Is Fantasy Brown a Marble or Quartzite?

Fantasy Brown has just arrived at Victoria Stone Gallery! But there’s a bit of speculation over what sort of natural stone it is. Is it a Marble or a Quartzite? Long answer short, it’s a hard marble that performs like a Quartzite. This article that we came across today talks the science and formation behind this peculair stone, and discusses in detail whether Fantasy Brown is a Marble or Quartzite.

There are thousands of natural stones available in the world right now. But every now and then there comes a granite, marble, or quartzite that we just can’t get enough of, we get regular calls about, and homeowners simply must have.

Fantasy Brown is one of those stones. Cool gray waves and smooth swirls tumbling diagonally across the slab, stunning mineral formations, and the faintest hues of green and rose make this a truly unique stone. But what is it? Is it quartzite as so many fabricators label it or are the suppliers who categorize it as marble correct?

“It mostly does perform like a quartzite or a granite. It’s a great stone. Geologically it does have some calcium carbonate & thus is a marble. A very hard marble. Even so, we have never noticed it etch, but since there’s some calcium carbonate we called it what it is – marble (just in case).” – Jeff @ Architectural Granite and Marble, Ltd. (AG&M)

The answer is a little complicated. Most broad stone types like marble or granite include a wide variety of different mineral compositions. Some marbles are much harder than others, and the same goes for quartzite. So, the precise geological term for a stone is not always a guarantee of how the stone will last or stand up to normal wear and tear.

Technically Fantasy Brown is a Marble, but There’s More to the Story

Geologically speaking, it contains the mineral calcium carbonate, which is a defining feature of marble. However, it’s an extremely hard marble with a very low risk of etching or staining. In other words, it behaves like a quartzite.

“Because we can’t expect our clients to know the finer details of how each individual stone will perform in the kitchen, we classify them according to durability. That means that in our showroom, you will see Fantasy Brown labeled as a quartzite.” – Kasey King | Sales Consultant at Tate Granite | Tate Ornamental

Fantasy Brown Quartzite is a durable, reliable countertop choice. With proper sealing once to twice a year, you won’t have to worry about etching or staining. Quartzite is scratch resistant, but we don’t recommend cutting on your natural stone, as it will dull your knives!

Fantasy Brown

Actual photo of Fantasy Brown slab available at Victoria Stone Gallery

Marble vs. Quartzite? What’s the Difference?

Both are metamorphic stones. One of the three main types of rock (the other two are igneous, which includes granite, and sedimentary).

Marble is created when limestone is “recrystallized” through exposure to heat, pressure, and/or chemically-active liquids. These forces change the composition of the stone, leaving behind an interlocking pattern of white crystals. The swirls and colors found in marble are technically impurities. They occur when clay, sand, iron, and other materials find their way into the metamorphosing limestone.

“Marble is softer than granite and quartzite, which makes it more susceptible to scratches over time. The calcium in the stone means it may etch when exposed to acidic liquids like lemon or vinegar.” – Lauren Little Rhodes | Sales Consultant at Tate Granite | Tate Ornamental

“The stone is what I call a “combo stone”. It’s a combination of quartzite minerals and calcite. alcite being a soft mineral and quartzite being a hard one.  So this stone, depending on its density plus quartzite to calcite ratio, can be pretty darn durable but that durability will fluctuate with the ratio of quartzite to calcite in the slab. The more quartzite, the more durability. We have sold a lot of this material and have had rave reviews from customers on how much they love this stone. I think a lot of customer satisfaction comes with properly educating customers on the type of stone they are choosing and how to take care of it.” – Laura Bolen | OHM International, Nashville, TN

While marble comes from limestone, quartzite is created when those same “metamorphosing” forces of heat, pressure, and chemically-active liquids come into contact with sandstone. This difference is what gives quartzite its glassy surface. Quartzite can range from slightly harder than marble all the way to harder than granite.

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Pionara Pyeongchang marble art piece

Verde Imperiale Granite Comparable to Korean Art Piece

As soon as we saw this masterpiece it reminded us of our Granite stone slab, Verde Imperiale, popular for kitchen benchtops in Melbourne homes. Natural Stone truly is diverse.

