Why choose natural stone?
Natural stone flooring comes in many styles and can suit both a traditional and contemporary setting. It is a very adaptable material that is at home in a country cottage as well as an urban townhouse or apartment. Ideal for hallways, kitchens, dining rooms, conservatories, pool area, patios, bathrooms and increasingly being used in living areas and bedrooms. Stone goes well with other natural materials such as wood and works particularly well with underfloor heating.
There are various types of stones that are used for interior, exterior and decorative purposes. The most well known ones are Marble, Granite, Travertine, Limestone and Basalt Stone (Bluestone). The very nature of natural stone is that no two pieces are exactly alike. Your project will be completely unique.
How can I differentiate between the stones?
The characteristics of the stones can allow you to differentiate between each stone. Marble obtains its different colours from the minerals and chemical elements in the stone and therefore has more striking colours and veins. Hence, marble can be white, gray, black, red, green, pink, banded and mottled. The resultant stone is a smooth and very hard substance highly suited to polishing.
Travertine on the other hand is dominated by beige and neutral colours. It is available in various finishes such as honed and tumbled, and is suitable for both interior and exterior. Over the years, travertine has become a popular use in outdoor areas, especially wet areas as they have excellent grip characteristics.
Limestone tiles are an aesthetically pleasing option for use on walls and floors and offer a distinctly natural and luxurious look. The colour tones are usually creamy or white and can come in both polished and honed finish. This product is ideal for a clean and sophisticated look and for those who like less variation.
Granite is one of the most familiar uses with kitchen bench tops or commercial buildings. Few natural stones are able to offer this kind of quality and practicality. It can be recognized by the specs through the stone.
Bluestone is a volcanic rock and therefore very hard, which has a low porosity. It can come in various finishes such as honed, satin, sawn cut. This stone is very popular and versatile when it comes to its use.
Are more expensive stones better?
Not exactly. Stones vary in price for number of reasons, such as the capacity of its quarry, it production volume and their colour variations. Some of the world’s best stones are less expensive due to their enormous reserves. As a wholesale company, at Attila’s Natural Stone and Tiles, we buy in bulk in order to gain economies of scale to provide competitive prices.
How do I figure the quantity that I will need?
Generally, tile and stone for a “field” area is figured by the square meters.
Does my tiler need special skills to lay a natural stone product?
No. A fully qualified tiler can lay a natural stone product.
Although experience with natural stone can be an advantage. Ask our staff for more information and referrals.
What size grout joints should I use?
All of our stones have been laser cut, meaning you will achieve finish that is suitable for tighter finish or butt jointed. Depending on each stone the grout size can vary.
What are the surfaces finishes for natural stone and which one is right for me?
The common surface finishes include:
- Polished. A reflective (sometimes mirror-like) surface achieved through grinding, sanding and buffing. Bringing out stronger colours within the stone.
- Honed . Semi polished although not as reflective, more of a low sheen. Doesn’t show scratches as much as polished surfaces and therefore more suitable for heavier traffic areas.
- Flamed . Rough and bumpy texture created by heat torching the surface.
- Sandblasted . Rough pitted texture created by submitting stone to a high blast of sand
- Brushed. Textured surface to give an antiquated appearance.
- Tumbled. Rough finish to give an aged look
- Hammer bashed. A bush-hammered finished is created using a purpose-built high impact device to create an evenly textured surface. The texture creates a non-slip surface ideal for high traffic outdoor areas.
Other finishes include: Sawncut, Patanato and Satin.
Picking the right one is mainly personal taste, however, any projects that are exterior we recommend you use a non-polished finished.
What sizes are available?
At Attila’s Natural Stone and Tiles various sizes are available which each product including slabs. The most common sizes include:
- 150 x 300
- 250 x 250
- 300mm x 300mm
- 305 mm x 305 mm
- 400mm x 400mm
- 457x 457 mm
- 400x 600
- 400 x800
- 457 mm x914 mm
- 450 x 900
- 500mm x 500mm
- 500 x 700
- 500×1000 500x 1080
- 600 x 200
- 600mm x 300mm
- 600mm x 400mm
- 600mm x 600mm
- 600x 900
Our stones are also available in slab sizes varying between 1.3 – 3m (with sizes in between)
The thickness of each stone varies between 10, 12, 15, 20, 25 and 30 mm.
*Note: each product comes with specific standard size. Please ask staff for more details.
What is the difference between filled or unfilled stone?
Some stones like Travertine have natural holes as a result of sedimentary minerals. These voids or holes can be left unfilled to give even more natural look to the floor. They are also available as filled Travertine or you can grout the holes when you grout your joints.
Is there a stone that will not show the dirt?
The beauty of a natural stone floor is that you can choose a stone with natural colour variation. This variation means that the colour will have depth and will not be flat. Stone with a colour variation is terrific for not showing dirt.
Is Natural stone difficult to maintain?
Not at all. Once your natural stone is installed, finish and sealer are applied. After that, sweeping and wet mopping are all the maintenance that is usually required. Removing spills using diluted bleach to remove marks and routine cleaning and scrubbing of the surface will keep surfaces looking good for longer. Our staff will be glad to recommend the proper sealants for your stone type
Why seal natural stone?
We recommend you seal your tiles for easy maintenance, which will not only protect your tiles but also the discoloration of the grout.
Sealing your stone can also help against efflorescence, salt attack, unsightly staining, reinforcement rusting and picture framing.
We recommend impregnating sealers as they allow the natural to breathe and maintain stone strength. Impregnating sealers have a natural finish and therefore will not change the colour or the variation of the stone.
Can you help me with designing my stone layout?
Yes, just ask our friendly staff to help you achieve your masterpiece.
Will a natural stone floor add value to my house?
Yes, many estate agents agree that investing in a beautiful and long lasting natural stone tile will reflect in the asking price of your property.