One of the most beautiful monument ever made – The Taj Mahal – is entirely made of marble. Photo Courtesy: Rachel Dale
When you think about luxury homes and their expensive furnishings, marble comes to your mind instantly. It is such an elegant and beautiful substance that it is hard to believe that it comes from the ground beneath our feet. Marble has been used for palaces and buildings of great importance for many centuries.
In recent years it has become more accessible for us mere mortals, and now you are able to buy the marble in slabs, and shape it for your own use. It is not an easy material to work with and here we look at the various uses and applications you may wish to use it for.
Marble can impart an elegant look to any room in your house, like this kitchen above designed by Tri State Stone of Newark, New Jeresy.
Greeks And Romans, and You?
The period dramas on television always use a marble floor when they revisit Ancient Greece and Rome; it lends an image of luxury and classic style to any scene. In this day and age of fake wooden floors and plastic worktops, it is nice to see something a bit more permanent. But can you really work with such a material without the proper tools and a lot of expertise?
Marble – The Facts
Marble belongs to the family of stones known as metamorphic rock and it is made up from recrystallized carbonate minerals, usually dolomite or calcite. It is usually used for sculpting statues and in the building trade. White marble is generally used for sculptures and tends to give off a waxy look which lends ‘life’ to the finished article.
The construction trade uses a mixture of calcite, dolomite or serpentine. This type of marble is much easier to polish. Pakistan is the chief exporter of marble, at over 100,000 tonnes per year. China is the largest importer worldwide and imports nearly 70,000 tonnes per year.
In Your Home
Whilst marble is undoubtedly a beautiful material to look at, it is far from perfect as a building medium. Although extremely hard and vitreous, it can also suffer from scratches quite easily. Unlike its bedfellow, granite, marble is quite delicate in terms of resistance. However, it can be used as a countertop if it is treated and sealed correctly. Usually a homeowner will consider the practical issues of marble and compare these with the class and beauty on offer. As you can imagine, the form beats function most of the time in this equation!
A marble wall is something to behold; they really add so much to the overall ambience of whatever room they adorn. The scratch issue is not pertinent in this case, and the stunning colors and shades are unmatchable as a wall medium. I’m sure there will be a plastic facsimile of marble walling one day, but that is all it ever will be.
Another beautiful kitchen and floor designed by Tri State Stone.
If you are thinking about a marble floor, it is really best to use the professionals to fit these. But you should think hard about the particular design you want. A lighter floor may seem very pretty, but a darker one will add warmth to the visual aspect. As marble is so expensive, it is a good idea to think about marble tiles for your floor. If they become damaged, you will only have a small piece to replace instead of the whole floor!
Mark Whinehouse is an interior decorator by profession. He is a fan of marble and openly suggests it to most of his clients as it provides a royal feel to the home. He deals with some of the best suppliers of marble in NJ, as he believes in providing only the best to his clients.