About Natural Sandstone – a general guide

About Natural Sandstone.

Sandstones are sedimentary stones, created originally millions of years ago from the sediment laid down on the floor of prehistoric seas and lakes. The vast passage of time and geological pressures combine to create a wonderful range of colourful, hard wearing and characterful stones.

One Orchard Gardens30 x 30 cm. Chancery Gothic font. Cream sandstone house sign.

30 x 30 cm. Chancery Gothic font

Indian sandstones and limestones are a recent addition to the uk market. And have only been widely available for the last four or five years. The quality of the stone is therefore, an unknown factor to most people.
We have been using these stones for several years and have found the quality the equal to and sometimes superior to many British stones. The sandstones in particular, have a very tight grain and when polished have a smooth even finish.
Indian sandstones tend to be much harder than their English counterparts. The cream coloured sandstones we use for our house signs are much harder than stones such as Derby stone or Yorkstone which are probably the nearest equivalent British stones.

Gold sandstone house sign

Gold sandstone house sign


(We also use Gold sandstone as an excellent match for English Cotwswold or Bathstone types).

This does not mean they are appreciably harder wearing than their english counterparts, just harder to work!
Like all sandstone, Indian sandstones are particularly good at resisting the effects of wind and rain and abrasion. This makes them superb stones for among other things house signs engraved paving stones and memorial plaques.
Though fine grained these tend not to be as fine grained as Yorktone. The edges of the lettering and engraving tends not to be quite as sharp with more of a tendancy to show the sandy character of the stone.
This effect is almost microscopic and cannot be seen from a few feet away.

Far from detracting from the finish of the engraving this actually seems to be a positive advantage on house signs where the engraving is left unpainted. The slightly less defined edges seem to highlight the finished engraving making it more visible and easy to read from a distance.
If you choose to purchase a sandstone house sign but would like the lettering painted this is not a problem, we simply take care to choose a finer grained piece of stone.
The colouring of Indian sandstones can vary, as can any natural stone. We select the stone for to be as consistant as possible and in practice there is only slight variation in the signs we supply.