Glass blocks in the interior of the apartment: advantages
One of the most controversial finishing materials is glass blocks. We will tell you whether it is worth using this material at home and how to work with it correctly.
Glass blocks are a rebirth material. How to properly incorporate it into the interior and what should you learn about glass tiles before heading to the store? Let’s look at it below.
Types and features of glass blocks
So, what is this finishing material and how do glass blocks look in the interior? To put it simply, this is a kind of “sandwich”, hollow inside, of two thick centimeter glasses, combined. In the Soviet Union, they were produced according to standards that have smoothly migrated to our days. There are only two size ranges: 19x19x8 and the second one is larger – 24x24x8.
The indicators remained the same:
- “Filling” from the air makes it possible to get rid of external noise in the room by almost 70%;
- they perfectly transmit light, leaving what is happening inside the house closed from prying eyes;
- in terms of strength, this tile can be compared with a brick, it conducts heat better than its counterpart, but one piece weighs much more than a brick – up to four kilograms.
What has undergone significant changes today is the appearance of the tiles. Only a lazy one will not find a design and shape to his taste on the market today: with a pattern and monochromatic, with or without illumination, in the form of stained glass windows or installations, decorated with flowers, corals, and whatever your heart desires. Choose and Conquer.
The form has also undergone significant changes. Today you can find not only classic rectangles and squares but also triangular and even round options.
Advantages and disadvantages of glass blocks
It is possible to harmoniously fit glass, taking into account its characteristics, into almost any room.
- Durability – a wall of glass blocks will look good in the interior and are guaranteed to serve you for many years.
- Moisture resistance – that is why glass blocks are very fond of using in bathrooms.
- Easy to clean. A special glass cleaner, a rag, and five minutes are all you need.
- Noise isolation. The noise of water, screaming in the street or loud music – you can forget about these annoying factors.
- Thermal conductivity. Glass blocks work well with the air temperature in the room: by keeping the required level of heat, they make your home even more comfortable.
- Light transmission. The thickness of one layer of glass is more than a centimeter, but this does not interfere at all with letting in almost all the sunlight from the outside – up to 90%.
Almost perfect finish, isn’t it? But what’s the catch? As a rule, it is clarified at the installation stage.
- The thing is that to build a structure, you just need professional skills. And if you do not have them, be prepared to spend money on a specialist, otherwise, you risk overwhelming the entire aesthetic component of the issue.
- Weight. As already mentioned, it is about 4 kilograms per square. This not only complicates the construction process but also constitutes a significant burden in the overall engineering plan of the premises. Simply put – if you do not want to fall through to the neighbors from below, you should not decorate the surface of more than 15 square meters in this way.
- If you are a fan of decorating walls with paintings or photos, this item is for you. The fact is that screws or nails cannot be driven into a glass wall. Hanging a shelf, decorated with a picture, or screwing on hooks – all this is not about glass blocks.
- The material must not be cut. This means that you will have to fully accept the conditions that the size of the source will dictate.
- Wiring cannot be made in such a wall.
- The design does not allow air to circulate. That is why you should not decorate window openings with them – the apartment will not breathe.
Glass blocks in design: how to combine correctly
First of all, it is worth immediately separating the concepts of “glass wall” and “classic style”. Classics do not tolerate such tricks and, as a result, glass blocks cannot be used in interiors decorated in the spirit of Baroque, Renaissance, Empire – in any classics. Not always combined with country and province. If you do not have professional knowledge, it is better not to take risks, so as not to get a bad taste.
This is where such designs fit perfectly – these are high-tech, modern, modern styles and, under certain circumstances, minimalism. Perfectly transparent cubes will complement the loft space, highlight its brutality.
General tips for using glass blocks in the interior of an apartment
- To prevent the living room from turning into an office, add colors to the interior.
- Decorating the space with blocks, add metal, wooden details, or textiles – for example, a carpet will look very cozy.
- It is ideal to use glass blocks in the bathroom interior. You can even make a whole shower partition out of them. See for yourself: such finishing material perfectly waterproofs do not darken the space, “removes” the noise of the water. And if you add colored parts, lighting, and marine decor inside the block, it will come out just fine.
- Pros believe that the total number of glass tiles for all other materials should be approximately 1 in 10. Stick to this rule – redundancy has never been in anyone’s hands.
- In no case should they replace the load-bearing walls in the house and do not include individual squares in such structures. Glass in the interior is exclusively about decor and beauty.
- Need to demarcate several active zones in one room? A translucent wall is ideal for this.
There are three ways to lay glass tiles.
- Using a solution
The first row of tiles is fixed to a profile on the floor. The work is similar to laying ordinary tiles: it is carried out from the corner, and plastic crosses-spacers are inserted into the joints. But there is also a peculiarity – after every three laid out rows, you need to take a break and wait until the heavy slabs are firmly connected to the mortar. And again, by analogy with ceramic tiles, the work ends with grouting.
2.With a frame
A frame is attached to all surfaces and the perimeter of the area on which the laying will be carried out. This is a mesh lattice made of wood and plastic. Each unit has a pocket with a rubber pad. The main plus is that all elements can be replaced if necessary.
- Laying on an adhesive base
Probably one of the most time-consuming ways. Here you cannot do without training and skills in working with special glue. The principle of operation, in general, is the same as when laying bricks.
Glass blocks are by no means a new word in interior design. They are firmly rooted in our minds since Soviet times, in the context of clinics, schools, and public baths. But today this material needs to be read in a new way, thanks to designers from all over the world, it got a chance for a new life.