The lost art of stonemasonry

Stone ToolsAs stonemasons job is to take newly excavated rocks and turn them into something beautiful. Stone is a big part of the everyday beauty which we see all over – lining cobbled streets, along the surfaces of buildings and lining kitchen surfaces.

Stone is a useful building material and is great for decorating the things that are most important to us.

In the modern era of cheap frills and flat packed furniture though, bespoke stonemasonry work has been all but forgotten about.

Stonemasonry is good honest work and we are proud to do it.

Humans have been cutting, shaping and manipulating blocks of stone into more useful objects for more than four thousand years. But the craft is beginning to disappear.

Walking down the modern high street keen eyes will notice how our primary building materials have changed from imposing blocks of stone to metal, glass and uniform orange bricks.

Fresh stone floors have been covered up with cheap laminate or patterned carpet which is designed to mask stains. And imposing stone staircases which used to be carefully designed by architectural stonemasons to last a hundred years have been replaced by cheap frames.

For clients wishing to make a statement and make a place that people are going to remember, these cheap alternatives are simply not good enough.

Bespoke stonemasonary plunge pool III

Bespoke carved plunge pool created for a private members club in London

The old techniques are still the best

The thing that is truly special about pieces which come from a stone mason is that you know it has been handcrafted and is completely unique.

Better technology has led to a lot of the more traditional techniques waning in importance which is a real shame for those who respect craftsmanship.

DIY wholesalers use this new technology to their advantage by mass producing stone counters and units for homes up and down the country. But the danger is that this will lead to ubiquitous housing units lining every street.

Stonemasons do use technology but only to make jobs more precise and cheaper. CAD drawing for example eliminates a lot of the hassle it takes to map out a room, but the finishing touches will almost always be applied by hand – using the same tools used centuries ago.

By employing an expert stonemason like Cheshire Graniteline you can be sure that you will end up with a piece unlike any other in the county. And that is definitely something that people will remember.

 

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