Limestone vs Travertine
Limestone and Travertine are essentially the same type of stone, with travertine having a unique formation process that distinguishes itself from other limestones. These are both sedimentary rocks, formed by the accumulation of layers upon layers of crushed fossils and eroded rock at the bottoms of lakes, oceans and other bodies of water. Their composition is over 50% calcite, which means they have a high acid sensitivity and are formed with less heat and pressure than their marble and granite counterparts, making them generally softer and more porous.
Their distinctive attribute is their linear design structure, caused by the sediment accumulation over the years, thus leaving their formation process a visible story for all to see. It is called vein-cut when we see these distinctive linear patterns, and cross-cut when the stones are fabricated perpendicular to this natural structure. Essentially, it is a cross-section of the stone that shows where certain minerals were accumulated. This adds to their natural beauty, allowing for different perspectives based on how the stones are sculpted and transformed by the fabricator or artist.
Travertine tells its own unique story. Being typically riddled with holes caused by its formation near hot springs and geysers. These pockets can later be filled during the fabrication process with resin, or left naturally unfilled, exposing their nature.
Both stones have been used throughout Europe and America in monumental architecture and design. However it is important to keep in mind that due to their relative softness and acid sensitivity, the development of surface wear and patina will be much quicker than with harder stones.