Posts Tagged 'marble countertops'

Granite, Marble, Quartz or Laminate – Which countertop is right for you?

With our great nation’s holiday now behind us, did you take time to pay special attention to your cooking habits as we suggested in our last blog post? Cooking, at any time and for any occasion, is a necessity that is as simple or as extravagant as you wish to make it.

couple preparing a meal in their newly designed kitchenHaving a well-planned space, enough storage and decent work areas to prepare meals makes any cooking experience more efficient and enjoyable. Your countertops are also an important factor in how you use your kitchen for meal preparation. Do you slice and dice fruits and veggies right on the counter or do you use a cutting board? Using a cutting board will protect your countertop from scratches and stains, especially if your countertop is made from porous materials such as granite, marble or a laminate material that can be damaged from cutting.

Untidy kitchen table

Take extra care to prevent stains and scratches on your countertop

Do you tend to make big splashes when you’re cooking? Something to consider if you like making your own homemade tomato sauce, turkey dinner or roasting a delicious prime rib with an au jus sauce, is the possibility of splatter, drips and spills. This is where having a solid design plan for the specific needs of your future kitchen  will make a world of difference. Like cabinetry and decorative hardware, countertops also come in a wide variety of material, colors and textures, styles and capabilities.

Some of the most beautiful and decorative countertops are granite and marble. Both are natural resources and offer an abundant array of visual aesthetics with their color striations and patterns created by the environment over time. One caveat with these materials, however, is the fact that they are both porous and can absorb elements that will leave a stain on your counter. Be sure to take extra care during your kitchen activities to avoid damaging your countertop.

A great alternative to the natural beauties mentioned above is engineered stone known as quartz. The engineering process includes natural materials and man-made materials. The colors and patterns can be bold and vibrant for a fun and active kitchen, or more neutral for a space that is more traditional in caliber. Quartz countertops are becoming more widely known for durability against heat, stains and scratches. SileStone has just expanded their product line and now offer more vibrant colors and new collections that more closely resemble true granite. Speaking of scratches, solid surfaces, such as products made by Corian can be renewed if they are damaged.

silestone countertop sample tiles

Let our professionals here at Kitchen Views at National Lumber help you decide what type of countertop will work best for your home, your budget and your family!

Silestone Nebula Engineered Stone Countertops and Surfaces

Silestone Nebula Series Countertop

If you’re looking for marble countertops, but don’t have the space in your budget, you can always turn to the new Nebula series surfaces from Silestone. While nothing will ever quite be the real thing, Silestone’s veined engineered stone comes close, but even more importantly, gives you a marble-like look without the bother of staining or chipping. With prices starting from about $65 per square foot (somewhat more if you include the integrated sink), it’s very affordable and worth checking out.

There are six available colors: Altair, Cygnus, Lyra, Doradus, Merope, and Lagoon. All colors are available in either leather and polished finish. Check out the Silestone Nebula Series webpage for information about colors and more:.

Kitchen Views
www.kitchenviews.com

Selecting Countertop Materials

A wide selection of countertop materials is available to choose from, each with its own benefits and limitations. The following is a summary of the countertop options available for your kitchen or bath.

Granite Countertop on Island

Granite – Created from nature and formed by man, granite has fast become a popular choice for kitchen and bathroom countertops with a timeless appeal. Granite is an elegant and beautiful material that has a wide range of colors, patterns and finishes to choose from. It is an extremely hard material that can withstand heat and scratches. A sealer must be applied to granite on an annual basis to protect it from staining, as it is porous and can stain without this protection. Also, the seams in a granite countertop are visible. Most granite is polished prior to fabrication, giving it a shiny finish. “Honed” granite is also available, providing a more subtle matte finish.

Corian Solid Surface Countertop

Solid Surfaces – Developed by DuPont over 40 years ago, Corian was one of the first solid surfaces created specifically for countertop applications. Today, a number of manufacturers make a comparable nonporous surface, which will not stain and is completely renewable. One of the best attributes of a solid surface countertop is the fact that there are no visible seams and integral sinks are also available. With over 100 colors to choose from, all solid surfaces are accompanied by a manufacturer’s warranty.

Cambria Quartz Kitchen Countertop

Quartz Surfaces – One of the newest countertop materials available, quartz surfaces have entered the market within the past decade. This surface is a blend of natural and man-made materials that, like granite, can be fabricated with either a polished or honed finish. Cambria, HanStone, and LG Viatera are a few quartz surface options.

Engineered Stone – Considered a “care-free surface,” Engineered Stone is an extremely  durable material that is resistant to scratches, chips and stains, as well as being heat-resistant and easy to maintain. With many colors to choose from, you can count on consistency of color throughout your project, though a visible seam will be required when bonding slabs together. Most offer a ten year warranty on the product.

Marble Countertop on Kitchen Island

Marble – A beautiful natural material with a wide range of colors to choose from, marble offers some unusual  patterns and veining. However, since marble tends to be significantly more porous that granite, it is more likely to stain.

Laminates – Laminates offer an extraordinarily wide range of colors and patterns to choose from. This affordable countertop choice is being made much stronger and more durable than years ago. It is recommended that you do not place hot objects directly on a laminate countertop or cut directly on the surface, as damage may occur. A laminate surface is non-porous and therefore resistant to bacteria and stains, requiring only soap and water for easy cleaning. Laminates today offer a wide range of design options, some of which don’t look like laminate at all. Wilsonart HD countertops are a great example of this.

Formica Laminate Countertop

Other countertop options offered at Kitchen Views include wood in a variety of species and a variety of recycled countertop materials.

Click here to see more about the countertops offered by Kitchen Views.


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