Wilsonart / Formica
Laminate countertops became the mainstream in kitchens in the 1960's. The biggest misconception about laminate is that people think it is made of plastic. Laminate is actually layers of compressed kraft paper adhered to a substrate of either flake board, plywood or a Medex. These layers are hardened with resins, topped with a decorative layer of paper which gives that it its design, color and pattern. A top layer of resin is applied adding protection and sometimes adding texture and various sheens. We've all seen those dated pink, orange, or white and gold-flecked laminates that were so popular in the mid-century. With the advances that have been made in digital imaging laminate is not what it used to be. Patterns, colors and textures resembling the look of natural stones are more common throughout the different brands, and graphic patterns add a fun and diverse option that can’t be found in a natural stone. Along with endless color and pattern options, many different front edge options are available. To learn more about these options, stop by the showroom or call for an appointment.
Corian / Hi-Macs / Staron / Livingstone
Solid surface is a man-made material composed of acrylic, polyester resins and pigments. It is a low maintenance, non-porous countertop material that can be used in a number of different applications, and has the ability to create a seamless look where you might see joints or seams with stone or other materials. It has the ability to be molded into shapes such as sinks, shower walls, and shower pans. It's also a great material for desk tops, craft areas, tables and really anywhere you might be looking to have a smooth, easy-to-clean surface. Oh, and they make great window sills for your plants!
Natural Granite is unique in the sense that no two slabs are the same, and to some customers this is what makes it so beautiful. If you are a granite person, more than likely you love the randomness in color and pattern. Granite is a porous material that should be sealed. How often a stone needs to be sealed will depend on the type of stone it is and how your stone is being used. Sealers do not completely protect your stone from stains, but rather gives you a longer reaction time to cleaning up spills. More often than not the olive oil bottle next to the stove drips and leaves a ring where the bottle was sitting, giving the oil enough time to work its way into the stone. If this is a concern, there are also permanent sealers available that can be added to your stone at the time of fabrication, but colors are limited and it does add to the overall cost of your stone. Granite is a very common countertop surface, and if you are a granite person, the maintenance that comes with granite is well worth the beauty of having this one-of-a-kind natural stone in your home.
Marble is a classic and elegant natural stone that has been used for centuries in design, sculptures and architecture. It’s a very popular choice for tile, countertops, floors and tub surrounds, and just like granite no two stones are the same making it unique and beautiful. Marble is a softer and more porous stone compared to granite, therefore requiring a little more care and maintenance, and most of an all understanding of the product (read more HERE). Colors range from white, black, gold, green and more. Although mostly quarried overseas, some marble is local. Danby Marble and Vermont Verde are both equally stunning. Our stone suppliers also carry Onyx and Quartzite for alternative stones.
Silestone / Eco by Cosentino / Cambria / Zodiaq / Dekton / Caesarstone / Viatera
There are many brands of engineered stone/quartz countertops with hundreds of colors and patterns to choose from, all of which are made out of a base material, quartz. Quartz itself is a natural product, but when combined with various resins, engineered stone is created. These resins are what give the stone it's color and pattern, and provides a non porous surface that is resistant to staining and scratching. Engineered stone countertops do not require sealing like you would a natural stone or granite, and they carry warranties whereas natural stone does not. This material is a great choice for the customer that wants the look and feel of stone, but does not want to worry about the maintenance that comes with it.
People from around the world have been using soapstone for thousands of years for building blocks, tools, sculptures, fireplaces, bowls and sinks (we have soapstone sinks as well). It’s a natural stone unaffected by alkalies and acids, stains are easily removed with acetone, and scratches can be easily repaired with a fine grit sandpaper. Soapstone is quarried in the same manner as granite or marble. It is a steatite stone primarily composed of magnesite, dolomite, chlorite and talc. The talc is what gives the stone its soft, feathery or dry "soapy" feel. Depending on the desired look, soapstone can be left in either its natural talcky state, or it can be polished with mineral oil or wax which darkens it, bringing out the beautiful and unique veins in each slab. There are various types of soapstones to choose from, however Origianl Soapstone is most commonly used.
Wood countertops are a great way to accent an area in the kitchen such as a prep surface, island or window seat. They can be made from a number of different wood species, fabricated from butcher block or planks of solid wood, stained for more protection, or oiled for a more organic look. Maple butcher block is a common wood surface used in the kitchen, a custom wide-plank black walnut butcher block can add rich colors to your space, and although technically a grass, bamboo countertops are also a great option. Wood countertops can be stained to match your cabinetry and look great on a hutch or a desk. They also add a natural, warm accent to any living space.
All of our countertop selections can be made into vanity tops. From laminate to marble, drop in sinks and undermount sinks, a vanity top can be built to fit your cabinet and space. We also carry "pre-made" vanity top options made out of solid surface and cultured marble, some of which are available with integral seamless sinks. We can help you find the right material and price point for your project.