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The Difference between Quartz Ledgestone and Quartz Countertops

Posted on September 18

Designer Kitchen featuring an island with a white quartz kitchen countertop

More people than ever know the term quartz from the increasingly popular solid surface countertop material, but few know that the quartz stone that we make a lot of our natural stone veneer and tile products isn't the same thing. The difference is actually pretty substantial, so lets take a look at the difference between the two in this week's classroom session.

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A Norstone Hurricane Story

Posted on September 13

Signage on the Norstone stacked stone wall at the Revel Casino in Atlantic City as seen from the boardwalk

The Norstone team based in Central Florida lived through Hurricane Irma over the past couple of days, thankfully with little damage to our homes and office. While a few of us still are waiting on power to come back, this experience reminded us of a great project we worked on in 2011, the Revel Casino in Atlantic City, which experienced major damage caused by Hurricane / Superstorm Sandy in 2012, and which we'll profile in this week's blog.

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The Importance of Sealing Natural Stone Veneer

Posted on September 06

Stacked Stone Feature Wall in a shower that has been sealed for protection and ease of use.

A lot of our customers ask us if they should seal their stone and the answer in almost every case is a resounding yes. While its critically important in some installations, such as water features, a case for sealing natural stone veneer can be made for just about any project. In this week's article let's take a closer look at why sealing might just be the most important part of your next natural stone veneer installation.

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Tex Mex and Norstone Basalt Interlocking Tile

Posted on August 28

Basalt Mosaic Interlocking Tile - Chipotle Signage Florida

Who doesn't love a nice burrito bowl or some carnitas, especially if you're lucky enough to visit this restaurant in South Florida that used our Basalt Mosaic Interlocking Tile on the exterior facade. If great design inspires great hunger – this is the place for you. Let's take a look at how the interlocking tile was used and why it was a great selection for this project.

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280 Park Ave Rooftop Pool Stone Feature Wall

Posted on August 14

Ivory Ledgestone Feature Wall on Indoor Pool with New York City Skyline Views and a glass roof

Swimming and New York City are two things close to the hearts of the team at Norstone, which makes this cool enclosed rooftop pool that used our Ivory Rock Panels on some feature walls a place we'd enjoy getting our laps in before or after the work day.

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Design, Spec, Build – Know the Players of Your Next Construction Project

Posted on August 07

Collage of icons representing the design, specification, and build processes of construction

At Norstone we get to work with clients on all levels of projects – from a small backsplash or fireplace where our homeowner client is installing the stone veneer themselves to large architecturally specified projects that can take years to develop. If you've ever found yourself in the middle of a big project and aren't quite sure who is responsible for what, here's a great guide we compiled to make things clearer for us and our clients.

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Banking on the Great Design of Ebony Basalt 3D Panels

Posted on August 02

Signage at a bank in Washington state that used Norstone 3D Basalt panels in Ebony on a vertical orientation.

This credit union in central Washington state raises the bar from a design standpoint as far as financial institutions are concerned. Let's take a look at how our Ebony Basalt 3D Panels were used extensively on the interior and exterior of this project and how this credit union gives you a lot to look at when you stop by.

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How To Install Stacked Stone On Curved Walls

Posted on July 24

Curved wall starting behind a reception desk and continuing over a large glass doorway in a modern industrial styled medical office.

Curved or radius walls provide a unique opportunity to use stacked stone in a way not traditionally seen. We've gotten a chance to work on some great radius projects and wanted to share our tips and guidelines for using stacked stone on radius walls.

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Basalt 3D Ledge Stone in America's Heartland

Posted on July 18

Gas fireplace and big screen tv recessed into a stone wall clad in grey basalt 3D ledge stone flanked on either side by floating shelves

We were blown away when we saw photos of this client's project recently completed about an hours drive outside of Kansas City, KS. The detail the designers and installers wove into the installation is pretty extraordinary. Come take a look inside with us and see what makes this project so special.

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Modern Stacked Stone Masterpiece in Asheville, NC

Posted on July 07

Asheville NC Modern Stacked Stone Home

We're incredibly impressed with the use of our Charcoal XL Stacked Stone veneer on this new construction modern lake home in Asheville, NC. Take a seat and let's look at some of the design features that make this project award worthy.

