June 2012 Archives - Walker Zanger BlogWalker Zanger Blog

June 2012


Put a Pin in It (6.5)


Summer is officially here and with it comes the promise of long weekends, vacations, relaxation, and fancy cocktails.  We sit at our desks in our offices daydreaming of dangling our toes in

cool blue water, and can almost feel the warmth of the summer sun on our backs.  As we collectively wait out the rest of the work week, we offer up these enticing poolside images from this weeks Pinterest board and pose the question… “Anyone up for a swim?”


Modern Swim.


Mediterranean relaxation.


Such classic poolside beauty.



La Mamounia in Morocco.


Urban Oasis.


Poolside chic.


Must be heaven.


Lawn, meet pool.


The Neptune Pool, Hearst Castle.


Jay Gatsby aka Robert Redford poolside.


Through the lens of a Quarryman.

These photos were sent to us awhile back from a quarry located in the hills above Modena, Italy.  They were simply shots taken to

let us know that they were back in production after a long winter break. They are not glamorous shots of silken white marble with ribbons of grey veins, nor do they depict the majestic mountains of Carrara dusted with the “snow” of marble dust.  The beauty in these images comes from the passion behind the lens, for they are taken from the quarry man himself.  Through his eyes we get a glimpse into the everyday working of a quarry and the men who order viagra online make the blocks of stone their livelihood.  Taken by Giovanni Mutti, these images, in their black and white simplicity, prove that there is art both in front of, as well as behind the lens.















Mosaic Monday… Blue and Yellow.

L to R: Oceanside Glasstile Tessera Canary Iridescent, Tabarka Studios Decorative Tile, Tabarka Studios Decorative Tile, and Ceramica Alhambra Lapis Azul.


Words on White.

We’ve all done it: opened the latest issue of a design magazine or logged onto Pinterest, and there it is leaping off the page or screen. The drop dead gorgeous, all white kitchen or bathroom of our dreams. You’ve pinned it, posted it, torn images out of magazines and committed to the decision. White is for you.  Now armed with all the visual tools… you’re ready to venture out and choose material. But as you start your journey you quickly realize that not all white is the same.  Here are some words on white  to help guide

you along.

 From Carrara to Calacata, which white marble is that really?

Italian White Marbles like Bianco Carrara and Calacata are some of the most popular counter- top and back-splash choices for today’s kitchens.  Because there are many varieties of Italian white marble that come from the same region of Italy and because many re-sellers use different names for them, it can be confusing to know what you are looking for and what you are getting when shopping for white marble for your kitchen project.


The Mountains of Carrara.


Italian White Marble, a classic for centuries

All the classic white Italian marbles come from the Carrara region of Italy located on the coast of Northern Tuscany. The mountains come almost up to the sea in this area, and white marbles have been quarried in these peaks since the time of the Roman Empire.  There are many marble quarries in this area but the three  main types are Bianco Carrara,  Statuary White and  Calacata, all of which are graded for specific attributes like the whiteness of the background and the color and movement of the veins.  This is similar to the way diamonds are graded for color, clarity and cut.  And, like diamonds, the higher the grade of white marble, the higher the price.  We are fortunate to have an office in Carrara, Italy staffed by third generation marble experts, who go into the quarries and block yards every day to select the finest marbles for us.


Quarry walls


Searching for the perfect slab.


Measuring a block.


Simple Italian White Marble Classifications

The simplest way to tell these materials apart is to use the “Background and Vein Color” rule.  The shorthand version of this is:

Bianco Carrara – A “grayish white” background with overall thin and feathery grey veining.

Statuary White – A cool, bright white background with thicker dark grey veining evenly distributed over the surface.

Calacata – A warm white background with a blend of thick and thin bands of  beige, light grey and green grey to blue grey.

A little more detail might help you make the best choice:


Bianco Carrara

There are three grades of  Bianco Carrara:


Bianco Carrara - Grey white background, thin dark grey veining and spots.


White Venatino - Medium white background with feathery light grey veining throughout.


Bianco Gioia - White background with widely spaced grey veining, highest grade of Bianco Carrara.


Statuary White

There are two grades of Statuary White:


Statuary White - Pure, cool, white background with medium size grey veins. Highest quantity has fewer veins, evenly distributed across the slab face. A very hard and dense marble.


Statuarietto - Background not as white, small and large darker grey veins and less clean white area in the slab.



Because of its popularity there are dozens of Calacata varieties on the market right now.  A few of our most  popular  Walker Zanger Calacata marbles are noted below:


Calacata F - This look is what most people think of when the imagine Calacata. It has a white background and wavy light grey veins varying from thin to thick across the face of the slab.


Calacata Regina - Warm white background with very soft green/grey veining. Calacata Regina is a perfect white marble choice if you are looking for an alternate to the typical grey veins of most white marbles.


Paonazzo - Warm white background with black and caramel colored veining. This lesser known Calacatta variant looks like antique marble and makes quite a statement.



Pricing for all 3 types of “Carrara White Marble” can vary widely depending on the grade of the stone.  The whiter and cleaner the background  and the more  evenly distributed  the veining, the higher the price. Like any precious commodity, the finest grade is only a small portion of the production and the demand definitely outstrips the supply.

Tips for shopping for White Marble

All  stone slabs are a product of nature, and no two are exactly alike.  That is especially true of the Italian Carrara Marbles, where the movement of the veining can vary greatly from one bundle of slabs to another.  Be sure to visit several reputable slab yards and spend time looking through the slabs and comparing them to find the ones that are just right for you in terms of price and quality.  Once you have found “the one” be sure the slab seller will hold the specific slab that you have fallen in love with for your fabricator to pick up.

To really appreciate the grandeur of Mother Nature and the art of all those who’s hands help create your kitchen or bath, take a moment to watch this amazing video…

The White Side of Carrara:







Mosaic Monday… Chartreuse.

L to R: Contessa Tapestry Chartreuse on Cream, Pasha Taj Mosaic Green River Onyx, Chelsea Art Glass Spring, and Vibe Ovals Key Lime.

All photo images and text are the property of Walker Zanger. Please do not use for commercial purposes without permission. You are welcome to repost. copyright 2014.

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