Marble countertops

mtmaxJuly 4, 2012

I am thinking about putting in marble countertops in my kitchen and have been advised not to. Can anyone offer advice?

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dab07

I heard that a lot too, but I put one in anyway, and I love, love it!

There are a few reasons why marble isn't the ideal material, but if you can live with them there's no problem. Apparently it doesn't stand up to heat, so you can't put a hot pot or anything on it, as you could with granite. They say it stains, but I haven't found that. Before buying a counter, I put a sample down next to my sink for a month. Any stains that appeared on it also miraculously disappeared by the next day. Other people on GW have commented on this weird but true phenomenon! If you're reasonably careful and wipe up spills when they happen you should be fine. It etches, this I have noticed. It's more noticeable with polished than with honed marble. Acids kind of eat through the surface finish. You can feel it, but mine, at least, don't show.

There are a few clutzes in our house, so I do worry a little. But it's been installed about 3 years and so far so good. There are a couple of minor etches, but you'd never notice them.

The bottom line, I think, is if you want a surface that will look perfect years after it's installed, this probably isn't the one unless you don't actually use the kitchen. One of the things I love about marble is that it reminds me of old ruins. So I actually like an aged look as long as it's not obviously chipped or stained. I think it's incomparably beautiful in a white or pale kitchen.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 8:25PM
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mtmax

Thanks so much for the response and advice. Everyone says use honed and not polished marble. What is the difference?

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 8:32PM
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dab07

Polishing marble gives it a shiny surface finish. Honed looks like my counter in the picture -- it's not dull, but not shiny either. It's a subtle, rich appearance.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 8:45PM
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2LittleFishies

Here is a thread about marble and a bit down are more links to several other GW discussions on marble ...

Here is a link that might be useful: Marble Thread with More Threads inside

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 8:48PM
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mtmax

Thanks

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 9:10PM
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Lake_Girl

egg-- that looks like a magazine picture! So beautiful!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 8:48AM
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mermanmike

Sorry to go OT, but Egg--is your finished kitchen posted somewhere? Stunning!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:27AM
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francoise47

Hi Egg -- another off-topic comment:
I love your kitchen! It looks like poetry.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 10:46AM
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dab07

Thank you. I think that shot owes more to the peonies than anything else. I haven't posted any pics yet bc it isn't finished yet. I've been working on it for three years and am only about 2/3 finished. I guess I should, since by the time I'm done most of the GWers who helped me in tbe beginning will be long gone ;)

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 11:17AM
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mermanmike

Yes--you should! And if you decide not to, I will only forgive you if you tell me where you got your wooden knobs and how you treated them if you bought them unfinished. Thanks! ;-)

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 1:20PM
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dab07

Apologies for taking this OT.

Mermanmike, funny you mention that, you might be able to inherit mine, eventually.... I'm seriously considering changing them, like soon. I accumulated them from two random places over the years, neither of which exist anymore. BUT similar ones can be bought at:Rockler:

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=565&site=ROCKLER

Here's another company: http://www.knobsandhardware.com/search/wood-knobs.html

Search for English, or British wood round cabinet knobs or some such thing. The detail to look for is the turned wood on the wide base. They're very common in old English country cabinets. I bought them unfinished, they're usually available in a few species of wood. Mine are maple and I used a low-VOC finish called Acrylacq, by AFM Safecoat.

Here is a link that might be useful: Acrylacq

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 4:17PM
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mermanmike

Egg--THANK YOU!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:09PM
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lavender_lass

Egg- Can you post your plan? And if not, may I ask...what are the dimensions of your windows? What a beautiful space!

Mtmax- I'm hoping to have some marble for my baking area. Honed will keep you from having those shiny 'rings' on the marble. Marcolo may post those pictures pretty soon...and you'll see what I mean.

If I thought we could all be as careful as Egg...I'd think about marble countertops for the entire perimeter! But, I know my limitations and living on a farm...I'll be lucky to keep the baking area from etching too badly.

Does anyone know if Meg Ryan really rubbed tomato sauce all over her countertops, to get the etching out of the way? I keep seeing that rumor, but wonder if she actually did that...and if it worked! :)

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:31PM
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2LittleFishies

I don't know if its true but I rubbed 1/2 lemon all over my 18x18 sample and it worked : ) Then when I tried to "re-etch" it it stayed the same for the most part.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:48PM
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writersblock

>Does anyone know if Meg Ryan really rubbed tomato sauce all over her countertops, to get the etching out of the way?

Somehow she doesn't strike me as someone who does much cooking or housework.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 10:19PM
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dab07

Thank you lavender,

I ran into a problem importing the elevation onto the computer. My drawing is pretty faded, but I'll see if I can post it after this weekend. Actually I think I have a photo of the wall-- there it is. Now that I look at it I'm a little embarrassed. The above-counter cabinets were supposed to have two sets of glass doors, small square ones on top, and longer ones on the main part. But i liked them open and figured I'd leave it that way for a while. I still don't know if I'll make doors. And the knobs -- I'm pretty sure I'm going to change them to bin pulls. Taken as a whole, the room is a little more wooden knobby looking than what I had in mind! And the cabinet legs are going to be different... and... other things will eventually be finished... sigh... The room looks a lot nicer in daylight, and when it's clean!

The kitchen has been years in the making, and it's still not done. I'm doing it all myself, planning the room, and designing and building the cabinets. I'm also renovating the rest of the house and raising a family, etc, etc, so it's about the longest renovation project in history.

The house's addition (with windows) was put on ten years ago but I didn't start putting in the new cabinets until about three years ago. So for years after the windows were in I fretted that they were going to be too small, but now that that wall is complete I think it looks okay. They're each 2' wide and 3' tall, give or take an inch.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 11:39PM
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honorbiltkit

Well, egganddart, the peonies and the greenery outside the window do make for a particularly winsome photo, but even in the stark nightime photo your kitchen is smashing. Somehow the giant farm sink and the open cabinets make it look well-designed but plain-spoken, despite the elegant counters.

Do provide detail and updates, please. Cheers.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 12:18AM
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honorbiltkit

Well, egganddart, the peonies and the greenery outside the window do make for a particularly winsome photo, but even in the stark nightime photo your kitchen is smashing. Somehow the giant farm sink and the open cabinets make it look well-designed but plain-spoken, despite the elegant counters.

Do provide detail and updates, please. Cheers.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 12:19AM
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mermanmike

Wow--you are my hero, building those cabinets yourself with all of your other responsibilities. I think the kitchen is truly stunning. FWIW, I think your wooden knobs are just perfect in your space. Honorbiltkit phrased it so well--well-designed, plain-spoken, and elegant. A great inspiration!

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 6:56AM
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YellowHouse678

I had carrera marble countertops installed in my three bathrooms almost four weeks ago now. They were beautiful for the first 24 hours but all three developed a grey ring around the oval sinks 48 hours after the installation. I notified my installor who told me to wait two to three weeks and the stain would disappear. All it has done is get bigger! Does anyone know if it will eventually dry and disappear? Any thoughts on this are greatly appreciated!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2012 at 2:37PM
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