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How do you make a solid sink?
San Francisco Interior Design firm Nicole Hollis, came to us with their inspiration image, for the production of a contemporary stone carved sink.
The selected material was the Tuscan Silver Travertine.
We rely a lot on the expertise of our masons in Italy having hundreds of years of experience, passed down from older generations. They not only judge a stone by what they can see, but they also understand what is inside the block, how the veins move and if there are any weak spots.
With a circular sink and the choice of travertine that is rich in texture, you definetly want to emphasize the stone characteristics. At that point our objective was to see if we could find a vein that would circle the drain hole. And this is where our mason’s expertise come in, since they know how to choose, not just the right block but where and in what direction to cut it.
Once the block choice is made and the routing machines are set you can only wait as the CNC machines go about their precise and meticulous work.
Cutting stone is all about patience and dust. Water is used to keep the router bits from overheating but also to lubricate and keep the stone dust to a minimum. Two sinks were cut, in case one does not have the vein patters we were looking for, or in case cracks or other structural imperfections were to be found.
Once the raw sink is “roughed out” the measurements are checked based on the shop drawings. Custom designs require not just overall designs to be precise, but also smaller details alike the radius of the curve of the lip. To make sure we had all aspects covered we shipped out the drain hardware to Italy to make sure we had an exact fit.
Once the dimensions are checked the masons will begin the slow work of finishing the sink, This is done strictly by hand with a variety of tools, some electrical but, depending on the job some are still free hand. The finishing can take up to a couple of days labor to get right.
The final product is exactly what we hoped for – with not just one, but two gorgeous veins circling the sink. Silver Travertine is quarried in Tuscany and despite it’s name is not primarily silver. It has wonderful warm beige tones throughout with the strong silver/grey veins that give it its name.
And now, courtesy of Nicole Hollis, we have a couple of photos of the final install!