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Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Posted by Hydragea (My Page) on
Wed, Aug 20, 14 at 10:21

I am considering using laminate for my counters. But I'm also considering soapstone, marble, quartz, and corian :-). In other words, I have room in my budget for higher-end finishes.

I like the idea of using laminate because you can add colour without a huge monetary commitment. You can somewhat easily remove it prior to resale, for example, or even if you tire of it.

That said, do you think that laminate looks cheap? Do you think you can use formica to make it look like you CHOSE it, as opposed to it looking like you ran out of money?

Background: I'm updating a 50's ranch, where formica would look 'house-appropriate'. I'm in a neighborhood where young people are moving in and updating with granite; however, lots of existing houses still have formica.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

The Formica of today, or actually laminate's of today are a pretty nice budget friendly option.
Why not? I do like some of the soapstone "like" options Formica and Wison Art do.
But they also have some fun jazzy options.

I would say if this is not a home that will resell in less than 5 years..go for it.
It's the same reason I chose Solid surface and Vinyl sheet in my last remodel. A) granite and tile break dishes and I had a house full of boys. B) The house was in a neighborhood that didn't warrant those upgrades. C) I personally prefered the softer touch of my choices. D) no resell in the future. 10 plus years later it all still looks good and will continue to do so.

Our "new" house came with butcherblock laminate. Lol..it's definately not my taste, but other than the pointed corner of the peninsula, it's held up really well and is probably 20 years old.

I know the color family I want to go with, but not the surface type to replace. It will depend on price for me. But I highly doubt it will be stone.


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I don't know how much pricing you have done but some of the higher end laminates were actually more than the low end granites so it is definitely not automatically a budget choice. I went with Corian for my countertops because I do not like granite (and soapstone was way out of my budget) and went with sheet vinyl because I love the ease of cleaning. I absolutely love both choices and to be frank, I really don't care if someone else thinks it looks like I was on a budget...I mean aren't most of us on some type of budget. Some may be higher budgets than others but there are probably very few of us who thought..."the sky's the limit" when choosing finishes for our kitchens.

Pick what you like for whatever reason you like it and don't worry about what someone else thinks.

This post was edited by dcward89 on Wed, Aug 20, 14 at 11:07


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I don't think it indicates a low budget.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

> Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Only to people who haven't priced it lately. :)


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

What style kitchen are you going for? I think that plays into the decision of going with laminate that reads as a deliberate choice.

I like laminates that aren't trying to look like wood or natural stone. I've seen some here on GW that have a colorful edge. There was one in a persimmon red a few years back. I also like the ones that look like a linen weave, especially in Spring green. It's a bit retro, but very fresh looking IMHO.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Not to me, but then I like modern. I think it plays well with modern and contemporary. And it is very functional. Does it fit the house and it's updates? There are, although, a number of people for whom Formica does scream budget. They want more expensive tops.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

It's a matter of personal taste. I grew up with formica counters and I'm done with that look. I prefer natural, rather than synthetic surfaces, but that's me. The new through-color laminates are an improvement over the old style with the dark line at the edge, but I still don't like it. Formica is sturdy and practical, but my feeling is that it cheapens the look of many kitchens. I'm just giving an opinion because you asked for an opinion. However, what's important is what you like: if you like Formica, use it.


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Honestly, I do think the perception is that laminate is less expensive than other types of counters, even if it's not true! Just as a cautionary tale, we put laminate countertops in our kitchen in 1986 because we couldn't decide on counters and the project was finishing up - we figured we could change them out at any time because they were not so expensive. And we did - 20 years later when we remodeled the whole kitchen!


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I think it depends on the overall look and design of the space. It can look "budget", particularly if you're choosing a design that is trying to mimic a more natural material, but it can look awesome and perfect if you're trying to have fun with colors.

It really does function well also. I grew up in a late-70s built house that had bright lime green formica that eventually became something of a laughing stock because my parents left it in long after it was in style. But the thing is, that as mock-worthy as it was, it was totally still in great shape in 2002.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

No, it screams "it's 1979".


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Terms that come to my mind about laminates are practical, functional - and (if coordinated with the surroundings) really nice. Its not a fixed, permanent feature which will involve more money just to pull up and replace so if it gives you wiggle room, go for it.

" make it look like .....you CHOSE it." to whom?

Its your kitchen, your money, go with what you like. It sounds simplistic esp given the hours of deliberation over BS, granites, surfaces, counter we do, but the reality is that those who want to be judgmental will be so - and do you really care about their opinions (or would you want to).

