Marble is a centuries old natural stone for flooring, walls, and sculpture. It is a metamorphic rock derived from limestone and composed of calcite. Its formation under incredible pressure and heat recrystallizes the original sedimentary carbonate rocks into an amalgamation of calcite, aragonite and dolomite crystals. This also increases its density, making it an incredibly hard rock. A polished surface, crystal grains and colored veining will also be prominent.
Modern uses of polished marble tiles include fireplace hearths, windowsills, bathroom vanities, hallways, foyers, columns, courtyards, spas and fountains. The dramatic veining of marble tiles contrast vividly with colors such as white, jade, gold, brown and dark green.
Tumbled marble is marble that has been blasted or tumbled with water. The edges are sanded and slightly chipped. This gives it a well-worn, non-glossy appearance. Tumbled marble gives bathroom backsplashes and bathtub decks a sumptuously minimalist and cool ambience. It is more expensive than polished marble because of the additional processing.
Spain, Italy, China, Turkey, and Greece are some of the major marble exporting countries.