Interesting Islands

Large or small, everyone loves a kitchen island. The kitchen is the heart of the home and people love hanging out there. In your home your kitchen island can be whatever you want it to be, and serve whatever purpose you want it to. It is with that thought in mind we share with you some really cool examples of unique kitchen islands.

This ultra-modern horseshoe island works beautifully with a workspace level and lower glass half-circle dining level. You could also easily pull up bar stools to the upper level on the outside edges to create more seating while entertaining.Kitchen-Island-Trends-2018-37Photo: Mendelday Kitchen
We love this triangular island with it’s gorgeous curves. It also incorporates the mixed materials trend we talked about last month by combining natural stone with a built in cutting board space. This design allows for seating on two sides, with a separate workspace area, maximizing its functionality.unique-kitchen-island-shapes-trends-with-enchanting-pictures-ideas-and-styles-cartPhoto: Eckti
Everything about this round island is gorgeous. From the granite counter top to the the walnut inlaid cabinetry, this custom piece is a stunning addition to this amazing mid-size kitchen.unique-kitchen-design-round-kitchen-island-walnut-cabinets-modern-kitchens.jpgPhoto: Nicholas C Johnson
This T-shaped island is a great choice if your space allows for it. The potential uses for so much counter space are really unlimited.t-shaped-kitchen-islandPhoto: DecorPad
This huge S-shaped island is a beautiful mix of granite and wood. The organic curve of the wood juxtaposes beautifully with the sharp edges of the granite counters and round stainless steel sink.22a727e8e5fe87a629ee51b06a52d746.jpgPhoto: Houzz
This kitchen island is the perfect example of how using an irregular piece of granite can work for your small kitchen. It shows how much extra storage and workspace an island can create.
traditional-kitchenPhoto: Buildhouse
This boat-shaped island is amazing. It feels both classic and modern, a total showstopper that perfectly complements the beachy vibes of the home around it. Kitchen-Island-Trends-2018-15Photo: Uhozz

Regardless of how you choose to design your kitchen island, Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

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Mixed Material Countertops

We love the mixed materials trend that is so hot in kitchen design right now. There are almost innumerable ways to incorporate this look into your home, one of our favorites is by combining multiple materials for your countertops. While we at Prestige will always be partial to natural stone, we get that sometimes people want to mix it up a bit. Here are some of the dual material kitchen countertops inspiring us right now.

The idea of using a piece of wood to connect two separate pieces of stone seems so simple, but it makes a big impact. This is a really understated way to experiment with a mixed materials countertop in a truly unique way.d1a8d28d768818fafdfdfc692987ad7cPhoto: Pinterest
We love the combination of wood and limestone on this kitchen island. There are so many different textures and finishes in this space, keeping the clutter to a minimum allows the eye to focus on the individual elements without becoming overwhelmed. 58471909Photo: Chicago Tribune
This combination of light stone and dark wood work beautifully in this modern kitchen with its neutral colors. Not only is the shape of this island unique, the stark contrast in the light stone and dark wood make this kitchen centerpiece a true showstopper. And how fabulous is that sink?modern-kitchenPhoto: Houzz
This kitchen island was created by topping a pair of architect’s drafting tables with glass. It adds a modern twist to this otherwise traditional kitchen. The glass beautifully complements the classic Carrara marble in a really unexpected way.glassPhoto: House Beautiful
We love the yin and yang vibe of this stark white stone next to the dark wood of the upper level bar. This two tone kitchen look has been gaining in popularity in the last couple years and we don’t predict the trend will be going away any time soon.ca7c5a8c64543ddc98c4c93f7908dd2cPhoto: Houzz
We love how the wood centerpiece of this large stone topped island not only breaks up the space visually, it also defines the different areas by function. We love how the pops of blue in the room really pull that color out of the predominately gray granite.1400989063342Photo: HGTV
This stainless steel island lends an industrial feeling to this contemporary white kitchen with it’s perimeter stone countertops. The hardwood floor really warms up the space, keeping it from feeling too stark.countertops-for-kitchen-elegant-in-white-with-a-modern-stainless-steel-island-great-countertop-photoPhoto: Globaltsp

Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Less Granite Garbage 2: More Ways to Use Scrap Stone

We got such great feedback on our post about upcycling granite remnants, Less Granite Garbage: Tips for Using Scrap Stone, we decided to bring you even more fun ways to use scrap stone around your home. We love seeing how many creative ways people find to use granite; here are a few of our favorites from across the internet.

