Can I Change the Surface Texture of My Stone?
Texture is an important design element that can immediately add warmth and visual interest to any project. The surface texture of natural stone comes in many forms such as polished, honed, leathered, and brushed. While polished and honed are the most common surface finishes we see today, leathered and brushed surfaces are growing increasingly popular due to their ability to immediately add a unique flair to an otherwise sleek and polished surface. Utilizing natural stone with a textured finish is an easy way to incorporate an earthy, multi-dimensional element into a design.
Slabs that feature a leathered finish are versatile and can easily complement a rustic or transitional room or provide a pop of contrast to a sleek, modern aesthetic. Initially, the quarry decides what type of surface to apply to a bundle of stone, but the stone surface and texture can easily be changed to fit your design aesthetic by a fabricator prior to installation.
Leathered and brushed finishes are less likely to show scratches that come from normal wear-and-tear. A leathered finish is executed by honing stone and then texturing it by using diamond-tipped brushes that have varying levels of grit to create small ridges in the surface of the stone.
By comparison, a brushed finish has fewer ridges than what you would see in a leathered finish.
The varying levels of matte and sheen create an overall “leathered” look on the surface of the stone. By design, stones with a leathered finish are more stain resistant than stones with a honed finish.
However, leathered stones are less stain resistant than polished stones.
Regardless of what finish you prefer, a good sealer can help maintain your stone’s resistance to staining.
To create a brushed finish, manufacturers gently brush the granite’s surface until it becomes textured and appears worn-in. Because of the brushing process, granite countertops with this finish are more porous in comparison to glossy polished slab. Like a honed finish, a brushed finish dilutes the colors slightly.
A bush-hammered and brushed effect is obtained by pounding the material surface mechanically or by hand with a specific multi-pointed tool. This method creates a rugged surface full of little grazes at the impact points, giving the surface a lighter colour. The surface becomes non-slip. This technique has been replaced by flaming and pressure water finishing which is a quicker and less expensive process.
A Flamed finish is produced when an intense flame is fired at the stone, causing the surface to burst and become rough. This finish is used primarily for exteriors applications where slip-resistance is extremely important. A flamed finish cannot be applied to all stones; however, most granite and certain hard limestone are preferred.
Antiqued and Tumbled
Natural stone that has been Antiqued by tumbling provides a rustic charm. Originally as the name suggests tumbling involves passing the stone through a rotating drum that makes the slabs strike each other therefore losing corners and edges and softening the lines of the stone.