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Amazing Interior & Exterior Palm Beach Remodel

Posted on June 26

Blade wall in a luxury Palm Beach contemporary home using Norstone Ochre Blend Rock Panels

At Norstone we're love great architecture, and this recently remodeled contemporary home in Palm Beach, FL checks all the boxes. Let's take a look at what makes this project where Norstone was used in both interior and exterior applications so special.

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An Ivory Comeback for the Summer of 2017

Posted on May 23

Residential Outdoor Living Space in Fort Myers, FL using Ivory Stacked Stone on a fireplace and curved walls

Color trends come and go, and one that we've noticed recently is a renewed interest in our Ivory Blend color, so we decided to feature a residential project in Southwest Florida that used our Ivory Blend on the exterior as this week's featured project.

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How to Install a Flat Screen TV on a Stacked Stone Wall

Posted on May 17

Flat Screen TVs installed on Stacked Stone Wall in a Casino

Stacked stone makes a great backdrop for a media wall and a question we get asked all the time is how to hang a flat screen tv on the stone. Keep reading our latest blog for the best solution to this quandary and some other tips and tricks we point out along the way.

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How to Install Mesh Backed Tile

Posted on May 01

Mesh Backed Tile - Kitchen Backsplash

Products like our Basalt Interlocking Tiles come mesh mounted to increase the ease and speed of installation by allowing the individual tile strips to maintain their pattern and spacing. Here's a step by step guide on installing any mesh backed tile product successfully.

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How to Sustainably Remodel Your Home

Posted on April 17

Sustainable Home Remodel Ideas - San Francisco Courtyard Project

Sustainability and green building practices are important factors to consider as part of your next home remodel project. Learn all the different ways you can remodel your home and make a positive impact not only on the space, but on the environment as well, all while sticking to a budget.

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Everything Tile & Stone at Coverings in Orlando

Posted on April 13

Coverings Orlando 2017 Tile & Stone Show - Entrance

Coverings, the largest tile and stone in North America, was last week in Orlando and our whole team attended. Check out our thoughts on the show and where the tile and stone industry is headed in this week's blog.

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Outside the Box Stone Design Ideas For Your Next Remodel or New Build

Posted on March 20

Charcoal Stone Tile Shower

While we all know stacked stone makes a great veneer choice for projects like fireplaces, backsplashes and feature walls, check out this article for some design inspiration on how to use stacked stone in applications that will be unique and eye catching on your next remodel or new construction project.

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Two Toned Modern Fireplace in Ft. Collins, CO

Posted on February 27

Basalt Stone Panel Fireplace in Fort Collins, CO

This is one of our new favorite fireplaces, designed by the amazing team at Springhaus Designs in Ft. Collins, CO. Unafraid to mix materials and colors allowed them to create a truly unique modern fireplace in this Northern Colorado home.

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The Importance of Samples in any Stone or Tile Project

Posted on February 22

Sample Process Icon for Tile & Stone Projects

Whether you're buying online or from a brick and mortar dealer or distributor, samples should be an important part of the selection process for your next tile and stone job. This article delves into some of the reasons why and some major pitfalls that can be avoided with the simple step of requesting a sample.

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Thinset for Stone Veneer Installations Explained

Posted on February 19

Thinset for Stone Veneer Installations Explained

Thinset forms that critical link between substrate and stone, but is all thinset the same? This article is a definitive guide to different types of thinset and what is the best type to use for your next stacked stone veneer installation.

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Design Trends – When it comes to Stone, Smooth is In

Posted on February 01

Smooth Basalt Interlocking Tile San Francisco, CA

Here at Norstone we've been noticing a trend in terms of design towards smoother finished products and away from more textured materials. This article explores that trend, how we see it showing up in our client's projects, and how some of our products will work well in design schemes looking to embrace all that is smooth.

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Hiring a Contractor For Your Next Stone Project

Posted on January 25

Natural Stone Installation over Cement Board

Although all of Norstone products are DIY friendly, sometimes you just don't have the motivation to learn or time to install your next stone project yourself. Hiring a contractor can be a daunting task for someone without experience or knowledge in construction, so here's some tips and strategies for finding and hiring a contractor that will meet and hopefully exceed your expectations.

