The book-matched marble is an ancient and precious technique. It requires a profound artisan knowledge to perform it. The only artisan knowledge that can recognize the most suitable blocks, among many, and cut them in the right way. Once the slabs are obtained, then technique and creativity come into play in a tireless and synergistic, precise and constant work, determined to free the design from the stone.
Book-match cutting: what does it mean?
The processing of natural stone in book-match exploits the consecutive slabs of a single block which, once polished following the logic of an open book, are arranged in a mirror-like manner to create intense graphic solutions.
The book-match can be created with a single sheet divided in two or by selecting plates from the same block.
The ideal natural stones are preferably those with very pronounced veins such as the Calacatta Gold Vein Marble, the Statuario White or the Onyxes that are highly sought after for their intense surfaces and characterized by parallel lines. The results that are obtained from natural stones with very original veins like those of black Wave marble are beautiful. The marbles, the granites and the natural stones are also excellent for the book-match. They have spots that are sufficiently outlined also as chromatics.
Through the book-match processing you can have different results: if the block of stone is divided into two slabs that are polished and then arranged in a mirror-like setting, the solutions will be purely graphic as they will reproduce the trend with a ‘mirror effect’ symmetrical veins.
If, on the other hand, the block is cut into several slabs, then in this case the possibilities become numerous since, thanks to the installation that exploits the symmetry, you can also compose extremely striking symmetrical graphics and drawings.
Dreamlike and almost magical beauty are the results obtained when the materials have the so-called ‘spots‘: here the imagination and the experience of the installer play an extremely important role and the results can truly be of an incomparable beauty.
The book-match is a very precious work because it requires particular materials, capable professionals and installers with a great experience. The result, however, is highly personalized and gives a feeling of unparalleled uniqueness. In fact, the surface becomes like a work of art that exploits the soft sensation of natural luxury that only stone surfaces can communicate.
One process, many skills
The first skill necessary to obtain a good result from the book-match is knowing how to select a priori the slab that, once opened and cut (with consequent and contiguous cuts from the same block), presents visible and continuous veins or stains of a certain surface entity and particularity of colors.
Then follows the design work that must take full advantage of the aesthetic potential of individual slabs.
Afterwards, and after the polishing, there is then a very delicate work of installation because the good result requires that precise continuity to the grain and perfect correspondence to the stains.
The book-match in design
The book-match construction makes the environment particularly precious, communicating true exclusivity and style.
For this reason, it is fully compliant with the current trend of luxury bathrooms where, to give greater emphasis to the craftsmanship of the execution, the book-match finds the perfect position as a partial or even covering of walls or floors. In any case, this processing is also very used in showers or as a finishing element for vanity tops, sink edges or bathtubs and whirlpools.
The book-match is now also sought for the SPA, where the natural stone processed in such a precious way perfectly furnishes this particular type of environment, combining luxury with an exclusive idea of naturalness.
But the book-match can find the right solution also as a graphic element to personalize the floors or the coverings of halls or rooms of representation, hotels and élite places: the specular designs that can be realized with this technique, in fact, can also be very big and decidedly effective. However, the opposite is also true: the book-match can play a fascinating role in the decoration of even small surfaces, niches or support surfaces, giving the emotion of true works of art created specifically for the client.
Graphic games for a classy touch: Ulysses and Mayfair
The first is on the yacht Ulysses, built in 2016 and 107 meters long, famous for both the ambitious project and the particularly elegant and luxurious furnishings. For Ulysses, Marmi Vrech has made light onyx floors dedicated to ship-owners who play on the specularity of the regular honey-colored veins of the material. In addition to the soothing atmosphere, this natural stone combined with the refined workmanship communicates a particular attention in highlighting the desire for exclusive rigor that dominates the whole interior design concept of the yacht. The result, in its simple elegance, is surprising.
Another, marvelous example of book-matched workmanship signed by Marmi Vrech and realized with a design of the interior designer Cristiano Gatto, is located in the heart of London, in an exclusive residence in Mayfair. Here, some bathrooms have been realized using the Wave marble that has the particularity of having very deep black tones, furrowed by rare veins that are almost rectilinear that turn from ocher to golden yellow. The play on the surface placed next to one of the numerous bathtubs of the project is splendid: the effect is like a lightning bolt, which, from a point of origin, divides into two perfectly specular arrows.
A small curiosity about the book-match.
In 1693, Catania was devastated by a terrible earthquake that razed most of the city to the ground. The reconstruction, however, took place very quickly and this can easily be deduced from the uniformity of certain architectures, the proposed materials and the techniques of decoration used, among which the book-match is very common.
This work was proposed above all in the marble decoration of the churches with astonishing results such as the side altar of the church of Sant’Agata la Vetere, which once housed the body of the saint: here, the skilled hands of the artisans of Catania have succeeded in reproducing the body of the saint through the specularity of the veins and the stains of the marble.
And to mention another masterpiece we must certainly refer to the church of San Michele Arcangelo where, with the marble worked in book-match, beasts, men, demons and saints were reproduced with an almost photographic fidelity, visible at the base of the columns of the altars side.