Are you looking for a cost-effective alternative for your next home improvement project? Perhaps your project needs the decorative yet durable touch of decorative concrete.
When improving either the outdoor or the indoor areas of your living space, decorative concrete could very well be the perfect solution you've been searching for that strikes the best balance of beauty, longevity, and value.
A true artist's medium, in the hands of the experts, concrete can be imaginatively transformed into finishes that mimic or even surpass far more expensive stone, slate, granite, brick, and even hardwood in some cases. Using different techniques, or a combination thereof, an extremely upscale appearance can be created without the typical costs associated with importing , cutting and fitting much more exotic stone products.
Various techniques are utilized depending on the surface's exposure to the elements. Some of the most popular outdoor techniques used outdoors on driveways, walkways, patios, porches and steps are as follows:
Broom or Swirl Finished - While more of a basic application, properly applied these textured patterns can really bring a normally simple and dull patio or walkway to life. Using precise timing, the effect is professionally applied and once the concrete sets your new patio will be the envy of the neighborhood.
Exposed Aggregate – Accomplished by removing a thin top layer and exposing the aggregate or 'gravel' in the concrete, you are left with a completely different texture than what you would normally expect from a concrete driveway, parking area, or walkway. One of the benefits of using concrete, is when done precisely, the complex technique leaves with a gravel look with none of the looseness normally associated with gravel itself.
Stamped Finishes – By far one of the most popular techniques applied in recent years is stamped of pattern concrete. In adding texture through the use of a flexible rubber mat once the concrete is poured, the design possibilities are endless. Professionally done, the concrete can be made to resemble a number of other products found in nature such as expensive, high end stone and slate. Using colouring agents, the effect is complete. Visitors won't be able to tell the difference.
On most outdoor concrete, advanced and intricate reinforcement methods are used to ensure the longevity of your beautiful new surface and minimize the possibility of cracking in the future.
Alongside the popular outdoor techniques, and often used in conjunction with, there are several techniques used on indoor applications of concrete that are able to produce stunning results.
Coating - There are various cement and epoxy coatings available that can transform your floors, fireplace mantle, or counter tops into unbelievable works of art. Properly applied by skilled experts, various metal finishes can be simulated such as aged bronze, copper, titanium, nickel, or silver. High gloss or matte options are available and the epoxy coating results in a low maintenance surface that has high abrasion resistance and can withstand heavy traffic for years to come.
Acid/Water-Based Staining - Both acid and water-based staining can be used to achieve the color palate that you're looking for with your floor or counter top. In conjunction with a stamped finish, your counter top will be visually indistinguishable from slate and other high end, extremely expensive natural stone products. A wide selection of earth tone colors are available.
While this is by no means a completely comprehensive guide, the door has been opened to the incredible possibilities in store for your next project using decorative concrete. The economically feasible yet visually and texturally stunning possibilities await! Visit Decorative Concrete Masterpiece today to for a quote or for more details.