While masonry companies, as companies go, are a relatively new phenomenon, masons, masonry guilds, and masonry associations have been part of every civilization dating back thousands of years. It was masonry that built the monuments of Egypt, including the pyramids, and many of the great monuments of Ancient Greece and Rome.
It was also guilds of Masons who built the great Christian cathedrals of Europe after Rome was converted, and it was guilds of masons who built the early centers of learning and industry that evolved into our modern civilization today. These guilds enjoyed special rights and privileges in every country, and were allowed to cross borders freely regardless of their nationality provided they could do and would do the work required of them.
What makes the history of masonry itself so relevant to masonry companies today is that the basic forms and raw materials of masonry itself have remained relatively unchanged over the centuries. In spite of all of our satellites, armaments, and computers, humans still love to build with stone and brick.
Examples of any and all of the following structures both modern and ancient masonry:
- Stone Retaining Walls
- Stone siding
- Brick siding
- Outdoor Fireplaces
Many innovative and resourceful Houstonians have some experience in working with stone or brick. Either they learned these skills on a previous job, or they learned them through some form of self study. Such individuals, because of their knowledge and skills, many times believe that they do not need a masonry company to build a wall or a walkway, or to add something like brick siding to their home.
The challenge these homeowners will face, if they take the do-it-yourself course, is that masonry is not as simple as it appears when considered from the perspective of vantage point. It is one thing to build an individual structure with impeccable grace and skill. It is another thing altogether to build that structure in relationship to other landmarks on the Houston landscape, lawn and garden vegetation, and the architecture of one’s own house.
Structures must be designed how they work in unity with home architecture and the other many elements of landscape design. Otherwise, your many fine masonry forms are more likely than not to end up looking disproportionate in size and shape to the property as a whole.
Another problem that DYI aficionados frequently encounter is gaining access to quality raw materials. Stone quarries and brick mills do not sell commercial-grade supplies to individual homeowners. The individual must then go to a retail center for bricks and stone, and these materials will not be nearly as good in quality as commercial-grade materials that are available only through authorized vendors such landscaping and masonry companies.
This brings us to another point when it comes to adding masonry to any landscape: It is best to hire a landscaper as a general contractor, and then let the landscaper subcontract the appropriate masonry company. This will ensure that all structures added to the property will work with the organic elements of landscape design and provide a more appropriate compliment to home architecture. It is a means of streamlining the expertise of a mason into the broader picture of a master landscape design plan.
At the end of the day, the homeowner pays the landscaping company for the entire project, and the landscaper pays the masonry contractors their asked for price. Everyone wins in this scenario, with the homeowner receiving and impeccable landscape design, and having had to do none of the legwork to look for and hire multiple layers of contractors that were necessary to build it as a team.