Can you tell me the pros/ cons of a leather finish on granite?

rcoopFebruary 17, 2013

I have been looking for information on leather finishes on granite. It has been hard to find much information.

Our local fabricator has a remnant of crema typhoon with leather finish that will work perfectly for our island. My DH loves it and really has liked the leather look on several display slabs he saw.

Is there anything I need to know about a leather finish and its care that is different? Also do you need to avoid certain edges?

I would love to see pictures of your leather finish granite or anyone with crema typhoon. It has been hard to find anything that looks like what we saw.

This post was edited by rcoop on Sun, Feb 17, 13 at 19:01

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I have Cambrian Black granite leathered. I have no complaints, and I can't say there is anything special needed for it. My husband was drawn to the texture of this granite, too.

The only downside I've experienced is most people are completely thrown off by the granite. They have no idea it is granite and almost everyone asks what it is. (They don't do that with polished granite, right?) That isn't really a downside, though.... :p

I don't know why the site is reducing the size of my photo in the preview window, so I'm linking to the photo directly. You can see the texture better that way.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 7:26PM
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My experience is similar to lolauren. We did not like polished finishes and DH really like the texture to it. There is no extra care. If anything, since we are not protecting a high polish finish, there is less care, IMO.

Funny, I have also had the experience that no one knows what it is when they come over. And EVERYONE has to touch it, they think the texture is really cool.

Mine is leathered black pearl, BTW.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 8:20PM
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Thank you for the input! We went back and looked at it again today and decided to get it. Our granite has some mica in it. I noticed where one Mica spot was there was an indent about the depth and roundness of a quarter. Is this normal or should I ask for it to be filled with Resin?

We really love the granite, it is really different!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 7:59PM
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There is nothing special that needs to be done with leathered granite. It's strictly an aesthetic decision and we really like the non-shiny surface because it's more casual.

Here is my leathered Typhoon Bordeaux Lite being delivered.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 9:30PM
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I also have Cambrian Black and love it. I think it is a pro that folks don't recognize it as granite and that it isn't shiny. There are very few polished granites I would care for and most would be out of my budget or not work for some other reason. Can't think of any cons really, but I would do a simpler edge treatment. My fabricator said to stay away from ogee and such because the edge portion would appear as a different texture -- less leathered and more polished. That was 6 years ago and leathered and brushed granites were fairly new to most folks. I don't know if they have worked with different ways to do edge treatments on the less polished surfaces.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 10:11PM
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I was just searching old threads and saw a post about your granite. It is very similar to the crema typhoon that we are getting.

Does your granite have mica or little indents from where the softer pieces chipped out. I know I felt one that was about the size and depth of a quarter. If so did they fill it or is that just part of the leather finish? That is the only thing I am worried about when I felt the granite. If you do have those big of indents do they collect dirt or spills. Ours is going into an island with one end being an eating area. I have 2 busy little boys that I know will be leaving both spills and crumbs for me to wipe up.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 10:15PM
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I have leathered Magma Supreme and love it. I can't think of any cons at all to the leathered finish. Never had any problem with anything getting stuck in the nooks and crannies. It is just as easy to clean as a polished finish. I've rolled out pastry and pie crusts without any trouble. Agree with the others that everyone who comes over wants to touch it and asks what it is. You'll love it.

My granite is busy and there isn't any issue with the ogee edge not being leathered. You really don't notice it. Whatever edge detail you get, it won't be leathered. Make sure you talk to your fabricator about how they'll finish the edge. The edge on mine is polished but not to a high sheen.

2 Likes    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 10:55PM
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rcoop - I do have one spot that looks like it consists of a thin layer of jet over a piece of mica and some of the jet has worn off (I assume from the leathering process) and the mica is showing through. It is actually my favorite part of the granite because it makes you think about how the granite was formed. There's another place that looks like it has the tiniest little pock mark, but it's still very smooth and if you close your eyes and rub your hand over it, you cannot feel that it's there. I am not particularly worried about either of these areas. The one thing that pleases me is that the granite seems pretty impervious to everything that I have dropped on it so far.

I tried to take a picture of the spot but I couldn't get good focus - too close.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 11:19PM
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I just wanted to add that the area has not collected any spills or dirt at all - it's actually very smooth so I don't think there would be anywhere for the dirt to hide.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 11:25PM
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I have a brushed finish on my madre perla quartzite. It does have some indentations, where the stone was softer and took the brushing more dramatically. I have no problems cleaning them, no special effort at all.
I love the finish and can't imagine anything else in my kitchen.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 6:57AM
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I lI've my leathered granite. It removes the reflective polish do I don't have to worry about glare or fingerprints. But unlike a honed finish which dulls Tge color, I have all the color and detail of the polished version. There is a subtle texture where the softer rock has been brushed away a little bit more than the harder rock, and the effective of this is that everyone who sees my granite wants to pet it. I can't think of a downside. Our fabricator prepared a small same of leathered granite from a remnant of a similar slab, which helped us make the final decision. We are very happy with it!

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 9:19AM
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Another happy Cambrian Black leathered customer! I just wipe it down. People do seem to think it is some new and fancy material that newfangled quartz stuff, and it's not (though I think you can get quartz that is called Cambrian Black). I'm sure karin_mt has some analysis of what it actually is, because I think she said there is no such thing as black granite.

My mom has polished Black Galaxy which is similar to Cambrian Black in that there are little flecks in it. It is very, very shiny, and I decided I didn't love it, though it looks very nice.

I saw a mini-kitchen with the leathered C. B. in a store and was really taken with it. Not sure why, but it doesn't seem as physically cold as the polished.

The only downside is that when writing anything on it, it's best to have multiple layers of paper, or else your writing will look funny!

This post was edited by drbeanie2000 on Wed, Feb 20, 13 at 12:01

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 10:57AM
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I agree with the comments above. I have both leathered and polished surfaces in two different granites. The leathered is easier to clean.
One big difference, not a disadvantage, is that the leathered finish is lighter than the same granite in a polished finish would be. Not as much so as honed, but definitely a shade lighter than polished.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 12:17PM
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Thanks everyone for reassuring me! I do love the granite, just was worried about spills. I will make sure I post pictures when we get it in :-)

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 7:43PM
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For the record, my granite has no pits or indents (just the leathered texture....) I'm not sure I would choose a slab with a quarter-sized indent if it seems it would collect water/crumbs. Are there any slabs without?

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 7:59PM
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It is a remnant at a great price! Plus we are from a small town and using a local fabricator who does not have a large selection of different granites. Besides a few unique ones, the rest are standard ones without tons of movement.

I can ask to have him fill it with resin. Which is why I was asking if it was normal to have something like that. We really did not look at a ton of leathered pieces, so I don't have much to compare it to. The few that they had in their showroom were tighter grains so they leathered much more uniformly.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 10:40PM
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I chose honed over leathered. I didnt like the fact that that the leathered had more a more textured feel. I felt it would catch crumbs and be harder to clean. My honed is smoother and easier to clean.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:33AM
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