Everything you Need to Know About the German Smear Stone

Have you ever dreamed of having a home that imitated the old architecture of the Medieval ages? If not, have you at least thought about consolidating stones with ancient world painting techniques like German Schmear?

The German Schmear has been around for quite a long time in the construction and painting industry. In recent years, however, it has grabbed the attention of a few homeowners. People want to try something new that could challenge the stature of their houses.

Everything You Need to Know About The German Smear Stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: With Love, Mercedes

If you haven’t tried the technique, read on to know how to German smear a fireplace or every wall of your home. If you like, you can even do it yourself. The step by step process is very straightforward.

Stones as Building Blocks

For many years, stones have been the main building blocks of houses, buildings, and other establishments. In the 19th century, however, concrete and other cheaper building blocks were introduced. The Industrial Revolution paved the way for people to embrace more affordable materials for their homes.

Stones As Building Blocks German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Jamie Y. Steele

Despite all that, a lot of new architects have embraced stones as building blocks. That is mostly due to stones’ sturdiness and ability to withstand time, climates, and disasters. Others have at least incorporated stones to clad concrete or brick sets for added protection.

Houses made of concrete, bricks, and wood or a mix of all are commonplace in the modern world. However, only a few ones have integrated stones to the building foundation of their homes. Many of them are not aware of the benefits of stones as construction materials.

History of Stone Architecture

Prehistoric humans used stone tools for eating and other tasks during the Stone Age. However, it was during the Neolithic period, or the “New Stone Age” when they started building houses. Stones are the first building blocks of human-made dwellings. The first-ever stone house was built in 3500 BC in Scotland, which is the world’s oldest house.

History of Stone Architecture German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: The Vintage News

After the Stone Age, other building materials were discovered. Many of these tools were incorporated with stones to build bridges and other constructions. As more construction materials were introduced, stones have faded in the background.

Despite the fading popularity of stones, it continues to be the best material for homes and establishments. The oldest houses in human history are all made of stones. People cannot deny its superior protective power and longevity.

What is a stone building made of?

In the past, stone houses are entirely made of stone. No more, no less. The people just stack the stones to be able to build a shelter. They relied on gravity to make the stones stick together.

In countries where the mortar is commonly used, the mortar was made of mud and limestone. This weak type of mortar was only applied to be able to prevent water or airflow from going inside stone homes.

In recent times, however, mortar made from cement and other sealants rely on what kind of stone is built or the other blocks constructed with it.

What is stone building made of German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: One Kind Design

The cost of stone architecture

Because stones offer the best durability and longevity for homes and other establishments, it is the most expensive building block. If homeowners jampack all their walls with stones, then the expected cost would be anywhere from 87,000 USD to 130,000 USD. The price per square meter ranges from 40 to 42 USD.

Advantages of living in a stone house

Advantages of living in a stone house German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Imgur

Stones are the most durable building blocks.

If you use stones for your home, it is meant to be enjoyed in the very long run. That house will be passed on for thousands of generations to come. It can stand the test of time and other inevitable external factors like climates or any accidents.

Stones are easy to clean.

A simple splash of water can clean stones.

Stone homes are environmentally-friendly.

Once you choose stones for your house’s walls, you are living in a guilt-free environment. You don’t need to be wasteful of other materials because stones last very long. More than everything, stones, and their accompanying materials are all-natural.

You also save up on energy with stones because they adjust the temperature to what is right for humans. If it’s cold, stones bring in some heat. If it’s too hot, stones instill cool air in the room.

Stones are Versatile.

There are several types of stones available in the market. Whatever style for your house you prefer, there will be stones that are perfect for you. Stones adapt to the whole look of your homes.

Stone VS. Other building blocks

As mentioned earlier, stones have been the most popular materials for architecture until the Industrial Revolution, and the 19th century introduced machines that gave rise to easier accumulation of building blocks.

The Industrial Revolution also led to more cost-effective materials as the demand for them rose. True enough, building materials like concrete, bricks, and wood are a lot cheaper than stones.

It takes a long time for stones to be constructed than the use of other building materials. That’s because the selection of stones that will be perfect for a house or room takes time. The person choosing the stones should be an expert in the stone-building field.

However, stones always win over other construction materials because it is more durable and protective. The only downside is that it can be costly. If you have no budget for stones, you may want to cover a particular area of your wall or fireplace.

Stone vs Other Building Blocks German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Lifetime Exteriors

Why should you incorporate stones on your brick or cemented walls?

If you have no budget for building your entire home using stones, then you should at least opt to use it for your fireplace or living room. Stones offer a lot of comforts, especially during weather changes. It’s also an excellent way to diversify both your living interiors and exteriors.

Can You German Smear on Stone?

The German Schmear Technique is Flexible. Since you use mortar for binding the stones, then you can easily do everything to a stone that involves mortar.

The most popular German Schmear applications are stone fireplaces. While only a few people have stone homes, most of their fireplaces are made of stone. That’s because stones are the best absorbents of heat for a fireplace and an entire home.

With the German Schmear technique, your stone fireplace, kitchen, or living room can mimic the traditional sense. This is both an old and new style that your guests can marvel upon and love.

