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Staining & Coloring Concrete

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Finding the Beauty in Simple Gray Concrete

Simple gray concrete in a hall at the University of Oregon adds to the design aesthetic of the space.There’s something about its weight. There’s something about its economy of purpose, its honesty, and sometimes, its beauty. There’s just something about natural gray concrete. And the longer I’ve been in the decorative concrete field, with options for coloring systems ever increasing, the more I’ve come to appreciate it.

Spray it Forward: The Decorative Concrete Community Gives Back

Spraying concrete as a way to teach the attendees proper technique.Decorative concrete overlays, stampings, fountains and countertops created from scratch. And the best part of all was that the majority of the work the artisans created are to become a permanent working part of Walla Walla County Fairgrounds.

Flattooing: The Art of "Tattooing" Images to a Concrete Surface

Flattoo design available from Surface Gel TekSurface Gel Tek (SGT) has introduced a new process called Flattooing, the art of tattooing images into flat concrete surfaces. The Flattoo process uses Flattoos — vinyl adhesive designs — and Tek Gel for Stenciling Micro Etch.

Show Trainers and Attendees Transform Phoenix Children's Museum

Shellie Rigsby of Acanthus Concrete Stain Designs designed and created the Sky Landing balcony stain project, working closely with Kemiko and the exhibits director of the museumWhen the 2010 Concrete Decor Show was over, it left something behind — beautiful and entertaining artwork at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix. The koi pond mural and Sky Landing balcony are just a few of the exciting new features on which children are playing, thanks to artisans and exhibitors who donated time, materials and creativity.

Color-crazy Concrete Floors at The Stain Store in Austin, Texas

Color-crazy Concrete Floors at The Stain Store in Austin, TexasAt The Stain Store's new location in north Austin, Texas, 600 square feet of flooring in the showroom and tool room was overlaid with Miracote MPC, scored with curved joints, then stained with Mirastain II alcohol-based stain, Butterfield Elements. Stain Store's own metallics were used in the tool room.

Creating Color Designs with FloorMaps' Stencils

A stencil in the shape of puzzle pieces was applied to this concrete floor and takes on a 3-D look.Complex and intricate designs can be applied to concrete surfaces very accurately using adhesive-backed vinyl stencils. They offer control, precision and, if needed, repeatability. Stenciling is a very old technique from the world of paint, but as it evolves in the concrete world, it’s becoming very modern.

Get the Golf Ball Look in a Concrete Patio

Concrete patio created by Scott Cohen of Green Scene to replicate the look of a golfball. The high-end landscape design and building firm is nationally recognized for creating custom pools, spas, fireplaces, concrete stamping and staining, ceramics and tile, outdoor kitchens, rock waterfalls and much more.

Acid Stain Alternatives for Concrete

Colors of all three stains can be mixed with other colors before application. You can also layer colors one at a time, depending on the look you're going for.Three more ways to get the look of acid stain without the hassle.

Protecting Yourself When Working with Acid Stain

Two people in white coveralls on a boom lift acid staining walls.Some materials you handle as a concrete worker can be hazardous to your health, including the concrete itself. Wet concrete can burn your skin, while concrete dust can hurt your lungs.

Acid stain is comparatively pretty safe — but there are still some safety procedures you should consider.

Faux Finished Illusions on Concrete

Faux finished concrete creates an illusion of multiple dimensionsBob Harris is probably best known as founder and president of the Decorative Concrete Institute. But one of his side passions is faux finishing.

Historical Museum Enhanced by Three Unique Concrete Floor Treatments

Putting down a beautiful concrete museum floor that doesn't distract from the artwork is, well, creating a work of art in its own right.Putting down a beautiful concrete museum floor that doesn’t distract from the artwork is, well, creating a work of art in its own right.

Staining & Coloring Concrete
Rescuing a Nightmare Concrete Staining Job

Polished concrete floor by Julio HallackIn March of 2012 my company received a call from an outfit that was working on a project at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, California. They wanted to discuss the issues that they were having with the application of an acid stain on almost 50,000 square feet of floor.

