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Choosing The Right Countertop

By Katarina Berger

Whether you’re doing a complete remodel or simply giving your kitchen or bathroom a facelift, the countertop can make or break the room. To me the countertop is an accessory, like a beautiful necklace, and it has to complement the rest of the outfit.

For a lot of my clients choosing their countertop is scary! Let’s go through the most popular materials and break them down.

GRANITE

is still a top choice for many. Granite is both beautiful, stable,  and durable….it’s basically a chunk of rock taken right from mother earth and it’s like having a piece of art in your home.  While an extremely strong material and great for kitchens, bathroom, and fireplaces, granite is somewhat absorbent and should be sealed regularly.

Price point: $39 psf-$59 psf with the exotics starting at $75 psf and up.

QUARTZ

The latest star of countertops. Quartz is becoming very popular and I think that’s due to its beauty and ease of maintenance. You don’t have to seal it and it is stain and scorch resistant. However I would still not put a hot pan on it without a trivet, quartz countertops contain resin which can melt under high heat and leave a mark. Quartz is especially popular for contemporary kitchens and baths because unlike granite with its swirls and dots quartz is available in muted monotone colors. Of course if you want quartz that looks like granite or marble you can get that too!

Price point: $65psf-$109 psf

MARBLE

The classic queen of countertops. Marble is beautiful, exotic, and elegant but has certain quirks. It’s porous, can stain and scratch, and needs to be resealed regularly. It works well in bathrooms where there is less traffic but for kitchens I don’t really advise it. However, some of my more adventurous clients have installed in the kitchen and they love it, so if you have to have marble and you’re willing to look after it (seal it regularly, wipe up spills quickly, be gentle with it) then go for it. If not, stick to quartz or granite.

Price point: $59 psf with exotics starting at $75 psf and up.

SOAPSTONE

I love the rugged earthy beauty of soapstone. It is an inert material and impervious to chemicals, acid, and heat. It does have a tendency to dent and scratch and it does need regular oiling to bring out the natural beauty of the stone.

Price point: $59 – $75 psf

RECYCLED GLASS

A recycled glass countertop makes a statement! If you want a unique countertop made out of recycled jars and bottles then this is for you. The colors are bright and beautiful and the material is durable and easy to maintain, similar to granite.

Price point: $95 psf and up

CHOOSING THE RIGHT COLOR

This is where working with a designer comes in. I find there’s a delicate balance between the cabinets, tile and countertop that just has to come together. Then there’s the floor, AND the wall paint color. It’s no wonder people get confused! What I like to do with my clients is have them bring in a sample of their cabinet and floor if possible. Then we all head out to the granite yard and go up and down the aisles propping our samples up against the slabs. What I usually find is that we can eliminate 75% of the slabs almost immediately and then often we are left with 2-4 favorites. From there it’s just a case of pick the one you love the most because all of them are going to work with your color scheme.

If I’m helping a client choose everything:  cabinetry, countertop, backsplash and floor, (for example, if Countertop.Expert is doing their kitchen remodel and I’m designing their kitchen) the way I work is I usually start with the cabinet, then the countertop, then the floor and backsplash tile. It’s kind of like layering a cake! Or like putting an outfit together, with one piece being the star and the others taking complementary positions. Think Angelina Jolie with a simple black dress and fabulous earrings! Confused? Just watch the Oscars and you’ll see exactly what I mean. J

 

See the beauty, live beautifully.

 

Katarina

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Phone: (888) 660 5705
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