Blog

16

Monday

August, 2021

6 Things You Didn’t Know About Slate

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At Garden State Soapstone, Slate & Wood, we talk about the popular uses for slate around your home. We did some digging (or mining!) this month and found a few things you probably don’t know about slate. Which of these were new to you?

# 1: Where is slate quarried?

Slate can be mined or quarried, and is most commonly found in New York, Vermont, and Virginia. Other countries that produce slate include the United Kingdom, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Brazil and Newfoundland. Granville, NY provides most of the world’s Green slate.

# 2: More than just gray or black

While most pieces of slate are gray or black, you can also find shades of blue, green, red, brown, and even purple. This is due to the different minerals and iron quantities found in the stone. At Garden State Soapstone & Slate, we can source all of these colors for tiles or countertops both indoors and outdoors.

# 3: Pool tables are made of slate

If you’ve ever wondered why a pool table is so heavy: the table top is made of slate, framed with wood, with felt stretched and attached to the wood. Slate can be ground and polished to be perfectly flat. Unlike wood, the slate will not warp due to moisture or changing temperatures, making it the ideal choice for a playing surface. 

# 4: Slate is a great roofing choice

The most popular use for slate historically has been roofing. Because the layers of slate can be split easily, it can be split into thin sheets and stacking. The stone also doesn’t expand or crack in freezing temperatures, is fire-resistant, and remains intact for hundreds of years when installed properly. 

In modern times, slate makes a great choice for roofing. However, the pricing can be prohibitive.

# 5: Even Aristotle talked about slate

We know historically slate was used as a writing tablet in schools and stores, often times a piece of slate kept track of the cost at a pub or inn. When these charges were paid, the slate was wiped clean, and the buyer had a “clean slate” with the store.

Going back further to ancient history, philosophers dating back to Aristotle use the phrase “blank slate” or “tabula rasa” to develop the nature vs. nurture theory: the mind is a blank slate at birth and all behaviors are a result of inputs.

# 6: Slate is waterproof and maintenance free

One of the reasons we love slate for indoor and outdoor projects is the easy maintenance. Waterproof, heat-resistant, non-porous, and anti-bacterial, slate is one of the easiest and more durable counter and tile options. While it doesn’t need a sealant, we recommend The Original Slate Oil™️ for indoor applications to penetrate, protect, and enhance your surfaces for years to come. 

Order slate tiles or countertops

The most common use for slate today is tile for kitchens, bathrooms, and patios. We also install beautiful slate countertops and create custom slate sinks that provide a great contrast to the trending, but still classic, white kitchen cabinets. Since they transfer heat well, homeowners often install heating under the tiles in a bathroom. Ready to start designing? Call Garden State Soapstone, Slate, and Wood Countertops to visit our showroom and view samples.