Decorative Concrete: A Brief History

Stamped or stained? Here's the history behind decorative concrete.

September 23, 2021

Jon Capus

Concrete

With a history dating back well over two hundred years, decorative concrete has been a cost effective and efficient way to improve the look of walls, floors, patios, and more. In the late 1800s, manufacturers began using pigments, dyes, and stains to embellish their concrete work. Concrete staining like this helped to beautify projects such as precast building facades. However, concrete stamping is a much more recent innovation!

The History of Stamped Concrete

Pioneered by Brad Bowman in the 1950s, the concrete stamping trend really took off two decades later. Innovations in lighter stamps enabled contractors to make lasting impressions on their concrete work. These easier-to-use stamps allowed for better textures in the concrete. They also enabled concrete installers to mimic the natural imperfections of brickwork or wood grain.

Concrete Staining and Colouring

Concrete colouring (dying or staining) is often used in conjunction with stamping, allowing for some very impressive and artistic results. A simple pattern, with or without colour, can transform the look of plain concrete at your home or business.

Though you can paint concrete, staining concrete will give you longer lasting results. Staining is not as prone to the same wear and tear as paint – but that doesn’t mean stained concrete is maintenance free! Your contractor should be able to tell you what signs to watch out for and the type of sealant that they used (if any). They should also offer a general care timeline for your stained concrete.

A Versatile Imitator

Nowadays, natural stone patterns are some of the most popular patterns to stamp into concrete. These include flagstone, slate, and fieldstone textures. Many people also choose to emboss brick, cobblestone and wood textures into their concrete. Stamped concrete is often installed in either residential and commercial settings! Stamped concrete is a beautiful alternative to bricks, tile, or other masonry work.


If you’re looking for concrete solutions in the Edmonton area (stamped, stained, or otherwise), give us a call at 780-436-5757 or request a free estimate today!

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