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Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Posted by cbo2008 (My Page) on
Mon, Sep 15, 08 at 14:44

Hi all - we were supposed to be picking our soapstone countertop from Stone & Tile World in Rockville. They have one slab that we weren't crazy about. We then looked at some slabs up in Frederick that we really liked (Designer Surfaces Unlimited), but our contractor won't let us go with them. He insists that Stone & Tile world can get ANY soapstone. Well, they called around and found some soapstone up in Jessup at Levantina. A very nice woman, Amy, e-mailed me a picture of the slab, which is nice but very green. We're looking for more of a grey. So far Stone & Tile World hasn't been able to find anything else.

Our contractor doesn't like working with new materials and most of his clients go with granite. He keeps pushing it on us, but I really want soapstone.

Any advice? Any other suppliers that we can contact? I hate to cave to the contractor and go with the green soapstone that would be fine, but not what I really want.

Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

We got ours several months ago from Grantops, also in Frederick. I included their link below. They are only about two miles from Designer Surfaces. I don't know what inventory they have right now (I'm sure you could call them before driving up there), but when I was looking they had four or five kinds to choose from, and a total of probably eight slabs to look at. We got Santa Rita and I think it's beautiful. Here's mine:

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Here is a link that might be useful: Grantops


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Many granite yards also have soapstone, albeit often not a great selection. You may have to look around to find the slab(s) for you.

Here's another current thread about granite...check with the names/places mentioned there and see if they also have SS.

(There's also an embedded link of another thread.)

Here is a link that might be useful: Looking for granite fabricator in DC metro area


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Dear "Looking for Soapstone in DC"
I am a remodeler in Idaho and have worked with stone countertops for over fifteen years. I am absolutly in love with Soapstone and would never put anything else in my Kitchens. To me it has a warm and organic feel. The longer it is in your kitchen the more you will love it. Granite is cold and sterile, it is shiny and perfect forever. Very boring. Soap stone has character and will develope a patina as you use it. Maintenance is easy. wipe it down with Mineral Oil as often as you want to. Mineral Oil is a sealer that has been used for centuries. It will not harm you. You can drink it if you want to. It is usually sold in the Pharmecy as a laxative. Unlike most sealers which would kill you if you drank it. The best place to buy Mineral Oil is the ranch and farm supply where you can buy it by the gallon for cheap.(I guess horses need bigger laxatives)
Do not let your contractor muscle you into anything else. What most people point out as flaws in soapstone I find to be its best attributes.

To find a Supplier near you just Google "Soapstone, Washington DC". And go talk to them. When you go visit the stone yard bring a wet rag so you can see what it looks like "Oiled" or wet.
Also be sure to google just plain "Soapstone" Click on a few of the links at the top so you can become familliar with the different varieties. Both Dorado out of Denver and M. Teixera are reputable importers and may have a contact near you. Most Soapstone comes out of Brazil. There is a green variety that I think comes from Finland. Be sure to get at least 1-1/4" thick variety. Do not settle for 3/4"

Get what you want and be sure to use a local fabricator who is not afraid of soapstone.

Good luck

David


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

cbo -- I was out at Universal Marble near BWI recently, and they seemed to have quite a bit of soapstone. You might want to give them a call. Good luck.


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

dmsun in Idaho; would you recommend a soapstone dealer in Idaho or where would you suggest I go for soapstone for my new home?


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Have you looked at Alberene Soapstone in Schuyler, VA? About 150 miles from DC it looks like. They have "greyer" varieties, some quiet, some busier with lots of veining -- and it is mined right there -- beautiful to look at, we were there last week and such a cool experience to see the giant rocks right out of the mountain, cutting slabs with the machine and plenty of slabs to look at. If all goes well and they can find the slabs that I need we will be using them -- I have my fingers crossed that this will work out, I really liked the place and the people -- very knowledgable about soapstone and the person who would be working with us has been working with and fabricating soapstone for more than 20 years. Might be worth checking out.......good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: Alberene Soapstone


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

We used Old Mill Soapstone in Louisa County VA. Pretty drive-- took a bit over an hour. Good price and they installed and delivered it and I liked that it was all one price, one person, handling the whole thing.


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Here is what I found while searching for black or grey soapstone in the MD/DC/VA area:

Universal - blue and green soapstone, minimal veining but they do not let you select your individual slab, only your lot

GranTops (Frederick) - best selection of soapstone in the area, just didn't have the grey or black I wanted. They get their slabs directly from M.Tex.

Avanti (Frederick) - had slabs of what they called soapstone that looked and felt more like Pietra di Cordoza...just didn't look or feel right

NSI - amazing granite, no soapstone

Levantina - same looking soapstone as what we saw at Universal

DalTile (Chantilly) - no soapstone

Marva (Beltsville) - no soapstone

HTH!!!!


