Marble has had a long and storied history. As the favourite medium for Greek and Roman sculptors and architects, it became a cultural symbol of tradition and refined taste. For interiors too, it’s extremely varied and colourful patterns made it a decorative material utilised time and again.
In medieval times it was often used in cathedrals to underpin the monumental design; creating awe-inspiring spaces soaring hundreds of feet into the air. This at a time when most other building were no more than 3 stories.
Jump to the 1930’s and the material was championed by Hollywood in its representation of aspirational architecture and lifestyle. Think high kicking Busby Berkeley musical extravaganzas. At the same time grand hotels like Claridge’s in London and the Plaza New York adopted the look for its public areas, to create a sense of arrival and opulence in line with the prevailing Art Deco trend.
Throughout the 2nd half of the 20th century marble waned a little in the popular imagination, as new materials like plastics, concrete and stone composites were developed for widespread use. As late as the 1990’s it was even considered somewhat gaudy in some quarters, not helped by its use in tones of gold and brown in buildings like Trump Tower and the Playboy Club.
By the turn of the century there was a renaissance. Every self-respecting New Yorker with a weekend or vacation home on Long Island used marbles in whites, pales greys and soft blues to create interiors that represented a lifestyle of relaxed wealth. With a reverence for the natural coastal position many properties enjoyed, the marble enhanced rooms of paired back but impressive detail. Spaces would be tiled in a combination of formats from penny shaped mosaics to larger format slabs. The look then spread to city homes and apartments. This style still dominates today; adopted by many in homes with less enviable post and zip codes, but ones created with just as much love and care.
The Claybrook Crew have long championed marble and have recently fallen for gorgeous greener tones. Bathrooms using green can sometimes feel more masculine, perfect for a tailored space with a strong aesthetic, and certainly not just for men. Used alongside pale pinks or soft brass tones, it can look effortlessly chic and inviting.
The Havens marble collection at Claybrook consists of a series of colourways and styles; each with irresistible beauty thanks to this most versatile natural material. The tones of white and grey have now been joined by three new geometric mosaic options featuring green as the dominant shade, alongside white and black. Best of all, you don’t have to be a New York hedge fund manager to afford them; we work directly with the makers to keep the prices wonderfully competitive.