DEC­O­RA­TOR IN­DEX: EX­PERT AD­VICE LAURA GON­ZA­LEZ’S GUIDE TO WORK­ING WITH MAR­BLE

ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Style Decorating -

How to pick your mar­ble

Mix and match dif­fer­ent colours of stone and var­i­ous pol­ishes. Each slice is dif­fer­ent and the veins in it can change the over­all ef­fect, so it’s im­por­tant to choose the ex­act piece you like from a dealer – I use Car­rara Mar­ble (car­rara­mar­ble.co.uk). Choose a spe­cific slab and the dealer will do the mea­sur­ing and draw­ings, cut the mar­ble to size and in­stall it.

Each type of mar­ble has dif­fer­ent qual­i­ties – for ex­am­ple, it’s a bad idea to use black Nero Mar­quina mar­ble in a shower be­cause white limescale looks ob­vi­ous against the dark stone.

The trick to try at home

On a re­cent project in an apart­ment in Paris, I used black Nero Mar­quina mar­ble to cre­ate a trim for a door­way (right), as an el­e­gant tran­si­tion from one room to an­other. It re­quired a min­i­mal amount of mar­ble, mean­ing a slightly lower cost, and cre­ates a strik­ing ef­fect. How­ever, in­stalling a mar­ble ar­chi­trave is com­pli­cated, spe­cial­ist work that re­quires a tech­ni­cal plan (drawn up by an ar­chi­tect or struc­tural engi­neer) to en­sure safety – the stone is in­cred­i­bly heavy! Plus, the mar­ble needs to be cut to an ac­cu­rate an­gle of 45 de­grees for a seam­less fin­ish.

How to care for mar­ble

The only down­side to mar­ble is that you have to be care­ful about main­tain­ing it. I love mar­ble in a kitchen, but I al­ways ad­vise my clients that it needs spe­cial care. It’s frag­ile, so even spilling lemon juice on a work­top can leave a mark. Be sure to clean it with a non-acidic prod­uct.

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