Morroccan Tadelakt how applying Tierrafino STONE

Tadelakt polijst steen
Polishing Tadelakt with a Tierrafino poliishing stone Photo: Carl Giskes

Working with Tierrafino ‘STONE’ lime plaster

Tadelakt / lime mortar is considered to be one of the most difficult plasters to apply. Unless you are a very experienced do-it-yourselfer, it is wise to have Tierrafino STONE applied by a professional. For a shiny result in all aspect you will need: Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt, Tadelakt soap and the right tools including a polishing stone. If you would want to get started with lime mortar yourself, you will find the processing instructions, the requirements for the appropriate surfaces and further technical information in the product sheets for Tierrafino STONE and Tierrafino STONE Soap. All other product datasheets can be found under downloads. In addition, the instruction video below provides clear information and inspiration about the processing of Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt. Do not forget to turn on the subtitles when watching the video, it is available in various languages!

How to apply Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt – only for the true professional

Tadelakt Tadelakt means (roughly translated) to ‘rub’ or ‘massage’.

Tierrafino STONE has a marble-like appearance and is impact resistant after hardening.

The special STONE effect is obtained by polishing the lime plaster with … a stone.

How to apply Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt


The processing of Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt is not easy, and best results can be achieved after sufficient practice. Constantly observing the drying process of the wall or object is important for achieving a beautiful Tadelakt end result.


The temperature of the air and of the wall / object must not be lower than 5ºC. It is wise to keep the doors and windows of the room closed during and after the processing of Tadelakt. Also avoid having a heat source in the workplace, such as a heater, large construction lamps or direct sunlight.


Load-bearing, stable, constantly dry, absorbent, sufficiently coarse for mechanical adhesion and free from dust and grease. Remove film-binding residue. Tierrafino BASE is a suitable surface for dry areas. A waterproof surface is required in wet areas. Preferably prime the wall with Ardex P52 and then 6mm Ardex A950. To prevent structural cracks, the substrate must not work or bend under all circumstances.

Tadelakt ondergrond Kalk- Zand- Cementmortel

Tadelakt surface coarse lime-sand-cement mortar


For the application of Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt wall finish, you need: bowl, mixer, metal chip, plastic chip, wooden sanding board, sponge, polishing stone, brush, floor cloth and various types of plastic materials such as a plastic bag.
The stone used for polishing the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt wall finish is preferably a semi-precious stone, such as an agate. In any case, the stone must have a hardness of at least 5 out of 10. The harder the better. The stone should lie comfortably in the hand and should have a seemingly flat side (slightly rounded), with which the polishing is done. Basalt and granite are great types of stone to work with. These types of stone can be cut into oval shapes with rounded edges. In addition to Tierrafino outlets, suitable Tadelakt stones can also be found in mineral & fossil shops and on the riverside (if you know what to look for).

Adding Water

Mixing Tierrafino Stone Tadelakt lime mortar

Wall finishing Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt is supplied in powder form in the appropriate buckets. It is possible to immediately add water and process the plaster immediately. For a paste which is easier to apply – after adding the 5.5 liters of water to the 12.5 kg Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt powder – leave the bucket with the lid on for 72 hours. It is not necessary to stir in between.

When the bucket is opened after three days, an apparently dry mass is found. Put this (still moist) Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt in a tub, by adding a little water and stirring a nice creamy paste is recreated. Stir for at least 15 minutes.

Moisten the surface/object

Tadelakt ondergrond bevochtigen
Moisten the Tadelakt surface

Moisten the wall. Even if it does not absorb, the substrate must always be moistened just before applying the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt. Otherwise there is a risk that the Tierrafino SSTONE Tadelakt will not bond.
Substrates that have just been set up (min. 24 hours) still contain enough moisture and therefore you have enough time to properly finish the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt. The drier the substrate, the more it must be moistened just before applying the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt. First read the information about different surfaces in the product datasheet.


Tadelakt opbrengen
Apply Tadelakt with a trowel
Tadelakt aanbrengen
Applying Tadelakt
Tadelakt verwerken
Applying Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt –  Photo: Carl Giskes

Apply the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt with a layer of 4-5 mm on the wall. Now wait until the plaster has set in such a way that only the top 1-2 mm can still be worked.

Shapes / flattening

Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt lime mortar shaping

Flatten the wall, or give a more precise shape to your object, with a wet wood sanding board. Different shapes of wooden sanding boards are needed for different three-dimensional objects. If the desired shape is not achieved after one sanding, wait a while and sand again.

