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countertop help- which material to choose?

Posted by melkel31 (melanie_kelly@hcpss.org) on
Tue, Apr 22, 14 at 16:49

I would love advice on a countertop that has a rustic look to it. Here's the link for the backsplash tile we like- (not the greatest pic on their site... much more rustic and textured in person)
http://www.tileshop.com/product/productdetail.aspx?familyID=2544&recordID=385318
We want to match the backsplash to the counter and originally wanted granite but wondering now if that will give us the look we want. Wondering if granite is too "BUSY" for this tile... any advice on other counter top materials or colors you think would compliment the tile? BTW we have ordered vintage black cabinets and a copper farmhouse kitchen sink just to give you a feel for the look...


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I think that unless it was a very very calm granite, it would compete with the backsplash.

I think a very calm quartz would look good. Something like Silestone Lena or Noka or Haiku or Vortium.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I probably would not do any stone tile with granite counters. We are doing granite, and I find that the granites have a lot of colour and pattern going on, even finer patterned ones.

For rustic, you could consider butcherblock - very pretty.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I'm putting your tile link into the clickable box so it's easier for people to follow.

It's a pretty busy backsplash so I agree I would look for a very quiet countertop. Soapstone comes to mind, but that seems too dark with black cabinets. Maybe copper countertops to go with the sink? They are unusual and you'd have to like patina. Concrete countertops? Wood, with a live edge?

Here is a link that might be useful: Tile link


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

thanks everyone! I do love the butcherblock idea! I am just concerned it will clash with the copper sink and also wondering about water damage?? any thoughts on this are much appreciated as well! :)


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

That backsplash would look fabulous on a BB countertop!

The thing with BB is just to take care to seal it well. I don't see it clashing with a copper sink t ALL, although the right finish color will be key for you.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I don't think wood will clash with copper. We had a butcher block counter in a kitchen with copper accents before and I liked it. Is your sink an undermount? I would definitely seal the butcher block well--I'm not sure there will be a tough enough finish that is also food safe so you may need to sacrifice cutting on it.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

crl_ thanks for the input! :) What finish did you have on your BB?


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I think it would look fab with a lighter gray soapstone, something like the one on the left in this link.

Here is a link that might be useful: soapstone


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I like franki1962's kitchen:


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

We had ikea butcher block with an ikea domosjo single apron front sink. Those sinks are top mounted, which helps a little with the water issue. We sealed with just mineral oil because I wanted to be able to cut on the counters. We had also decided that if the counters got ruined over the course of a few years, that was okay because they were dirt cheap to start with and we would just replace them when we had a little more money to do so. We ended up only living there for 18 months so I can't comment on how the counters held up over the long haul.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I like the BB and the soapstone idea- wondering if the soapstone with the vintage black cabinets and darker BS will be just too much dark ?? we only have one window in the kitchen so not a lot of light is let in- house has a lot of shade around it too. we do plan to possibly add light under the cabinets to give some light...


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

soapstone or walnut...

i would not do granite with that busy BS.....

IMHO i don't think silestone etc., would look good with the BS

agree something on the "quiet" side....something busy would just be too much on the eye....

good luck !!!


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

How about soapstone and butcher block? Have soapstone around the sink and butcher block for the rest?


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

Soapstone does come in a few different colors, but my understanding is that it all darkens over time even if you choose not to oil it. I think black cabinets, a dark counter and a somewhat dark backsplash would be too dark for me, especially if the space doesn't get a lot of natural light. But you may feel differently.

You might be able to find mongocot's wood bathroom counter in the bathrooms forum and find out how he finished it. Boats are made of wood after all, so I think if you don't care about cutting on it, you can probably find a way to make it suitable for use around water. Trickier if your sink is an under-mount though.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I'm with crl, soapstone will be too dark. If it didn't darken with age, then it would work well. BB or a calm quartz in one of the colors as suggested in one of the earliest posts would look great. Or a light grey quartz might work too.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

thanks everyone! love reading your advice! I am slightly obsessed haha! ;) After talking to a friend who has a fab kitchen and very wise ;) she gave me some good reasons not to get soapstone or BB. She said soapstone in her experience u can literally scrape with your nail and is very high maitenance. I had already decided that would be way too dark and remind me of my biology class haha ;) as for BB she said in her experience like another GW member it stained and needs upkeep- i still LOVE that look but am nervous about the upkeep, water damage , staining etc.. For NOW i am looking into the silestone colors of Sienna Madre, black canyon and mohogony brown which I hadn't even considered (brown) - it has some copper flecks in it as well as silver that would pick up our copper sink and stainless pieces as well. Sill need to see it in person- I just LOVE granite but our fear is that we won't find another backsplash that we just love where as we can more than likely find a counter that we like that will compliment the counter- may just have to forgo the granite for the look we like. Also, I looked at the link i posted of the tile and while it is the right tile the pic just doesn't do it justice!! :( It doesn't look rustic at all in the pic and looks more brown- I found that if I really zoomed in on the pic it gives a better idea of what it looks like in person. ;)


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

Get accurate info on soapstone before you discount it.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I have a natural stone backsplash (Jeffrey Court Pietra Fire and Ice) and used a quartz countertop that's dark with copper flecks. Not busy, very pretty and I get a ton of compliments on it. It may suit you. It's Blume's Keystone Quartz "Dakota Copper". Good luck!


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

thanks! I do like that countertop- I will definitely look into that one too pghgolfgirl! :)

btw- I am discounting the soapstone mainly bc it will just be way too dark. ;)

also, this is probably a naive ? but is quartz the same as silestone or are they different altogether?


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

Silestone is a brand name of quartz countertops, much like Cambria is also.
BTW, my cabinets are cherry and the Dakota Copper looks terrific with them. I know you are planning black cabinets, so I'm not sure how that would looks. There are enough other little flecks of color in the Dakota Copper (such as gray, blue, peachy pink and copper) so maybe it would not be too dark.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

As a material soapstone is great for countertops (i.e. your friend is wrong), but honestly, black cabinets, soapstone and only one window? Your kitchen would look like a dungeon.

Cawaps posted some quartz colors--the two bottom ones (the lightest two) could look really nice and also alleviate the darkness.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

I did not know before I started my overhaul that there is a difference between quartz and engineered quartz. If it matters to you then you want to read up. The article linked below explains it very briefly and simply.

I just had engineered quartz installed, and I absolutely love it! It is tough as nails and gorgeous to boot. Sometimes I wish I had done granite or marble but I am thrilled with the durability, especially since DH is somewhat of a heathen in the kitchen. ;o) Good thing he's cute.

Here is a link that might be useful: quartz/engineered quartz


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

thanks for the article greenhaven ! I will definitely check it out! :)


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

just read that engineered quartz is the new up and coming countertop of choice bc of it's crazy durability and scheme of colors. Apparetnly many even mimic the natural stone whichis the look i prefer (natural) sooo.... going today to check some out - hoping we can find something that will work!! :) thanks again all!


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

Just an FYI, engineered quartz can be damaged by heat. I sometimes see it touted as heat proof, but it is actually heat resistant.


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RE: countertop help- which material to choose?

thank you crl_ i did read that somewhere (to use trivets etc :) )


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