Natural stone is a natural material that’s mined from the earth. It can be processed into different types of products for interior and exterior decorating needs, such as countertops. One type of natural stone is marble which has been used to make everything from buildings in ancient Rome to modern-day sculptures and even jewelry. Man-made materials are manufactured with various substances such as plastics or glass fibers and have become an increasingly popular option due to their affordability while also providing durability. In this blog, we’re going to talk about finding your style, material selection, different materials, and different qualifications and characteristics such as; natural stone, man-made, and other materials. We will discuss what’s the difference between natural stone and man-made stone?
How to Find Your Countertop Style
Your style is the most focal point and it has to complement what is already there. Let’s focus on your kitchen or flooring; if you’re changing your flooring or paintings there should be some harmony, every material should complete the story of your space. Not only color or painting, but the shape is important. The shape is also something that you need to consider when you are starting your project. With aspects of your selections, the shape of your countertop should complete the look. For instance; OG or double OG, a waterfall style. There are contemporary countertops that you can always try to kind of create a contrast. If you’re looking at a contemporary kitchen, you see a black and white, that kind of kitchen is going to give you the contemporary style. Those can sound a little bit complex and make you feel a little bit overwhelmed but you should look at different selections and make a final decision about that.
Also, another important point is the functionality. At the end of the day when you’re looking at your kitchen, it has to fit on your personality, and most importantly it has to be functional. It’s not only about your cabinets, your countertops also need to fit your personality.
When you start to think about the project, as the first step you will be asking one question; what’s your favorite look? Do you like more of a classic look or a little more transitional look or modern style? So What’s the biggest difference? Let’s explain it with a sample; when you look at a classic look you see there are more intricate textures, you can see a double OG kind of edge right there. Even the countertop and cabinets also support this feeling. But in a modern style, you can see a more clean look with the clean line cabinetry and the countertop should reflect the same style.
So as the first step, you need to have an idea about what you want and you need to have the information about the styles to make a choice when you consider different types.
Material Selection: Reviewing the Different Materials
When it comes to kitchen countertops, there are so many different materials from which you can choose. It may be difficult to try and decide on the best material for your home because of all the options available. Once you’re done with your style the next one is the material selection. Let’s talk about these materials a little more in detail.
Natural stones are cut and processed from selected blocks. The most popular ones are granite and marble, but granite is the most popular one. There are actually some hard and dense patterns and striking movements. So who makes this pattern? This type of stone is not man-made, it is 100% natural, so it comes from nature, no one makes them.
Marble is softer and more subtle but also we have a bold movement there, like whites and grays and they are likely to kind of spread on the texture. But there are also other different stones such as; limestone, onyx, slate, and sauced or travertine.
Travertine is really strong but we do not provide that much. Mostly you can see marble, granite, and quartzite countertops, they are used widely.
One of the characteristics that we can talk about is UV resistance. Natural Stones are kind of better compared to man-made stones, and also that’s better in heat resistance. But one thing that may give you a challenge is being the seal immediately to maintain these natural stones on a regular basis. It depends on how you use your kitchen, if you are using that kitchen almost every day and cooking a lot of things that you’re processing a lot of things, then you need to do that. Sealing will prevent staining your natural stone and it will keep them new as the first day that you purchase your countertop.
When we talk about man-made stone, firstly we can mention quartz. This is man-made but it’s still 90% plus natural material for sure. 10% is going to give you some characteristics of the story. What we mean by these characteristics is like you don’t have to maintain your stone on a regular basis because it’s stain resistant. If you don’t really want anything to be absorbed by your countertops then engineering and man-made materials such as quartz is going to be an option. But unfortunately, we can not say that quartz has a lot of heat resistance or UV resistance. But the good thing is we have uniform patterns in a variety of colors and detectors. During the production process, we can decide what kind of patterns that you’re looking for. When you’re looking at the whole slab it’s going to be more or less the same when you look at a man-made stone, it’s different on natural stone because natural stone is being cut by natural sources and every single slab could be different. Also, it is produced domestically and also internationally. The particular stone could be anywhere, even could be made in the US or Brazil, India. There is no quality difference, that is almost the same, it’s all about your taste and style. But of course, there will be some difference in pricing, but when you like something and want it in your kitchen you shouldn’t give up only for the price. You might have a limited budget but if you like something you should think about it and consider the budgeting that may be secondarily to focus on what you really like.