Tadelakt met houtplank schuren
Sand Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt with a wooden board – Photo: Wolf Backhaus
Tadelakt schuren
Fine sanding Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt – Photo: Carl Giskes

Smoothen with a trowel

Then smoothen the wall or object with a metal or plastic trowel. To push the smaller pieces of lime into the surface, which are necessary to give the different effects to the finish of Tadelakt, such as Venetian plaster, or to create a very smooth surface, more or less force is required based on the experience with the material.

Tadelakt met plastic spaan glad maken
Smoothen Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt with a plastic trowel – Photo: Wolf Backhaus

It is important to regularly polish the entire surface to continuously push fine lime particles into the surface. It is better to polish in one place for a short time more often than less often and for a very long time.


Before the surface has completely dried, it is possible to make grooves, like in an LP-record, with a stone. Small, circular movements with the stone add structure to the surface. This operation with the stone in wet condition is representative of Tadelakt.

Tadelakt met steen polisten
Polishing Tadelakt with a stone / Tierrafino STONE lime mortar from Marrakech
Tadelakt polijsten
Polishing Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt

Applying structure to Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt
With this technique you apply certain movements to the wall that will become visible at a later stage due to different incidences of light on the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt.
By then polishing with a plastic trowel and waiting shorter or longer, the texture created with the stone are rubbed away more or less. While polishing, look for the moment when the signature of the stone remains and an even shine is created.

Obtaining an even shine becomes more and more difficult if after the treatment with the stone you do wait too long before polishing with plastic!


Tadelakt Scrafito
Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt Scrafito – Applicator: Gabi Krewet – Photo: Carl Giskes
Tadelakt FIU LOGO
FIU LOGO in Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt – Applicator: Carl Giskes – Photo: Waldo Bien
Tadelakt en goud
Gold leaf on Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt – Applicator: Carl Giskes – Photo: Carl Giskes FIU Bolongano Italy

Adding Scrafito into Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt
Before Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt is polished with soapy water, it is possible to scratch a ‘Scrafito’ into the Tadelakt. This scratched Tadelakt is also waterproof after polishing with a stone and soapy water. Polishing also strengthens these specific textured areas.

Polishing with soapy water

Tadelakt met zeep polijsten
Polishing Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt with soap – EXPO2000 Hannover
Tadelakt zeep opbrengen
Applying soap onto Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt lime mortar from Morocco

When, through continuous polishing, a shine has been obtained on the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt, let it dry for between 6 and 24 hours (depending on speed of drying), before polishing the wall or object with a mixture of 1 x part Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt soap and 15 x parts water.

In some cases it is necessary to wait somewhat longer than 24 hours before polishing with stone and soap.

When polishing with soap too early, there is a chance that the surface will be roughened again by the stone. The soapy water is applied with a brush.

If drops appear and run off the wall, you should quickly scrub them away with a soft cloth!

Make sure that enough soapy water has been applied to allow the stone to slide properly over the Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt and make small, circular movements with the stone.

After polishing with the stone, the polishing with a sock comes in a thin plastic bag, also with small circular movements. The soapy water reacts with the Tadelakt, making the Tadelakt waterproof.

Do not polish in one spot on the wall for more than 2 minutes. Polish 2 minutes, wait an hour, then polish another 2 minutes and so on!

Polishing – 2

As long as Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt still has its wet color, it is still possible to push in the stucco layer with a stone and soapy water. Bathrooms and other wet areas should be treated at least 5 times with a stone and soapy water. There is no precise time indication within which the 5 polishing steps must take place, this can be within two days or a week.

Tadelakt boenen

Washing with Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt with soapy water

After 6 weeks, reapply soapy water to the wall or object and rub with a soft cloth until the soapy water is completely rubbed in.


Repairs are always possible. The surface must therefore be thoroughly cleaned. Apply Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt to the damaged area and finish as described above.
Repairs remain, more or less, but always visible, which also gives charms and liveliness to the whole over time.

Rest material

Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt, when wet, is perishable and should be used within 2 months after adding water. Provided that the wetted Tadelakt is kept tightly closed in the original Tierrafino STONE bucket, adding a little water and stirring can immediately deliver a creamy paste again.

Drying time

Depending on temperature, humidity of the air and to what extent the substrate absorbs, Tierrafino STONE Tadelakt needs between 2 hours and 24 hours to dry, in such a way that polishing to a shine has already taken place.

The final colour can be seen after about 1 week. Tadelakt is fully hardened after about 6 months.
Walls of a shower cabin may be used after 1 week, bathroom floors after some 4 weeks

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The information in this product description has been compiled with the greatest care. However, Tierrafino does not accept any responsibility for direct or indirect damage that could occur when using the information provided. With each new release of the product information, the validity of the previous release expires.