One of the toughest yet arguably most attractive types of natural limestone, Jura is quarried from the foothills of southern Germany.
Often used in commercial projects such as shopping centres, it’s one of the best kept secrets in the interior design industry.
Hardwearing and tough, yet with a delicate and unique appearance, Jura limestone is perfect for a range of different projects around the home. Once quarried, it can have a range of different finishes applied, all of which can radically change its appearance.
Polished Jura limestone has a particularly high sheen, and is often used in areas where an alternative may have been marble, giving it an elegant, sophisticated appeal.
However, not all projects suit a polished finish which is why there’s a range of other finishes too, including antique.
We take a closer look at the types of finishes which can result in the Jura limestone looking like it has been aged.
Jura limestone typically has a wide variation of patterns, and geological imprints in the surface creating what it the much-loved appeal of this natural stone. Brushing the surface creates a very interesting effect as it allows the appearance to become far more weathered but it doesn’t diminish the individual surface design.
Created in a very similar way to a honed tile, the same tool is used which incorporates a diamond tipped wire. However rather than using it to polish the surface, it’s scraped across it instead; this results in a light texturing which gives the impression of natural weathering. Feeling roughened to the touch, brushing is a technique which creates the appearance of antiquing.
For a piece of stone to look heavily weathered, as if it has been battling the elements for some time, a technique known as bush hammering needs to be carried out.
This involves the stone being beaten repeatedly by a special type of mechanical hammer device, which ultimately creates a kind of waffle iron effect.
This final result is a very extreme antiqued appearance, with a very rough texture to match.
Lying somewhere on the middle ground of the spectrum, sand blasting creates an antiqued appearance which is just shy of bush hammering.
Once again the final texture created is rough to the touch, but rather than use a mechanical tool to beat the surface, a machine blows fine grains of sand using pressure from either steam or air. This pressure erodes the top layer of the stone, creating an artificially aged appearance.
Great care has to be taken when using a sandblasting tool not to stress the stone too heavily in one area and also to get an even appearance over the whole surface.
Sandblasted and brushed
A truly hybrid technique, combining the effects of brushing and sandblasting creates an undisputedly antiqued effect.
However, due to the combination of the different tools, the end result is often said to be a far more natural antique appearance than any of the other methods.
If you are trying to antique the appearance of your Jura limestone you find certain oils on the market which claim to be able to do this.
They typically work by first applying one type of oil and allowing it to soak in for a few hours. Beeswax or a similar substance is then used to try and remove it, but the result will only be a partial success.
This leaves the stone with patches which are darker in some places than others, thereby creating an aged appearance.
Although the results can be good, there’s no guarantee what the outcome will be. Much depends on the absorbency of that particular piece of stone, as well as the atmospheric conditions in which it is being applied. It can therefore be a big risk to even consider using a product such as this.
Antiqued Jura limestone can look perfect for many types of application, whether it’s an outside construction that you want to look aged, or a rustic decor for inside the home. There are a few different options you can choose to create an authentic antique appearance but your final choice will depend on how drastic you want the appearance to be.