Thinking Outside the Box… The Countertop Box…

by Jackie FogartieNovember 18, 2016

The kitchen is without a doubt the heart of the home. Think about it – anytime you have a party, the kitchen is where everyone ends up hanging out. When designing the most important room in your house, there are so many decisions. From the flooring to the cabinetry to the paint color, you could spend years agonizing over these design decisions! One of the most important aspects of any drool-worthy kitchen is countertop choices. Countertops need to be functional, easy to clean and pretty to look at – that’s a tall order! Here are some outside of the box countertop finishes that will wow any visitor:

Image courtesy of Home Editvia Home Edit

Quartz

While quartz can be mistaken for the always popular granite, it’s got a lot of winning qualities in its own right:

  • I’ve found granite to chip rather easily. Quartz, on the other hand, is one of the hardest, most durable surfaces making it no big deal if you hit it with a heavy object accidentally.
  • Quartz isn’t porous – meaning that when you inevitably spill red wine on it (ahem – I’m talking about myself) it won’t be absorbed into the material. Granite absorbs stains which can make it difficult to remove spills.
  • Quartz is a breeze to clean, all you need is warm, soapy water.
  • Perhaps the biggest plus of quartz? While it shares granites popularity, it’s often cheaper – score!

Image courtesy of Concrete Network
via Concrete Network

Concrete

Concrete is uber popular these days, giving an industrial, modern look to your kitchen. Here are some fun facts about concrete:

  • Concrete is typically more environmentally sustainable than other countertop materials.
  • As expected, concrete countertops are extremely durable, so don’t worry about chipping this strong material!
  • Concrete countertops are usually sealed, so when cleaning avoid using any harsh scrubbers that may destroy the sealant.

Image courtesy of Tops and More
via Tops and More

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel isn’t just for your appliances anymore! It has become a popular material for sinks, countertops, and kitchen island tops.

  • Stainless steel can basically combat anything – heat and stains are no match for stainless steel! That’s why restaurants often use this material for their prep tables.
  • Stainless steel provides a modern, clean look which many people find attractive.
  • One drawback to stainless steel is that it picks up fingerprints very easily, but Target sells a great cleaner/polisher that will wipe those fingerprints right away!

Image courtesy of Icon Home Design
via Icon Home Design

Butcher Block

The farmhouse/rustic look has been popular for years, and butcher block is the perfect material to complement this look!

  • Ikea makes precut, standard size butcher block to make your countertop install as easy and affordable as possible.
  • Aesthetically, these counters make a kitchen feel warm and inviting and are also very durable.
  • Once again, using warm soapy water should take care of cleaning this surface.
  • The counters do need to be sealed or oiled to prevent scratches and staining, and be careful not to use your butcher block as a cutting board (even though it looks like one!) The better you take care of your butcher block, the longer it will last!

Talk to the countertop specialists at Lowes, Home Depot, or your contractor while weighing your options. Be sure to weigh all the pros and cons as well as pricing differences before making your final decision. Happy shopping!


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About The Author
Jackie Fogartie
Jackie Fogartie (often known as Jackie Fo) is a NJ born, NC living event planner and freelance writer/blogger. Five plus years ago, Jackie started an events and wedding planning business based in Charlotte, North Carolina called Jackie Fogartie Events handling events of all sizes from intimate baby showers to large weddings. In addition to making events go off without a hitch, Jackie writes a blog covering all things food, cocktail and party. She has also written for brands such as General Mills, Aladdin insulated mason jars and Proctor & Gamble. You can often find her staying true to her NJ Italian roots by eating big bowls of pasta and drinking copious amounts of red wine. Cheers!
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