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Fireplace Renovations - Small Budget Project with Big Return On Investment

Posted on January 20

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Big returns on a small budget are music to any homeowner, investor, or flipper's ears. When a blockbuster budget to re-do the kitchen or bathrooms isn't in the cards, or if you've been diligent and have some money leftover at the end of a big renovation, look no further than the fireplace for smaller project that can significantly change the way a room looks and feels, and if done correctly, give you a great return on your renovation dollars.

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What Makes Norstone Different - A LOT!

Posted on December 19

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All Natural Stone veneers are not the same. Thickness, build quality and color consistency, not to mention service before and after the sale are just some of the things to consider when doing your homework on this type of product. In this blog we dive into some key reasons why Norstone products differ from other products in the marketplace, and why ultimately that results in a superior product for the end user.

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Natural Ends - Norstone's Latest Addition to Standard and XL Series Rock Panels

Posted on December 19

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Many installations don't end neatly into another wall or fixed object. What do you do when your thin veneer installation ends right in the middle of a wall? Natural Ends by Norstone are a great way to solve this problem. Each "unit" has two "ends" left in the natural cleft, allowing an installation to be finished mid wall, without seeing, or finding a way to cover up the standard smooth saw cut ends of a field unit.

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Norstone Industry Series - What is Stacked Stone?

Posted on September 28

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Stacked stone is an age old building term that literally refers to constructing walls out of slabs of stone in various sizes. Romans used stacked stone walls in Europe to mark territories and some can still be found today. In New England you can find walls from early settlers that are moss covered and blending into tree lines.

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Norstone Industry Series - Marble Tile Backsplash

Posted on March 03

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Granite, Marble, Quartz – the big three when it comes to high end stone countertop material. Ever wondered how these products would hold up when you turn that stone 90 degrees and put in on the backsplash? The answers might surprise you!

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Norstone Classroom Series - Ceramic Wall Tile – Color Variation in Natural Stone vs Manmade Tile Products

Posted on February 25

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There are many differences between manmade tile products, like porcelains and ceramics, as compared to natural stone. One of the most noticeable is color variation – something that can be tightly controlled when tile is manufactured versus something Mother Nature dictates when it comes to natural stone. Learn more about why color can vary and figure out what type of product works best for you.

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Norstone Classroom Series - Backsplash Trends

Posted on February 11

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Think of your kitchen or bath backsplash as a canvas where you can express your own creativity or embrace the latest trends in backsplash tile design, without the same cost and construction commitment as other elements of the space, like cabinets and countertops. Let's explore some more trends in backsplash design that might get you in the remodeling mood!

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Norstone Classroom Series - Installing Norstone Around Outlets

Posted on January 29

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Whether it's charging up your phone or setting the mood with lighting, outlets and switches are a necessary and important part of many kitchen and bath backsplashes. However, when it comes time to renovate, figuring out how to work your new surface material around them might be more than you bargained for! This week's article is a great tutorial on how to work around outlets when installing a stacked stone backsplash and many of the lessons can be applied to other similar surfaces as well.

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Norstone Designer Series - Travertine Tiles

Posted on January 20

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Sometimes as ubiquitous as it is beautiful, Travertine really is its own segment in the natural stone industry. When you start hearing words like tumbled, polished, honed or filled you know you're entering a world of light earthy tones with uses as diverse as the stone itself. Come learn the basics of this unique natural stone and why it might just be the perfect selection for your next project.

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Norstone Industry Series - Tumbled Stone

Posted on January 16

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Tumbled Stone is to polished marble as those $500 "vintage" designer jeans are to a brand new pair of Levis. Have no fear Norstonians, this isn't SAT English - but it is our latest Blog where we take a closer look at what all the fuss is about when you take a perfectly good stone and make it look old.

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Small Can Be Beautiful Too

Posted on January 08

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A small home made almost completely of larch wood in Austria dazzles us with its imaginative composition of traditionalism and futurism. Simply stunning, come check this gem out.

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Slate Tile - a Natural Stone Alternative to Ceramic Tile

Posted on December 17

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Slate tile and other sedimentary based stone tiles are wildly popular due to their range of colors, ease of use, and in many instances, great value. While these products aren't as durable as most ceramics or porcelain tiles, slate tile and other stone tiles can be easily maintained with a few simple steps and will offer the uniquely natural qualities that a manufactured product just won't have. Read on for some tips about caring for your slate tile and other sedimentary based stone tiles.

