Concrete and Children's Safety: A Blog for Parents and CaregiversConcrete and Children's Safety: A Blog for Parents and Caregivers

About Me

Concrete and Children's Safety: A Blog for Parents and Caregivers

You love your kids and don't want them to get hurt. I certainly know that I feel that way. Hi, my name is Jenici, and I am a safety advocate. Some of my kids even tease me about it and call me a fanatic. However, I have never taken my kid to the emergency room, and I plan never to be in that situation. If you are a parent or a caregiver, this blog is devoted to you and your kids. Here, I look at concrete and children's safety. I provide tips and ideas to help you. Please look around – I hope you enjoy this blog.


How Contractors Embed and Reveal Embellishments in Exposed Aggregate

When laying exposed aggregate around your home, you'll need to choose decorative stones or other embellishments that you want to add. Pebbles come in many colours: blue, sand, cream, red and grey, which you can mix or match to create uniform or colourful concrete. 

You'll also need to consider whether to choose rounded or angular stone, which will generate smooth or sharper surfaces, respectively. Your selections will depend, among other things, on whether you intend to walk across it in bare feet, as you might want to for a pool deck or patio. 

Once you've decided what to add, your contractors will need to get to work creating your design. There isn't only one way to do this; they can perform different processes. Read on to discover three main methods contractors use to incorporate the embellishments across the concrete, plus, how they'll expose them.

Integral Mix

One way is to add the aggregates to the cement mix before pouring. This method uses the most aggregates as they disperse throughout the entire concrete, some of which may be submerged and thus not visible. 


An overlay provides a smart way to distribute the aggregates while using fewer of them. Instead of dispersing them throughout the concrete, contractors only add the ornamental pieces to a topmost cement layer that sits over a bare concrete slab. Because the aggregates fill up the upper portion only — where they stick out and thus add decorative value — you'll need less overall, and you'll get more value out of the aggregates. 

Hand Seeding

A third possible way for the contractors to embed decorative aggregates is by hand. After pouring the cement and before it's totally set, they arrange the pebbles or stones one by one, until they've created the design you asked for. This way, they have ultimate control to handpick which colours to place and what size.

Revealing the Aggregates

The next stage involves removing the top mortar to reveal the decorative embellishments. This can be done only using water and a broom until the stones stick out to the desired level. Timing is crucial as the stones need to sit firm within the cement and not be washed away, but the cement needs to be soft enough to remove. A retardant that slows the hardening process provides a broader time for the revealing process. Sandblasting a solidified surface provides a rougher option, but this technique can dull and damage the aggregates at the same time.