Monday, February 25, 2013

And the award for Best Product goes to...Sandstone

"I would like to thank Sandstone for this award. And,
I hope this thing is made of chocolate because I could use some calories right now."

In honor of the Oscars, I would like to bestow my own award for Best Product in the Faux Effects line to Sandstone. 

This is not based on anything scientific. No poll was conducted.  Sandstone did not launch a campaign of billboards or send me a swag bag.  This is entirely based on my own criteria:

1) Product Cconsistency
2) Product Ddurability
3) Ease of Application
4) Versatility
5) Overall Appearance
6) Product Cost

In many ways Sandstone is the Daniel Day-Lewis or Meryl Streep of products. (BTW, how cute was his acceptance speech?).  It has long been my go-to product when a client wants a low build plaster.

Sandstone is an off-white plaster that has a small brown aggregate (fleck) in it and the plaster dries to a pretty parchment color after sanding. It sands easily and creates very little dust.  Thinning with water, up to 50%, and whipping will give you a nice plaster paste suitable for rolling.

And of course it may be troweled whether thinned or straight out of the bucket.  Sandstone covers about 200-250 square feet unthinned.  Thinning with water will give you approximately 100-150 more square feet.  Coverage is always dependent on how thick and/or connected you apply the material.

The classic way we apply Sandstone is to roll a paste coat and then trowel a high/low coat when the first coat is dry.  Then we glaze on top.  You can tint Sandstone but it looks best when left light so the aggregate shows.

Sandstone is thick enough to go over orange peel (the walls in the picture above) and knock down (the ceiling in the same picture).

Sandstone is also thick enough to use a stenciling material for raised patterns. This is a dining room we did years ago where we used Stain & Seal on the base layer of troweled Sandstone. Then we pulled more Sandstone over a Royal Design Allover Stencil. When the Sandstone pattern was dry, we stained it one more time.

I use Sandstone a lot for both interior and exterior wood finishing.  The above door is the sample I did for a client's paneling where I crackled Sandstone over a custom black grey Setcoat. The door below is also Sandstone this time applied with a sea sponge and then sanded flat.

Here Sandstone is used in a back splash tile with the Cutting Edge Birch Tree pattern. Because the plaster may be thinned it is a good choice when using the specialty rollers, wallpaper brushes, or combs. The bathroom finish below is Sandstone shaped with a whisk broom. I call it Samara because it looks like the creepy kid's hair from "The Ring" movie.

Sandstone is flexible enough to be applied to a paper finish and will not crack off. I used it for the Yellow Birch paper I made for the craft room in our home.

Sandstone also comes in two Reactive Series products: RS Sandstone and RS Sandstone with flake.  Above picture is the finish I am applying to 2,500 square feet in our home.

This is a product that plays nicely with other materials.  The finish above is RS Sandstone over hologram foil. Here is the same finish in the picture below over a copper foil in our client's bathroom:

This whole story board for walls, wood, and ceiling are done with Sandstone in combination with other FE products.  So the next time you are stumped about what to do for a client give some Sandstone a try. It is much more then a simple rolled plaster.  You will be surprised at all the finishes you may do with it!

And speaking of surprises....

Look what was under that gold foil wrapper!  Oscar who?


  1. Hysterical and as always super informative Thank you!

  2. Thanks Sass-too bad George doesn't need some faux finishing at his Lake Como Home!

  3. So glad to have found this Rebecca!

    Notice your post above indicating Sandstone is great over a knockdown texture but you mentioned it's best to roll a paste coat and then trowel once dry. Does that include over knockdown texture or have you troweled right over knockdown in one pass ... tightly fill and then go back and trowel while wet?