What color is this mortar?

threeapplesApril 10, 2012

I'm down to the wire, the mason has mixed several different mortars, but none are close to this color. It's not buff, which looks like brown sugar, not grey, and not ivory. He's used river sand, which I love the consistency of, but we really need to figure out this color immediately. I thought it was ivory buff, but it's not. Any help would be great, thanks!

http://oldvirginiabrick.com/project_photos/Colonial%20Full%20Range/

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threeapples

Here is another image of the mortar used with a different brick.

Here is a link that might be useful: mortar color

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 9:58AM
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athensmomof3

Did you call Old Virginia or email them? I am sure they will know. It is definitely not ivory buff which is what we have. It looks like what is on our current house which I thought was buff?

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 10:13AM
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threeapples

Yes, they said they are not sure. the buff our mason used looked like brown sugar. to me this looks like a cream color, but i'm not positive. i am in a huge hurry with this and the mason is in the dark about how to mix such a color. thanks.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 10:22AM
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athensmomof3

I don't think this is cream, at least not on my monitor. Looks closer to brown sugar to me (light brown sugar). The river sand could be darkening it some. Have you mixed it with a different sand?

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 12:50PM
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threeapples

No, the mortar was just mixed with river sand, at least that's what the mason called it. The brown sugar in our kitchen is a light brown color. This mortar on the website looks like a dark ivory cream to me, which is what I think would be really nice with the two bricks we're deciding between.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 1:43PM
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athensmomof3

I think the river sand is browner than whatever the other choice of sand is. Maybe that is making the difference.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 3:15PM
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threeapples

i'm not sure, the concrete sand (if that's what the standard is called) was yielding a white or grey mortar. i really want a dark cream color as shown in these photos and am at a complete loss about how the mason can achieve that.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 3:27PM
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athensmomof3

My monitor still shows that mortar as light brown sugar color, not a dark cream. Can he mix the buff with the white sand? Maybe that will get the look you want. Do you have a mortar chart? I think ivory buff is what is usually used when someone wants a cream but it is not a dark cream. Buff is the next step down, from what I understand - at least mortars that are typically used.

Mortars do dry lighter - I presume you have looked at them after they are fully dry?

What color is your brick? We have ivory buff going in on our patios but it is a brown brick (Old Savannah) since we have a greige painted brick house. It is not dark at all and I am not sure it would give you the look you want.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 5:34PM
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threeapples

yep, we looked at it when fully dry. it looks like the color of regular concrete, which is not what we want at all. we're trying to decide (still) between old virginia's bricks: old williamsburg and their colonial full range. i feel like the proper mortar will help us make the decision, but we're running out of time and it looks like we'll need to decide on the brick first!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 6:26PM
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athensmomof3

To me, ivory buff mortar works better with brown/gray bricks. This is a house with ivory buff mortar and river sand and it is the perfect complement to the brick. I am not sure I would like the ivory buff with a true red brick though.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 6:38PM
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threeapples

Here is a link to the brick we are currently favoring. The architect for the fourth pic down (a bank) said he used buff mortar. The first pic on this page is exactly the mortar I think looks best, but it's nowhere near the buff our mason used for our mock wall. Any ideas? What do you think about the mortar used in these pics-does it look good with the brick?
Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: brick

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 8:12PM
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athensmomof3

My guess would have been that it was buff too. That is why I asked about the sand - it can change the color. River sand sounds brown - maybe it is not. I think buff mortar is a nice traditional choice on that full color brick. That is what I have on my current house and, even though I didn't pick it, I like it a lot and it was one of the reasons we bought the house - the brick was pretty.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 8:33PM
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athensmomof3

The sand they are using to lay our patio brick is white - not tan or beige or brown. We are using ivory buff mortar, so maybe that is why.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 8:35PM
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threeapples

the river sand was only used for the recently-created mock wall, which appears a concrete color. the buff mortar used on the original mock wall was made with regular sand, not the river sand, so this had no bearing on the recent mock wall.
athensmom, or others, what color mortar do you suggest would look best with the brick i've linked to? thanks!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 10:59PM
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