Kitchen Countertops

I know there are a lot of man made stone composites used for kitchen countertops. Composites are made from acrylic, resin, marble dust and are often very energy intensive to manufacture. They have many properties that make them practical; hard wearing, indestructible, non-staining, germ resistant, easily repaired. And, in many cases, it is hard to tell them from the real thing.

There are also wood tops (not at all practical), cement, stainless, terrazzo, tile (the grout can get nasty) and finally, the 50’s favorite, formica. None of the above quite match the priceless beauty of a slab of natural stone, especially if it is 3 cm thick or thicker.

Personally, despite the fact that real stone can easily stain, need extra care with quick wipes from spills, lemon juice and red wine, I find there is magic in natural material especially since the countertop is the pivotal material in the kitchen. It is the connector between upper and lower cabinets, the thread that allows upper and lowers cabinets to be painted different colors, defines the style and color palette of the kitchen and, in many ways, informs the backsplash choice. The countertop is the most frequently observed item in the kitchen and it should provide inspiration with every glance.

I love stones with active surfaces.  You can almost feel the magic of the mountain in materials that have significant veining and multiple colors. That color variation and striation makes for great conversation about the choice you have made and how it connects to the backsplash and the color of the cabinetry and, ultimately, alignment of the kitchen to adjacent rooms.

My advice, get out of your comfort zone and dependence upon white as a countertop. There are so many fabulous stones, each with its own personality, energy, inspiration.

from Bathroom & Home


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