If the kitchen is the hub of a household, then the countertop is the feature that unites every aspect of the design. Countertops should be both functional and attractive, blending together the different colours and materials in the cabinetry, flooring and splashbacks. Too much variety and contrast will distract from the over-all effect of the space as a whole, while not enough can leave it looking dull.
Choosing the best countertop or benchtop material to suit your lifestyle is the key to getting this balance right. When you bring your ideas to Craftbuilt Kitchens, our team of designers and consultants will help you decide on the countertops that will best suit your kitchen. In the meantime, we have compiled some information about the materials currently in demand for countertops.
The Natural Stone Look
There are several alternatives available in this type of material, depending on your budget. At the high end of the market is marble. Renowned for its beauty and durability, marble conveys a timeless elegance but it is expensive and requires a lot of care.
An example is this white marble benchtop (picture above). This elegant display of white is a stunning light fitting to highlight the bold veins of the marble-look quartz benchtop and complete this perfect vision. The marble benchtop draws guests in because of the different texture it brings, lifting the area and pulling them together. The island bench was from SmartStone Statuario Venato (40mm).
Granite is not quite as expensive as marble, looks great in a kitchen and is long wearing. Like marble, it requires care and maintenance.
A much more affordable alternative is engineered stone or quartz. These materials tick the sustainability box as they are manufactured composite products that have the look and feel of stone without the price.
The Timeless Warmth of Timber
Timber countertops are almost a pre-requisite in country-style kitchens. The material is light and easy to shape, and the natural colour tones complement a wide range of cabinetry styles. Although timber scratches easily and also can be stained, it is just as easily sanded and returned to its original glory.
Old Favourites and New Trends
Laminate seems like it has been around forever, and for good reason. There is a huge range of colours and patterns to choose from. Laminate is inexpensive, hard wearing and requires little when it comes to maintenance. The story for other acrylic materials is similar. They offer plenty of scope for creative licence, are cost effective, low maintenance and with normal care, stains can be removed without damaging the surface.
This is an example of a rich textured wood laminate finish by Polytec Ravine in Cafe Oak to contrast with the gloss white cabinetry.
A material that is crossing the divide between commercial and home kitchens is stainless steel. In the right environment, stainless steel is an alternative material worth considering. It looks stunning, is hygienic and easy to clean, will not stain, but requires care as it will dent and scratch.
Before making a final decision, we recommend you think about how you use your kitchen. Take into account the frequency of cooking and accidents like staining and scratches. Do you drop heavy items or hot saucepans on the countertops? Choose your materials to suit your lifestyle and your countertops from Craftbuilt Kitchens, and it will look fabulous for years to come. Call (07) 3341 9166 today for any questions you may have, or visit our showroom at 2958 Logan Road, Underwood, QLD 4119.