You’ve weighed all of the different options and decided you definitely want granite countertops in your new kitchen. Now you just need to decide which is the right granite for your new countertops.
The surface appearance of granite slabs can vary dramatically. Speckled, mottled, streaked, or striped – there are endless variations to this product of nature. There are even varieties that look like the pebbles in the bottom of a streambed! Consider the cabinetry and flooring in your kitchen when choosing a granite. You’ll want the granite to complement the rest of your kitchen rather than clash with it.
The first step is to choose the dominant color you want in your kitchen; then choose a granite that highlights that color. The highlight can be either a whisper or a shout – it’s up to you. If you want a classic white kitchen with black highlights, you might choose a white granite with black speckles or marble-like veins. Alternatively, you might choose a solid black granite.
A granite with complex color patterns looks best in a sunlit kitchen where the natural sunlight highlights the patterns and brings out the colors. If your flooring has a red undertone, a granite with brick-red veining can really bring out the red in the floor. A granite with shades of green and brown can lend an earthy feel to a kitchen. If you choose the granite that looks like a streambed full of pebbles, you’ll probably want to make less busy choices for the rest of your kitchen; perhaps sleek, contemporary hardware and simple flooring without a lot of detail.
Natural stone varies in strength and granite is no exception. It can also vary in its porosity and number of pits, pores, and imperfections.
- Commercial-grade granite is usually thinner (3/8″ versus 3/4 to 1- 1/4″) and often needs a plywood backing for support. It’s only available in the most common colors.
- Middle-grade granite is sometimes the hardest and most durable granite, although it might have surface pitting. It’s considered mid-grade because it only comes in the more common colors and patterns rather than those that are more unusual or rare.
- High-grade is good quality granite that includes the rarest colors, patterns, and veining.
- Designer-grade granite is the rarest and most expensive kind. These slabs are handpicked by designers and pattern-matched between cuts.
Bear in mind that there are no standardized grades of granite and one company’s commercial-grade could be the same as another company’s high-grade. Always clarify a particular company’s grading standards before buying!
Talk to an experienced kitchen design expert to make sure you’re getting the right granite for your kitchen. Because of the price and durability of granite, it’s a good idea to spend a little more to get the color, look, and quality you really want. After all, you might be living with it for decades to come! When you’re ready for your new kitchen, contact us. We have the experience and expertise to give you the kitchen of your dreams.