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Granite is wonderfully suited for use as bookends. These examples prove the versatility and range of looks you can achieve with simple granite remnants.
All Photos: Etsy
Granite scraps make for beautiful dog bowl bases. This is also the perfect solution if your pet is one of those who constantly wants to play with, and knock over, their food and water dishes.080adbe3522137c754e4bb2b2aab8c4aPhoto: Fireplace Carolina
We love the asymmetrical, rough-edged look of this cheese tray. It would make an elegant addition to any occasion. cc5cde12d59f9690cc0bec5f79def07fPhoto: Countertop Couture
Using your granite scraps to create a custom coffee table is the perfect way to tie together different spaces in your home.20130526-Granite-Coffee-Table-2-757054Photo: Ikea Hackers
Granite’s durability make it perfect for outdoor use. This garden bench, made by incorporating a remnant slab with two large stones, is absolutely incredible and would look beautiful in any setting.e3302ef2e5d8129adba12eb59bcae210Photo: Pete Rose, Inc
We love the stone mosaic at the base of this tree. Equally functional and beautiful, granite scraps are an extremely creative way to protect your landscaping.granite-mosaic-under-tree-21675128Photo: Making Mosaics
Granite’s natural heat resistance and durability make it the perfect material to build a fire pit with. This square one takes things to the next level with a grill attachment.
firepit1Photo: A&E Recycled Granite
There is no limit to the number of ways you can use granite scraps in creating outdoor pathways. Finished or rough, uniform or random, this is an easy way to express you personal aesthetic. We love how all of these unique walkways help both capture and create the atmosphere of the outdoor spaces they’re in.
All photos: Pinterest

Whatever project you can dream up,  Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Countertop Trends for 2018

111Photo: Prestige M&G

Your countertops are a vital component of your kitchen, ultimately, they are where the action happens. And if you’re remodeling or looking to buy a home, countertops are probably on your mind. But you don’t want to start life in your new kitchen with dated decor. Here’s what is hot right now in the world of countertops.

Neutrals, Neutrals, Neutrals

Neutral tones like beige, gray, and tans are seeing a huge resurgence in popularity in home decor in general, but especially in the kitchen. And don’t think neutral has to mean boring! Modern kitchen design is focusing on highlighting the individual components of the room against a softer colored counter.

The yellow and green decor accents really pop against this santa cecilia granite, which complements the light, airy feeling of this kitchen perfectly. The neutral palette will also easily accommodate a variety of color or design schemes.neutralPhoto: Memorable Decor
The neutral gray island counter keeps the focus on the midcentury modern design elements dominating this space. This kitchen completely reinforces the idea that neutral colors can be fun.102335341.jpg.rendition.largestPhoto: Better Homes & Gardens

Integrated Sinks

The integrated sink is a huge trend for 2018. Integrated sinks are made of the same material as the countertop, creating a seamless, modern look. It’s important to be aware that not all materials are suited for the purpose of a sink. Stainless steel, quartz, concrete, and marble will all endure being a sink.

We love the double-level element of this integrated sink. One of the most functional aspects of this sink style is how easy it makes clean up; this design takes that to the next level.sarah-blee-claudio-silverstrin-sinkPhoto: Remodelista

Patterns & Veining

Homeowners today are gravitating toward more unique countertops. Veining is in, and materials like quartz are being offered with more realistic swirls and patterns that look more natural than ever.

The beautiful gray veining of this kitchen island makes it an absolute show stopper.Which-Wood-Is-Best-For-Kitchen-Cabinets-Aqua-Glass-Tile-Backsplash-Using-Granite-Tiles-For-Countertops-Portable-Kitchen-Island-Breakfast-Bar-Gerber-FaucetsPhoto: Erbria

Textured Surfaces

Stone countertops have long been polished and shiny, and while that look will never go out of style, today’s homeowners are gravitating toward counters with a bit more character. You can check out our post, Finish Options for your Granite Counters, to learn more about the different textures available for your counters.

A leathered finish creates an almost water-washed look for your counters. This design takes it a step further with a rough edge as well.040Photo: Anchors Rest

Quartz

Quartz isn’t new this year, but its popularity has never been greater. And it doesn’t seem like this trend is going anywhere anytime soon. Quartz is non-porous, making it extremely resistant to staining, and very hygienic. It’s also super durable and available in a huge number of colors and patterns. Read Quartz vs Quartzite: What’s the Difference, to learn if quartz might be right for your kitchen.

Quartz works with any design aesthetic and makes a beautiful surface in any kitchen.
quartz-counter-xlPhoto: This Old House

Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

 

 

Finish Options for your Granite Counters

18199422_1324100174325922_1350130141026771919_nPhoto: Prestige M&G

Granite has been the number one natural stone choice among homeowners and builders for years. It’s beauty and durability are just some of the reasons for its popularity. When you think about granite counters, you likely envision a shiny, smooth stone. The polished look has been the most popular countertop finish choice for years, and is still the most utilized today. As homeowners have started looking for more unique options, changing up the appearance of granite with different finishing techniques has become more fashionable.

