A Guest Post by Adrienne McGuire
Homeowners, you’ve doubtless already learned that kitchen renovations are one of the most impactful upgrades you can choose for your home; having a beautiful kitchen created from high-quality materials is sure to boost your home’s value substantially. Now more than ever, too, there are trending kitchen countertops that can be incorporated into timeless designs that are sure to delight prospective buyers for many years to come.
It’s crucial to select the countertop materials that will enhance the beauty of your kitchen; seeing a gorgeous photo of a granite countertop on Pinterest that gets your heart racing can be a great place to start, but without considering your lifestyle, your kitchen’s style, and your intended cabinetry, choosing the perfect countertop can be tricky.
That’s why our designers spend time with each client, carefully discussing each aspect of the remodel and learning about their kitchen needs before suggesting countertop materials that will not only deliver the look they desire but will also work with their lifestyle so that their counters will still look amazing in a decade’s time.
Countertops are having quite a moment in the realm of design. Homeowners are in search of open, clutter-free surfaces that support creative cooking, easy cleaning, and frequent entertaining. Because countertops are now usually fully visible, they must be attractive and free of unsightly stains and scratches.
In 2018, the sleek, understated, traditional kitchens that have dominated most of this decade are more popular than ever, with no signs that buyers have lost interest in neutral, soft, open spaces. Subtle textures surrounding integrated sinks have crowded out busy patterns, bright colors, and heavy textures. The entire country has rekindled our fascination with subtlety in home design.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled the following list of countertop materials that have been trending strongly throughout 2018 and are expected to remain popular well into the next decade.
1. Granite & Quartz
Having first gained its following as a high-end alternative to granite, quartz has become the choice for homeowners who want a more subtle look. While granite is inherently valuable and therefore certainly boosts a home’s value where it’s installed, it has become used less frequently because of the growing popularity of quartz.
Both granite and quartz are highly durable, low-maintenance, and available in a wide range of colors, patterns, and finishes that perfectly imitate the look of natural stone. If you settle on a look that can be delivered by either product, you are sure to be happy with your choice both immediately and throughout the coming years.
2. Butcher Block
If you’re a serious home cook, butcher block might be the material that’s best for you. Whether you have only a center island topped by a butcher block or decide that you want the timeless look in the entirety of your kitchen, the warmth and practicality of butcher block may be right for your classic kitchen. Providing an ideal surface for cutting, chopping, kneading (and more), the versatility of this material is matched only by its ease of maintenance. Should your butcher block get scratched, stained, or burned, just lightly sand out the blemish and wipe down the fresh wood with mineral oil to restore a rich glow.
3. Leathered Granite
This aesthetic is achieved by polishing granite to a subtle, soft glow that is far less glossy than the mirror-like finish usually seen. It feels different, too, with a soft touch reminiscent of water-polished river rocks. Lending itself to modern, sophisticated kitchens, it hides water spots and fingerprints incredibly well. If you would like natural stone without the pressure of maintaining that flawless reflective finish, consider this warm and trendy style instead.
Year of the Backsplash
Though backsplashes are not technically countertops, they go hand-in-hand, so you’ll want to work with our designers to choose a backsplash style that compliments the countertop material and finish you choose.
Previously, homeowners could expect that a 4”-high strip of countertop material would be installed as a backsplash. Now, in more recent years, we’ve seen that strip disappear and give way to the use of small decorative tiles instead. This trend has held steady, with homeowners frequently choosing tiles that stand out against the subtle colors of their countertop. Subway tiles are still very popular, though designers have been playing with proportion and color within the parameters of this motif. Tiles with finishes that look like wood, brick, stone, and veined marble have become the medium for homeowners who want to express their individuality and emphasize or give a nod to their choices in furnishings or fabrics throughout the rest of the kitchen and dining room. Some designs even involve extending the countertop material all the way up to the ceiling to create a stunning accent wall. Whatever you choose for your kitchen, your backsplash is a great way to showcase your personal style and creative individuality!
As you can see, countertops are just as important as cabinetry, flooring, and lighting when you’re designing the kitchen of your dreams. Each part plays an intricate role in the outcome of the finished project. Remember, the look you’re seeking can likely be satisfied by a few different materials, so the way you work and live in your kitchen is just as important as the overall appearance you hope to achieve!
If you’re interested in remodeling your kitchen, we’d be happy to help! Contact us for more information!
The Medford Design-Build Team