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A Classic Never Dies...We Heart You, Subway Tile

Posted on December 10

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We recently bought a home and it is a fixer upper. My husband and I are already dreaming about the laundry list of projects we want to tackle. The first up is the bathroom. When brainstorming ideas for the design of the space, the various materials and textures to consider, my suggestion for the shower was subway tiles. They are classic, easy to clean, and affordable. However, my husband's automated response was "Subway tiles? They are so boring!" Little does he know the world of Subway tiles that exist...

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How To Design Your Next Mosaic Tile Backsplash

Posted on December 04

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A kitchen without a backsplash is like a car without windshield wipers - it can work some of the time, but when things get wet, watch out! A popular finish in today's kitchen design is the use of mosaic tiles backsplashes, made from a variety of materials including tile, glass, stone, even metal. Come with us and explore the difference between traditional hand laid mosaics and today's pre-mounted systems and see how a mosaic tile backsplash might be a good fit for your next kitchen remodel.

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Ledgestone Defined

Posted on November 14

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The horizontal stack is the basis for most stone masonry work and is the primary feature of what we call "ledgestone" in today's marketplace. One of the bigger advancements with ledgestone over the past 20 of so years changed the process from a back breaking labor intense process to what most installers today refer to as lick and stick. Come learn more about what ledgestone is and why with today's technology it's more achievable than ever.

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What the term "Split Face" actually means...

Posted on November 07

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If you've ever heard the term "split face" in reference to a building material and weren't quite sure what that meant - you're not alone! This is maybe one of the broadest and most over-used terms in the stone industry and can be used to describe almost any product with a natural, unprocessed finish. Today's blog discusses more about what split face means throughout the industry, how split face products are made, and why they might be a good fit for your next project!

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Jazz up that Brick with some Stone Veneer

Posted on November 04

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Brick was and still is a very popular building material, particularily for residential fireplaces. Whether it's been a few years, or a few decades, the brick will look pretty much the same, but your tastes might have moved on. Stone Veneer is an excellent choice for refinishing over an existing brick substrate because it most often can be applied directly over the brick, minimizing the prepwork and allowing for a quick and easy transformation of the space. This article covers in detail some of things that you might consider when installing stone veneer over brick.

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How To Stone Veneer Your Columns

Posted on October 15

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Columns run the gamut from stately accoutrement in grand entry ways to just plain unsightly, view blocking headaches in a basement. Whatever its purpose, stone veneer is a great option for finishing columns, providing either a singular unique look, or allowing you to extend the stone veneer to more than just the flat walls of your project. This article touches on the major points to consider when selecting a veneer for a natural stone column project.

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Norstone Industry Series - Real Stone vs Faux

Posted on October 09

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If you clicked over and are reading this article right now there is a good chance you discovered it while doing some research for a current or upcoming design project involving stone veneer. Natural stone has been the time honored choice for stone veneer since mankind started using it as a building material, but with recent advancements and the proliferation of manmade faux stone materials, you might be asking yourself what product is the right fit for your job? Read on for a comparison between the two and determine for yourself who is "King of the Mountain."

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Design Your Patio with Natural Stone

Posted on October 01

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For many people, outdoor living space is more than just a nice feature, it's a necessity. Whether it's a small rooftop terrace overlooking a city skyline or a large space shaded in the leafy suburbs, outdoor spaces allow us to look away from the glare of our screens, breathe some fresh air and reconnect with nature. Natural stone finish options abound in these spaces and can be used on flooring, walls, seating and speciality features like outdoor grill islands and water features. This article visits on relevant design ideas and concepts for natural stone patios.

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The Basics of Sustainable Architecture

Posted on September 24

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In the not-too-distant future, we’ll look back effortlessly through our 3-D screens at the hallmark trends of today, and one thing that is sure to stand out as so remarkably simple yet so important that happened during this time is the revolution in design known as Sustainable Architecture. It is, without question, the Architecture and Design industry’s biggest fundamental shift of today, and is embedding itself in every fabric of our future. Let's discuss some of the important principles involved in Sustainable Architecture, and see what shakes out.

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Designing Natural Stone into Bathrooms

Posted on September 18

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Bathroom, restroom, lavatory or loo - whatever you call it we all know it's one of, if not the most important place in your home. With square feet often being a precious commodity, bathrooms challenge your design acumen to accomplish great things in small spaces. This article touches on how natural stone can be used on many surfaces of a bathroom serving both functional and aesthetic purposes to help create the luxurious spa like feel that will make you not want to leave.