Whatever you do, enjoy :-)


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I was not budget-constrained, and I really wanted formica in my beachhouse kitchen, but the problem is that I didn't like the colors and patterns available.

Most of what I found in residential formica was trying to imitate granite or marble or wood. I did not care for that, i wanted something that announced itself as Formica --- but not retro boomerang either.

I had to give up on my quest for a simple, linen look aqua.


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Like someone said, it all depends on the color/style choice and the space. I also don't like the ersatz stone patterns of some (also didn't like some of them in quartz and corian) but some of the formica styles look very good and appropriate -- like some that I saw at Ikea.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

If laminate looks appropriate, then it will not cheapen an already inexpensive look. Do you have solid wood cabinets? Do you have a linoleum floor? No matter what you choose, there will be those who will not like it and want to change it. If you have beautiful cabinets and floor, then laminate tops may scream "budget". If you have cheap cabinets and a cheap floor, installing expensive countertops will not make the other elements look less cheap - at least to me. If your cabinets will need to be replaced soon, then laminate is definitely appropriate. Do NOT put expensive tops on cheap cabinets!

How much longer do you expect to stay in this house? You might want to ask a local realtor about how laminate may or may not affect buyer interest. But even if you have great cabinets and floor, an expensive top will not appeal to everyone equally.

There are some Italian laminates that I like - especially those designed by Ettore Sottsass, but they are not inexpensive.

Lars


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I think there is a presumption that if you could afford real stone that you would choose that over a stone-look laminate. It isn't always true--some folks like the resilience of laminate and find stone to be too noisy and too cold. (Apologies to folks who chose laminate for budget reasons--I actually quite like laminate and 100% support staying on budget).

I think laminate really shines with patterns that aren't possible with natural materials: abstracts, textile looks, rusted metal, crazed ceramic, vivid colors, etc. In fact, I have 4 Formica samples on my desk right now (VirrVarr light blue, Sisal mat, Tangle seaweed, and Beluga). They can be great looks in the right kitchen. We see them all the time in commercial applications and never think twice about them being "downmarket."

A few years ago there was a Design Around This thread (anyone remember those?) on patterned Formica (see link below). Some of the pics are missing now, but there's a lot left.

Here is a link that might be useful: Design Around This #4: Formica Patterns are coooool!


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Laminate is now the preferred choice over granite, especially in europe. Granite is a past trend now.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Thanks for your opinions. I appreciate both the 'for' and 'against' views.

I'm considering two possible 'looks' for my kitchen:

1. cottage: painted white-or-very-light-coloured shaker cabinets. Floor would be wood. Formica, marble, or quartz counters.

OR

2. modern: slab oak (maybe cherry) cabinets with bar pulls or some other modern hardware. Formica, corian, soapstone, or quartz counters. Not sure about floor.

My gut feel is that option 2. is a better match the house.

Formica I'm considering for options 1 and 2:

image

Sky tulle

As mentioned, I could add a different-coloured band to make it look more purposeful.

here is the slab oak I'm considering (sorry, it's on a bathroom vanity, but you get the idea):

Slab cabinets would look nice with corian or soapstone too...


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We purposely chose laminate. The premium laminate we chose was a little cheaper than stone, but not so much that we based our choice on the cost. We chose it because we like it, its tough, easy to care for, low maintenance. There are so many colors, and patterns, almost unlimited choices. . Someone recently posted their counters in the marble laminate, it looked great although it was mimicking stone, but will undoubtedly be easier to care for than marble. As far as resale, for me it wouldn't be a deal breaker. What would discourage me would be badly painted, chipped cabinets, or cheap, flimsy ones.


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ok, thanks for that link cawaps. I'll definitely have a look.
I had a look at the golden oak design around thread and was inspired, as you can see from my previous post :-)


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"I was not budget-constrained, and I really wanted formica in my beachhouse kitchen, but the problem is that I didn't like the colors and patterns available."

It's funny you should mention this in relation to a beach house. My husband and I spend a lot of time at a family beach house over the summer, and love to randomly pop into open houses with the idea of our own someday (not now). EVERY SINGLE TIME we walk into a kitchen that has older laminate counters at any of these homes, the real estate agent present immediately mentions how it "wouldn't be hard at all" to replace it with granite. Every. Single Time. I always respond with the fact that of all the things that make an ideal vacation house for me, kitchen counters are pretty much the least of my concern. I want enough space for friends to visit, a realistic walk to the beach, working systems, and general cleanliness. I could not care less about the kitchen counters in a house where my main goal is to relax and have as few responsibilities as possible.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I like your second choice particularly! It sounds to me like laminate is appropriate to your house and to your cabinet choice. And you seem to be drawn to laminate with fun colors rather than going for a stone imitation. I think both of those make it look more intentional and less like a default or budget related choice.


