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Natural Limestone Preferred by Homeowners, Architects for Strength and Beauty

February, 7 2007—CHICAGO

Despite the availability of less expensive alternatives, natural stone maintains a notable cache among discerning homeowners, as well as architects and interior designers. In a recent article, Traditional Building magazine said, “Hand-carved stone possesses a life and character that no other material can duplicate. Thus, although carved stone is relatively expensive, demand has remained brisk—even though there are many less-expensive cast products out there that look “about the same.”

“Of course, no other material can compete with the look and durability of natural stone,” says Olivier Dumont, the master carver and owner of Atelier Jouvence Custom Stoneworks in Chicago. “Natural stone brings a strength, beauty, authenticity, and durability to our work that cannot be matched by cast stone substitutes.” Atelier Jouvence hand-carves customized stone fireplaces, fountains, staircases, columns and capitals, kitchen range hoods and interior/exterior ornamentation, mainly from imported French limestone.

The majority of Mr. Dumont’s clients purchase hand-carved stone fireplace mantels—for their obvious aesthetic value, and because they often increase the value of a client’s home. Fireplaces also hold a special place in the hearts of homeowners and their families. According to Chesapeake Home, the Mid-Atlantic’s House and Gardening Magazine, fireplaces tend to be “the focal point of any room” and have become “a sort of cultural icon…synonymous with holidays and nostalgia.” As such, there is no “other single aspect of a house more commonly associated with the concept of home sweet home.”

To learn more about adding a hand-carved natural stone fireplace to your home, please call Atelier Jouvence at (312) 492-7922 or visit