This is my first kitchen renovation, so it is the first time I have ever chosen my own countertops. My past three kitchens have all had dark granite countertops and I was itching for a lighter look. But I had a lot to learn when it comes to the world of countertops. What material should I go with? How thick should they be? What about the edge? I really had no idea there were so many decisions to make.
Loving the Look of Marble
I absolutely adore marble. In fact, I specifically bought a marble dining room table in our old condo, and brought it here to our house, because it’s such a stunning stone. It’s light, has unique veining, and the patina is beautiful. Of course, marble does require maintenance and you have to be careful about staining and water spots.
We had our white marble dining room table for three or four years and it looked pretty darn good when I sold it in early September. I just followed the steps in this post to seal it annually; we used coasters on it when possible; and we did our best to keep it clean.
And while I love the look of marble, I was pretty certain that I didn’t want marble countertops in our new kitchen. With Rory, our lives are messier than ever and I didn’t want to spend a boatload on new marble countertops only to have them stain right away.
Why I Chose Quartz Countertops
In the end, I decided that I wanted to go with a quartz material meant to look like marble. Quartz countertops are manmade and while they can’t quite mimic the natural beauty of real marble, they come pretty close. Here are a few other reasons I decided to go with quartz. They are:
- Heat resistant
- Non-porous and stain-resistant
- Never in need of sealing
- More resilient than marble
- Less expensive than marble (typically $40-$100 per square foot; marble is more like $50-$150 per square foot)
Of course, I fully admit that quartz will never be as beautiful as marble. But for our family, this seemed like the best way to go! Do what’s right for you!
Choosing the Stone
Once our kitchen cabinets were installed, we had the stone installer, Luxury Marble & Granite Design, come out to measure our kitchen. I told him I wanted to go with a marble-looking quartz, so he brought a few options for me to visualize in the space.
I immediately gravitated towards the “Calacatta Laza” because it had a nice light color with veining, but not too much veining. Because we’re adding the quartz all the way up the walls to the ceiling, I didn’t want it to be too busy with tons of veining. This seemed like the perfect option, but I wanted to see the full slab to be certain.
I visited their showroom so I could see the full quartz slab and immediately knew that the Calacatta Laza was the winner! These slabs are 1.25 inches thick and I decided to go with an eased edge detail and 1.5 inch overhang. That means we will have slightly rounded edging without any decorative elements. It’s nice and simple – just the way we like it!
Quartz Countertops – Cost
I really had NO IDEA how much the quartz countertops would cost, so we kept a lot in the budget, just in case. Boy, I’m happy we budgeted a lot for this line item because it ended up costing about $9,000. But remember, our kitchen is huuuuuge. We have quartz on the dry bar, the perimeter of the kitchen, our huge island, and all of our backsplash! We needed many square feet of quartz for our space. If you have a smaller kitchen and you’re not doing a quartz backsplash, it will be a lot less. This also includes the installation of the stone and all of the cutouts for the sink, faucet, cooktop, etc.
Our New Countertops
The countertops were installed last Friday and once they were in, the crew measured for the backsplash one more time because they wanted to make sure it’s perfect! The backsplash was then installed this past Tuesday – I’ll share more pics of that soon! It was so fun to watch them install it from a distance. It’s quite a job lifting that heavy stone.
One thing to keep in mind, if you are considering doing something similar, is that you’ll need to have your sink installed and your faucet on hand for the measurement and installation of the quartz. That way, they can cut the hole for the faucet right on site and make sure the sink fits perfectly.
I also gave them the specs for the stovetop so it will fit in the countertop perfectly. (Definitely have that information on hand during measurement day!)
Can you tell I’m excited to have our new quartz countertops in?! Now that the countertops have been installed, the crew can really start to finish up this space!
Next, they will add the hood over the quartz, add the pot filler, add the leg to the island, and finish installing all of the cabinets. We’ve had a bit of a delay with our appliances (ugh, I am so ready to be done microwaving food for dinner!), so I think that will be the last piece of the puzzle. Oh, and our butcher block doesn’t come until mid-November, so the island won’t be complete for a little while longer.
Next week, I’m planning to show you the completed bathroom! They’re finishing it up this week and the shower looks incredible. And I’ll also share about painting the walls in the kitchen. (You’ll notice I didn’t include pics of the other side of the room because I want it to be a surprise!) Stay tuned for that…Casey
Catch Up On Our Kitchen Renovation
- Kitchen Before Photos
- Hiring a Designer
- Our New Kitchen Layout
- Design Plan & Mood Board
- Single vs Double Bowl Sink
- Ordering Our Kitchen Cabinets
- Tasks To Do Before a Kitchen Renovation
- Our Old Kitchen Is Out
- Creating Our Electrical Plan
- Our Kitchen Cabinets Are In!
- Kitchen Hardware Guide
- Dining Nook Design Plan