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chris carr polished concrete wall

The popularity of concrete finishes continues to soar with many design bloggers reporting the concrete look, especially for interiors, is here to stay.

Whether you’re a fan of the edgy and industrial aesthetic or contemporary minimalist is more your style, the concrete look can be used as a cornerstone for your design style.

One of the most effective ways to achieve a concrete aesthetic is to use natural plaster: it’s highly versatile, can be used almost anywhere and creates a stunning continuous, seamless surface. Concrete finishes created with natural plasters (I recommend and use the RockCote Natural Materials range) have a textural warmth and tactility that enlivens a space and activates the senses.

Traditional plasters are applied by hand (not prefabricated),making it easy to craft a theme by finishing walls or feature areas across interiors and/or exteriors with a consistent look including:

  • Concrete feature walls
  • Other feature areas
  • Outdoor kitchens and alfresco areas
  • Benchtops and island benches
  • Butler’s pantries
  • Splashbacks
  • Bars and countertops
  • Bathrooms including shower recesses
  • Powder rooms
  • Laundries

With a wide variety of looks available from highly polished concrete finishes to a more rustic, earthy look, I can guide product selection for your project based on the finish sought, the type of project (residential or commercial), the location of the finish and the level of wear and tear the product will be exposed to over time.


Dramatic concrete wall finishes and features


A bold, dramatic look can be achieved using RockCoteVelvetina or Venetian Plaster. Visible trowel marks create an obvious patina across the surface with daring lighter and darker shades adding interest. Both products are suitable for interior or exterior concrete walls and can be polished and coated with a clear sealer for added protection. This look is effortlessly paired with vivid white walls and ceilings, and polished concrete floors or large tiles.


Contemporary light concrete effect


Inspired by the off-form concrete look, the light concrete effect features a more consistent colour with subtle transitions between shades across the surface, creating an almost cloud-like appearance. Simple and refined, this popular concrete wall finish works beautifully with glass balustrades, light timbers and Scandinavian style.

Crafted with RockCote Marrakesh or Velvetina, it can also bring a natural, contemporary feel to powder rooms, benchtops, island benches and Butler’s pantries. Marrakesh is also suitable for bathrooms including shower walls, delivering a continuous, seamless finish.


Textured concrete look walls and features


The rustic, earthy look has really taken off, with many cafes, bars and restaurants favouring a distressed look for their concrete finishes. Undulating, tactile and yearning to be touched, a textured aesthetic can be crafted with RockCote Earthen Render, a natural clay-based render that can be mixed with hemp for added interest. A handcrafted industrial look with a smoother finish also be achieved with Marrakesh or Velvetina.


Achieving the polished concrete look


Polished concrete walls and feature areas continue to dominate home magazines, their mirror-like reflections creating a sense of spaciousness and elegance. A polished finish can be achieved with both the dramatic concrete and contemporary light concrete effects. For a truly opulent glass-like polish, Venetian Plaster is my product of choice.


More from the blog

> The inherent luxury of polished plaster finishes
> Luxury beachfront home showcses concrete look finishes
> The elegance of a seamless bathroom
The earthy beauty of a bespoke textured finish

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