The most noted aspect in choosing outdoor décor elements are color and style. However the texture of an item not only reflects the style it also influences the way items are seen and felt. Texture gives colors a greater depth and has the ability to make an item reflect a certain mood.
The artisans who work with cast stone use a number of different processes when creating their outdoor décor to achieve unique textures. We’ll take a look at some of the ways they do this at Campania International, one of our most popular vendors.
In creating most all cast stone planters, they all go through a similar creation process. First, the item is sculpted out with all of its details, and then a cast is created. Once the mold is poured or filled with the cement mixture, it dries. Lastly there is a hand finishing and sanding process that smoothes out the seams and gives the cast stone creation its final finish. Now, let’s look at three of these different types of textures they create.
This is the most basic texture that most cast stone or cement décor items come in. One example is this Williamsburg Strapwork Leaf Urn.
Once the individual cast stone urn is completed, then there is an extensive hand-finishing process. First, the finished piece is hand sanded to smooth out any seams or cracks. Next, a smooth plaster is applied to the entire outer product in multiple layers. Each item may have this process done a dozen times. This finishes the piece in a perfectly smooth texture.
This smooth texture is best used for very classical or traditional items. It allows the finest level of details to show on the outer surface and creates an elegant finish. Also note how the stain used shows off the delicate leaf pattern around this featured urn.
Rustic Sandblast Texture
In this style of finishing texture, the artisan is looking to create a rustic, aged or even rural craftsman-style feeling. You’ll see, this pockmarked texture grabs colors and stains more deeply into the finished stone piece. How these items are created? The artisan makes the item just as above, and then literally sandblast the original sculpted item. Then the mold is created complete with the pockmarks embedded in it by the blasting process. You can see an example of this style here in the Rustic Greenwich Urn.
Chunky Rustic Texture
Probably the most innovative process that has been created to give a unique textured finish is what they call a ‘chunky rustic’ texture. These Saguaro Planters show an example of this. To get this look in the cast stone, they take the original sculpted planter and use peat moss inside the actual plaster cast! This has the effect of creating both these unusual striated patterns as well as a sort of ‘worn away’ texture to the stone.
The final effect is a highly unusual aged finish that can be applied to a rustic old-world style, or as with these Saguaro Planters a very contemporary look.
Whatever your personal style in outdoor décor, the final textures that are used add a lot to the design aesthetic. The mold making and finishing process of each of the hand-finished items from Campania International is part of what makes this vendor’s creations so special.
Posted by Jean Widner of the Garden-Fountains.com team.