As a homeowner, you want nothing but the best for your home—and your kitchen. Marble has long been at the top of the list, next to granite and quartz, for kitchen countertops. The material is stunning and has been used for millennia for all kinds of applications. Choosing the right slab of marble for your kitchen counter, however, can be a bit difficult if you do not know what to look for. From the moment you enter the shop, you need to know how to properly select marble.
That is why we have come up with a guide on how to select marble for kitchen countertops, so you can make the best choice. Let’s get started.
Things To Keep In Mind When Considering Marble
Whether you are prepared to head to the showroom or are still deliberating between marble and other natural stone for your countertops, here are some things you need to know:
Before you step foot in the marble facility, do some research. See what colors of marble you are interested in, how much of it you will need, and your desired dimensions. Let the showroom know you want to come and if someone will be available to assist in your search. This allows for the supplier to gather up the appropriate slabs in advance, so you can spend less time searching for the right marble and skip right to comparing their offerings.
Ask About Origin
Marble from Statuario and Calacatta are in high demand and may not be easily found. Some manufacturers will try to trick you and say their white marble with veining is from Calacatta, but it may just be marble originating from China or somewhere else. Therefore, you should always inquire about origin. If you want authentic Statuario marble, then it should have come from Italy. Same as Calacatta marble.
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Did you know there are hundreds of colors for marble? You can find green, gold, taupe, red, and black marble—not just white. However, while those colors may be tempting, they may not be the best for your kitchen countertops. Sometimes, it is best to stick with white. The reason is that darker colors are more likely to show whitish marks from etching caused by the acids in foods. Though it is a personal choice, you should keep that in mind if you don’t want to deal with stained countertops.
There Will Be Cracks and Fissures
Yes, there is a difference between fissures and cracks. A crack means that the marble has been mishandled along the way and that it may not be the finest quality. Fissures, on the other hand, are completely natural, and you should be prepared for them. Fissures will not change the integrity of the stone. It should be smooth enough that, if you were to slide a fingernail over it, it would not catch.
About The Veining
Quarries have their own unique way of cutting marble to achieve various effects in the stone. Marble blocks can be carved in different ways to get variations in the veining, as well. For example, there is a fleuri cut (cross cut) that gives the veins a bloomed flower look. There is also striato (vein cut) which slices the marble in a way that gives the veining a more striped look.
Coming Together and Seams
Since every slab of marble is going to be unique, you should focus on choosing pieces that are going to fit together visually. You will have to look closely at the veining that runs through the marble and understand how those veins will merge together during fabrication and installation. This is why it is important to have a professional assist you will you are perusing the showroom. They will be able to discuss the most artful choices, so you have a countertop that looks like a complete unit.
Sometimes, you may be lucky enough to have a piece that is long enough to avoid seams. If seams are necessary, make sure the pieces areidentical on either side of the seam.
Know Your Finishes
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Marble can be transformed with the right finish. Similar to granite, fabricators can apply finishes to the surface of the stone to give it an entirely new appearance. You can also thank technology for making some techniques possible. For example, you can choose between river-wash, leather, or brushed finishes. If you want a rougher, more rustic look, you might want a more matte finish.
Most people desire that glossy, mirror-like look of marble, which is called a “polished” finish. On the other hand, there is a honed finish that is slightly more resistant to scratching and marks. A polished marble surface is more likely to show off scratches and will get duller as time goes on. Honed finishes, however, disguise those scratches.
Marble Needs Some Maintenance
Though you might think having your marble countertops installed is the end of the process, there are a few more steps to anticipate. A marble counter is not finished until it has been sealed. When you cook, you can potentially expose the stone to damaged liquids and acids. Since marble is porous, that acid can damage it, resulting in staining and etching. Sometimes, you can remove those marks, but sealing is the first major step to preventing damage. You can also hire professional marble cleaners to come and buff out the scratches to ensure the maintenance is done right.
Final Thoughts On Choosing Marble
Marble is bound to make a statement in your home, but only if you get the best quality. Now that you know what goes into selecting the best marble for kitchen countertops, you should have no problems. Do some research before you go shopping, and know what to expect.
The last step to getting an amazing marble countertop is to hire a professional contractor like Marble Concepts. Expect nothing less than beautiful marble countertops that will wow you and your guests for years when you hire us. Have questions? Get in touch by giving us a call or filling out the contact form.