Check out the article below from DesignBoom. A piece of art by Korean visual artist, Pionara!

artist captures winter olympic scenes in south korean marble

ahead of the winter olympics, set to commence in korea this year, visual artist pionara sees a unique opportunity of her own to provide an entry route into understanding the country. in a personal project exploring the games the artist evolves her fondness of working on natural materials and objects, sourcing marble unique to the hosting region in an attempt to better understanding the place that will be televised worldwide.

intending to find something unique about the county, pionara‘s work begins with her canvas – a beautiful stone (called ‘pyeongchang seok’ – seok means stone in korean). this marble, produced in the pyeongchang area of the gangwon province makes a backdrop from a series of complimentary grains. mixing pink, bluish grey, white and black, a sunset-kissed setting of snow and tricky terrain is imagined by the artist whose illustrative additions of figures depict scenes from the games itself.

Pionara’s canvas was Pyeongchang Seok. A marble produced in the Pyeongchang area of the Gangwon Province

Verde Imperiale Granite Slab

Verde Imperiale Granite slab available at Victoria Stone Gallery

Verde Imperiale is a unique, mixed-colour granite used for kitchen benchtops, bathroom vanities and more. It has a sweeping diagonal effect, mixing greens, whites, pinks and a touch of orange.

pionara’s aim is to capture the dramatic moments that will be presented during february 9 to 25. so, in the beautiful patterns and swirls of pyeongchang marble, skiers run steep mountains, figure skaters show off beautiful performances, and bobsleigh slide down fast.

the artist was inspired by her research into the characteristics of the region.

This led to her discovery of the gangwon province being a valuable part of korea with regards to its resources. understanding that the rare mineral resources of the gangwon province account for %70 of korea this eventually led to the artist’s choice of canvas, symbolising the contribution of the region and its individuality.
Pionara Pyeongchang marble art piece 3
designboom.com, pionara.co.kr


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How to keep clean marble

Clean Marble – 5 Easy DIY Tips

Dying for a marble benchtop but the thought of maintaining clean marble is daunting? Architectural Design share these Clever, household tips on how to keep that marble surface as beautiful as the day it was installed!

How to Clean Marble (Yes, There’s Hope for Those Stains!)

Caring for this beautiful material is as easy pie

The marble kitchen counter of your dreams (and Pinterest boards) is finally installed—but wait, there’s a catch: how to clean marble? Keeping marble countertops and tile clean is actually simpler than you’d think. But, as with maintaining any surface and most things in life, you need to know what you’re dealing with. Now there’s day-to-day marble cleaning and then there’s the kind of tactics you’ll need to employ if Uncle Pat puts the punch bowl on his head at dinner and spills Cabernet across the length of your beautiful, white marble island. You got this—here’s how to clean marble and make it stay that way.

Supplies You’ll Want to Keep on Hand

  • sealant of your choice (food-safe, if for use on a marble counter)
  • soap and water (for counters)
  • dust mop (for floors)
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • ammonia
  • liquid cleaner
  • #0000 steel wool

Hand cleaning black marble stone counter bar

How to Maintain and Clean Marble Surfaces

Know your marble. Think like the marble. Be the marble. Marble is more porous than other common countertop materials like engineered stone (sold often as simply “quartz”) or soapstone, so it can be prone to staining and etching (a.k.a light scratching or physical changes to the stone itself). You’ll want to clean and seal yours regularly. More on that below—and easy enough to do before you’ve had coffee, promise.

Prevention is key. Whatever marble you have in your home, sealing it every few months is a good idea. According to the Marble Institute, sealants don’t make the stone stain-proof but they do make it more stain resistant—giving you a bit more time to get to big spills. Check with whoever supplied your marble for their recommendations on the right products to use (and remember to make sure it’s food safe if you’re using it in the kitchen). For marble floors, coffee tables, and other high-traffic surfaces invest in some furniture pads and some coasters—better safe than sorry.

Daily cleaning. For routine maintenance and spills you catch quickly, warm, soapy water is the best for the job. Just make sure to rinse well, sop up any standing water, and thoroughly dry the surface. Also note that for marble, acid is kryptonite—so do your best to keep things like wine and lemon juice (or even cleaners that contain vinegar) away from the surface. And if they do spill, tend to them as quickly as possible. For marble floors, start with a dust mop; you want to avoid anything abrasive on the surface, and dirt and sand being dragged around by a vacuum could do more damage than you intend.

