Article below from guest blogger Janet Creasy of Coulee Concrete Designs.
Ever considered pre-cast concrete? As you may know, concrete is the medium of choice for many architects and remodelers through the country, both inside and out of dwellings. A quick look into pre-cast concrete will tell you that the possibilities are limitless.
The number one benefit to pre-cast concrete is all about the engineering of the mold. Most people think, “oh yeah, I can do that”. But in fact the molds are the key to entire process. Not only to they have to be formed properly, they should be perfect before the liquid conglomeration of aggregate, cement, and sand (and reclaimed fly ash for eco conscious businesses) hit them. Since concrete starts in liquid form, the ability to produce custom and standard products is far beyond the ordinary. A recent project at Coulee Concrete Designs of Lake Oswego involved making a custom shower curb that met with the glass of the shower just so. Another involved putting an outlet in the side panel of the concrete to allow for a switch that was much more convenient for the homeowner. How about a soaking tub? Or a fireplace surround that doesn’t look puzzle pieced together but has harmonious clean lines that flow together?
In addition, open the flood gates and let the creative juices go! Because of its liquidity, designs are almost without limits and it is very cool to pop the art pieces out of the molds to see what has been created. Using concrete is truly unique as no two pieces can be alike, even when we apply the same standards to each. Tap into your customers that can grasp the concept of “functional art”. How about sea shells that are mementos of a beach trip? Or a reclaimed shelf bracket positioned just so into a corner of a countertop? Mitch Stanley of Stanley Home Design and Renovation has a unit on display in his showroom that has a “hand cut copper latch” around the rounded edge of a kitchen display piece.
One other tidbit is that because concrete is more porous than stone, it can be an excellent temperature modulation (enter ICF technology).
There are many examples of pre cast decorative concrete work to view on the web. One local source is www.couleeconcrete.com. Check it out, broaden your remodeling edge, get creative and have fun!
Contact Janet Creasy of Coulee Concrete Designs at 503-914-5985 or 503-895-2621.