June 18, 2012

New Counters You Can Count On

I have designed a lot of beautiful (and functional) kitchens and bathrooms in my career.  There are so many details that go into these projects that it can be overwhelming to someone who is tackling it for the first time.  Today I want to talk about one of the most important selections you'll have to make and that is counters.

If your kitchen or bathroom need an update and you're not ready to commit to a full remodel, consider replacing just your counters and maybe adding a new tile back splash.  Those two changes alone can make a huge impact and can only increase the value of your space.

Here are the top three materials out there today, along with some photos...

This is still the top pick for counters in both kitchens and bathrooms.  There are tons of choices out there and the final one can really define the overall look of your space.  I tend to go with a more neutral granite for my clients, like Santa Cecilia or New Venetian Gold.  My biggest piece of advice regarding this type of counter is go see your slabs in person before they are installed.  Every piece of granite is unique and will NEVER look like the sample in the showroom.  If you can't get to the warehouse, insist on seeing photos of your slab before it's installed.
Granite Counters by White Oak Construction
Like granite, marble is a top pick for counters and is gaining in popularity.  I mainly use it in bathrooms, where staining is less likely to occur.  It has a beautiful look and evokes a sense of classic elegance.  
Carrera Marble Counters by Jennifer Taylor Design
Cappucinno Marble Counters by Jennifer Taylor Design

Engineered Stone
This category encompasses many brands, including my two favorites, Cambria and Zodiaq.  This product is 93% quartz compared to granite which is only 40% to 60%.  Quartz is one of the hardest and most common minerals on earth.  It is super easy to maintain and has a nonporous surface.  Over the years, the manufacturers have made great strides in developing colors that look more like real granite.  I really love this product and use it as much as natural stone.

Cambria Counters by Jennifer Taylor Design
From Cambria Photo Gallery

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