Getting out pesky stains. If you don’t catch a spill quickly (hello, red wine spilled at a lasts-until-2am dinner party), there’s hope. For most organic food stains, the Marble Institute recommends cleaning with a solution of 12% hydrogen peroxide and a few drops of ammonia; if you spilled anything oil-based, like a vinaigrette, and the stain has set, attack it (gently) with a liquid cleanser that contains “household detergent, mineral spirits, or acetone.”

Correcting etching. For water spots, light scratches, and nicks, try buffing your marble with dry #0000 steel wool. Anything deeper than surface level scratches will require a professional’s help. So if you left a lemon out on the counter and now it’s both etched and left a stain, go ahead and use the above recommendations for food stains to take care of the latter. Sadly, the etching will likely need to be polished by a professional—so be careful where you leave your cut lemons!

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Photo Credit Colonial Marble and Granite Quartz V Natural Stone

Quartz V Natural Stone

Shopping for a new stone benchtop for your kitchen? There are a lot of stone options in the Australian market these days, which is great! But it all drives down to two options. Man-made (aka reconstituted or reengineered stone) Quartz V Natural Stone.

Are you looking for indoor or outdoor application? Do you need a stone benchtop to withstand a hectic lifestyle? Are you wondering which will add more value to your home? Have a read of this super informative article from Phillymag.com & Colonial Marble & Granite for a quick crash course in the differences and similarities between Quartz V Natural Stone.

Quartz vs. Natural Stone: Similarities, Differences and When to Use Each

When you’re opting to swap out your old bar or kitchen countertops for something new, there’s a lot to consider. First, you need to think about value and quality — are you willing to pay a little extra for quartz or natural stone, which has more staying power than laminates and can also help raise your property value? Aside from being a good investment for your home, natural stone or quartz are durable enough to withstand the wear-and-tear of extreme cooking and regular family gatherings. So, if you’re ready to make a valuable upgrade to your living space, here’s what you need to know about quartz and natural stone countertops, and what you should expect out of your install.

First, a briefing on both:

  • Quartz, in its natural state, is found in large crystals or small, sand-like grains. Once mined, the stone is mixed with man-made materials, like resin, which allows for a cleaner cut and more scratch and stain resistance. Quartz is one of the most popular materials for counters and backsplashes, due to its durability and antimicrobial, non-absorbent properties. Colonial Marble offers one of the widest varieties of quartz in the country, from the extremely durable Q Quartz to ECO, which is made mostly of recycled materials and comes in a variety of hues and textured patterns.
  • Natural stone is a bit less malleable than quartz but withholds a snowflake-like individuality that makes it truly, naturally unique. Sourced straight from the earth, natural stones like a soft-coloured limestone or bold marble show off raw patterns, flecks and textures that quartz can only mimic through manmade mixing. When it comes to choosing a timeless, on-trend look, Arctic Cream graniteBianco Venatino marble and Lagos Blue limestone are three (literally) solid options.
Photo Credit Colonial Marble and Granite Quartz V Natural Stone

Photo Credit Colonial Marble and Granite

The differences between Quartz V Natural Stone:

  • Quartz is fused with resin and other polymers, and does not need to be sealed regularly. Natural stone, however, may require yearly sealings to maintain its smooth look and durability. Additionally, this material makeup is less prone to chipping than natural stone.
  • Since quartz is mechanically engineered with naturally mined materials and binding resins, cleaner cuts are available. It’s because of this that quartz is considered extremely design-friendly.
  • When opting for natural stone, it’s a good idea to go with an “eased edge,”. It gives the stone a thick cut look that helps to play up the natural texture and marbling.

The similarities between Quartz V Natural Stone:

  • Quartz and natural stone are both extremely heavy. Due to this, it is important to work with a professional during installation. The team at Colonial Marble will not only help with installation but can provide samples, quotes and even a Kitchen Visualizer to help you decide just where to make your upgrades.
  • Natural stone and quartz do not always hold up to extreme weather conditions, making indoor installation the preferred method. Planning on installing an outdoor bar or fireplace? Make sure your granite or marble surface is safe from hard rain and the scorching sun.
  • Historically, the price of quartz and natural stone, like marble, seemed out of reach for many. But, as granite, marble, quartz and stone countertops become increasingly trendy in today’s homes, materials are becoming more and more affordable.
Photo Credit Colonial Marble and Granite2

Photo Credit Colonial Marble and Granite

Christmas and New Year Hours at VSG

Christmas and New Year Hours

It’s been a great first year here at Victoria Stone Gallery.

