A Potted History
Stuart Furby, the founder trained in the use of traditional building materials as a stone conservator. He has worked under the guidance of many of the country's most prominent conservation architects on varied projects including cathedrals, vernacular buildings and even an art gallery.
Stuart has developed a modern lime paint for interiors and exteriors that allows buildings to breathe and salts to pass through, by combining naturally hydraulic and non hydraulic limewash bound with acrylic. This increases freeze-thaw durability and abrasion resistance when used indoors, and bond strength to both porous substrates and masonry/emulsion painted surfaces. It's high solids content gives good opacity reducing the number of coats required of limewash to one or two coats internally and up to three externally while maintaining its conservation quaility status.
Lime washes are one of the oldest traditional paints. Made from putty lime, they're environmentally friendly, absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere to carbonate (harden), thus helping to reduce one of the greenhouse gases.
Traditionally, lime washes required regular maintenance, as without the addition of binders, such as casein (milk protein) or tallow (animal fat), they had a relatively short life as a result of flaking or powdering. Regularly painted over however, the additional layers of limewater wash (lime wash) would consolidate the layers beneath and eventually build up in thickness to form what was effectively a lime render, lasting hundreds of years. The porosity of lime allows moisture to evaporate out of all walls rapidly, making it a suitable paint in all areas where there is moisture and as an exterior paint, its alkalinity naturally inhibits mould growth.
Most modern paints prevent moisture from entering the wall and from leaving the building as water gets behind the paint, through expansion and contraction cracks, rising damp or water leaks. Moisture trapped beneath the surface causes blistering and further deterioration of the wall if left resulting in spalling brickwork or powdering plaster.
Designers and builders should start specifying the use of lime to help buildings breathe again, learning from the success of our medieval builders in this age of technology.