Countertops are a big deal because they are a big design feature in a room covering a sizable amount of space. Cost, durability, and color — just a few of the many things to consider when selecting countertop materials. Let’s explore countertops from planning to pros and cons of today’s most popular picks.
When planning countertops consider the entire room and all of its elements. Pick a surface material that coordinates nicely with surrounding cabinets, flooring, and other built-in design features in the room. Also be sure that the countertop you have chosen compliments the overall architecture of the home.
Natural Stone Know-How
Take the time to view countertop materials in person. Keep in mind natural stones may be labeled similarly but can vary widely in color, detail, and visual movement. Know your countertop surface measurements when you shop so you can reserve the exact stone to be used for your countertop. If there is a unique vein or color detail that you particularly like in a stone, you may even be able to request specific placement of that detail when countertops are cut. Islands and bar tops are highly visible places to spotlight interesting countertop characteristics.
Select countertops that are best suited for the intended use. Designers prefer granite, quartz, butcher block, and marble in the kitchen. These selections are both highly attractive and able to handle food prep and spills. Granite, quartz, and solid surface all hold up well to splashing making them excellent choices for the bath. More affordable laminate and granite countertop surfaces allow for easy clean up and are often recommended for the laundry or mudroom.
Pros and Cons of Popular Picks
Pros: Granite is famous for its durability and low maintenance. It is stain, heat, and chip resistant. This natural stone offers a depth of design texture that you simply won’t find in other countertops.
Cons: Natural stone can be difficult to repair if chipped.
Pros: Quartz is super durable and chip resistant. This engineered stone does not require sealing and is available in light colors including white.
Cons: This material is not heat resistant and is often more costly than granite. Some patterns draw attention to the fact this product is man made.
Pros: If you are after a luxe look, marble does the job. This natural stone is semi-heat resistant, available in light colors, and timeless in design.
Cons: A softer stone that easily absorbs stains, oils, and acidic based products, so regular maintenance like sealing is necessary. Marble is often more costly than granite.
Pros: Wood offers a warm, natural look and is more affordable compared to stone options.
Cons: Butcher block is easy scratched, dented, and damaged. Sanding, oiling, and other maintenance is required to avoid heavy distress. Wood does not hold up well to direct heat, so hot pads must be used under hot items to avoid scorching. Knives can also cause damage so using a cutting board for food chopping is recommended.
Less popular countertop materials include soapstone, solid-surface, stainless steel, ceramic tile, concrete, and laminate. Due to product availability, durability, and/or installation requirements these materials tend to be used less often.
Countertops can be costly, so think of them as a design investment. Everything Home can help you to make the best choice! We think beyond trends when selecting countertops — our team considers design, durability, and duration to make timeless picks that serve clients for many years. Contact us today to learn more about our uniquely custom interior design services.
Happy Home, Happy Life.