In September 2023, a group of Vilnius Technology and Design College students visited Gforma solid surface production headquarters in Kaunas. Students were accompanied by their teacher, interior designer Jaroslav Daveiko. Being one of Lithuania's leading solid surface fabricators, Gforma has two offices located in Kaunas and Vilnius apart from the main fabrication area in Kaunas. Just before setting down to prepare for their final diplomas, 23 future interior designers decided to give a closer look at solid surface materials.
In early March, Baltic Stone team presented some of natural stone types used in interior decoration for the architects of ArchDesign studio. The design professionals became particularly interested in gemstones. According to the team leader Akiko Tutlys, it is important to offer the clients not only an original project, but also an interesting material. When working with architectural projects of different proportions and purposes, it is advantageous to have a wide choice of materials and as diverse a colour palette as possible.
At the end of May, Baltic Stone consultants organised a seminar for architects from Heima architectural studio on natural and artificial stone materials. The team of young professionals, who have gained experience and knowledge working at architecture studios in Lithuania, Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium and Spain, focus on architectural objects of various scales and purposes. Heima's professionals had the opportunity to hear about the types of natural stone used in interiors, as well as about famous brands of engineered countertop materials.
Kitchen countertops from Porcelain and ceramic materials have many great qualities - they are non-porous, do not absorb liquids and do not need to be sealed. Such surface will be durable, scratch-resistant and heat-resistant, but at the same time boast lightweight, modern and elegant appearance. Some high-tech ceramic surfaces look stunning. They are hardly distinguishable from real stone at a glance.
Exceptional architecture, modern design and the harmony of nature, all come together in the Green Hall II business centre in Vilnius, located close to the Neris riverside. The project client, SBA Group, formed a hard task to Gforma solid surface fabricators to design and manufacture an exceptional reception desk representing the entire building, which would add to the spacious, light, nature-like interior with its plastic forms, and at the same time be functional and comfortable for the employees and visitors of the business centre.
Baltic Stone consultants held a seminar at Vilnius Design College for future interior designers and architects. Two hours passed unnoticed as the conversation was evolving around natural stone and artificial stone types and their application in interior design and architecture. The first and second year students were introduced to some well-known solid surface material manufacturers and popular brands. Many of them for the first time heard about four types of artificial stone: acrylic, quartz, ceramic and sintered.
Engineered quartz countertops not only have elegant look and beautiful patterns, but they are also extremely durable. They can make your kitchen and the whole house a real celebration. Don’t be suspicious of the product's beauty - this artificial hi-tech material is easy to care for. All you need is a sponge, soap and water. Engineered quartz pieces mimic real stones in their texture and patterns, but are more practical in everyday life.
Hi-tech acrylic solid surface countertops are virtually non-porous, therefore they are resistant to mold, rot and staining. Bacteria and fungal spores do not penetrate into this long-life material. Even very old acrylic countertops can be renewed very quickly. If the surface no longer shines after ten or twenty years, it is enough to polish the product to make it look like new again. Can this really be true?
While creating modern homes you will definitely come across artificial stone countertops that require little maintenance, but look stylish and hi-tech. They don’t absorb liquids, they are easy to clean, and the color range is almost limitless. These materials are suitable not only for horizontal surfaces, such as tables, baths, washbasins or window sills, but also for vertical surfaces, such as walls and furniture facades.
This type of artificial stone differs from other engineered stone types not only in composition but also in its qualities and the peculiarities of production. Sintered stone countertops look particularly modern, give an impression of lightness and elegance, but surpass natural stone in strength and durability. According to designers, this 100% natural material is the latest high-tech fad.
Baltic Stone representatives visited the Cuellar Stone factory in Almeria region of Spain, where it has been working since 1958. Almeria is famous for its stone quarries, so many blocks of unprocessed granite, marble and quartzite come to the Cuellar Stone premises. We observed the first working cycle at the factory: stone cutting into slabs and detailed work of stone professionals whom we named stone sculptors. The owner and CEO of the company Diego Martínez Cano talked to us not only about marble and granite, but also about basketball and Lithuania. He visited Kaunas a decade ago, and watched a basketball match there!