The market for this design is literally exploding. Basically, the concrete is poured for a patio or driveway and then a chemical powder called a color hardener is broadcast over the surface. Once the concrete dries the hardener will change the top color of the concrete to whatever color the consumer wants. The color won’t wear off. It’s tested at 5000 PSI pressure so it will be as strong or stronger than the concrete it covers. The concrete can be highlighted with another chemical agent so that you can have a blended color effect.
After these two chemicals are added to the surface of the concrete, then embossed rubber stamps are used to add a pattern. The stamps are pre-molded into a variety of patterns ranging from flagstone to cobblestone to brick shapes. A releasing agent is added just before the stamping process begins so that the stamps do not stick to the concrete surface .The stamps are applied in a pattern and pressed down into the slowly hardening concrete to get the pattern that is wanted by the homeowner. In addition to the stamping process, there is also a process known as rolling the concrete.
This is a heavy metal roller with an embossed pattern in it that is simply rolled over the concrete to create a texture or pattern. Again, coloring and highlighting make this process look like natural stone and the like. The highlighting is done because as we all know no two rocks look exactly alike and the highlights bring out different coloring so that it looks like, for example, a genuine stone pathway. Another way to color or treat concrete is with a stencil.
The stencil, available in many different patterns, is placed over the concrete and then the coloring agent is added. When the stencil is removed, it leaves a 1/4” to 3/8” mortar joint imprint underneath so you still get the relief like you would with stamped concrete but you’ve got natural-looking mortar joints.
Whatever style you choose will give your home the elegant custom look that you desire.