By: Kevin Fritz
Marble, to some the Queen of all natural stones, has been revered for centuries, a love affair that is still as passionate today. At the outset, people are drawn to its pure white-ness. Nothing on the planet compares. Beyond beauty, though, the natural stone has so many applications that its versatility allows for multiple love affairs throughout the home or places of business.
From artwork creations to functionality, marble is sought after daily by designers and homeowners who peruse stone yard containers for the perfect marble slabs. They find that fabricators and stone yard owners who belong to Slabmarket offer the widest array of marble options.
Marble makes for fantastic bathtub surrounds, bathroom vanity tops and flooring. Some designers have created entire marble bathrooms, from floor to ceiling. Kitchen countertops, islands and backsplashes create glorious kitchens and marble is also ideal as wall tiles, windowsills and even stairs.
But marble’s versatility does not end there. Marble has as many color shades as it does applications, leaving endless possibilities. While white marble will always have its place, the in-thing is integrating color into design. The stone colors of marble slabs offered today give even more reason to love the stone.
From pinks and salmon to browns and gold, marble seekers can easily find a shade that will match their vision. To see for yourself, access the Visualizer+ 2D and 360° designer planning tool, part of House Tipster Virtual Rooms. The room design planner shows off a variety marble slabs, one that will surely win your heart.
Even within white marbles, nuances are frequent offering custom looks to each homeowner or designer. Compare and contrast Cararra marble with Statuario marble, two of the most beautiful white marble specimens. The latter offers bolder, thicker veins, while Cararra is less veiny, offering a soothing gray-ish appearance within the movement of its lighter veins.
Although you will hear much about avoiding marble for kitchen countertops or to be leery of marble vanity tops in the bathroom, with proper care and diligence, there is nothing like the visual effect of a marble top in either room. Granted, busy kitchens may not be the best place for the queen of natural stones; if that’s the case, reserve marble for low traffic kitchens, or make a design statement by applying the marble to a smaller work area in kitchen, blended with a contrasting granite.
The same rule applies for marble vanity tops. The culprit, whether it’s in the kitchen or bathroom, is acids, which can mar the surface of the stone. These acids can be found in foods, wine, juice, as well as hair and bath products. The aforementioned Carrara may be quiet dense and non-porous, and can combat staining and chipping, but the high levels of calcium carbonate found in limestones—yes, marble is a limestone—make them susceptible to etching, leaving a whitish mark on the surface. Don’t fret, however. There are ways to remove etching. Employ products like DuPont StoneTech Oil Stain Remover, which will bring your beautiful investment back to its original splendor.
If by chance your marble is chipped, again, don’t worry. A marble repair kit will make your kitchen countertop or marble vanity top new again. Mr. Stone’s marble repair kit will restore your chipped stone in minutes.
It is recommended that marble be sealed up to four times per year to avoid staining and etching from acidic liquids and harsh cleaners. In between sealing your marble, include the All Granite and Marble Countertop Cleaner by Mr. Stone as your multi-purpose cleaner. It removes grease, oils and other marks typically found in a kitchen, plus it contains an ingredient that seals as it cleans. Simply spray and wipe dry.
Mix and Match
The versatility of marble does not stop with color options and applications. Try to mix and match your precious stone with other natural stones or classic woods.
Wood shelving or butcher block islands are ideal complements to marble of any color, shade or veining. Turn heads by combining vertical veining marble with standard horizontal marble in the bathroom. Marmara White is one of the few marbles illuminating linear veins that can be installed vertically; match with Cararra marble or Statuario marble for a stunning look.
Natural stones can always be mixed and matched for functional uses and beauty. Oynx, another limestone, can be applied to bathroom walls or kitchen backsplashes to complement a marble kitchen countertop, marble vanity top or flooring.
And remember; be sure to take care of your marble once installed to preserve its natural beauty by making All Granite and Marble Countertop Cleaner part of your daily regimen.