honed dark green granite that looks like soapstone?

lucretziaDecember 22, 2009

I saw honed dark green granite that looks alot to me like unoiled soapstone. I was told it is from Italy.I have not found any comments about it here and wonder if anyone is familiar with it? I let some butter and juice sit on it for 24 hours (along with a cup to try to create a ring). I did not put any sealer on it. I was able to easily wash it all off. There was the tiniest of glass ring showing, but I don't think anyone would be able to see it. It looked like it could just be a variation in the stone. I'm doing some more rigorous testing with it and will let you know the result tomorrow.

I have given up on soapstone because of the negative things I've read here and this seems like a decent alternative - maybe more organic feeling than engineerd quartz and softer than polished granite. Comments?

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plllog

There's also dark green soapstone. I have it on my island. Most comes from Finland. It's much harder than most other soapstones, but just as resistant to thermal shock, chemicals and water. It doesn't require oiling to have a beautiful, dark color. Sometimes it's labelled "granite" even though it's really soapstone. If water beads up and rolls off, it's probably soapstone. Especially if it's 3cm (about 1.25") thick.

BTW, don't give up on other soapstones because of some negatives. Instead, educate yourself, and make sure you know what you're getting and who's installing it. Soapstone is better installed by someone who's familiar with soapstone, because it handles differently than crystalline stones, is templated differently, etc. You can test soapstones for hardness by trying to scratch a corner. If it crumbles up and is easy to scratch, it's more appropriate for carving than countertops. Also make sure the surface is polished to the right texture (harder to know and understand yourself). Florida Joshua has taught us about that. The level of grit it's polished with can make all the difference. After that, it's just a matter of choosing the right product to oil or wax with, which you can find out a lot about here.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2009 at 2:58AM
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Cassandra

In my former kitchen I had honed Verde Fontaine (or Verde Fountain) that looked something like a dark green soapstone. I liked it a lot.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2009 at 7:48AM
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lucretzia

Pillog, Thanks for the feedback. What is the name of the soapstone you're describing? And Marita, was your verde fountain granite pretty stain resistant?

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 12:11AM
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plllog

Mine was labelled "Finland green soapstone". It's a very dark green, and even the loose talc where it has been cut is green. I had heard about this type before I found it. I prefer the green color, and it's very hard. The guy at the stone yard had a hard time whacking it so it would break for a sample. Using a hammer and all his might he could ding it, but that's about it.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 1:26AM
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Cassandra

Yes, I never had a problem with stains with the Verde Fontaine. It did get occasional water marks, but these came out with resealing (which I did every so often). Here's a photo, although I'm afraid it doesn't really show the lovely color (dark green/gray) of the granite.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 1:18PM
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sabjimata

you may want to check out the soapstone sold as "malibu" from m. texeira. i read that it's the stone the owner has in his own home. it doesn't need oiling, is much harder than the usual soapstones and has a super unique look. and it's green.

Here is a link that might be useful: my blog/not related to this post

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 2:02PM
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lucretzia

Thanks to all of you for this excellent feedback. Marita, did your granite come in this honed state, or did you have the fabricator hone a previously polished piece? It looks from your picture like the sample I have. Do you have any more pics? Is it considered safe to roll out/raise dough on stones that have sealers on them? Pillog, did you oil your soapstone, and did you have those water mark issues that lots of people describe here? Do you have pics? I think I'm Mrs. Natural, but when it comes down to it, I don't like things getting scruffy looking. That's why I'm thinking the granite might be an attractive alternative. I'm relieved to know that lots of people suffer from confusion over all these decisions.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 4:08PM
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plllog

My kitchen isn't finished, so I can't tell you about handling IRL, but I did a lot of tests on my sample and the only thing that left any kind of mark was grease (butter, I think), which makes sense since soapstone repels water, but attracts oil. It came right off with a gentle dish liquid (not the grease fighting kind) and water.

The dark green is the color of the stone when there's no loose talc clinging, so there's no oiling. I suppose if you wanted a blacker color you could achieve that with oil or wax. It doesn't look at all scruffy unoiled. My slab had one large white and yellow (quartz?) vein, and a few yellow cross veins that come up as spots. I chose to highlight the white vein. The green soapstone I've seen has a small amount of veining compared to some other soapstones.

This picture wasn't for showing off the stone (which is currently covered with work materials), and it's not very good. The overall appearance isn't really mottled, and in normal light it appears darker and much greener. The camera flash brings it out. This particular slab had a leather finsih texture, which I really like. The sides are polished normally, by the fabricator, and that's a really smooth texture that feels a lot like polished granite, but softer (probably due to the talc vs. crystal structure--i.e., soapiness).

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 4:59PM
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lucretzia

Both the granite and the soapstone look pretty. I am planning to use one of these two counters with off white cabinets. Sorry, Pillog, but what is IRL?

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 10:01PM
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buehl

IRL = In Real Life

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 10:39PM
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buehl

Perhaps Virgina Mist or Jet Mist?

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 10:45PM
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lucretzia

Isn't virginia or jet mist rather black?

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 11:01PM
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jejvtr

lucre

I searched for quite sometime to find a bullet proof counter top. I knew I did not want shiny, seriously considered soapstone - then the samples failed the stain tests

I found this in shiny state & fabricator honed it for me - Nothing we threw at it would damage/stain it

Here is sample called "Victoria Classico" per the stoneyard - like a verde peacock or butterfly

Just installed

IRL - old photo but i find it funny


Very pleased with the choice - 3.5yrs installed w/o any problems

good luck

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 7:30AM
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Cassandra

lucretzia, I had the Verde Fontaine honed. I had found a small sample at the granite dealer, and he honed the sample to show me. . .loved it! It is a good question about rolling out dough--I have never done that, so you might want to ask others about its safety. Here are a few more photos. Again, none I think really show the beauty of the granite but I hope they help:

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 7:31AM
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lucretzia

Thanks Jejvtr and Marita - very helpful to see pictures. Marita, does yours look like jejvtr's close up? The sample I have has less crystal flakes than Jejvtr's (for lack of a better description). Jejvtr, is that a carrara backsplash you used with it? It looks nice. I will try to get a picture up of my samples. Thanks for your help!

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 12:05PM
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jejvtr

luc

That is tumbled crema marfil subways fr. Daltile

BTW - if you find a stone you even think you may like, as them to hone a smple - you will see a totally different look

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 12:44PM
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lucretzia

good combo with the dark green, jejvtr and I like the suggestion of honing a sample of something i find attracti ve. I'm wondering if it would look okay to combine both the soapstone and the honed granite: granite on the perimeter (a 10x12 L and a 6' "hutch" area. Island: 5x4 cherry butcher block with auxiliary farmhouse sink of soapstone with runnels. Thoughts?

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 2:14PM
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buehl

Usually yes, but I've seen Virginia Mist range from dark gray to a dark blue/green! I figured it couldn't hurt to look at it.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 2:39PM
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lucretzia

Here are two graphics of my proposed kitchen with the idea of using honed green granite on the perimeter, cherry butcher block on the island with a soapstone farmhouse prep sink. I have included a gorgeous kitchen from which I got the inspiration plus the forth picture shows my honed granite samples and soapstone below.

Any and all thoughts regarding the concept?

Dolls house view  (Click on picture for larger view)

Floor level view  (Click on picture for larger view)

Inspiration example  (Click on picture for larger view)

My granite and soapstone samples [Top - Granite, Bottom - Soapstone]Â Â (Click on picture for larger view)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2009 at 3:54PM
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