A slow walk around the 10-acre materials yard at Pat Scott Masonry reveals the organized collection of owner Eddie Langhorne’s trade. His business is all about Santa Barbara sandstone — that 30-million-year-old sedimentary rock angulating from our mountainsides and foothills — and the elegantly rustic look it lends to the South Coast’s everyday charm and many of its exemplary homes.
From poolside pavers and gateway columns to ornate entryways and hand-sculpted fireplace surrounds, sandstone provides a durable beauty that complements entire neighborhoods.
Almost all of Langhorne’s sandstone stockpile is sourced on-site during construction projects. For example, it’s fairly common that boulders large and small are unearthed when a new homesite is initially graded. That’s when Langhorne’s team comes in with shovels, wheelbarrows, loaders, cranes, and dump trucks.
Back at the materials yard, located in Goleta, the cobbles are sifted and sorted by size into hog-wire baskets, ready for the next installation, often at the same property from which they were sourced. The sifted-off dirt makes its way into garden and landscaping projects all over town.
“We try to limit our waste,” Langhorne says, pointing out that small scraps of sandstone get crushed into gravel for driveways and drains behind retaining walls. “We’re left with just a bit of dust on the ground.”
Downtown, on the industrial lower Eastside, Langhorne has a 5,000-square-foot shop with a 10-ton crane, a stone lathe, and three computer-guided stone-cutting saws. The biggest blade measures two meters across and its teeth are made partially from diamonds, enabling it to slice precisely through very heavy, very thick sandstone boulders. Taking form, the cut boulders eventually become garden benches, oversized patio pavers, antiqued veneer siding, or the roomy baking slab of a custom outdoor pizza oven.
The lathe and smaller saws can handle the more intricate cuts. But for truly artistic touches, Langhorne relies on his small crew of expert stone carvers. One of them, Salvador Melendez, was a young mason in Jalisco, Mexico, before coming to Santa Barbara a few decades back. Prior to landing a job with Pat Scott Masonry, Melendez carved the Sunday brunch ice sculptures at the La Cumbre Country Club.
“It’s really the clients who set the bar,” says Langhorne. “Our talents have been refined by the people who push our abilities.”
A Carpinteria native who grew up with the son of company founder Pat Scott, Langhorne worked for Scott as an estimator before branching out on his own. In 1998, as Scott neared retirement, he approached Langhorne to buy Pat Scott Masonry, which had been in business since 1960.
Langhorne seized the opportunity, combining his crew with Scott’s to offer elite stonemasonry that’s highly adapted to the textures and hardness of our local sandstone.