Help with sink .... And a backsplash behind stove question

akmomesqNovember 2, 2013

I desperately need help with a sink decision. Unfortunately, I need to order sight unseen - no showrooms where I live - and if I wait to order samples, my kitchen won't be done until after the new year. I'm hoping some of you guys who have seen these things I'm thinking of might be able to give some design guidance.

I have a small u-shaped kitchen, natural maple slab-front cabinets. It rains a lot where we live so I want to keep the kitchen as bright as possible. I fell in love with a slab of creme bordeaux granite so that's the counter with honed travertine backsplash. Stainless appliances.

I think I've decided on an apron front sink. Kohler whitehaven. My problem is what color? I'm leaning towards biscuit because I'm assuming brighter would be better - just hoping someone whose seen one might have some insight?

My backsplash question... I just ordered a bluestar RNB and was planning on doing the honed travertine behind it, but the granite guy said he could run the granite behind the stove. Would that be overpowering in a small space? I'd never heard of that being done so no clue.

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We shopped for our Kohler Whitehaven in a local Kohler showroom. The colors they have are lovely! Biscuit is really quite subtle so it should look fantastic. (And it should compliment your granite and backsplash) Definitely see it in person if you can!

(We are doing a white kitchen and initially thought to do a Cashmere color, but we finally opted to do White. It looks fantastic!)

FWIW - the granite behind the stove - its a personal choice. Some find it overwhelming; others find it easier to clean than travertine? My parents did a full granite backsplash in their kitchen several years ago. Its fantastic for clean up, but a bit too overwhelming for the look. Maybe some pics on the internet can help you visualize?

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:17PM
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I'm a fan of a full height stone backsplash in a kitchen. It's MUCH easier to clean than travertine, and it's much more style cohesive with the modern look of slab front cabinets to have the same material for the backsplash as the counters. Travertine is a more traditional look. Not modern.

As far as the sink goes, with slab cabinets, a stainless farm sink would be again more style consistent. Or a plain single bowl undermount in a color that blends in with the counter. Like maybe a Silgranite in a bisque or truffle.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:30PM
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Oh thank you Eskayzee for telling me biscuit was more on the subtle side!

Do you mind if I ask which faucet you chose for your whitehaven?

I'll take a look online at granite backsplashes. Your comment confirms my first thought - easier to clean but likely too much for the space (I like the easy to clean part so I'm likely trying to rationalize even though I know it won't look best :)

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:32PM
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GreenDesigns: I hadn't thought of that ... The slab front cabinets were here and are also well made it would have been ridiculous to replace, but modern aesthetic isn't really me. Neither is totally traditional though. It's the natural, organic feel of that creme bordeaux slab that just slays me. I thought the travertine because it would not pull attention away from the counter and it's the right color. Maybe I need to widen my search.

I was worried about that much stainless if I went with the stainless sink - that it would look *too* modern. I'm not much of a designer - is it better to keep with one "genre" - slab front cabinets with modern touches vs mixing it all up?

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:40PM
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Which is less busy in a small kitchen? My assumption was granite with a lot of movement needs a quiet more subtle tile but the pictures I'm looking at of full granite backsplash in small space - maybe one material is less busy.

Every time I think I'm closing to deciding .... I'm wrong!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:14PM
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Maybe pictures will help...

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:29PM
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One more...

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:30PM
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Kitchen - mid remodel. And yes, that really is flowered wallpaper...on the soffit! The appliances are all being replaced. No more micro OTR, I have to keep the soffit but floor will be a hard wood - hand scraped maple spice. Cabinet fronts are being redone - they're solid maple slabs.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:37PM
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Floor. (Fluorescent lights are also leaving...)

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:38PM
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I know I'm asking a lot of questions but I'm really appreciating the feedback --- now that you can see the kitchen...cast iron kohler whitehaven or SS apron front?

This post was edited by akmomesq on Sat, Nov 2, 13 at 17:07

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 5:06PM
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No expert here but your cabinet, wood and stone choices indicate to me you like natural, organic surfaces. Based on that, I would don't think a SS sink will please you. While slab cabinets are a "modern" your choice, I think the maple finish makes them flexible. You can use the your cabinet hardware, sink and faucet to make the kitchen more "traditional" in look.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 5:16PM
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I think that a gorgeous stone with some movement can look like artwork when used as a full height backsplash. It becomes the center stage of the whole look. That can be especially important with cabinets that don't have a lot of detail to them, like shaker or slab. Sometimes a gorgeous color can be that lynchpin, like doing a dramatic grey paint. Sometimes, it's a highly figured wood, like zebrawood or bamboo. And sometimes it's a gorgeous piece of stone that becomes the "oooh" statement.

You'd have to extensively alter your sink base cabinet to do a farm sink. I'd just do a plain large bowl undermount sink. Stainless would be fine. Or a cast iron or silgrante in a color like the chocolate brown that we used in the kitchen above.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 5:21PM
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Lannegreene: yes! That is a perfect description of how my tastes run.

Live wire oak: I was planning on one of the self-trimming kohler sinks - the one with the short apronfront in particular. But you make me realize I really do need to check with the carpenter. I do like how that full granite backsplash looks...

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 5:32PM
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I meant to say I don't think an apron front SS sink will complement the look your going for. Doing a full stone stove back would certainly steal the show in your kitchen! Good luck with your decision making.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 5:45PM
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I first got one of the self-trimming apron front sinks. We bought used cabinets so I had to use the cabinet that was in the set. The carpenter talked me out of the sink because he would have to modify the cabinet. He would have done what we wanted but I agreed not to use the apron sink. It was not going to look how I thought it would. Instead we got a large single sink. It gives a different look then the apron sink would have.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 7:02PM
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