Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Giving Credit: "Dutch Stone"

Wall along outer hallway to mechanical room
The ledgestone is going up and looking great!  When we first began opening the boxes, the rock was a bit bland and grayish..... not at all what I was expecting based on the sample board that I'd seen.

I decided to forge ahead and have faith after reading on the website that it was shipped immediately after being made and would take a week or more to lighten after drying out and curing.  Sure enough it looks awesome now and the color is exactly what I wanted.

The words "boxes" and shipped "after being made" should clue you in to the fact that we aren't using real stone.

In Louisiana the largest rocks are pea gravel so I had a lot to learn about stone siding.  I worried that the "fake" stones would feel like plastic or foam, but who'd have thought that they're made of concrete and so actually feel like rock?!

In a perfect world using "real" stone would have been wonderful, but the cost was too high to justify when the look and feel of the "fake" stone was pretty darn close if not identical to what would have come from the quarry.

The makers would prefer that it be called cultured and not "fake" though to me that infers a delicate growth process such as developing pearls in oysters instead of pouring colored cement into molds!

Based on the recommendation of the local stone supplier who sells both the real stuff and cultured, we chose to use Dutch Quality Stone.  It was a great decision since Dutch Stone came through for us in a big way!

I had decided to break up the look of the primary ledgestone by scattering in a few fieldstones.  The ledgestones are rectangular slices and the fieldstones are rounded.  I'd seen a few photos where this was done and it gave a subtle variation to the otherwise monotonous horizontal pattern of the ledgestone.

A few days before the rock was due to be ordered, I learned that the color that I'd chosen for the ledge wasn't available in the fieldstone.  Aaaargghhh!!  Back to the drawing board, but I wasn't happy about the roadblock.

Never one to back down when there's something that I've got my mind set on, I emailed the company over in Ohio asking what they suggested that I do to make this idea work and lo and behold the next morning, I got an email back with a request to call the district manager!  After I pled my case, whined and pretty much refused to hang up and take "No" for an answer, Wendell Mast the eastern regional manger for Dutch Stone agreed to make a small custom batch of the fieldstone in our color for just a very small upcharge from normal price.

Six days later, the stone was here in Virginia!!

Now that's service!!!
Kitchen Window and Hallway Wall
It was one of those instances where I went in thinking "All they can say is No," and I came away with a "Yes"!!!!

A huge "Thanks" to Dutch Quality Stone and Wendell Mast!

I wish that we could have done the entire lower level in stone... that's the way that it was originally drawn when we were in the "put it all into the first phase of the plans and cut later" phase, but to help the budget, the lower porch area will now be the board and batten HardiBoard that is on the upper level.  Too bad as this former Louisianan is loving the rock look!!!

And for the big picture..... the rear rafters (already stained!!) are all up!!!  The shadows give it a zebra house effect without the roof decking.  I'll be glad to see the blue membrane get covered up with the real roof!

P.S.  Oh how I wish that I was being compensated for this blog post!  Dutch Stone doesn't know about the blog and isn't helping out with our stone budget, I'm merely a pleased customer!  


  1. oh, i like the stone, too! fake or not, it will look great!

  2. We used "fake" stone on our chimney, too, when we built over 25 years ago. So I can tell you that it lasts!

  3. I am so glad you are back. Blogger can be a real pain in the neck. Went over to Douthat Friday for the weekend. Yesterday was my 73rd, so that is an annual trip for us, a friend, and my son Gene, little Eloise, and Patricia. The weather was ok but could have been a lot nicer. I am loving watching your house go up. It is going to be out of this world once you all finish. Hope all it well with you all...glad you get to see Bud. genie

  4. Is this Natural Blend or Prestige Dutch Quality Stone?


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