Polished

Polished granite countertops are probably what you think of when you think of granite. To achieve this look the stone is buffed to the highest possible level. The glossy, highly-reflective surface draws attention to the stone and perfectly displays the flecks, veining, and other desirable characteristics that make each slab one of a kind. A polished finish can also work as a stain repellant, making it a great option for a kitchen prep/work space.

20638436_1421843744551564_6806475974364016893_nPhoto: Prestige M&G

Honed

If you love the look of granite but aren’t a fan of the super shiny style, a honed finish might be exactly what you’re looking for. A honed finish is still extremely smooth, but has a decidedly more matte appearance. Natural imperfections may be more noticeable with this finish, and it is definitely more susceptible to watermarks and fingerprints than the traditional polished look.

farmhousePhoto: Houzz
An example of honed versus polished finishes on the same slab for comparison sake.
honedPhoto: Goodfellas Granite

Leathered

Similar to the honed finish, leathered stone isn’t glossy or reflective. But this is where the similarities stop. Unlike polished and honed countertops, the leathering process results in a surface riddled with fissures and has a pitted feel, like a fine piece of leather. For this reason, leathering may not be the best option for a busy cook’s kitchen, as it can be slightly more difficult to truly deep clean. Because every stone is unique, the leathering will appear more pronounced on some slabs than others.

leathered-granite-countertops-granite-leathered-granite-countertops-picturesPhoto: Homehad
A close-up of a leathered granite countertop.ideas-leathered-finish-black-granite-dupont-square-edge-design-ideas-for-kitchen-countertop-plus-leathered-granite-exciting-leathered-granite-for-kitchen-countertops-matte-granite.jpgPhoto: Elerwanda

Flamed

A flamed finish is created by firing an intense heat at the granite, causing the stone to burst and change color. The process results in a rougher, textured finish with a faded, more natural seeming appearance. Flamed granite works best in damper areas, where slip-resistance is an important factor. Because of how well-suited this finish is in exterior, uncovered areas, flamed granite is extremely popular for outdoor kitchens.  Don’t feel confined by this if you really love this look,  it can be used functionally in almost any room in your home.

flamed-granite-countertops-2-flamed-black-granite-countertops-666-x-408.jpgPhoto: Sick Chick Chic
A close-up of a flamed granite countertop.pin.jpgPhoto: Pinterest

Prestige Marble & Granite is happy to answer any questions you may have about different counter finishes, and what will work best for your personal style and needs. We are here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

 

 

Prepping for Your New Countertops!

18740435_1349553635113909_5075823411215451552_nPhoto: Prestige M & G

You’ve picked out your new countertops and are already envisioning your dream kitchen come to life. You’ve met with the contractors and your installation is scheduled. What now? While certain aspects of install prep fall on the installation crew, there are some things you can do to ensure your counter install goes as smoothly as possible before they even arrive.

Is Everything Where You Want It?

Once your space has been measured and a template cut, changes can be extremely costly and will obviously take additional time to correct for. Make sure your appliances, outlets, and sink are all where you want them to be in the space when your contractor comes to initially take measurements. If you’re purchasing a sink from a separate source, make sure you have that available as well.

installing-kitchen-countertop-how-to-install-granite-tos-diy-step-measuring-for-installation-worktops-custom-vanity-tops-composite-countertops-prefab-laminate-marble-970x728Photo: Marina and Jason

 

Is the Rest of Your Home Ready?

This isn’t an issue in new builds, but if you are replacing existing counters you want to make sure they are completely free of stuff when installers come to take measurements. And for the day of the install, make sure there is a clear path from where your granite will come in to home and where it’s going. This doesn’t just mean furniture. Rugs, wall hangings, etc. should all be removed. In a renovation, it’s also important to make sure the openings from the kitchen are properly sealed off from the rest of the home to keep dust and debris in.

15622167_1189928521076422_5517086231751701173_n.jpgPhoto: Prestige M&G

Have You Scheduled Other Necessary Professionals?

The majority of installers don’t have licensed plumbers or electricians as part of their crew. So while they will install your sink, they will not be able to actually hook up the plumbing. As such, you will need to coordinate schedules with the professionals who can perform these jobs. It may require extra organization on your part, but in the end will be totally worth it when you’re not having to wait to use your beautiful new kitchen!

17200934_1257642320971708_7174943496218015346_nPhoto: Prestige M&G

Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation, and can answer any further questions you may have about the information shared here. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom, or give us a call, any time!