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Hi,
I've ordered my soapstone from a distributor called Carapace Stone LLC in Savage, MD (I'm in Silver Spring inside the beltway). It's Green Mtn. Original PA and I pick out the slabs in a couple of weeks. Ordered it through cabinet discounters in Columbia, MD. (Matt Simms of that office has been wonderfully helpful throughout)

Also visited Old Mill Soapstone in VA, as mentioned above, and Sally there gave a fabulous price and was a real option but for mainly logistical reasons I went with Carapace.

Good luck!

Kindly,
B

Here is a link that might be useful: Carapace in Savage MD


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Thank you for all of the responses! I hadn't realized that we had local suppliers in VA. I will definitely look into those as well as some of the other places that were listed. Hopefully, this issue will get worked out soon so we can have a working kitchen!


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

I have to give positive feedback to Designer Surfaces Unlimited in Frederick. Truly, they were a joy to deal with, especially when compared to all the horrible other vendors you have to deal with in an install. I worked with Audrey. (1) The turnaround time from template to instal was only a week and a half; (2) I had to reschedule my template date probably 5 times, and they never batted an eye; (3) when I came in to place the templates on the stone slabs, everyone was extremely friendly, patient and helpful. I was just shocked-- largely because you become so accustomed to dealing with rudeness and incompetence.
And the install went very smoothly, everything looks great. They did a great job with the seam and matching it up. You can barely even tell it's there.
I strongly recommend Designer Surfaces Unlimited.


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

I hope this thread's not too old to add to. I did some investigating today. I've only seen soapstone a few times but have read every thread on here.

I visited Designer Surfaces and Grantops in Frederick today. Very interesting! Designer Surfaces had Green Mountain Original on display and gave me a quick quote based on a very rough drawing. I was told they had very little stock but were expecting more very soon.

At Grantops, I was shown a few slabs outside that were very green, and flakey /crumbly. It seemed quartz-like to me, with white crystals mixed in? (I am not a geologist!) I was assured that is was soapstone, but it looked extremely different than the display and sample I saw at Designer Surfaces. It was marked (I think) "Savon Pierre" on the side. A google search shows that this may be Canadian, and good for carving? Very strange!

I made a quick stop at Home Depot tonight as my son wanted some duct tape. I walked thru the kitchen area and noticed that they are selling this exact same soapstone (same name too). I asked the store associate ( a very, very young man) about it and he told me it was real soapstone, but you couldn't put it in a kitchen because it was extremely porous. He said it was great for bathroom vanities. Bizarre, don't you think?

I also called Carapace last week and they said they only had "the green kind that nobody wants". Maybe he too was referring to this "Savon Pierre"?


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

I am in metro Detroit, but I saw the same "Savon Pierre" soapstone at my local HD this week. I posted a thread a couple weeks back about Canadian soapstone, but no one replied. It definitely looks a lot different. More grey and a different texture. The HD folks said it was from Brazil, so I am not sure. I know they make stoves out of the Canadian soapstone & sell it as counters (www.woodstove.com) & I kind of like the gray look.

Here is a link that might be useful: Quebec Soapstone Quarry


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Thanks for all the advice. We ended up getting the last 3 slabs from Designer Surfaces last week. They have a new shipment on a boat somewhere in the Atlantic. They were incredibly nice and helpful. However, they won't install the stone. That will be done by Stone & Tile World, because that is the installer that our contractor uses. I called just about every soapstone supplier in the area. A few places, like Carapace, had green soapstone - it looked like the Finlandia soapstone that someone posted a picture of recently. Although it's nice, we wanted grey soapstone.

The countertops will be installed next week. Hopefully, we'll be able to post some pictures of a finished kitchen by Halloween!


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Cbo2008, let me know how Stone & Tile World works out. We had a bad experience with them just trying to see slabs and refused to use them. They used to be the supplier/fabricator for EXPO, but they got so many complaints that they dropped them.

They may be great fabricators though...so maybe you just have to get past their sales/floor people. I'd like to know b/c one of my DH's co-workers is looking for granite fabricator recommendations.


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

Hi-I was at Carapace in Savage, MD this morning. They had a good bit of Iceflower and GM Original. A new shipment of Original PA also being catalogued...
My templating and install is over the next two weeks and the fabricator is Creativeincounters out of Mt. Airy, MD
So far great customer service all around from both Carapace and Creativeincounters-I'll let you know how the rest goes.
Kindly,
B


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

The Jessup store is the one that has "Green Soapstone" (the subject of my rant earlier today). It's not Soapstone-- it is serpentine. He, like the HD guy from a previous poster in this thread, said real soapstone is "very porous"... there's a huge difference between soft and porous-- soapstone is not porous.

I've had a hard time finding knowledgeable people down here. I think soapstone is a lot more popular in New England... at least that's what I've heard from cabinet people up there. Good luck.


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RE: Soapstone suppliers in DC metro area

I had a remarkably perfect experience with Carapace in Savage, MD (the stoneyard where I got my Original PA) and with creativeincounters (my fabricator located in Mt. Airy, MD). Can't say enough good things about both locations and quality of service and workmanship--We installed our soapstone on Oct. 31...we LOVE it.
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