During the process of a kitchen renovation, choosing a new countertop is often one of the most difficult and important decisions a homeowner will face. We have had clients confess that selecting the right countertop involved months of research to find the perfect one. This week we are going to take a look at countertop materials, and discuss creative ways you can implement countertops outside the kitchen to enhance other rooms in your home.
Types of Countertops
Countertops have come a long way since simple laminate—your options are practically limitless, from colors to patterns to textures and materials. Here is an overview of popular countertop materials.
Natural Stone: Slate, soapstone, and granite are the most common. Granite is the clear favorite among homeowners, and while it is still priced higher than slate or soapstone, its popularity has made it more affordable than it once was. Granite comes in a huge array of colors while slate and soapstone come in fewer colors, but are more affordable than granite. Natural quartz is another terrific option; mimicking the look of granite at a more affordable price point, but is durable and low-maintenance as a busy family requires.
Solid Surfaces: 100% acrylic or 100% polyester, or a combination of acrylic and polyester, solid surfacing materials are extremely resistant to staining and scratching; the material is also renewable and repairable and comes in hundreds of color and pattern options.
Wood: Wood is a very traditional material for countertops, though the popularity of solid surface materials and stone has overtaken the market. Wood remains popular for use in secondary work surfaces, such as islands with butcher blocks.
Plastic Laminate: Durable and hard-wearing, plastic laminate (“Formica”) is affordable and resilient; matte and fine matte finishes work best for countertops.
Ceramic Tile: Ceramic tile has been overtaken by lower maintenance, seamless counters, but remain popular for backsplashes.
Concrete: Concrete countertop fabrication is becoming more sophisticated, yielding beautiful countertops that mimic natural stone.
Countertops: Outside the Kitchen
A countertop is a creative way to increase storage and work space in areas of your home other than the kitchen. By working with a designer who can help you incorporate a countertop into a non-kitchen design, you can get the most out of any space in your home. Here are some of our favorite examples of countertop ideas in rooms other than the kitchen:
• Laundry Room: A permanent countertop in a laundry room provides space for storing laundry items (irons, detergents/bleach, spray bottles, rollers, dryer sheets) as well as an area for folding.
• Bar and/or sideboard: Rather than purchasing a piece of furniture, install a section of countertop in a dining room or breakfast nook. You can use it as a bar during parties, for serving large crowds; create a display of cookbooks; design your own coffee bar and get your coffee machine off the kitchen counter to free up space.
• Office: Rather than a traditional credenza, try a combination of countertops and organizational drawers and baskets to create a unique, modern office design.
Have you been searching high and low for the perfect countertop? Stop in and see us to learn more about Silestone by Cosentino, the leader in natural quartz surfaces for your home.