Last month we shared an overview of different materials to consider using for counter tops for your kitchen or bathroom remodel. This week we’re going to delve into natural stone, specifically granite and marble.
Granite was a big hit over a dozen years ago. Back then, it was the option I found my clientele gravitating toward the most when they wanted to change out their laminate countertops. It certainly is more luxurious than laminate, so even without changing out cabinets, it makes a big difference in the way a kitchen looks. Developers consistently used granite when creating new communities across America. Now it seems like granite is the minimum standard for many kitchens and baths. The colors range from very light to black and everything in between. The patterns range from very small patches or chunks to huge swirls across many feet of a slab. There can be many colors within granite that help make up its overall look. There are some beautiful varieties that have flecks of iridescence that really make the stone come alive.
Granite reacts well with heat and acids, but not abrasive cleaners or pads. In addition, you’ll want to ensure your granite is sealed from the get-go to reduce absorption of liquids. You will want to get it resealed after ten years, but possibly sooner depending on use. The edge styles are almost infinite with granite, so you can pump up the style with this detail alone.
Marble is a classic. It looks good, it feels good to the touch, but it’s a bit delicate. It’s a softer stone than granite. It will look beautiful in a powder room or a master bathroom and will be a nice surface to knead or roll out dough on in the kitchen. It can be polished to a reflective finish or honed for a softer look. While it is heat resistant, it does absorb liquids and can etch with red wine or marinara sauce. It will patina over time. It can chip or crack along a vein. If you want it to not look as worn, marble may not be right for you. If you love it and can care for it and don’t mind it wearing like your favorite cashmere sweater, it could be perfect. That comparison isn’t a coincidence. Marble is expensive and is a luxurious material, ranging from $150-250/square foot. If you love the look of it but are worried about the maintenance, you can use it solely as a baking counter. This way you get the look you want but in a smaller dose with less risk (you could also use marble tile as a backsplash for another elegant choice). Another option that looks like marble is manmade quartz or porcelain. We touched on it here and will expand upon it in a future post.
So, tell us: do you prefer granite or marble, or another surface for your kitchen or bathroom counters? Let us know in the comments!
Written by Emilie Kyle