Salt Lake City Historical Landmark Gets a Facelift By Way of Stained Concrete

Hallway in an historic building get made over with stained concrete.After decades’ worth of ramshackle renovations and rehabilitations, the floors at this retail and residential complex were in sorry shape. Giving them one more facelift took some doing.

Philadelphia Polished Concrete

concrete firepitBart Rockett, 46, began working with concrete back in 1987 after joining Patterned Concrete Industries (PCI) and working for one of its local franchises outside of Philadelphia in southern New Jersey.

A River Colored with Water-based Stain Created on Museum Floor

 these photos of a river he carved through an acid-stained floor using two brands of water-based stain from NewLook International.Dan McCormick of Eagle View Custom Creations, Fort Harrison, Mont., submitted these photos of a river he carved through an acid-stained floor using two brands of water-based stain from NewLook International. He put down the river at ExplorationWorks, an interactive science and culture museum in Helena, Mont.

Gil Santistevan, a Master in Crafting Decorative Concrete

Stamping integrally colored concrete driveway apron.It’s more dainty, more elegant, like between silk and cloth with hard-eners. The grays and browns last forever. He also likes to sprinkle color on top of the concrete with a brush to create freckles, just like real stones offer.

Pigment Peculiarities

A vibrantly colored surface may not seem like the end of the world, but the color difference between the surface and the underlying concrete can pose problems not only in the case of damage somewhere down the line, but also just in the process of finishing the slab.Any time you’re dealing with integral color, the key to success is getting a nice, even distribution of pigment. The key to that, in turn, is managing the water-to-cement ratio in your mix.

Using Stencils to Expand Artistry in Decorative Concrete

Applying a stencil to a floor creating an artistic look when artistic talent is lacking.Because their artistry is computer-generated, stencils empower every contractor to create stunning works of art regardless of artistic talent. It is amazingly simple to produce logos, images, and artistic effects with exact detail and concrete industry has an arsenal of magnificent images ready to order.

Architect Embraces Polished Concrete in Schools

Polished Concrete and Colored ConcreteAll over the country, architects who design primary and secondary schools are warming to polished concrete. Jim Ward, of Ward Scott Architecture, Tuscaloosa, Ala., is one of them. His firm’s recent project, Big Sandy Elementary School, part of the Tuscaloosa County School System, opened in 2013.

A Concrete Tree Celebrates the Branches of a Family-Owned Business

Steven Ochs Smith Paints concrete treeBeing next door to the Artistry in Concrete competition at the World of Concrete 2015, Steven Ochs knew he had to bring his A game to the Smith Paint Products booth. Ochs, a decorative concrete artisan and chairman of the department of art and design for Southern Arkansas University, presented several designs to the Brunners, owners of the family-run business.

Concrete Troubleshooting Stories That Make You Go Hmmm

Putting the pieces of the puzzle together.It's that time of year again - the time when I review the hundreds of questions and situations I dealt with in 2010 looking for those special few that made me pause and just think, "Really?"

A New Endeavor - Caribou Art

Exterior wall with Caribou Art placed on it by Tamryn DoolanTamryn Doolan, owner of Surface Gel Tek, has long been in the business of turning simple concrete surfaces into striking works of art. Continuing in that tradition, Doolan’s new endeavor, Caribou Art Studios, brings her talents to a whole new venue — exterior walls.

Maintaining Color Consistency in Large Decorative Pours

Consistent color in concrete from ready mix concrete company.Have you ever gotten that early-morning or late-night call from an unhappy owner telling you that the color is lighter than they wanted … or darker … or does not match from one pour to the next? If you haven’t been on the receiving end of one of those calls, good for you! If you have, then you know what we are talking about.

Modern Mosaic Artwork Livens San Diego's Landscape

Lemon slice lithomosaic, small rocks embedded in concrete to make a shape.“It was back-breaking work,” says the owner of Brailsford Public Art in San Diego about placing colored aggregate piece by piece into wet concrete on a job site. She was working with Shaw & Sons’ Lithocrete system which incorporates a means to create a scattered aggregate pattern on a concrete surface.

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