There is much to consider when choosing kitchen countertops. The look is of course at the top of the list. But for me, I always take durability, practicality, and price into consideration as well.
There are so many different options for countertops these days: granite, marble, quartz, quartzite, soapstone, concrete, and the list goes on. Here’s how we settled on our kitchen countertops, and also a roundup of my favorite picks for modern kitchen countertop options.
When choosing our countertops, my heart wanted marble. The movement in the stone, the color, it just speaks to me. My head said no way, Jose’. Marble in a kitchen isn’t really the most practical of options. It etches easily, stains easily, chips fairly easily, and it’s quite expensive. I had a simple backsplash in mind with subway tile, so I really wanted the look of stone. Enter quartzite.
Quartzite is a bit harder than marble, but not as hard as granite. It still etches like marble does if you don’t clean up spills, but is more practical. It’s also less expensive than marble as a general rule of thumb (if you’re willing to shop around).
The first step in shopping for countertops is to select an installer. Each installer has different accounts at different stone yards. We got a few quotes and ended up deciding on ProCast here in Salt Lake based on a referral from a friend. Our contact, Aaron, was really helpful and because I’m pretty (very) hands on, he suggested I visit a bunch of the stone yards they work with and find something I liked.
I swear I went to every stone yard in the valley and several tips for you: first, price for similar/exactly the same product varies a whole lot from yard to yard. There are different degrees of quality, but I’m not kidding, I found the exact quartzite I wanted at one yard, and found it at another yard for more than $10 less per square foot. That adds up to a big savings.
I narrowed it down to the exact slabs I wanted, put down our deposit to reserve them and thought we were good to go. Then I got a call that was pretty frustrating: the slab yard said there was a mix-up and they accidentally sold our slabs to someone else. I had to lug my one week old and toddler back down to the slab yard to select new slabs and found something pretty close to the same. It can’t all go smoothly, can it? This quartzite was $15/square foot for 3cm, which was a pretty amazing price.
We decided on a waterfall edge for the island. It was a splurge, even at a great price for the stone. A waterfall added up to an entire extra slab of stone, as you buy it by the slab, not by how much you use. But, it was worth it. I think the stone is one of the elements that makes the room.
photos by Veronica Reeve
Quartzite was the option that was right for this space, but it’s not the only option I love. Here is a roundup of my top picks for modern kitchen countertop options:
I love each one for different reasons. If you’re on the hunt for modern countertops, I encourage you to check out each one and find the best one for your space and needs.
Any guesses which one I chose for our basement kitchen/bar area?
On a side note, I’m off to NYC today for the Better Homes and Gardens Stylemaker event. Last year was quite a whirlwind, as I was one of three bloggers competing in the Stylemaker Challenge. It feels good this year to just be able to focus on attending the event, seeing good friends from across the country, and connecting with the dear team at BHG.
Hope you’re having a lovely day!