As we mentioned before, there are different types of engineered stone. And porcelain is one of them, if you are trying to do something outdoors, they are resistant to stealing in high heat, direct sunlight and UV are not going to affect the porcelain, it’s not going to affect your porcelain countertops. It’s good for outdoor use. Also, the thicknesses are different. We have 6-12 millimeters, 12 thicknesses, it’s in US standards, the quarter of an inch and half-inch selections are possible. It is produced from fine clay and exposed to high heat, that’s how we have to get the porcelain. Using the inkjet printing technology with the high-resolution inkjet printing technology, we can give the images of the real stone on the porcelain. It’s like inkjet printing and it’s a high-resolution printing that lets us see the real stone images, and this image transfers on the service only, not through the color for sure. The porcelain is available in both polished and matte finishes and they have both available.
Those are the cornerstones, it is produced from the crushed stone under intense heat and pressure. Sintered stone is also good for outdoor use because they are good for their staining and high heat is not going to affect it. They have different thicknesses, we are talking about centimeters which is almost more than an inch thickness and. Also, the profile edges will match the color of the surface well. But it is offered in a variety of colors and textures. Also, it is recycled. There are a lot of people who are kind of environmental and don’t want to think about the environment when they’re talking about their next remodeling project.
How to measure countertop
Let’s discuss the layout. There are some standards there, your cabinetry is 24-inch steps and the 1.5-inch overhang is going to be like 25 a half. It’s a standard for a common layout. You’re going to consider your base cabinets and also there should be appliances like your refrigerator, so all these different factors should be 25 and a half inches for the standard. It could be overhung up to 12 for the natural stone or in 15 for the quartz, it’s possible as additional support, also there is one thing that we also talk about the same placement.
The same placement is determined by the slab size layout and handling restrictions. When you look at a slab, you can see its size, this is a huge material and to make it your countertop we cut it and it should be something that can go through your doors. When you look at the stability of the stone, the same placement is an engineering problem, but it is important to be aware of it. Sometimes we use the corners for countertops, and we can place your sink where you want. We just cut it from the proper place depending on the remaining size. We will decide after seeing the actual layout and actual measurements and everything. We have digital templates and physical templates are used to cut materials to size and shape. When we are looking at this template, we need your cabinets and appliances to be placed at the top of the template. Because we need to be sure about the measurements to make changes that you want, for instance; you have a 30-inch refrigerator then you decide to make it bigger so we can change it because we have the real template. It’s important that your appliances must be there before you start your digital temptation for your countertop. Also, there’s another good thing, those digital layouts are going to give us kind of availability to see the virtual renderings of the final design. It means with a digital template we can show you the real version of your kitchen.
Installation of Countertops
First of all, we need proper prep, it is really essential because we need to remove your existing countertops to install a new one. And sections are replaced directly on top of the cabinetry, they are silicone adhesive, and of course, our cabinets must be leveled. Your contractor needs to level these countertops and make them ready for attempting. Templating is an important fact in the installation phase because we can not see what is going to be cut and make it kind of 100% sure that it’s going to fit into your space.
While you are starting your project, you need to think about the details and you need to state them in the beginning. For instance; if you want a double sink we need to kind of cut it in size, so we need to know what kind of the idea is there and what you want to pick.
A couple of different things that we need to consider for a nice and easy installation. We are talking about the surface sections that feel too rough, they match surface color for sure. We need some sort of product to seal and we may apply that before your countertops arrive. For a smooth installation process, you need to clarify every detail.
Countertops Have a Function: What to Do and How to Prevent
Countertops are a kitchen’s most valuable asset. They provide the space for cooking and entertaining, as well as storage for long pots, pans, dishes, and everything else that you might need. Countertops also have an important function: they serve to protect your cabinetry from heat damage by absorbing it themselves. Proper care of your countertop will ensure that it serves its purpose for many years to come! To keep your countertop’s function;
- Try to use items underneath your pots and pans, in this way it’s not going to harm the countertop material there.
- Also, when you’re just cutting something use a cutting board. You always need to avoid dropping heavy objects.
- You shouldn’t really stand on your countertops.
- Do not use harsh chemicals, we do not kind of use those harsh chemicals, mild detergent and water are perfectly fine.
and we have two locations and each location is convenient so you can easily come and see our selections.
We are a family-owned business and we have years of experience in the field and we also have good ratings and reviews in our Google My Business. Our customers are just speaking on behalf of us and when you go there you will see that people are sharing their happiness at the end of the project. Our job here is to make our customers happy for sure.