Tips for Choosing the Right Exterior Stone Veneer

Exterior stone veneer has been a popular design choice for hundreds of years and is surging again in recent popularity. Also known as stone cladding or stone siding, stone veneer is a thin layer of stone applied to an exterior wall to give it the appearance of a complete stone construction. It’s a great investment into the value of your home by increasing its durability against the elements as well as its aesthetic appeal!

If you’re considering stone veneer as an addition to your own home, be sure to consider these tips before getting started.

Make a Plan


A crucial first step for exterior stone veneer is to make a plan of action for your project. Preparation is important because it allows you to get a firm understanding of how much stone and other supplies you’ll need and how that matches against your budget. For example, what you don’t want to happen is to start a veneer project and find out halfway through that you didn’t purchase enough stone or that you’ve reached your budget and can’t continue. 

Making a plan also helps us at the Rock Garden because even though we keep plenty of inventory at our garden, larger projects may take longer to fulfill. Coming up with a plan and communicating with us ahead of time is the best way to ensure a seamless process from start to finish. 

Explore Your Options in Person


When making an investment into stone veneer, it’s always best to view your options in person. Natural stone always has some variation in its visual characteristics - from texture to shape and color. These differences are what make natural stone so unique and beautiful! However, the nuances are generally hard to spot in online samples or pictures. 

Seeing the various options that are available to you will of course help you make the right choice of stone to match your style. Furthermore, it will help you to get a better understanding of how it will actually look at your home in natural, outdoor lighting. 

Fortunately, The Rock Garden is a Fort Collins landscaping store where you can explore dozens of options firsthand. With structural artistry and peaceful landscapes, our beautiful garden serves as an opportunity to view the different stone you may use for your exterior stone veneer while getting plenty of inspiration for future projects to come. 

Natural vs Manufactured: Which is Best? 


We can definitively recommend natural stone veneer over manufactured stone veneer. While you may discover manufactured stone is less expensive than natural stone, once you see both in person this choice will speak for itself. 

Natural stone is not only more durable but is far superior in its appearance. Manufactured stone, on the other hand, tends to degrade faster in harsh Colorado weather and will in time develop a chalky-like texture and look. Nobody wants their investment into new veneer to end up being tacky - natural stone is guaranteed to retain its classic, elegant look. 

Choose a Stone Veneer That Fits Your Home’s Style


There are many different types of stone veneer, and it’s important to choose one that compliments the style of your home. Some stone veneer looks more rustic, natural, or traditional, while other types of veneer are better suited for clean, minimalistic, or modern home styles. The stone type as well as the design you choose should be based on the type of home you have, your color palette, and the vibe you want to create.



At The Rock Garden, our natural stone veneer comes in three different styles: random, ashlar, and chop. 

Random layout is, just as you would guess, a random assortment of shapes, cuts, and sizes. A random fieldstone pattern relates the raw beauty inherent to natural stone while creating a timeless finish. 

Ashlar layout appeals more to a modern aesthetic. While the term ‘ashlar’ varies throughout the stone mason community, in our case it refers to a pattern whose dimensions hold to a 2:1 ratio with sawn top and bottom edges. 

Chop layout is a middle ground between the other two patterns. Chop patterns retain the natural look and feel of random-sized stone but with the addition of squared-off edges. The stone is protected by our techniques of chiseling and chopping rather than using a saw to shape the stone to a desired shape. 



Just as noticeable as the pattern is the chosen color. Each pattern type comes in a great variety of gray, tan, and brown hues - select an option that suits the rest of your home as well as the surrounding property and landscape. 

Never Compromise on Quality 


With an investment into exterior stone veneer, it’s important that you don’t compromise on quality. A home upgrade of this kind has the potential to last a very long time and will likely remain in nearly perfect condition for the duration of homeownership. 

So when it comes to the type of veneer you choose, know that you will get what you pay for! But the money you put in will be reflected in the increased value of your home - it’s one of those investments that are better off going for quality rather than cutting corners and saving a few dollars. 

Work with Exterior Stone Veneer Experts 


Our last tip is to work with experts in exterior stone veneer projects. Maintain your peace of mind knowing that such an important upgrade to your home will be done to the highest professional standards with the best possible advice. 

At the Rock Garden, while we don’t install stone veneer ourselves, however, we do provide the best quality stone that perfectly matches any blueprints or designs. We also work with many different landscapers and masons that we are happy to refer you to. If you have a contractor already prepared for your project, make sure they give us a call to source the finest materials for your new veneer. 

Contact our team of seasoned experts today, or come visit the garden yourself to see what we’re all about! 

Beyond Blue Media magnifiercrosschevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram