Many materials are used for interior decoration, but stone cladding has always aroused special admiration and respect. It emphasizes the high status of the owner and gives the room presentability and luxury.
The use of natural stones today is impractical. Firstly, it is very expensive, and secondly, not every wall can withstand such a significant weight. For this reason, decorative stone trim is actively used today.
This material has many varieties, is available to most people, and most importantly, it is in no way inferior to its natural counterpart in showiness.
What kind of stones can be purchased at construction sites today? How to choose them? How to decorate a room with them? We will consider all this in our article.
Popular types of decorative stone
Four types of products are most widely used for interior wall cladding:
- made from cement;
- created on the basis of gypsum;
- clay products;
- agglomerate varieties.
Each species is a fairly plausible imitation of expensive naturalmaterial, while such specimens weigh much less. The cost of decorative varieties is also significantly lower, especially if they are produced by domestic or Belarusian manufacturers.
In comparison with the cladding made of natural materials, the decoration with decorative stone also wins in terms of ease of installation. The light weight and comfortable shape of the latest products allow them to be laid on the surface as quickly and comfortably as possible.
Each of the above varieties has its own characteristics and is purchased depending on the specifics of the room. Let's take a look at how they differ.
Description of plaster products
Gypsum decorative stone for interior decoration is the most popular variety. It is lightweight and has the most affordable price tag. The lightness of the material allows it to be mounted on prefabricated gypsum structures that do not accept heavy weighting.
The disadvantages of gypsum products include increased fragility and hygroscopicity. If you choose this particular material for repair, take it with a margin, as part of it may be damaged during installation.
High porosity and moisture-absorbing properties make you think about the appropriateness of its use in the kitchen and near the bathroom. If you really want to decorate the walls with this particular material, take care of protecting it with a transparent varnish. Otherwise, it will quickly lose its appearance andmoldy.
Properties of cement products
From a mixture of gypsum and sand, sufficiently strong and durable facing materials are obtained. Their indisputable advantage is resistance to moisture and detergents. For this reason, the decoration of the kitchen with decorative stone is carried out using just such varieties.
The material also has flaws. This is:
- processing complexity;
In comparison with the previous analogue, the cement stone has a more impressive weight. However, this figure is more than two times less than that of natural materials. The same can be said about the cost of these products.
But in the processing of cement is really more complicated. To cut the stone to the right size, you will need to use a grinder with diamond blades. But such a finish will serve you for many years.
Stones from agglomerate
This type of decorative stone appeared on the market not so long ago. It is based on cement and polymer resins. To obtain high decorative qualities, finely crushed particles of quartz, marble and granite are added to the raw material.
The resulting material has excellent strength, moisture resistance and durability. Such varieties can be used for facing surfaces in damp rooms, kitchens and for finishing the hallway. Decorative stone of this variety can be used even in the street.
Disadvantages can beconsider significant weight (again, only in comparison with gypsum) and a slightly higher cost.
Clinker brick and its characteristics
Clinker bricks are made by heat treatment of refractory grades of clay. In this way, a durable and fire-resistant product is obtained.
Finishing with decorative stone (clinker type) is carried out on columns, bar counters, fireplaces and work surfaces near the fire.
The material tolerates moisture well and has a long service life. The disadvantages include an impressive weight, which leads to the weighting of the lined structures.
Subtleties of choosing decorative bricks
In order for the decoration with decorative stone to have a presentable appearance, the choice of material must be approached responsibly. First of all, you need to pay attention to the type of coloring of the product.
If the pigmenting components are added to the mortar for making bricks, then even if there are chips, the material will not lose its appearance. If brush marks are visible on the surface of the tile, then with each chip and scratch, such a decorative stone-like finish will lose its attractiveness.
The reverse side of the material also plays an important role: for reliable fixation at the base, it must have roughness.
For use in rooms with high humidity, a protective water-repellent composition must be applied to the stone. But this does not apply to moisture-resistant varieties.
Selection of glue for fixing decorative cladding
The integrity and reliability of stone cladding depends on the quality of the composition for fixing it. A big role in his choice is played by the weight of the stone. Modern manufacturers offer us two types of products:
- for light stone varieties (up to 30 kg per m2);
- for heavy stones (from 30 ka per m2).
According to the composition, adhesive mixtures are of three types:
- adhesive mastic;
- compounds for fixing tiles;
- cement-sand mortars.
The last option is made before installation by mixing cement and sand in a ratio of 1:3. It is quite economical, but hardens for a long time and does not have the necessary plasticity. When working with plastered surfaces, this method of fixing should be abandoned, since cement mixtures do not set with a similar base.
Tiled compositions are considered more convenient to use. They securely fix the material on concrete, brick and drywall bases. Their only drawback is that they do not penetrate into small cracks and depressions in the brick, which means that the adhesion area with the surface is slightly reduced.
Thick adhesive mastics have excellent adhesion to any surface, but it is very difficult to apply them in a small layer.
Preparing the surface for stone finishing
When the stone is selected and the appropriate mixture is purchased, work can begin. But first you need to pay attentiondevote to preparation. Decorative stone for interior decoration is laid only on well-prepared, even walls.
In this process, it is important to be guided by the following recommendations:
- If the finish will be made of heavy varieties of stone, it is better to reinforce the walls with a metal mesh. This is not necessary for gypsum tiles.
- From the surface of the wall, you need to clean off the missing fragments of finishing materials, remove interfering elements. All cracks and grooves are smoothed out with putty.
- Before applying the adhesive, the surface should be treated with a primer. This will ensure a clean base and a good grip.
When the wall is dry (after about 2 hours), you can start laying the cladding.
Technology for decorating walls with decorative stone
Photos of decorative stone trim will help you get an idea of this process. But in order to do everything as correctly as possible, we advise you to study the technology for carrying out this kind of work.
It consists of the following steps:
- Creating a sketch. Before starting the installation, you should imagine the future pattern on the walls and depict it on the diagram. You also need to consider the method of arranging the cladding: it can lie end-to-end with neighboring elements, or maybe with the formation of a seam. To create it, wooden planks or special crosses are used. The choice depends on the desired thickness of the seam.
- Material cleaning. On the reverse side of the stone, there may be remains of a cement or gypsum mixture. From the ends of the tiles are also often availablebumps. All this is cleaned with a metal brush and polished.
- Fixing tiles. Using a notched trowel, glue is applied to the wall. The stone itself is pressed against it. So the first bottom row is laid out. If it is planned to overlap the material in the outer corners of the surface to be lined, then the tiles of the first row are shifted towards the corner by a distance equal to their own width. The elements of the second row are already installed exactly along the edge of the corner. By the method of alternation, all external corners of stone are equipped. Trimming of products is performed by a grinder.
- Arrangement of the seam. A wooden plank or crosses is installed on top of the products of the first row. After that, the second row is laid out. Thus, the whole stone is laid.
After the glue has set, you can start grouting the joints (if it is provided by the design). A special mixture is placed in the seams with a rubber spatula. Excess composition is immediately removed with a damp sponge.
To protect the stone from external factors, it can be coated with a colorless varnish. This is done with a regular paint brush.
Decorative stone is a versatile and beautiful material. It goes well with all types of wall cladding. In residential premises, decoration with decorative stone with wallpaper is more often performed. To do this, first glue the stone, and then the rolled materials.
No matter how complex your design is, fixing decorative tiles is a breeze. The main thing is to have on handinstructions for their installation. In this case, you can get not only aesthetic, but also moral pleasure from work.