I want a rough concrete floor: what are the solutions?
In full trend of minimalism and refined interiors, the raw soil is popular for many reasons. In the manner of a concrete, it's a seamless coating which expands the space to create an impression of continuity throughout the room. Most often in shades of gray, it can also be declined in colors according to the chosen option. Thus several solutions are possible to find the appearance of a raw soil. Waxed concrete, large sandstone slabs with very fine joints, fibered patching (more solid than a conventional mortar), vinyl floor or floor paint, discover the different tracks to follow for give style to your house or apartment with a coating like no other.
After the fashion of the industrial style, the waxed concrete has emerged to become a full coverlike the tiles or parquet. While waxed concrete represents a large part of the market, some tips reproduce its effect so more or less faithful with other advantages or disadvantages. Sometimes simpler and easier to set up, these other coatings are similar to concrete without being. Côté Maison has made the point with Agathe Marimbert of the Marimbert Architecte agency, and Xavier Grindel, co-founder of Mercadier, to see more clearly and determine the best soil for your project.
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1. The waxed concrete, the indrostable for a raw soil
The principle of waxed concrete
With its particular style, waxed concrete is an improved version of the floors of industrial premises. For about fifteen years, it is found in individuals who want a different coating with many possible colors (more than 200 at Mercadier). "The principle of waxed concrete is very simple," recalls Xavier Grindel, "it is a mixture of cement, sand and pebbles, then additives, elements to add strength, comfort to the feet, quality optimal, avoid micro-cracking etc. When talking about waxed concrete, it's an application technique. "
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With many advantages, the EBC (colored concrete coating) offered by Mercadier is available in a wide range of colors. Here tinted in Cocomilk for a natural style.
Eric Thierry / Mercadier
The practice of waxed concrete
If the principle of waxed concrete is fairly basic, its implementation needs to be well framed to ensure optimal results. "The waxed concrete comes down to three stages: preparation, application and protection," recalls Xavier, "preparation is crucial and requires healthy, resistant, flawless soil." If it is not the case, there is solutions to repair them before laying the waxed concrete The application is based on the respect of the instructions for use by absolutely avoiding to throw with the eyes closed Then the protection of the polished concrete is a varnish which will prevent the tasks water or grease to soak in. A good varnish keeps the mineral aspect of the concrete, it is important not to save on this point. "
Note that a polished concrete can also be applied by a professional (an often recommended option), which results in a higher budget. "It takes about 25 to 50 euros per square meter for an individual who applies himself waxed concrete and 100 to 150 euros per square meter for a pose by a professional," says Xavier.
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If the laying of the concrete can be carried out by a private individual, the precautions for use are to be followed carefully for an optimal result (EBC soil, colored concrete coating, Moket tint, Mercadier).
When it comes to maintenance, waxed concrete is quite simple by avoiding household products that are too acidic or abrasive. "After a certain number of years, it is just necessary to protect the waxed concrete by applying a new layer of varnish after a thorough cleaning," advises the co-founder of Mercadier. step is useful, just look at the floor when you mop the floor: if the concrete begins to darken, the protection is no longer effective, it is time to apply a varnish again. "
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On the whole flat, this floor in decorative concrete floats standardizes the whole style and brings a nice unit. A project conceived by Marimbert Architect.
2. A fibered patch covered with varnish for a raw effect
In a completely different way, some decorating professionals are moving towards less expensive and more original solutions. "With raw soil and soft material, we have to accept that we do not always master the final aspect, warns Agathe de Marimbert Architecte.And once it is laid, we do not control how it can evolve, it There is always some uncertainty, the material will live, but the advantage of this type of soil is the possibility of changing it after a while by adding a coating on top, for example. "
The architect proposes a fiber patching, a layer of mortar with fibers more solid than a conventional leveling, in order to obtain a rough appearance at lower cost (count about 45/50 euros per square meter). "Only condition: take the charm of the small drops and other imperfections of this type of soil.You can also integrate a tint in the patching and have it done by his company of general works.After applied, a varnish adapted in a glossy finish Satin is necessary, unlike the mat, it allows easier maintenance.This floor just needs to pay attention to scratches (especially chairs) and needs to be re-varnished from time to time. "
Initially intended for industrial premises, patching adapts to projects at home. An example of realization by Marimbert Architect, for the Biocoop Mirabeau, with a varnished rough patching floor.
Like waxed concrete, fiber-reinforced patching requires sound soil. "Whatever the covering chosen, the underlayment is important, confirms Agathe.The site must be clean, dry and free passage over several days so that the soil has time to dry.This is the special feature of flexible flooring who have certain constraints to the application. "
3. Large sandstone slabs with fine joints to mimic raw soil
While waxed concrete and other soft floor coverings attract fans in decoration, they are still shy and some remain reluctant to pose. Tiling is a safe bet for those who hesitate or prefer a less atypical solution. "When looking for a floor with very little joint, you can also opt for large slabs of at least 70 x 70 cm to give the illusion of a uniform surface, advises Agathe. is that it has a little texture and is less messy than cast concrete, for example, very smooth.The edges are also ground, that is to say at right angles (versus more rounded angles on the small tiles), which marks the seals much less. "
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Alternative to concrete, tiling with large slabs and fine joints gives the impression of a uniform floor (realization Marimbert Architect).
To accentuate the style of this type of coating, some details are to be taken into account. "The shapes of the tiles are to choose according to the configuration of the room but I like the idea of large rectangular slabs instead of the usual square, continues the architect.They are more original and can play with the lines. the color, we opt for a concrete imitation tone, quite neutral. "
4. Floor painting, the easy option for a raw floor
With the desire for a uniform floor without wanting to start work, the floor paint is a solution at hand, provided you choose a quality paint. "Interesting in terms of cost, painting his floor is accessible for a handyman who does not want to appeal to a company while having the desire to have a little fun with its decoration, says Agathe. choice of colors and can be applied on parquet or concrete.Positioning is very important for this type of coating.It is necessary to follow the laying protocol with the different layers of paint and varnish.The surface must also be stable at the risk of cracking very quickly. "
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Simple to implement, the paint is a solution to imitate a concrete floor while having fun with the color. Like this project signed Marimbert Architect with a Farrow & Ball floor paint.
The advantage of the painting is to be able to modify the color according to the desires. With many colors available from manufacturers, it's also a way to personalize your soil and bring it character without spending too much.
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In this apartment in the heart of Paris, the agency Marimbert Architecte has opted for a floor of kitchen concrete decorative float (not cast) Mercadier in a soft and crude gray.
5. Vinyl flooring with a concrete appearance for a rough floor
Among the solutions that are accessible and simple to put into practice, vinyl floors are to be installed in all rooms of the house (in the kitchen and the bathroom if they are designed for damp rooms) to be similar to a raw style. In slab, blade or roll, the vinyl floor mimics the concrete to its appearance. With a minimal budget (between 10 and 40 euros per square meter), it can be installed on any type of soil provided that it is well prepared. The advantage of vinyl flooring is to reproduce also the different effects of concrete with many colors. A panel of decorations to answer all the desires.
With a concrete effect, vinyl flooring is more and more qualitative with many possible models to meet all desires.