 

Countertop Types: What Will Work Best For You

kitchen.jpgPhoto: Prestige Marble & Granite

Marble? Granite? Quartz? Natural stone or engineered? What does it all mean? Anyone who has built a home or done a kitchen remodel knows the number of different material options can be overwhelming. And it’s an important decision. Experts estimate you should plan on spending 10 to 15 percent of your kitchen budget on your countertops. Here are some thoughts on different types of materials so you can choose what’s right for you and your home. All prices mentioned are general estimates.

Granite

Granite is the number one countertop material for a reason. It’s beauty and durability make it a wonderful choice for almost any kitchen. It’s very nature makes it resistant to water and heat. That being said it is slightly porous. Most granites don’t need to be sealed, though it never hurts and will help block stains and liquids from eventually seeping into the stone. Granite’s inherent strength will also help protect it from scratches and etching. Because granite is a natural material there will be variation from slab to slab. While many people love the uniqueness this ensures, it can make matching up slabs difficult.

Expect to spend between $40 and $200 per foot installed.

Granite comes in a variety of natural stone colors and can be finished multiple ways.15-gorgeous-granite-countertops-title-e1503856458744.jpgPhoto: Home Epiphany

Marble

The demand for marble has certainly increased in the past few years. While a lot of marbles have gray veining running throughout, if you’re looking for a bright, more pure white slab, marble is definitely for you. It gives a high end, classic feeling to any space. Marble is more porous than granite and does require sealing; this means it does stain more easily than granite and some other natural stones. It’s also a softer stone, meaning it more readily scratches and nicks. While some marbles like Calacatta and Carrara are decidedly more expensive, there are plenty of options with a price point comparable to granite.

Expect to spend between $50 and $200 per foot installed.

The gray veining warms up this marble slab , which lends a polished feeling to this rustic kitchen.Advantages Of Marble CountertopsPhoto: Improvenet

Quartz

Quartz countertops are growing in popularity thanks to their many good qualities, and due to the fact they don’t have many of the weaknesses of natural stone. Quartz is a manufactured product and is also referred to as engineered stone. The manufacturing process for Quartz allows for an almost unlimited range of colors and can be finished in a luxurious way other solid surface materials aren’t. Quartz is just as durable as stone but more forgiving, so it won’t chip or scratch easily. It’s also nonporous, so it resists staining and will not harbor bacteria or viruses. Quartz doesn’t have many downsides, though it isn’t as heat resistant as natural stone.  It may be considered on the more expensive side, though it’s pricing is competitive with many natural stones.

Expect to spend between $50 and $200 per foot installed.

If you’re wanting a nontraditional countertop color, quartz might be just what your looking for.
quartzPhoto: HouseTrends

Soapstone

Soapstone is a natural material that has been used as countertops for literally hundreds of years. Today people love soapstone for its warm, rustic charm. Soapstone ranges from light to dark gray; the darkest slabs are almost black. Soapstone actually contains a certain amount of talc, which accounts for its milky look and somewhat powdery feel. This also accounts for the softness of the stone, but doesn’t mean it can’t stand up to daily kitchen use. Soapstone is nonporous so it is stain and acid resistant, though it does darken over time. It is recommended you treat soapstone with mineral oil to help achieve a more even look and deepen the color. It’s softness does make it slightly vulnerable to scratching, the mineral oil will help disguise these. Soapstone is extremely heat and bacteria resistant, making it a wonderful choice for any kitchen.

Expect to spend between $75 and $150 per square foot installed.

Soapstone is perfect for warming up what would otherwise be an all white kitchen. It also creates a sense of depth and additional dimension in this large space.decorpad.jpgPhoto: DecorPad

Limestone

Limestone is a beautiful choice, but not always practical for a busy kitchen. Limestone is an extremely versatile stone, available in a variety of colors and textures. Only the harder, denser varieties should be installed in the kitchen. Your fabricator should be able to help you choose the appropriate slab for your needs, should you choose limestone. Limestone is a calcium-based rock and by its very nature reacts with acidic substances in a manner that can create etching. It’s extremely porous and should be sealed regularly to help minimize staining, as it will soak up liquids quickly. Due to its softness, limestone also scratches and chips more easily than other natural stones. You also need to protect your limestone countertops from heat as it does have the ability to burn.

Expect to spend $50 to $100 per square foot installed.

Limestone looks great in almost any setting, though it requires a lot of maintenance. Many homeowners who want limestone choose to use it in a bathroom as opposed to the kitchen.
f89819d6fbab1e723c2ae503f35ae8af.jpgPhoto: Traditional Home

Whatever countertop material you ultimately choose,  Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!