremely durable, so you won’t need refurbishing any sooner.  

  • Purpose  

If you are aiming at serious refurbishing and you want more permanent results, then you need to go for authentic marble. The natural stone is mainly used for floors and countertops and it is one of the best solutions for kitchen islands. Therefore, if you want durability and style, we suggest that you select the natural stone for these projects. 

Faux marble, on the other hand is a great solution for decorative accents such as columns, furniture (mainly table tops) and even walls. The advantage here is that you would be able to change the look pretty often. Faux marble is also a great solution for some projects, which are hard to achieve with real marble.  


How to recognize real marble? 

Quite often people have trouble distinguishing between marble and other natural stones. There are some types of limestone and granite that look quite similar to certain types of marble. One of the ways to tell one from the other is by using acid. Since marble is a metamorphic rock made of recrystallized calcite it reacts to acid. The calcite in it starts to bubble. Visually, you can also differentiate the marble from the other stones by the calcite in it. When you look at the edge of a marble slab, which has not been treated in any way, you can see little flashes from the large calcite crystals in it. You can see how to recognize marble easier.

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The concept of sustainability has entered almost every aspect of our life. We try to establish and grow our businesses in a sustainable manner, support local and international sustainability initiatives and naturally think of a sustainable architectural environment. In line with that, the ideas of green building and sustainable architecture have emerged.  

Both ideas support the effort to build in a way that has a minimum negative impact on nature, using recyclable and renewable materials, while at the same time this reduces the construction costs. There are many sustainable materials that have entered the market in the last few years and offer innovative solutions. However, there is the ultimate sustainable material that has been in use for centuries now and has proven its qualities – natural stone. Let’s have a look at the options of sustainable building and why natural stone is one of the best options you can choose from.  


Types of sustainable materials 

When we are talking about sustainable materials, we need to differentiate between three main types depending on their usage. Thus, we have: 

  • Sustainable building materials – in this category we can include natural materials as stone and wood, as well as a great variety of newer solutions, such as sustainable concrete, solar tiles or wool bricks. The latter are developed by Spanish and Scottish researchers by adding wool and a special polymer extracted from seaweed to the brick clay. The bricks made in this way turn out to be extremely suitable for the wet weather in Britain.  
  • Sustainable isolation materials – the idea is to have completely reusable and recyclable materials, such as cellulose, which do not generate waste but are extremely efficient at the same time.  
  • Sustainable paints, wood treatment or sealants – the move here is towards natural substances that do not harm the ozone layer and don’t contain any chemical products.  

The best way of all is to combine the three types of materials in order to achieve your ultimate goal of green building.  


Why natural stone is sustainable? 

Building in a sustainable and nature-friendly way requires some planning in advance and a few additional arrangements, however the pay-back in a long term is worth all the efforts. Besides, using natural stone is an easy way to stay in line with the idea of green building while at the same time have a beautiful and long-lasting final product. This is due to the intrinsic qualities of stones like marble, travertine, granite or limestone. In addition to that, the Natural Stone Council has developed a series of best practices concerning stone extraction, transportation and other activities that can help in achieving sustainability. It has also presented a few case studies and compiled a series of life-cycle datasets that promote the usage of natural stone. Here are the main ones. 

Natural stone features  

As a product of mother nature, stones are earth-friendly. Besides, they possess a series of qualities that make them a preferred material for both interior and exterior designs. The most important features of natural stone are: 

  • Long life-cycle 
  • Durability 
  • Resistance  
  • Recyclability 
  • Great variety of usage options 
  • Attractiveness 
  • Abundance of colours and shades 
  • Easy to maintain  

When you combine all of the above with the fact that natural stone is abundant in nature, you can easily realize why it is such a preferred material. The best proof of natural stone qualities are the numerous buildings made of natural stone in ancient times that still amaze us with their glory: The Great Pyramids, The Coliseum, Taj Mahal, etc.  

In addition to that most of the quarries of natural stone are in exploitation for centuries now and still there is sufficient stone to serve us for centuries to come. One such example are the famous Carrara marble quarries. 


Best practices 

When the above-listed qualities of natural stone are combined with the best practices for their extraction and transportation, the desired effect of sustainability can be easily achieved. The following guidance documents were prepared by the Natural Stone Council to help the industry achieve its ultimate goal for green building and sustainable architecture in all its stages.  

  • Best Practice: Water Consumption, Treatment, and Reuse 
  • Best Practice: Site Maintenance and Quarry Closure 
  • Best Practice: Solid Waste Management 
  • Best Practice: Transportation 


Case studies 

In addition to the best practices, the Natural Stone Council has developed a set of case studies, which outline different qualities and possible usage of natural stone.  

  • Case Study: Application of Green Building Certification Programs to Natural Stone 
  • Case Study: Durability of Stone Flooring in High Traffic Areas 
  • Case Study: The Use of Reclaimed Stone in Building Construction 
  • Case Study: Solar Reflectance of Natural Stone 

All of the information above makes it easier to realize why natural stone tiles are the best solution both for large-scale and small projects at industrial or residential level.  


4 main benefits of sustainable design  

Sustainable design and the usage of natural stone for institutional, commercial and residential projects has many benefits for both the environment and the population as end users. All of the advantages can be combined into four main groups: 

  1. Reduction of energy use by 245 to 50% 
  2. Reduction of CO2 emissions by 33% to 39% 
  3. Reduction of water usage by 40% on average 
  4. Reduction of solid waste by the astonishing 70% 

The integration of natural stone both for interior and exterior solutions not only helps for the achievement of the above-mentioned benefits but also adds beauty and longevity to the buildings. The good news is, that natural stone is not only a classic material but it is also cost-efficient. While in the past it was considered a luxurious and expensive option, now it is quite affordable. You can browse through a great range of natural stone tiles and check the sales offered in order to get the most suitable stone for your project.  

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