Stone veneer adds a new dimension to any home. But, as with any modern design feature, you have a variety of choices to make when installing stone. What are some of these choices, and what do they add to the house’s style? Here are the four biggest choices you’ll have to make.
You can have just about any type of stone look that you want with today’s veneer styles. Generally, there are three main categories. You can choose stone that appears stacked in the way that old-fashioned walls are stacked in layers. Or you may want a wall with the appearance of random placement and stone sizes. Finally, you can get a particular design, such as cubed stones or a fitted mosaic style.
Each of these styles achieves a different look. Natural and random settings look more rustic and earthy. Cubed designs may give a more regal feeling, reminiscent of what a castle might have on its fortified walls. And slim stacks are modernistic and appear elegant.
How do you want the stones themselves to appear? River rock is smooth and rounded as though water were passing over it for eons. Chiseled stone calls back to a quarried or tectonic look, feeling and looking rough-hewn and sturdy.
You can have pitted stones with imperfections or a smoother, impressionistic finish. Quarried or mosaic stone is generally very similar in size and width while rough-cut options tend to have a lot of variation.
There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to which cut is right. The answer often depends on the size of the wall or architectural feature. You don’t want to overpower a small wall or column with huge or thick stones. The right cut also depends on how dominant you want it to appear. Hard lines and greater depth will feel stronger while softer edges and a smaller footprint give a more romantic air.
You will also choose colors that suit your home or interior design. Most homeowners opt for natural-looking shades of grey or light brown hues. But you aren’t limited to just these earthy colors. Look for a dark slate or marble veneer to dress up a large master bath or modern fireplace. Or, opt for a multi-colored fieldstone that blends in with many different shades around the house’s exterior.
Because it’s made to appear natural, stone veneers feature more than one or two shades. They may have a large shading difference from stone to stone, or they may be relatively homogeneous. Look for mineral-specked stones for a rough-hewn look, geologic streaking to add interest, or smoothed river rocks for a more unified color scheme.
You probably haven’t given much thought to the spacing of your stones on the surface. But the right spacing adds a lot to the overall look. Tight spacing that resembles dry-stacked stone walls has little or no grout lines between layers or individual stones. Wide spacing emphasizes the grout lines, adding depth and interest to a large accent wall or fireplace.
Choosing a wider, “wet stacked” look for your stone means you’ll also have to decide the color of grout in those spaces. Contrasting colored grout — usually lighter than the stone around it — individualizes the stones and highlights them. Opt for a color more similar to the stones to make the grout blend in.
Finding the right stone options may be difficult, but it will add so much to your overall interior or exterior design. It will be worth the effort. At Harristone, our veneer experts will help you find the right mix of style, cut, color, and spacing. Call today to learn more.