Can You German Smear On Stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Free Range Cottage

Benefits of doing the German Schmear Technique on Stones

The Clean Look 

The German schmear has an abstract feel into its whole look. The style is flexible–its design need not follow any rules. While it must look sanitary, German Schmear on a stone will look clean at whatever angle.

Benefits of doing the German Schmear Technique on Stones German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Heathered Nest

Superior Quality

You have two of the most enduring materials rolled into one technique: the mortar and stones. What more can you ask for?


Like stones and their binding elements, most of the materials for the German schmear are sustainable. Depending on which technique works for you, you may opt only to use zero-waste materials.

Old World Architecture

The new modern world has limited the use of medieval architecture to homes and establishments. German smear houses bring a different feel to several neighborhoods in the country. Aside from their uniqueness, being one with nature and the old world offers them an edge in architecture. Their homes are one that can surpass the time and challenges of every generation.


You’ve already spent quite a fortune for your stone fireplace or living room, so your room update costs should at least be minimized. The German schmear technique makes this possible as its materials are very accessible and cheap.

How to Do the German Schmear Technique on Stones

Are you looking to update your room or your stone fireplace? The German schmear technique is something that a lot of people love. They have been using this technique to their interiors: living room, kitchen, and fireplace.

Doing the German Schmear on stones is just like how to German schmear on bricks except for a few things. Because stones are irregularly-shapes and rough, there’s a need to assess each material to use.

The materials you’ll need:

  1. Premixed Mortar
  2. Water
  3. Power Drill with Concrete Paddle Bit
  4. Putty Knife
  5. Scissors
  6. Paint Brush
  7. Grout Sponge
  8. Ziplock bag
  9. Gloves
The materials you need German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Pine and Prospect Home

Step by step process

Step 1: Clean your walls or stone fireplace before smearing. Make sure you get rid of all the dirt and other elements on its surface.

Step 2: Mix the premixed mortar with water to form a joint compound. The ratio is usually 30% mortar and 70% water. You may play around the ratio to achieve the consistency you want.

Step 3: Using your putty knife, scoop up some joint compound and put it inside the ziplock bag.

Step 4: Cut a portion of plastic on the tip of the ziplock bag.

Step 5: Add pressure to the ziplock bag so the mortar will come out. Start putting mortar on the edges of the stones.

Step by step process German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Pine and Prospect Home

Step 6: Instead of using the sponge or putty knife to spread mortar into, using a large paintbrush is easier. Get your paintbrush and spread the mortar from the edges to the surface.

At first, you might see that using a paintbrush cover everything in white. That will depend on how much mortar you put into the surface. You don’t need to worry because, after that step, you’ll have to remove some mortar.

Step 7: Remove some of the mortar with the use of the grout sponge. The mortar can bond with the stone surface, so don’t wait until 20 minutes before removing some of it.

If the mortar can’t be removed anymore, use some water to scrub the sponge along with it.

How long does German Smear take to dry?

It would take about 20-45 minutes before the German smear dries out. Make sure that you remove some of the mortar from the surface of the stones before that timeframe.

Points to Bear in Mind

Points to Bear in Mind German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Style By Emily Henderson
  • Make sure that you list or draw the pattern and look you want for your German smear fireplace or stone walls. That way, you’ll be able to apply the mortar more seamlessly when you’re on the job. There would be no room for mistakes.
  • If your stones are old, crumbled, and have irregular shapes, add new mortar on it. The new mortar would add more to its binding factor.
  • If the new mortar you put it still doesn’t suffice, then use a paint sealer. It ensures the mortar would bond to the stones and won’t ever let go.

The Beauty of German Schmear on Stone

The superb quality that stones and the German Schmear stand the test of time. It is undeniable, but the beauty it exudes makes it stand out and get lots of love from architects. Here are the German Smear room and fireplace photos made of stones. They won’t make you think twice about trying out the new German smear on the stone technique.

The beauty of German Schmear on stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Pinterest

From time to time, you might encounter one house that genuinely exemplifies medieval stone architecture. This house is one of the very few.

The Beauty of German Schmear on stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: BHG

Don’t you love homes such as this? The brick set and stones complement each other. They are indeed one of a kind.

The beauty of German Smear on stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Chris Loves Julia

There is more to love in a German schmear fireplace than its heating capacity. Its elegance is like a monarch’s fireplace during the old world.

The Beauty of German Schmear in stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier Masonry
Source: Pinterest

German schmear is commonly applied in fireplaces, but wouldn’t you love bathing in a room that emulates the old world?

The Beauty of German Smear in stone German Smear Stone | Alexander and Xavier
Source: Free Range Cottage

This design creates a clean and old look. Who wouldn’t like hanging out in a room like this?


German Schmear on a fireplace or any part of a room is still uncommon, but many people already embrace it. The technique is very adaptable. You can use it for a lot of construction materials. You can even do it yourself. The possibilities are endless, you can check out our article for additional information on how to prevent your project to gone wrong.

If you have no time to DIY, then you can hire skillful and creative masons to do the German Schmear fireplace or any room for you. Contact us.

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