We’ve met a lot of new people and sold some beautiful stone slab. Now we’re excited to bring you some new marbles, quartzites and granites in the New Year! We will be available by appointment between December 18th-22nd, and wrapping up on December 22nd and reopening on January 15th, 2018. Have a great Christmas and New Year!


Victoria Stone Gallery opened in March 2017, lead by a father and daughter team. After wholesaling and fabricating in New Zealand for 20 years, our founder, Chris, moved to Brazil to be at the forefront of new and exciting natural marble and quartzite discoveries. Chris spends his days travelling the world sourcing and trading natural marble and other exotic stones, suppling New Zealand, America and Brazil. In 2017 he fulfilled a dream of opening a marble and granite wholesaler in Melbourne, Australia. And So Victoria Stone Gallery was born. We operate from one site in the South East suburbs of Melbourne, where we have our offices, showroom and warehouse. Our small team are all knowledgeable, friendly and love working with stone slabs.


Our company mission is to bring a range of unique and speciality natural marble, granite and quartzite slabs to the market. We believe there is a stone out there for everyone. We aim to cover variety in cost, colours, finishes and stone types – while never compromising on quality.


Parthenon Greek Marble frieze replica the Greek Centre 2

Greek Marble Unveiling in Melbourne’s CBD

The Greek Community of Melbourne’s headquarter building unveiled an impressive replica of the Parthenon Greek Marble frieze on Sunday 26th of November.

The life-size, border of Greek marble runs along the building’s entrance at six metres long. The stone slab not only reflects one of the most recognised symbols of Ancient Greece but reminds us of the HQ’s significance in the Australian-Greek community and the buildings historical connection to Greece.

“The building offers so many different services to Greek Australians. But at the same time we want the building and those services to appropriately reflect through symbols of our culture and heritage,” Mr Papastergiadis told Neos Kosmos.

To mark the momentous occasion, the street closed off to celebrate with speeches, music and performances near the centre. Significant political leaders and personalities of the community attended, including Melbourne-born actress and comedian Mary Coustas. Coustas was one of many speakers, eager to draw the attention to the return of the Parthenon Marble back to Greece. The friezes are on permanent display in the British Museum after being controversially taken from Athens in the 1800s.

Parthenon Greek Marble frieze at British Museum

A segment of the original Parthenon Marble frieze currently at British Museum

“Britain is conveniently ignoring the screams from the world at large (to return the Greek marbles) because it benefits them, too,” she said. “We need to keep the dream alive and keep applying pressure.”

Dubbing herself a proud Greek-Australian, Coustas likened the marbles cause to the recent Yes vote in the gay marriage debate.

Followed by Victoria State premier Daniel Andrews. “We continuously demand the restoration of the injustice done by Lord Elgin two centuries earlier. This is not just my personal opinion. But a standing demand of the Victoria government and all the parties that are part of it. And will not change until this injustice has been restored.”

The Greek Centre is home to the city’s official Greek community organizations. It has become renowned as a hub of Greek cultural life and activity. Some have disputed the placement of the replica and its placement above a burger restaurant. But its beauty cannot be denied. Nor the opportunity to voice support for efforts to return the Parthenon Greek Marbles.

In the new year, Victoria Stone Gallery will be getting in some stunning Greek marble ourselves, keep an eye on our product catalogue to find a relic of your own!

Source pappaspost.comneskosmos.com, thenationalherald.com



Lonely Lingerie models in Italian Carrara marble

Honoring the Female Form: Lonely Model Alongside Italian Carrara Marble

A New Zealand-based lingerie brand is celebrating women of all shapes and sizes.  A stunning new underwear campaign sees models posing alongside classic Italian Carrara marble sculptures.

Lonely Lingerie enlisted photographer and artist Yumna Al-Arashi to shoot models Naomi Shimada, Riya Hamid, and Ayesha McMahon at a classic marble atelier in Carrara, Italy, for its Autumn/Winter 2017 campaign.

Since Ancient Roman times, sculpt depictions of the female form have been carved out of Italian Carrara marble. And the three models look right at home posing next to the statues’ marble curves.