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I think particularly when you choose something that clearly Looks like what it is (laminate in an abstract, obviously-not-mimicking-anything pattern), it seems intentional and not a compromise.

I don't want to criticize formica that looks like something like the FX ones, but they aren't really "budget" options either.


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i too looked at laminate, mostly the 180fx and no it was not cheap at all. we did a whole remodel and my husband thought putting laminate on new cabs was nuts and i sort of agreed but we do want to sell hopefully with 5 years so we had to keep that in mind. if i had done lighter cabs i could have gotten a plain black laminate. to me the lighter ones with flecks looked more fake but that was how i felt about corian and quartz so that is only my opinion. you have to love it, not anyone else!
to the person that said granite is a past trend because it is in europe, here in the suburbs of upny and new england and possibly jersey it is not passe but expected for resale. if resale is a concern, check out zillow to see what comps in your area have. i know here, granite is listed first and foremost in an ad.


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Hydrangea, I love your two choices posted.

Ardcp - where I am, granite is falling out of favor. It is definitely a regional thing,but once it starts it tends to spread.


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We built a house in 1998 and put fancypants granite in our kitchen. 8 years later we down sized to a condo and I put in laminate similar to the second example you showed. I love it. Funny though when we had it installed in mid construction we were so pleased to see it but went back 2 days later and they'd ripped it out. I ran to the contractor for the condo and ask where my beautiful counter went and he told us when he'd seen it he couldn't believe anyone would have picked it and assumed it was a mistake so had it taken out. We made them put it right back in even though they had to refabricate the whole thing again. 9 years later and we still love our aqua green Formica. When we redid our mountain home last summer I again put in Formica but this time with a 24 " area of butcher block next to the stove because the only thing I missed about our old granite was putting hot pans on it.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

In regard to resale, yes, granite is a plus. But it is easier and cheaper to replace counters than to replace the cabinets. And usually, if you have to replace the cabinets,, you need a new countertop as well. So if I was looking to buy a home, I would place more priority on a good set of cabinets than the counters. If I loved the house, loved the kitchen but not the counters, that would not prevent me from buying the house. A price adjustment might be in order in that case. I think if you are looking at resale, I agree with the posts that said you have to look at what homes in your area and price point have. If I was looking to buy a home, I look at location first, how well the home has been maintained, the general layout of the house and cleanliness as most important. When doing new cabinets and counters, get the stone if you like it and can afford it. But I would never get an inexpensive cabinet so I could put the savings toward a stone countertop. If the budget won't allow both, in that case, I'd get the quality cabinets and the laminate and upgrade the counters when you can afford to.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I think laminate can look awesome. I would certainly pick a nice laminate over some of the ugly granites I've seen.

You would do it because you like it, right? You prefer it over other materials that may cost even less?

Besides liking it, I think you have to be honest with yourself about something. When you show people your new kitchen, will you launch into a Defense Of Laminate? Explain its advantages, how it's not a cheap solution anymore, that you like it even if others think it's dated? If you don't really give a crap what they think, you'll go, yes! it's laminate! isn't it fabulous? Never offer an apology.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I like laminate and no, I don't think it screams budget if it is done right.

One thing I DIDN'T like about laminate when I was house shopping last year was a couple or three houses where they had just put the bare, thin laminate right on the wall as a backsplash. Looked really, really awful!

On the other hand, one house had black leather-look laminate with a black 4X4 tile backsplash. Which, of course, stood out from the wall. It was stunning! I tried to buy that house but couldn't reach a price with the sellers.

The home I did buy has neutral tan Corian with a pretty up-to-the-cabinets tile backsplash above the 4" Corian one. Works nicely with my solid oak cabinets.

I guess my point is whatever material you end up using, do it right. Don't cheap out on your installation.


