It’s no surprise that the use of natural stone outdoors is so popular. Besides enriching your outdoor space by creating a beautiful ambiance, natural stone in the use of outdoor living areas and spaces is both a fantastic way of enhancing your lifestyle and even significantly elevating the ultimate value of your home.
There seems to be some confusion around the use of granite outdoors as there is a tendency to underestimate the durability of granite. While you do need to make sure that it is properly sealed to resist staining, wear and tear and last for years to come, it is still one of the hardest and most durable materials on earth. With the proper care, granite is a brilliant material to use in outdoor spaces as it is able to beautifully stand up to the elements, withstand freezing temperatures as well as endure exposure to direct sunlight and rain.
We will be continuing our series about the use of natural stone outdoors by taking a closer look at granite, exploring why it is a fantastic material to use outdoors as well as offering important things you should know to get the most out of your granite in your outdoor space.
How to Choose Granite For Your Outdoor Space
When you are deciding which material to use in your outdoor living space, one factor you will want to consider is its durability, as you will want your natural stone to maintain its beauty for years to come. Granite, which is classified as an intrusive igneous rock, is a type of natural stone and one of the most durable materials on earth. While marble is also a very popular type of natural stone, granite can sometimes be preferred because it is less porous than marble, and therefore, more stain-resistant as well. However, it is very important that granite is sealed properly to still prevent any surface stains. Sealer is composed of a chemical that will soak into the granite, transforming it into a less penetrable surface, and subsequently preventing surface stains from penetrating through the stone.
Since granite is a very durable material, less porous, and more stain-resistant, it is a great choice for your outdoor space. whether it is used in an outdoor kitchen counter for the floor of an outdoor patio or by a pool. Again, as granite is less porous, and can stand up to moisture, it is a smart choice for the area by a pool which will obviously come into contact with a lot of moisture.
Granite is also heat resistant, being able to stand up to direct sunlight beautifully. In fact, it’s heat-resistant properties means that you can take a hot pan and put it directly on a granite countertop or use a slab of granite on your grill itself.
In terms of maintenance for granite, it is recommended that you do a full sealing every 1 or 2 years. You can easily do this yourself or hire a professional. You can also use a cleaner/ sealer-in-one for light, daily cleaning and maintenance.
As a natural stone, granite infuses organic beauty with a traditional feel into your space and no two stones are alike. As compared to marble, granite is more sedimentary in its appearance which means that the stone tends to feature more color gradation, busier patterns as well as more color movement. Marble, on the other hand, lends a more contemporary appeal to a space with its sophisticated, cleaner, more plain and overall, less busy appearance.
There are so many stunning types of granite to choose from depending on the aesthetic you seek for your space, as well as the other decor and furniture in the area. Neutral tones of granite are always a popular option, lending warmth with an earthy feel to your outdoor space. The neutral palette will gorgeously play against the colors of the great outdoors.
Perhaps, you are interested in a modern color palette such as granite featuring a speckled gray pattern. Gray-colored granite will complement your outdoor stainless steel appliances beautifully. For a crisp, clean and exquisitely elegant look, you may prefer a white colored granite variation. Remember, with its more sedimentary appearance, even white colored granite will have striking speckles of other colors running through, creating stunning dimension and depth.
When choosing the color of granite for your outdoor space, you want to take into consideration the size of the space you are working with. Lighter tones such as light beiges, creams and white colored granite add an airy feel to your outdoor area, making the area feel more spacious and maximizing the space. They will also complement many types of decor as well without taking centerstage, allowing you to easily accent the space with bold splashes of color in other areas. Lighter colored granite will be an especially lovely choice for the floor of a patio or by your pool, complementing the colors of the pool beautifully, creating a supremely elegant look in your outdoor space. Darker colored granites play more into the traditional vibe of the natural stone, bringing warmth and character into your space with a luxe feel.
The finish you choose for your granite in your outdoor space will significantly impact its final appearance, enhancing its overall look and feel.
Polished is the most popular and preferred type of finish for granite, especially for granite countertops, elevating the rich colors and tones of granite with its high-gloss and lustrous shine. A polished finish is also easy to maintain as it is the least porous of the various types of finishes and does not have to be sealed as often as other types. One thing you will want to keep in mind if you are considering using a polished finish for your outdoor patio or the flooring by a pool, is that a polished finish can become very slippery especially when it becomes wet. This can be potentially hazardous for small children or the elderly. Karen Pearse Home offers a special polished finish that passes slip resistant requirements.
A honed finish is alo very desirable, giving off a satiny and smooth appearance. The finish is rougher, and retains a bit more of a natural or rugged look that reflects the organic beauty of granite. Honed finishes are more porous than polished granite, which makes them more susceptible to staining. However, scratches on a honed finish won’t show up that easily. A honed finish is usually recommended for outdoor areas as it is generally more slip resistant than a polished finish.
Granite will stunningly enhance your outdoor space, creating an elegant and inviting living area to enjoy for decades to come. If you are considering granite for your outdoor area, check out Karen Pearse Home for a beautiful selection of popular types of granite to elevate your space.