Mystery Surface Series: Marble
Marble is a classic beauty that never goes out of style. It’s been used for centuries and continues to be popular today, gracing the surfaces in many homes and commercial settings.
While we’re all familiar with the elegance marble brings to any space, there are some lesser known facts about, and uses for, this material that are helpful to know if you’re considering using this luxurious stone in your home.
The Maintenance Factor
Marble is a porous material, making it more susceptible to stains. It’s particularly sensitive to acids from substances such as red wine, tomato sauce, coffee, and blueberries. But there’s a common misperception that marble will stain instantly and this isn’t the case. It stains when these substances have soaked into the surface, which will happen if left to sit for a long period, like overnight.
Aside from simply cleaning marble surfaces after each use, there are some other things you can do to maintain its appearance for as long as possible.
1) Seal It – While a sealer won’t protect your marble completely, it will buy you a little more time if an acidic substance isn’t wiped up right away.
2) Spot Treat It – Spot treat high use areas periodically using a spray cleaner that doubles as a sealant. Kitchen countertops and areas around bath faucets are two areas that can benefit from this treatment.
3) Consider Polished vs. Honed – A polished marble has a bit more stain resistance than honed marble, which tends to be slightly more absorbent. Many homeowners select a polished marble in high use areas for this reason.
Carrara Vs. Calacatta
Two gorgeous and better known types of marble are Carrara and Calacatta. These Italian marbles are often confused since they’re similar in appearance, both being white with gray veining.
Generally, Carrara tends to be grayer with a softer veining, while Calacatta is whiter and has a bolder veining.
Carrara veining tends to be linear and is more readily available, while Calacatta is rarer and considered to be more of a luxury stone. There are many types of Calacatta including Calacatta Gold, a variation with gold mixed in.
Marble in Home Designs
Marble is naturally textured and uniquely veined, with each slab having its own individual characteristics. Available in many natural patterns and colors, it’s easy to find a style perfectly suited to any décor.
Here are some ways to incorporate this lovely natural stone into your home.
- Add sophistication and function to any kitchen, whether using marble on a countertop, island, or backsplash.
- Create a stunning effect by using marble on a fireplace surround.
- Use marble to create an elegant, rich feel anywhere in a bathroom, making it a comforting place to relax at the end of the day.
- Design a tile feature wall with marble for a unique headboard in a master bedroom.
- Make a tile rug out of marble to create a classy yet cozy feel in any room.
Keep in mind that marble is a natural product that will age over time, regardless of where it’s used. Many love marble for the beautiful patina look it acquires over time. So expect signs of wear and tear from foot traffic on a marble floor, or on a much used kitchen countertop, and enjoy the beauty it brings to your home!