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Agreed with all of the above. We went with laminate in a modern aesthetic and we love it. Like others have pointed out, so long as all the elements are thoughtful and tie together, it won't cheapen anything. I am amazed at all the fun patterns and textures available, particularly the fun, funky, cool ones. I'll also echo the comments of others that laminate that is trying to look like another material (stone, wood, etc) is not my favorite.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Only if you're more concerned about what others think than what you actually like. For me , the beauty of Formica is that I can change the decor (including countertops) about 10 times for what granite would cost.

Today's Formica colors and designs are almost endless. We have a supply company that will even do any custom color you want. You create your own edge design, backsplash, whatever you want.


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I would get what you like. The laminate option we were looking at (wilsonart high definition) was significantly less expensive than the basic granite we ended up going with. For us, we narrowed it down to deciding between a lighter vs. darker countertop, and went with the granite. I found some really nice thin rim stainless steel sinks that we were going to use with the laminate option, and I'm sure we would have loved that too.


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Some folks won't even change a wall plate without thinking hard on how it might affect the house's resale price. To build and decorate the house you live in based on what others think of your choices is giving away too much power to those "others". It's YOUR house. Do what YOU want.


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This:

"Besides liking it, I think you have to be honest with yourself about something. When you show people your new kitchen, will you launch into a Defense Of Laminate? Explain its advantages, how it's not a cheap solution anymore, that you like it even if others think it's dated? If you don't really give a crap what they think, you'll go, yes! it's laminate! isn't it fabulous? Never offer an apology." -Linelle

and this:

"To build and decorate the house you live in based on what others think of your choices is giving away too much power to those "others". It's YOUR house. Do what YOU want." -grubby_me


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Do what you like. I really like some of the new laminates, and was thinking of it, but I really really wanted an undermount sink. Even tough I saw some laminate with an um sink, our people wouldn't do it.

Plus DH thought if we're doing this, we're doing it, so we went with quartz and love it.


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Ha ha, linelle. I think I wouldn't say anything about the counters, and would just let the overall beauty of my kitchen imprint its majesty on their brains ;-)

I just wanted to address the 'do-what-you-love-and-dont-worry-about-others' comments:

I do care what people think, to a certain extent. Especially my mother's opinion :-)

Realistically though, I'm considering formica even though my budget will allow for something fancier. I should be getting at least *some* 'independent-minded' points for that, shouldn't I?


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Short answer,,,YES.

Longer answer, if you're keeping your home and truly want laminate, get it. If you plan to sell within a couple of years, buyers want quartz or granite.

Depending on where you are, the costs aren't that different. Here in South Florida you can have granite installed for not much more than laminate.


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I think it depends on what finishes are in the rest of your house, too. If you've got laminate elsewhere then it wouldn't feel out of place. I think they've got a lot of great options out there now, and I know granite will probably be passe someday. I think they still even sell the boomerang patterns of yore if you're into that kind of thing haha. We still have some on an old bar in the basement. Cracks me up! So rockabilly.

I will say I prefer natural stone for baking and cooking and things like that - much easier to work on IMO but I can't tell you the last time I tried pulling dough on a formica counter, either.

What style is the rest of your house decorated in? Are you sticking with the 50s look? Funny enough I ran across this kitchen yesterday when I was trying to make myself feel better about the hickory floors. The colors kind of remind me of what you're describing. Can't wait to see what you pick I think this sounds like a fun project!

Here is a link that might be useful: barton hills houzz


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I do care what people think, to a certain extent. Especially my mother's opinion :-)

That's the most honest response I've ever read on GW!


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I really like the colors of the 2 laminates that you posted up and think they could really work well, depending on the overall look of the kitchen and house! For example, my grandparent's little 1930 or 40's 4 room +bath cottage comes to mind. Would be great fun there -- just one example.

I really think that the edge makes or breaks laminate's look.


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I think the slab oak cabs with Formica counters would be appropriate to your 1950s home. I love the colors you chose above!

If visitors ask, just respond, "Yes, I love the laminate. It respects the home. Any other material would have bastardized it."


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I really want to do a vintage kitchen, with laminate counter tops...along with a butcher block work area and a little marble for a baking area. Not everyone's taste, but I think it would be beautiful. Your choices are both lovely and I really like your option #1 :)


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Here's a picture of the kitchen we just redid using laminate and butcherblock. The cabinets are ancient but good quality so we left them. I really like the laminate better than the granite we had in a previous house. I make no apologies and laugh all the way to the bank.


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I make no apologies and laugh all the way to the bank.

Like.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Hydragea, I love the laminate colors you chose. Would you mind sharing what they are? We will most likely use laminate when we remodel. The good and bad about laminate is that there are so many design options. I dread the decision process.

