June 19, 2011

Colored Concrete

Wow, what a process this patio turned out to be. I didn't realize how labor intensive it was going to be.
The guys arrived at 7:00am to make sure everything was ready, and the concrete began pumping at 8:00. It took them about 2 hours to pump, and level the concrete; then the fun began.
The finisher drew the shapes of the stone with this high tech tool.
Yep, it's a twig tied onto a an aluminum pole. I love the ragged lines it made, but the guys following behind him made the lines deep and regular. They are going to chip some of the edges for me before they grout. Even though it is concrete, I want it to look as natural as possible.
I asked him to make stones of all sizes. A couple of times, I wanted smaller stones in a certain area; he would erase the existing lines and redraw them. What a nice guy!
The base color is sandstone, and on top, there are 5 different colors. At first, I was worried that this was going to be over the top, but they assured me that it would look natural. After color was sprinkled all over an area, it was covered with yellow sand. The final step was to take a texture stamp and tamp it into the wet concrete to make it look like stone.
By the time they left, all I could see was yellow sand with some ridges. They told me I could sweep an area away this morning to see what the color looked like. This is what I found.
It looks fabulous. Can you see the stone texture? On Wednesday, all the sand will be removed, and Saturday the joints will be grouted. So far, I'm thrilled . . . I just can't wait to see it all finished!