Cork - a unique, nature-created material that does not have artificial analogs. In fact, it is the bark of cork oak, whose native land is the Western Mediterranean. The first to use cork material in everyday life was the Greeks. They used it to make bottle closures and roof decks. In the present time, it has found application in the role of cork coatings on walls and floors.
Cork material is heterogeneous and has a porous structure. A large number of unequal sized cells are filled with air. This feature determines many properties of the cork coating. Consider the most useful:
- Amortizing properties. They can be manifested in conditions of short exposure, for example, when walking on a coating, or with prolonged pressure on it (from furniture on legs). In both cases, when the source of the impact moves to another location, the surface acquires its original shape, leaving no unevenness or dents. It is believed that walking on such a coating has a beneficial effect on the spine and leg joints. The index of residual deformation of a quality material does not exceed 2%.
- Water resistant. The material will not lose its properties and presentation even when exposed to a significant amount of liquid;
- The cork cover has exceptional sound insulation properties. The sound of footsteps will be less audible in the room, and neighbors from below may even stop hearing you;
- Due to the presence of a large amount of air in the pores of the material, the plug shows good thermal insulation properties. Very relevant such floors will be on the lower floors of houses, in private cottages of areas with a cold climate. With cork floors you do not need to install a warm floor or flooring from the carpet;
- Resistance to household chemicals. The plug is inert to most cleaning care products. To this list it is also possible to add bactericidal and antistatic properties, durability, ecological purity, aesthetically attractive appearance.
Varieties of cork coatings
Coatings can be divided into two main types: floor and designed for walls. The first, in turn, are divided into:
- Adhesive - fastened to the base with adhesive throughout the surface of the coating;
- "Floating" - are produced in the form of panels with locking grooves for connection between each other.
The advantage of "floating" floors is the possibility of re-use elsewhere. The room can be used immediately after installation. "Floating" coatings also differs from the adhesive in the unequal layer structure. If the first two-layer: the upper protective and the main of the cork, the latter include as many as four layers:
- Covered with a protective film or a layer of varnish decorative veneer;
- layer of agglomerated plug, performing a "carrier" function;
- the main "supporting" plate from HDF or MDF;
- glued from the bottom of the base plate, pressed cork substrate.
The second type includes the following materials:
|Tile||For its production, a granular plug is used. In the process of production by pressing create the desired shape and texture, covered with wax to increase strength and durability.|
|Panels||The basis of the product is pressed cork, which is processed from above with the same veneer.|
|Wallpaper||Are made from a cut of a stopper (шпона), pasted on the basis from flizelin or a paper.|
Important: the tile is the best and durable of cork coatings. It has the highest moisture resistance, sound and thermal insulation.
Простейший в обработке материал. Wallpaper легко режутся, наклеиваются на стену как обычные обои. Единственное, что требуется — это подобрать усиленный клей, поскольку такие обои тяжелее флизелиновых. Cork wallpaper обладают антистатическими и антибактериальными свойствами, эластичны, не собирают пыль, долговечны. Срок их службы примерно 15-20 лет. На рынке представлен разнообразный ассортимент цветов и оттенков. Есть варианты с рисунками и даже фотообои. Поэтому пробковые обои будут гармонично смотреться в любом интерьере. Недостатками таких обоев можно считать низкие тепло- и звукоизоляцию, высокую цену.
A variety of cork wallpaper - roll cork. Its difference from wallpaper in the absence of non-woven or paper backing.Read also: Patchwork in the interior: 75 examples in the photo
Cork wall coverings
As already mentioned above, coatings from cork for wall finishing are produced in the form of tiles and panels.
Cork slabs are available in single- and double-layer designs. In a two-layer variant, a natural adhesive composition is applied to the base layer, covering after the layer of agglomerated or natural veneer veneer. The front side is often painted in different color shades. After painting, the plates are covered with decorative wax to protect the paint and glue from moisture. Plates are available in standard sizes 300x300, 300x600. The service life of the tiles from cork, depending on the quality of production and operating conditions, from 10 to 30 years.
Cork on the floor
Due to the high demand for cork floors, manufacturers each year expand the choice of goods, adding to the assortment collections with new textures, types of protective finishes, types of jointing plates. Color solutions of the front surface of the coating are very diverse, also including various drawings. Tiles of the same design, but different colors and designs, can be combined, getting a huge number of color options.
For the practicality of the cork floors says their widespread use. Such coverage can be found not only in apartments or offices, but also crowded public places (hypermarkets, cinemas, etc.). In a home environment, such a cover is simply universal: they are covered with floors in the hallway, corridor, bathroom, living room, bedroom, nursery, in the kitchen.
Important: it is strictly undesirable to lay floating floors in rooms with high humidity (bathroom, sauna). Here, glued floors are more suitable.
How to properly cork cork wallpaper
The technology of gluing wallpaper from a cork is very similar to the pasting of walls with usual wallpaper, with the exception of some nuances. The surface of the walls should be level, otherwise all the irregularities will be clearly visible on the surface of the wallpaper. Therefore, before gluing it is necessary to level the walls with putty and finishing plaster. Before starting work, it is better to roll up a roll of wallpaper and let it straighten, since these wallpaper are prone to deformation, but after a while they return to their original shape. It is better to choose a special glue, but you can glue on acrylic, strongly pressing the wallpaper to the wall.
It is very important not to bend the wallpaper too much, do not overlap each other. Cut them better with scissors for vinyl tiles. Before you begin to stick to the first strip, you need to make a markup on the wall. Draw a vertical line in the middle of the wall and paste the wallpaper on either side of it. Apply the adhesive on the wall with a spatula, distribute the labels of the next strip by the comb using the comb. Press the wallpaper against the wall and the joint of the adjacent strip. Take care that the glue does not get out of the joints on the cork. If this happens, do not rush to wipe it off the surface of the wallpaper. Wait until it dries, then gently pry and tear it off.Read also: Outdoor vases in the interior +51 photos of different styles and shapes
We use in the interior
Cork in the interior of a modern apartment is no longer considered something exotic. This material is decorated with walls, floors, ceilings of private houses and apartments, as well as furniture elements.
The existing range of coatings available for sale, perfect for decorating rooms in styles: ethnic (African), classic, country, loft.
For a long time the fashion for monotonous decoration of walls has left, now the technique of "diluting" the cork arrays with sections of other materials is in trend. The main condition of such a design solution - the elements of materials should be the same in thickness. If this is not possible, then the use of decorative moldings on joints of materials is allowed.
Materials should be in harmony in color. For example, the insertion of decorative elements from the cork should be in the tone of the color scheme of the room. And, conversely, the color of the interior should match the brown shade of the cork. Light-gray, tender-green, pink tones are perfectly combined with a bright brown stopper.
The design of the room in the classical style implies a symmetrical decor. The shape and color of the panels should be repeated throughout the entire area of the room. The same applies to other decor elements from cork (patterns, frames, etc.). Avant-garde style on the contrary, involves the inclusion of asymmetric elements in the interior. For the ethno style it will be appropriate to alternate the cork cover and white, plastered areas, or covered with a mat or veneer.
Products for decorating the interior of the cork have proven themselves among the owners of houses and apartments as quality, safe for health and durable. Despite the high cost, which is fully justified, their popularity is growing year by year. More and more people who decided to change the interior style in the house prefer cork.