Raee, you mentioned that the edge makes or breaks the laminate. What edges do you like?

Rgps, your laminate with the butcher block is beautiful. Great idea. What type of edge does it have?


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Kendog, not sure what the edge is called so I included another picture that shows it better.


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Nothing wrong with "being on a budget" and even better to choose something you like vs trying to keep up with the Joneses! It's refreshing to hear someone who has the means making a reasonable choice rather than buying to make an impression for someone else!


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rgps- love the cabinets actually and that formica is definately one of the looks i would have been happy with. what is your bs? it is really cool


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Ardcp, it is tile. I love it but having trouble figuring out what to do for cover plates.


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Hydragea, I always have to chuckle to myself when this issue comes up. Years ago (I'm old), we put laminate on the counters, and stone on the floor. Now we put stone on the counters and laminate on the floor. :-)

A new house just went up next door to us, and they used Formica. It is gorgeous. I like hers a lot better than my Bianco Romano that I paid A LOT more for. Installation of Formica, including nice edging, is so much different than it was years ago. It's a fabulous surface, and always in style...at least I think so.


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Hi Joyce - hijacking briefly here - What do you not like about your Bianco Romano? That's in the final running as a choice for me (I have white cabinets in a small kitchen). (I know slabs can be quite different.)

Hydragea - best wishes on your decisions - I am in the midst of mine; there has been lots of back and forth and it is all part of the process, I guess.


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Hydragea... I just redid my kitchen and used the FormicaFX in Marble. I wanted a cottage/beachy look so I had the cabinets (90's Oak) professionally spray painted in a very light green. Flooring is Allure Vinyl Planks in 'Mellow Wood'.

Can't wait to see what you decide to go with.. I do like both your Formica choices!


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Lydia1959 I love that marble look laminate. Certainly easier upkeep than real marble. I think with counter tops, and pretty much any kitchen materials, a lot of things to consider when making your choice - how much can you spend; style of your home/kitchen; do you do a lot of cooking/baking; what you are willing to do to maintain your choices. What I wouldn't worry about is what people will say or think about my choices, after all they are MY choices. After looking at hundreds of kitchens on GW and Houzz I've concluded that almost any material choice can look great, if its well thought out, well done and in keeping with the general style of the home. I really like Lydias kitchen because it has a beautiful cottage feel to it, which I think is what she was aiming for. And, to me, all her choices are easy care. The formica is easy to clean, tough as nails and needs no sealing or special care. The painted cabinets can be easily touched up if nicked, and the vinyl floor is super easy to clean and won't scratch the way real wood does. (I really love those knobs too) Get what you like, and what works for you and make no apologies for it.


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rgps, what is your backsplash?

I just installed laminate. Formica's FX180 travertine silver, and I'm very happy with it. It's the HD stone look a like create from a 12' long photo of a stone slab. I like the easy maintenance. I have the ideal edge that wraps a bullnose around the corner, and also an undermount sink. I'm only going to put a full height backsplash behind the stove (I have a 4" lam backsplash on the counter). I wanted to do a tempered wavy, backpainted glass sheet behind the stove, but also was leaning towards a slide in range. I just realized that the glass would be thin next to the formica backsplash... ugh. Maybe now, I'll go with granite behind the stove (my island top and kitchen window are granite. Or maybe I shouldn't get the slide in range.


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I'll move in 10 years, roughly. Too far away to care about resale? Not sure.

The colours I posted are from the Arborite site. I forget what they're called, but you just need to page through the options. It's obvious which ones they are. There are lovely linen-look ones there too.

raee - I agree the edge makes it. Below is a photo of linoleum with a metal strip. The lino might as well be laminate, imo. I think it looks really nice.

I'm wondering: do you think that counter is 1" or 1.5" thick? I like the thinner counters...

metal strip


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I'm wondering these days what impact all the quarrying for the stone counters is doing to the environment? I was at a display center the other day and I found the laminate to be my choice, I just found it to look better IMHO.


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I wonder the same thing, Arkansas Girl. That's partly why we opted for laminate. We used remnant pieces of stone in two places in the kitchen because I do love stone but can't fathom the idea of having a slab cut out of the ground and shipped halfway around the world just for me. But I that's just me. I don't judge anyone else's choice and I enjoy looking at all the pretty results here on GW.


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Someone mentioned choosing laminate "shows you compromised" or something similar. For me, all of life is a compromise and I have no shame in saying I chose to do X so that I could get Y.

