Category: Stone

Pile On Design With a Dry-Laid Stone Retaining Wall

Stone retaining walls have existed for ages. Examine the pyramids in Egypt as well as the stone walls that line much of the southern countryside — those constructions have stood the test of time.

Unlike dry-joint walls, which utilize mortar to hold the stones together, properly installed dry-laid stone walls only utilize gravity and friction to stay together. Because the walls incline slightly inward, floor movement actually locks the structure closely together. Concrete footing is not needed, which saves on labour and material costs.

If you’re searching for a retaining wall that will stand the test of time, consider dry-laid stone.


Dry-laid stone walls create a sense of definition, distance and privacy in a landscape. They also maintain the soil in varied terrains.If you’ve got a home on a hilly terrain and want different degrees of landscape, this art form might be a good alternative.


Kinds of stone used. Consider using native stone in your region for dry-laid retaining walls. Fieldstone and boulders create a more natural look, while layered flagstone can supply a dressed and clean look. You can even integrate boulders within the wall, as shown, to combine both.

Stone with a sandy texture, such as the reddish sandstone found in the American Southwest, might not be wise to work with around a patio or pool area due to the sandy residue that can collect.


Benefits of dry-laid stone retaining walls:
They withstand fire, water and insects.They can be recycled due to the dry-laid method.They supply natural drainage with no damage to the structure, including mortared walls, which tend to crack and split into segments. Notice: You may not wish to utilize the dry-laid method right up against a swimming pool due to the silt that filters throughout the stone wall from rain or sprinklers. A dry-joint method is a much better option to achieve the same look.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

Installing the stone. Reaching a sound structure means adhering to certain instructions. When picking a contractor, be sure he or she is experienced at the craft and check out previous work. Each stone is hand chiseled to fit within the wall, and there are no wobbly stone. Stone wedges are utilized to stabilize rocks within the wall. Rubble stone, or backfill, is put behind the trim stones to aid with the ethics of the wall.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

Cost. Labor costs vary greatly, depending on the region and the wisdom of the contractor, however, usually are between $36 and $45 per square foot. Materials are additional.

Matthew Cunningham Landscape Design LLC

Design options. Dry-laid stone retaining walls can match most landscape layouts. Curving lines or ordered lines create definitive boundaries from 1 distance into another.

The wall pictured above has a stone bench integrated within the structure. If you are restricted in space for seats, why don’t you integrate seating into your wallsocket?

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Surround Your Fireplace With Stone, Brick or Tile

I explored the choices of rock slab fireplace surrounds in my final ideabook, so here are some fireplace design ideas with brick and tile. Whether you’ve got an existing traditional brick and wood fireplace surround and you’re looking for a change — or you are designing one from scratch — there is an idea in here for you.

More: Suggestions for Stone Slab Fireplace Surrounds

Dana Wolter

So many houses have a conventional natural wood fireplace and red brick surround and hearth. Do not fee like you are tied to this forever. Just go to it and paint it white — all and brick. It might require some convincing of a partner or relative, but everybody I know who has gone for it never looked back with regret. Painting the brick white can decorate and decorate a room and offer you more choices for paint and fabric colours. Of course, this is not for everyone’s taste. Some people today love natural wood, and it may be more appropriate to their property.

lorraine Pennington

Following is a more modern case of white brick fireplace. I totally adore this — it’s modern yet earthy, and I enjoy the way the top ledge goes over to the shelving on the rear, making it more asymmetrical. This design really complements the minimum black inside.

CWB Architects

If you know you are ready for a change but don’t want to paint that wood mantle, go for a new tile surround instead. I really like the raised relief pattern of this blue tile. A fireplace is the best place to use a tile you adore but may have too much texture or is a bit too pricey to use in kitchen.

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

Hand-painted terra-cotta tile provides a modern twist to some more conventional fireplace mantle. Here tile proceeds down to the hearth, but you could easily maintain your existing hearth substance or switch it out to a rock slab.

McIntosh Poris Associates

Another vintage-inspired tile provides a lot of personality to this white ring and fireplace. If you want your design to me more about the tile and less about the ring, then go for a thinner profile similar to this.

A easy shadowbox mantle design creates the glass mosaic tile on this fireplace the focal point. When using a tile on the surround, don’t be afraid to mix in a different material, like a the black rock slab to the hearth.

Rather than opting for the simplicity of a single-shape tile, go for something with much more detail, like this embossed tile and architectural molding. Caps, liners and other moldings include pattern and detail though the tile is all the exact same color.

When designing a new fireplace surround, you are able to integrate things like shelving as well. This design accentuates the horizontal lines of this room. Here the rock tile is the exact same substance on the surround and raised hearth, but changes contour for texture and interest.

John Lum Architecture, Inc.. AIA

Run the rock tile to the ceiling to make drama and accentuate the vertical. Charcoal black and gray rock are always excellent ways to de-emphasize the black box that is a trademark of gas fireplaces.

Dufner Heighes Inc

This rock fireplace surround takes the cake for outrageous and unique. I am not sure if that was first to the house or newly designed, but in any event, I am in love.

More: 16 Stunningly Beautiful Fireplaces
More Ways with Tile Fireplaces
9 Portable Fireplaces
Suggestions for Stone Slab Fireplace Surrounds

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