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KBIS2017 Part III-Exploring Surfaces

This is Part III of my KBIS2017 recap.  You can find Part I  here and Part II here

Ok where were we?  Ah yes, I believe I promised you something to do with rhino poop and a surprise inside the shower.  In Part III, the final installment of my Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS2017)  recap, I’m going to deliver just that as I share with you two really cool surface manufacturers  that are game changers in the world of design.  The first is from the tradition of Ripley’s Believe It or Not!

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Cambria Celebrates Launch of Two New Additions

Have I ever mentioned how much I love quartz countertops?  If not, I have been remiss.  Quartz tops, composed of 93% quartz and 7% resins, are the ultimate in durability, come in a variety of looks and are so easy to care for.  What could be better?  My favorite brand when it comes to quartz counter tops is Cambria.  I love their selection of patterns and colors plus they make it so easy, all the colors are the same price!  I was thrilled to be invited, earlier this month,  to the local launch of two new additions to their luxurious Marble Collection, Ella and Brittanicca.

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Tip #4: Granite or Quartz?

 

Nautical White Kitchen 1
Sometimes white is right. If your counter top is not your focal point, it should blend seamlessly with the other elements. Here, the story is white. Quartz is definitely the best choice in this case because it won’t stain.

The last few posts we have been exploring the big questions I get from clients who are in the market for a new kitchen.  Today we are up to #4, and it’s a biggie.  What counter top should we get?  Counter tops are a main component of the kitchen.  They have to look right but more importantly they must stand up to daily use.  During the 50s, 60s and 70s , other than the odd wood or tile counter top, most of us had laminate counters.  Formica ruled the roost.  To be fair, laminates have come a long way and are quite popular in Europe.  They are not as indestructible as granite or quartz but the price is right.  Truth be told, back in the day, it was not unheard of to have a laminate top last 30 years or more!

Remember those “Boomerang” Formica counter tops?  If not, then you might find one now in a Mid-Century Modern style kitchen of 2013.

A great example of the natural variations inherent in granite.
A great example of the natural variations inherent in granite.

Today my clients  know about granite but what’s this quartz all about ?  Here’s what I tell them: If you love the uniqueness and natural variations of granite then it’s the top for you.  If you can’t stand that and you prefer consistent color and/or pattern then quartz is for you.  Quartz is man-made and is about 93% quartz with the other 7% being the resins that hold it all together.  Performance wise you can’t do better than quartz.  It is non-pourous, very hard, heat resistant and does not require maintenance.   When it comes to price, at least in Florida, the price is comparable to granite.  Both materials are generally available in 2cm or 3cm material.  2cm is about 3/4″ thick.  You can use it like that if you like the thin look but typically it gets doubled up to give you your 1 1/2″ standard counter top thickness.  If you’re planning a matching backsplash this is a good option since it can be 3/4″.  Yes, the counter edge will have a seam in the middle but if your fabricator is worth his salt, you shouldn’t really notice it.  A 3cm thickness will give you 1 1/4″ thick counter top with no seam but it makes for a very thick back splash which may not leave you enough room for your faucet.  My favorite brands for quartz are Cambria because of the color selection and because all the colors are the same price.  That makes it easy!  Cambria is also made in the USA.  I also love Silestone which can be a little more expensive but is cutting edge when it comes to new textures and technologies.  Silestone is made in Spain and features their trademark Microban which enhances the antibacterial nature of quartz even more.  Granite can come from South America, Mexico, Europe and even India.  If opting for granite you’ll need to make a trip to the yard to select your slabs since they vary so much.  If you need help deciding you know where to find me!
Next up: Tip #5: Glass Doors, Solid Doors or Open Shelves?
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Cosentino: Leading Innovator of Quartz Surfacing

 

kitchen

As a kitchen designer, quartz has been my long time favorite choice for kitchen counter tops.  The reasons include durability, ease of maintenance and all the available choices for color and visual texture.  Cosentino, maker of Silestone as well as other new counter top products, is the world’s largest manufacturer of natural quartz.  Read more

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