We just did laminate in our new build because a) it is not high end to begin with, at $250,000., b) we prioritized and upgraded the cabinets now, because it is much harder to do cabinets later, unlike countertops, and c) our builders' granite choices were not what we wanted. If and when I do granite or quartz, I'm doing something like superwhite. I have no problem with living with a nice laminate for a few years in order to get what I really want later, if I still want it.

Here is ours:


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skyangel23 that is really pretty and not an obvious laminate trying to be granite. i had a laminate 180fx sample that was a calcutta marble lookalike and just wasn't sure how it would look irl. since your builder granite choices were limited, you lucked out that they offered such a nice laminate. when i built 15 years ago my flooring and counter choices were limited to the cheapest available.


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Skyangel.. that looks very nice! I think I had that sample too. Ardcp.. the photos I posted above are the Calcutta Marble Formica FX... my husband and I both are very happy with it, we think it is a nice clean look and not overly 'busy'. My last Formica lasted 20 years and I am hoping this Formica lasts just as long.


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Skyangel - what is your laminate? I really like the pattern, and the fabrication looks very well done, that is a tricky corner and I don't see the seams.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I think you should get what you like. That ideal edge is very appealing. My only concern is that I installed white formica in 1973 and took it out in 1993. It still looked brand new, no marks whatsever. Then I installed off white in my remodeled kitchen, and it had some breaks in the surface within a few years. It looked like someone used a steak knife on it. I had it another 14 years with no further damage, but I wonder if the newer product will hold up as well as the older laminates did. I'm about to install 60SF of solid surface in my current home because I also like the softer look and feel. Get what you want.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I was just in a client's home recently and she had a leathered dark laminate on her perimeter counters. She also used a stunning black/white/gray granite in a circular cut out for a very unique breakfast bar coming off her countertop. It was stunning.

I would replicate it in a heartbeat and to heck with people who judge you based on what you choose for your countertop material. Life is too short..do what makes your heart sing.

As far a resale, you can install the most expensive countertop and someone will come in, not like it and bid low because of it. Been there, done that.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

linelle, lol, I so agree. If you're going to do laminate, no need for righteous indignation toward those that do granite and are happy with it. Whatever choice you make don't defend or apologize for it no matter what it is. Variety is the spice of life. Be convinced of your choices and secure in your reasoning. It doesn't scream "I'm on a budget".


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

"Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?"

Depends who your audience is.

Nothing wrong with being on a budget or not being rich either.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

There are loads of great-looking laminates out there nowadays, with all sorts of colors, textures, and patterns - ranging from ultramodern to retro and everything in between, including many looks that would be hard to duplicate using other materials. It is not just the choice for the financially unendowed.

My main beef with the material is that (a) is is nearly impossible to intergrate an undermount sink or other transition where there won't be a dirt-catching, space-stealing ledge surrounding the sink, and (b) the material can't be rolled both vertically and horizontally. That is, if you have a curved cabinet in the corner or at the edge, you'll have to either to have telltale seams at the countertop edges in front, or have a bullnose or other shape made of another material fastened to the front of the countertops to handle the curves. I've used laminate countertops with rolled edges rather than seams and few realized it was even laminate, since they're used to seeing those black seams on the top and bottom of the edge and between the countertop and backsplash.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

Be convinced of your choices and secure in your reasoning.
gr8day

Words to live by.

No one who's seen my kitchen since it was remodeled has ever questioned my choices. They might think I made stupid ones, but they've never voiced them. Actually, it makes me wonder. I can imagine some of them going, WTF was she thinking?

Sounds like laminates still have the tell-tale black line. Don't some of the high end brands have color running all the way through? Do the majority start with a black core and then they add the topping?


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

I don't find the top mounted sink to be hard to clean along the edge. A lot of people mention this as a problem, I don't find it to be so. I always thought the undermount sinks, where the counter meets the sink, would be harder to clean. I can't say about the lighter laminates having the black line, since I have a dark laminate. I am happy with my laminate choice, I realize its not for everyone. Do I admire a beautiful granite? Yes, of course. Do I regret choosing laminate? No.


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RE: Does formica scream 'I'm on a budget!' ?

"I don't find the top mounted sink to be hard to clean along the edge. A lot of people mention this as a problem, I don't find it to be so."

same here. never have had a problem cleaning around a drop in sink. The 2 I'll be replacing this yr will both be with drop ins again.


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