Design

Say it with stone

Indoors, in a courtyard or as facade, stone makes an impact.

Indoors, in a courtyard or as facade, stone makes an impact.  

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Use of stone, whether for exteriors or interiors, is getting popular, especially if you want that rustic look

A residence is meant to effuse warmth, character and cheer. Infusing natural materials into the structure or décor brings this effect effortlessly, lending a refreshing feel to the space. Residences dating back to prehistoric times reflect the use of natural materials, be it wood or stone. Replicating a similar use in a modern context blends the residence totally with nature, giving an earthy, rustic character to the structure.

Use of stone in structure, be it in exteriors or interiors, is quite popular even in contemporary buildings, especially if a rustic aura is sought. Natural stone in its unpolished state can be arresting anywhere, fused totally with nature. It can be used in a wall as cladding or as a structural element where the wall is raised entirely with the use of unpolished rough-edged stones.

Here, the stones could be used in a similar manner as bricks or the wall can be built with random rubble masonry which is a special technique where the stones are expertly packed. The natural undulations and imperfections that are left totally evident have a stunning aesthetic appeal, transforming the character of the building.

Walls & columns

Says Architect Leena Kumar of Kumar Consultants, “The beauty of natural stone is more evident when the wall is erected with it rather than when used as cladding.” Natural stones such as Sadarahalli can feature as columns too in the porch of a large residence, in a charming internal sky-lit courtyard complemented by refreshing water bodies and greenery. The walls around the courtyard could feature cladding of sandstone where the alternating natural colours of red and beige of the sandstone can give a spectacular twist to even a mundane space. This is especially so when copious sunlight washes off the walls to enhance its effects.

Bath spaces too

According to architect Shivani Kumar of XS Studio, the use of sandstone need not be restricted to courtyards or outdoors but can be extended to bath spaces too. “Incorporating sandstone in bath spaces gives a spa ambience. This can be further accentuated by opting for little niches to house small artefacts or candles. When teamed with a skylight, the presence of the sandstone would create multiple patterns along with the differential shadows thrown in.”

In basements

Sandstone is also an excellent material to be used in the basement in areas such as the wine cellar where the walls are clad in sandstone to infuse colour and character that strikingly contrast with the wooden wine racks, Shivani adds.

Shivani also suggests use of black granite in outdoor water bodies to offer a mirror effect, as in a reflecting pool. “This could be combined with stone seating and sculptures to lend an enchanting effect to the outdoor space.”

Inlay work

Stone, likewise, can be used as exquisite jaalis in the structure where they not only permit light and ventilation but also serve as decorative features. It can also feature as inlay work in walls, doors and floors. Says Leena, “Semi-precious stones can be used as inlay work on floors, walls, as well as on doors. Stones such as onyx are excellent material for lighting where they can be backlit to serve as an arresting highlight.”

In the interiors, stone can be used as table tops, as in a dining table, or a tea table, or in the fireplace. A slate dining table top would be dramatic given its play of colours and textures.

Stone can also be used as the rustic base of an internal staircase where it is shaped as a mound of rock with the steps carved in or as the highlight wall accentuating a large internal water body. In both instances, the effect on the interiors would be dramatic.

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Printable version | Aug 25, 2019 9:16:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/homes-and-gardens/design/say-it-with-stone/article6295277.ece

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