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Class is in Session - Using Natural Stone for Retaining Walls

Posted on September 10

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Natural Stone has long been the choice for retaining walls that last the test of time and now with advanced manufacturing techniques that enable manufacturers to cut stone into thin veneers, retaining walls can be built easily out of component parts, simplifying the installation even further. This blog explores how thin natural stone veneer products like Norstone can effectively be used for retaining wall applications.

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Cast Stone vs Natural Stone – Norstone Industry Series

Posted on September 03

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What are the big differences between natural stone and cast, or manmade, stone products - and why are those differences important? Here's a high level industry targeted look at the differences and some guidance on picking the right material for your project.

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What A Rising Remodel and New Construction Market Means for Design

Posted on August 28

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As the economy continues its steady climb and the residential markets become less acrimonious to first time home buyers and investors once again, designing a space with a strong personal signature has become the hallmark trend of today’s emerging remodel and new construction market. Creating a space that is uniquely yours means finding materials that set you apart. With this increased demand for higher end materials comes a growing landscape of suppliers and vendors like Norstone that are rising up to meet your needs. This guide will review the essentials to ensure you choose a vendor who cares about your signature design as much as you do.

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Understanding Natural Stone Mosaics

Posted on August 20

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Mosaic design has been used for centuries to create everything from functional floor and wall coverings to some of the most impressive pieces of art known to man in a variety of different mediums including natural stone. Learn more in this article about the practical aspects of selecting and working with today's natural stone mosaic finishes.

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Get to Know How to Clean Natural Stone

Posted on August 13

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There are a lot of misconceptions about natural stone being a hard surface to clean when the inevitable accident occurs. Don't let the thought of a spilled glass of red wine or junior going Picasso on your stone keep you up at night. Let us show you how these and other stains can be cleaned on natural stone surfaces.

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Designing with Norstone Series - Natural Stone Backsplashes

Posted on August 06

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When designing a kitchen, there are a lot of little details to think about - cabinets, countertops, appliances, island or no island, flooring and more. The one detail that is often overlooked, or saved for last, is the backsplash - but it shouldn't be! The backsplash can tie all the little details together and be the finishing touch on the kitchen. Here are a few design ideas using natural stone as a non traditional backsplash medium.

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Norstone Classroom Series - Working With Corners

Posted on July 30

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There comes a point in most stone veneer projects where the stone will need to go around an outside corner to either continue along, or terminate into another wall or structure. Calculating the right mix of field and corner units for your project the first time around is a critical step to staying on time and in budget. So don't let an outside corner bring your stacked stone project to a screeching halt - Here's a handy guide that explains how using our Rock Panel series Outside Corner Unit will have you turning corners in no time.

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Designing with Norstone Series - Edge Options

Posted on July 23

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An in depth look at different ways to finish the exposed edges of Norstone Rock Panel system. When working on a backsplash, fireplace, feature wall or any other application that does not require corners or terminate into another wall or abutment, you might find yourself with an exposed edge, which begs the question how do you finish an exposed edge? The answer is, it's up to you! This is a place in your project where you can get a bit creative and really give your application a unique touch. Depending on the final look you are trying to accomplish, there are several options we recommend.

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Norstone Classroom Series - How to Measure

Posted on July 16

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Got Dimensions? This is a quick tutorial on everything you need to know to measure your project for a stone veneer application. One of the first steps in any project is going to be measuring the space and determining material requirements in square feet (sq ft). Whether you are working on a fireplace, backsplash, or feature wall, measuring the pertinent dimensions can be broken down into a few easy steps. Let's take a look at them here.

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Designing with Norstone Series - The "Ochre Blend"

Posted on July 10

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Of all the rock panels,the Ochre Blend has the most color variation to it. You will find shades of gray, rust and beige. If you are lucky, you will even receive panels with hints of blue and green. Since the Ochre is made up of a combination of sedimentary rock and quartz, you will also notice that it has a slight gold glimmer that will catch your eye. This can be your guide to designing with this crowd favorite, helping you elevate your project from ordinary to extraordinary.

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Our blog is a forum dedicated to discussing design themes, sources of inspiration, natural stone products, and how the world around us influences our creative interpretation and buying preferences. In this blog you'll find our articles sorted according to 3 main topics:

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