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Staining & Coloring Concrete

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Troubleshooting Topically Colored Polished Concrete

I was recently asked to troubleshoot issues on a polished concrete floor that failed to show vivid color, even after all the usual right steps were taken.I was recently asked to troubleshoot issues on a polished concrete floor that failed to show vivid color, even after all the usual right steps were taken. It was “The Case of the Disappearing Color.”

Secrets to Special Effects with Concrete Stains

The nation's best decorative concrete artisans have years of experience laying down color combinations that glow, spark and shimmer. Even better, they're willing to share their secrets with you.The nation's best decorative concrete artisans have years of experience laying down color combinations that glow, spark and shimmer. Even better, they're willing to share their secrets with you.

When the Customer Wants That "Special" Gray

Our task had been to art-direct the placement of a new natural gray topping slab, and to subsequently patina it to simulate some 20 years of hard use.Our task had been to art-direct the placement of a new natural gray topping slab, and to subsequently patina it to simulate some 20 years of hard use. In other words, we were turning it from gray to “that special gray.”

The Acid Stain Looked Good at First... What Went Wrong?

Concrete Acid Stain FailureWe then washed the floor with soap and water and removed almost all of the color. The floor now looks spotty and ugly. Why did all the color come off, and what can I do to make it look like it did before I cleaned the floor?

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.

Artisan Grows Up in Concrete Industry and Becomes a Stamping Success

Robert Salinas, 58, jokes that he has 50 years of concrete experience. That's not too far off from the truth, because as a youngster he recalls helping to place concrete for the pool company his uncle and father worked at in San Antonio, Texas. Robert Salinas, 58, jokes that he has 50 years of concrete experience. That’s not too far off from the truth, because as a youngster he recalls helping to place concrete for the pool company his uncle and father worked at in San Antonio, Texas.

The Benefits of Tried and True Iron Oxide Pigment

Using excess water on a concrete slab case discoloration.The products and finishes in the decorative industry are becoming more sophisticated - polymer-modified toppings, nanotechnology sealers, and sustainable stains and dyes to name a few. But all need to remember the old tried-and-true products that still make up a large portion of the industry, and refresh ourselves on the right way to use them.

Color Issues with Liquid and Powder Release Agents

Bart Sacco applies dry powder release to a slab.The choice you have is between a liquid release agent and a dry-powder antique release. Both products are similar in function — however, the application technique is completely different for each. This results in a different final look as well.

Recipe: Rustic Chic Stamped Concrete

A bluestone-stamped field trimmed with richly stained faux beams, this technique is perfectly suited for any room with an upscale rustic theme.A bluestone-stamped field trimmed with richly stained faux beams, this technique is perfectly suited for any room with an upscale rustic theme.

Recipe: Easy Antiquing on Polished Floors

Using this easy antiquing technique is a sure fire way to upgrade any space.Ideal for distressed floors with lots of cracks, pits, chips or gouges, this versatile technique can be used to turn a fixer-upper into a masterpiece.

Pigments for Integrally Colored Concrete

Iron oxide pigments in yellow, red, brown and black.Not any pigment can be used in concrete. The chemistry of portland cement plus exposure to sunlight and weather can cause most integral concrete colors to fade.

Understanding pigments is the foundation for successful decorative concrete.

A Sprawling Ocean Mural Graces an Australian Fish Market

Blue ocean color imitates the look of an ocean reef.Elite Crete Australia and decorative concrete artist Audra Lynch Nanay, of Audra Lynch & Cie, Chicago, have brought the ocean ashore in greater Melbourne. Their ocean-themed concrete mural sweeps across a restored footpath outside of Conway Fish Trading, in Footscray.

From the Ground Up: Building a Concrete Home

A compass placed on the concrete floor in this kitchen.In this house, concrete is everywhere, from the floors to the walls to the tabletops. And it doesn't stop there, the entire home was consructed using concrete and insulated concrete forms.

Cutting Pictures in Concrete with Diamonds - Engrave-A-Crete

A sophisticated design on a concrete floor made by cutting a series of straight lines into the floor.A sophisticated design on a concrete floor made by cutting a series of straight lines into the floor.

Museum Blends History with Multiple Processes and New Concrete Products

To commemorate a colony that contributed much to Texas, the Texas Historical Commission had a museum built that uses decorative concrete to capture history.To commemorate a colony that contributed much to Texas, the Texas Historical Commission had a museum built that uses decorative concrete to capture history.

Color Repairs Explained in Black and White

shiny brown polished floorOver the last few months I’ve had multiple projects with issues related to color. I feel it will benefit Concrete Decorreaders to understand the process for corrections as well as some simple tips and tricks for achieving desired results.

Concrete Contractor Fixes a Botched Stencil, Stain and Sealer Job

A custom stencil was applied to the concrete floor that took on the look of a horse, the company's logo.When you've just created art on 256 square feet of concrete entryway, you do not want to have it described as a "horse with a rash" two days before the opening of your client's new retail establishment. But that's what Tony Victor and partner Ben Washburn were up against in October 2007.

University Building Transformed by New Dye System

Fast-Stain by Wescoat creates vibrant colors on the floor.Westcoat Specialty Coating Systems has sent us some photos and information of a striking dye installation in the classrooms, hallways and main entrance of the United States University building in Chula Vista, Calif.

Advantages of Water-based Acrylic Concrete Sealers

dry and wet floor comparison - In the 30-odd years I've been in the concrete industry, first as a contractor and now as a retailer, I've heard time and again that water-based acrylic sealers can't compare to solvent-based acrylics.In the 30-odd years I’ve been in the concrete industry, first as a contractor and now as a retailer, I’ve heard time and again that water-based acrylic sealers can’t compare to solvent-based acrylics.

Polishing Concrete and Dyes Are a Winning Combination

You lose a lot of the color in the final grinding and polishing with stainsWhile dyes have experienced an increase in market share in the colored concrete industry over the past few years, it's not unreasonable to say they've enjoyed an unmitigated bull market within the polished concrete arena.

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.

How Stains and Dyes Color Your Concrete

Using the product is not enough. You have to really know what it is, what it's made of, how it works, and how to properly use it.Do you really understand how the products you use on your decorative projects work? One of my “Seven Steps to Success Before You Start a Project” states that you should “understand the products and process.” Using the product is not enough. You have to really know what it is, what it’s made of, how it works, and how to properly use it.

A New Way to Look at Decorative Concrete in Art Galleries

Decorative concrete in art galleriesThe finished floor of this art center brings in the arts wherever applicable. The new floor was one of the major changes to the space, and it presented the perfect opportunity to showcase local talent in artists who could work with concrete. Instead of creating a neutral floor, we went for bright and vibrant.

Water-based Stain Acid Stain Alternative from Increte Systems Inc.

Developed as an ecofriendly alternative to acid stain, Increte Systems' Stone Essence is a water-based stain that offers contractors a wide variety of options in regards to both location and aesthetics.Developed as an ecofriendly alternative to acid stain, Increte Systems’ Stone Essence is a water-based stain that offers contractors a wide variety of options in regards to both location and aesthetics.

Effects with Reactive Stains on Concrete

Reactive stains create unique looks on concrete as the chemical reactions happen.There are unlimited opportunities to create fabulous effects with reactive acid stains. Acid stains are most mutable from the time they are sprayed onto the concrete until the reactive color change develops.

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