It’s been a strong interior design trend for a while now and it’s easy to see why – concrete is the perfect complement to industrial-themed interiors. But not all concrete is made equal. We got the lowdown on all things concrete with Kylie Peculis of Studio Fiveo3, a design studio that specialises in high-end concrete furniture and homewares.
While you may not be concerned when purchasing a small concrete accessory for the home, it pays to be informed when it comes to bigger ticket items like furniture or benchtops. “When investing in a quality concrete piece you should ask what it is actually made of. While it may seem like a silly question, a lot of products on the market today are more plastic than concrete and sometimes they’re simply rendered timber,” says Kylie who warns that these types of products are likely to crack, chip and show wear very easily.
And it’s not only the material but the quality of the sealant that is key. “Concrete is a porous material similar to stone and will therefore naturally stain so sealing is essential. We use only the best sealers made specifically for concrete bench tops in the kitchen making them resistant to the harshest of stains,” says Kylie who warns that no sealant provides absolute protection and you need to remain vigilant.
“Our number one advice when caring for concrete is that you need to clean as you go. If you spill something, wipe it up. The sealer is only there to give you a buffer period to prevent the concrete from staining,” says Kylie who recommends the use of trivets and coasters as heat and sharp objects can damage concrete’s protective coating.
Of the latest concrete trends, Kylie says that the look is a departure from the past where bench tops and outdoor tables looked as cold and heavy as they felt. “The latest trend sees concrete as more lightweight than thick and heavy. We’re also seeing a move toward curved pieces instead of straight, angular ones,” says Kylie whose company makes gorgeous concrete pieces that combine the material with timber, steel and glass.
The Architect’s Wife showroom
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If you’d like to touch and feel Studio Fiveo3’s designs, Kylie has also just opened a showroom called The Architect’s Wife which showcases her own designs and other Australian designers too.