Lonely Lingerie models in Italian Carrara marble

Photo taken by Yumna Al-Arashi for NZ lingerie label, Lonely

The brand prides itself on its honest representations of women. The company explained that ‘modern portrayals of women have never been more unrealistic,’ in comparison to classic works of art.

‘Where once curves, imperfections and realism were celebrated, many representations of women now seek unrealistic and potentially damaging ideals.’ Lonely said in a press release.

Unlike many advertisements found in today’s media, Lonely’s campaign aims to honour the female form rather than depict unobtainable body shames, homogenised ethnicities and cultural backgrounds, and heavily edited and retouched images.

Carrara’s marble has been used to make some of the world’s most famous sculptures, including Michaelangelo’s David and Pieta.

‘I visited an incredible atelier in Carrara. Home to some of the most famous marble quarries on this planet.’ she said of her inspiration behind the shoot.

‘Michelangelo’s hands worked in this town, and its marble has built structures that have withstood the test of time.’


Source dailymail.co.uk, lonelylabel.comyumnaaa.com


Check our Italian Carrara marble range.

Inside view of Blue Marble Caves in Chile

A Blue Marble Must ‘Sea’!

With coloured stone on trend, and on our minds, we were in absolute awe coming across this natural stone beauty. Blue marble with hints of green, border these stunning caves in Chile.

The next place to add to your bucket list: Patagonia, Chile. In a freshwater glacier lake called General Carrera Lake stands a peninsula of marble caves called Capillas de Mármol. The natural wonder has multiple names, including the Marble Cathedral and Cuevas de Mármol, but visitors can agree that the magnificent site is worth the trip.
Blue Marble Caves Chile
The carving of the caves is a result of glacier movements millions of years ago. Reflecting the icy blue waters of the lake that’s shared by Argentina and Chile, the solid marble caves look almost unreal because of their swirling colours. The intensity of the walls change by water level and depending on the time of year.

Blue Marble Caves ChileThe journey to get to these caves isn’t the easiest, however. After flying into Santiago, Chile, an additional 1,287-km flight to Coyhaique and 321-km drive on rough roads are required. You’ll then need to take a ferry to the actual site. There are several combinations of transport you can take to arrive at the destination, including tours that can guide you the whole way. Regardless of how long the trek is, you’ll want to go through all that travel after seeing the photos ahead.

See the full article here

Check another blog post of ours here discussing the resurgence of green and blue marble. In this article, it was predicted at Milan’s Furniture Fair 2018 that coloured marble will be making a big come back.


Scan of Ebbets Field Marble Natural Stone Slab

Natural Stone At Home? How Much Is It Worth?

Like everything, natural stone types go in and out of fashion, bringing the cost up and down. The trends and styles in design dictate the demand upping the supply increases and the costs. Lucky for some, this means the stone you have in your home could double, triple or even more in value just by the clock ticking. Check out this article we came across about one lucky mans’ find…

In 1990, a Brooklynite was at a New Jersey construction salvage yard examining a pile of marble slabs for a table top. After a short bidding war, he obtained a 21-pound slab of Italian natural stone for a very modest sum and lugged it home where it resided for the next 25 years. The owner knew it had something to do with the Brooklyn Dodgers’ fable ballpark from 1913 to 1957.

The holy relic, from Ebbets Field’s ticket rotunda, recently sold for $72,000 in a Heritage auction. Shipping was only $45 due to Fed Ex’s great rates.

“It stands as the most significant artefact from the storied Brooklyn landmark in private hands. Second only to the original cornerstone at the permanent collection of the Baseball Hall of Fame,” Heritage noted.

On February 23, 1960, before a wrecking ball, painted at the whim of a dark humorist with the white hide and red stitching of a baseball, swung the dramatic blows that wiped the Dodgers off Brooklyn’s map. Salvaged were any contents of monetary value. For five dollars, the seats were unbolted and hawked off. Discarded bats and photos were sold at auction. And, as the exterior walls of the grandstands fell, the valuable white marble of the rotunda was carted off and repurposed in the Tri-State area’s inexhaustible rush of progress.”

Browse through the Victoria Stone Gallery collection to find the perfect stone for your project at a great price.

Natural stone truly can add to the value of your home more times than not. Stay on top of trends and choose wisely!

(Source, forbes.com, ha.com)

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