Concrete decoration of the backyard area, and the interior too, is actively used in various techniques. At the same time, new and new ways of design are invented with the help of this artificial stone, a huge plus of which is its “flexibility” in casting in forms and durability. Therefore, decorative concrete, cast with its own hands, does not leave anyone indifferent who wants to make their home unique, and at the same time save a whole lot of money. Consider the main types and methods of its independent production.
What concrete can be considered decorative
Decorative concretes – so what is it?
In fact, this “family” includes all derivatives of such an artificial stone, which carry at least some kind of decorative function. And here it doesn’t even matter in which area the decorative concrete will be used – the interior, landscape design, facade, park paths, furniture and even dishes.
But, there are a couple of distinctive features by which it is possible to distinguish such concrete from the usual draft (although the latter is megapopular in design):
- color – products from decorative concrete are trying to pigment;
- Add-ons – ingredients are added to the composition, which add a “zest” to this concrete, for example, glass, phosphoric stones, etc.
- quality – usually, on the strength and other performance characteristics when creating decorative concrete, there is no much looping, products are made according to the “if only” principle it was beautiful, and there are no special requirements for decorative concrete.
Note: However, the latter characteristic does not apply to products that will be subjected to intensive use in the future, for example, floor, garden paths, table tops. When creating such concretes, special additives are used that increase the strength, the frost resistance grade and reduce the susceptibility to cracking.
What are the differences decorative concrete
As already mentioned, the variety of decorative concrete is simply amazing. But its species classification is not limited only to external indicators of finished products. For each specific option, there are certain quality standards, and in order to achieve them, they maintain a certain composition of decorative concrete.
Consider in detail what types are. Let’s start the “debriefing” with the most common – concrete for paving and floors.
From it do:
- paving slabs with a thickness of not more than 3.5 cm, decorative elements made of concrete for walls and facades;
- floors with different effects – for example, interesting pigmentation, varnishing with the addition of decorative stones, which, when polished, create an interesting base structure;
- solid basis on which some decorative pattern or texture is applied on the raw concrete.
For countertops, worktops, sinks and window sills, the production of decorative concrete occurs according to the usual cast technology using, if possible, a mixture of a hard consistency, from which products with a long service life are obtained. For this purpose, special plasticizers and additives are also used.
Manufacturing technology for decorative concrete for worktops, sinks and window sills also includes the stage of thorough grinding, repairing small cracks and varnishing.
- Instead of varnish on concrete, often use epoxy resin, which has a truly water-repellent properties. And the lack of exposure to moisture is, as we already know, the secret of longevity of concrete.
- Architectural products for concrete for landscape design are often made of a conventional cement-sand mortar with good plasticity.
- Also in such mixtures add additives that increase frost resistance and mechanical strength.
- To impart shine and durability, such concrete is additionally coated with varnishes and other protective compounds.
- Decorative concrete for creating interior elements is also made without the addition of rubble and with a whole “cocktail” of plasticizers, which increase the molding properties and ensure a good surface of the finished products.
What to work
Note! Tools for decorative concrete of this kind can be used absolutely any – from plastic cups to rubber gloves. You can also additionally purchase professional volumetric forms for the decor of concrete. It all depends on the imagination of the master.
- You can find commercially available special cement paste with excellent ductility. When cured it turns out perfectly smooth surface of light gray. Such compositions are simply diluted with water to the consistency of sour cream.
- They are suitable for creating small decorative items, such as flowerpots, candlesticks and more. But it should be borne in mind that the price is comparable to the cost of a bag of cement and a third of a cube of river sand, with which you can make a lot of concrete for decorative items.
- Decorative concrete for walls, or nanobeton – a new trend in the field of finishing. It plays the role of ordinary plaster, and the composition of such compositions is very similar to it.
- Also, micro-cement solutions are highly resistant to moisture and other negative factors. Therefore, manufacturers recommend it for use for both internal and external works. You can finish not only walls, but also floors, ceilings, showers, sinks and even furniture.
Decorative concrete is not a new development. Pay attention to the buildings of the Soviet period – quite often this material is “decorated” with color, then broken tile, or mosaic, or pebbles. And look at what technological beauty it has become today. Of course, beauty is not for everyone, but who argues about tastes!