Travertine is a stone that has been used for construction dating back to some of the earliest recorded cities. Travertine has been found as a building material dating back to Egyptian ruins over 5000 years ago. Travertine has also been found in major ruins in Turkey and Slovakia. Maybe the most famous use is the Coliseum in Rome which is build entire from travertine stone. In ancient construction travertine was used as a construction material as it was both structurally sound and could be carved and polished to a beautiful finish.
Travertine is actually a form of limestone. Travertine is always formed near natural springs as the warm, mineral filled water is what brings out travertine’s beautiful colors and patterns. The dissolved minerals in the water flowing over the limestone will create etching and scare the surface and create pour in the rock. In these pores, organic compounds can grow like algae that will crystallize over time giving travertine its remarkable colors and patterns.
The largest deposits of travertine are in Italy which is where most of the stone comes from today. Today’s use of travertine is much different than ancient construction. Today’s construction employs the many cost saving benefits of framing and concrete and travertine is only used as a façade. Travertine comes in highly polished tiles ready to install on your walls or floors.
Although travertine is a pores stone due to the way it is formed, it is still a great option for your bathroom. In areas that won’t be soaking wet such as your counter top or floors, choose a travertine tile that has a hone or tumble finished surface. These finishes will soften the colors of the travertine and allow for spills to be easily cleaned up. You can still use travertine in wet areas, such as the floors and walls of your shower, the stone just needs to be sealed before use.
To help you decide if your travertine needs to be sealed to help prevent staining or water absorption, check out this great sealing test. If it does turn out to be a good idea to seal your travertine floors or walls, using a high-quality sealer will be worth it. Some sealers do not penetrate the pores of the stone and are simply a surface coating which wears off quickly and will probably require resealing every 6 months. Better penetrating sealers can last for many years. Some high-quality sealers give stain warranties up to 15 years, but we recommend sealing your travertine with a good quality sealer at least every 4 years to prevent water absorption and prevent staining.
Now that you know how to choose the right stone and properly prepare it for regular use in your travertine bathroom, you’re ready for the fun part! Designing your dream bathroom. Travertine offers many advantages over tile, but most people use it for its beautiful and elegant design. Travertine’s natural patterns bring luxury to any bathroom. Travertine is available mostly in light colors like white, cream or ivory. Travertine is also starting to be available in gray hues and rusty colors as well. If you are just using travertine on the floor you might consider brighter stone like whites or ivory to help keep the room bright and clean looking. If you’re planning an open shower design with travertine walls you might choose a more calm color like a cream or even a rusty brown.
No matter what colors you choose you will love the patterns and style travertine brings to your bathroom. When you’re ready to create your new travertine bathroom call the experts at Carolina Flooring Service at 843-225-0700 today for help choosing the right stone for your bathroom. For more information on how to choose the right color, visit our stone and tile page today!
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