It’s easy to see why many people think that choosing the right type of paving stone for a garden project can sometimes be the hardest decision about it. Naturally there’s a sizeable budget involved, and unlike certain other things it’s not a decision that you can reverse easily if you change your mind - so it pays to think very carefully about it! So, where do you start? Well, if you’ve decided on Indian sandstone paving already, we think this short guide will help - it covers a few of the biggest considerations you’ll need to think about, and how they could affect your decisions. Let’s get started!
What’s the main purpose of your garden project?
The first question it’s best to ask yourself is simply this: what are you trying to achieve with your new paving stones? Are you laying them as part of a mission to redesign your existing patio, or are you trying to create something new, like a garden path or driveway?
If you’re installing new paving stones within an existing space, it’s a good idea to consider how the colour and style of your new Indian sandstone will fit into the overall design of your home and garden (more on that in just a moment). If you’re completely redesigning a space from scratch on the other hand, you can have almost total creative freedom and go a little wilder with your choice of style and colour, and use the new paving stones as the bedrock of a new design.
There’s also the practical side of things too - you’ll need to consider how much traffic, footfall and weight your paving stones will have to endure. Will they form a major throughway for visitors and family members through your garden, or are you planning to park cars, vans or caravans on top of them?
Another good point to consider is this - where exactly is it going to be laid? If it’s in an area that gets very little sun, it’s worth preparing yourself for the fact that it’s likely to be covered in algae by the end of winter each year. That’s not so much of a worry if it’s an area which won’t get that much footfall, but if it’s across an area where people will regularly be walking, you’ll need to carefully consider the type of surface you use for your Indian sandstone.
Indian paving stones tend to be available in several different textures, from a raw-looking riven texture to a smooth sawn surface. Riven surfaces are great for lending a rougher, more traditional appearance to a space, but some homeowners believe it can be more dangerous to walk on when wet, especially if it’s in a high traffic area. It’s worth taking this into account, but it doesn’t have to be the be-all and end-all of your decision - don’t hesitate to ask our experts if you’re unsure!
What’s your budget?
This is, of course, one of the questions that will be at the very top of your list anyway, and the answer to this might even influence what you plan to get done in your garden (at least for the immediate future, anyway). Don’t forget that the cheapest option on the market doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best. Quality is just as important as price!
To be worth buying, Indian stone has to have the strength and durability to withstand the full range of outside climates that it’s going to be subject to over the course of its lifetime, as well as the activity of people and vehicles moving over it. Some excessively cheap Indian stones don’t always fulfil this criteria, and much like any false economy, can end up putting you more out of pocket further down the line. Treat your Indian sandstone as an investment, and pick your suppliers carefully! (You can find more details on our own credentials and expertise right here on our site at Bridge Street Stone, just in case you’re wondering why choose us?)
Make sure to take in the full range of costs too - it’s important to account for not just the cost of buying the Indian sandstone, but the cost of laying it too!
Think about colour and style
We’ve already briefly touched on this above, but before you commit to buying a particular type of Indian sandstone it’s worth thinking about how it’s going to fit into the overall appearance and style of your house. One of the first things you’ll have to think about here is whether you want it to complement the style of your home, or contrast against it. If you’ve got a contemporary style home for example, you might like to go for the stunningly sophisticated effect of our Kota Black Indian stone. If you’ve got a more traditional style on the other hand, you might prefer something like our Autumn Brown Indian sandstone instead.
You can also pick colours to give certain areas of your home and garden a lighter or darker tone. Golden Leaf Indian sandstone, for example, can be used to lift the mood and colour of an area that might not otherwise get that much direct sunlight. Or, you can use something like Kandla Grey to give a space a calmer, more relaxed feel.
Those are a couple of ways you can complement your home, but you can also choose to pick a sandstone to give a contrasting appearance instead, which can produce some quite unique effects. Don’t be afraid to look at other people’s homes for inspiration, whether you choose to peruse magazines and websites, or even just look at one or two houses on your own street!
What we will say, though, is that it’s worth bearing in mind when (and if) you plan to put your house on the market, and what potential buyers may think. If you’re going for something a little unorthodox, be prepared on how to sell the design to the prospective new owners!
One golden rule is that larger areas tend to be the best environments for larger stones and slabs, and smaller areas best suited to smaller stones and slabs. (Trust us on this one - you can experiment if you want, but be warned that the proportions may look a little strange!)
These are just a couple of general tips from us here at Bridge Street Stone, and should give you some good jumping-off points to get your garden project kick-started. If you’ve got any specific questions that we can help with, don’t hesitate to let us know - our expertise is second to none! Feel free to give us a call today on 01282 860571, and we’ll be happy to see what we can do.