One of my interior design clients called today.
She was sold some marble by a reputable marble supplier in central London.
She said she had used them many times in the past. She said “I always felt that he knew exactly what he was talking about”. She was looking for some stone to go into a bathroom.
She told me that she saw a lot of different stone options but many of them were calcium based soft stone such as limestone, marble and travertine.
She decided on a brown marble very much like Greek Thassos. She asked her client would need any special information or the need special attention or would it be okay to use immediately after fitting to which the supplier replied, yes but it should just be sealed first.
On face value, this is correct however the supplier should’ve sought some more information.
The stone installed has been staining and marking and has taken a lot to work to put it right. If her client continues with the maintenance regime we let them with it should help a lot.
I would always ask what type of home or business would the stone be installed in.
Some people use strong cleaning chemicals, Perfumes, aftershaves maybe take drinks such as wine into the area that would be acidic and could etch the surface causing unsightly stains.
Another question which helps me to ascertain the type of property the stone would be going into and that is what area if indeed is in London is it going into.
Some areas have terrible limescale problems, and soft stones would require a lot of maintenance.
The point I’m trying to make here is that suppliers in stone I’ve have very little interest in helping the buyer make the correct choice and in the main just go for the most expensive sale.
I have offered training on literally hundreds of occasions to come into the tile suppliers premises and brief the staff on the pros and cons of the stones they supply and the information they should impart to the consumer.
I believe up to now I have been asked to go into no more than half a dozen suppliers.
So, unfortunately, it’s a case of buyer beware and make sure that when you choose stone, you write down all the ways it will be used.
An example is if it’s used for a hallway that would have a lot of foot traffic some of the Middle Eastern limestones such as Olympus from Turkey and Iraq would be far too soft. They would wear and mark quickly.
I’m sure there are some great stone suppliers out there that might have come from a geological background but if there are they are few and far between.
We will be putting together some information that will help you choose the right stone for your task.