Hello, readers! Welcome back to the Stonehouse Countertops blog! We’re pleased you’ve chosen Stonehouse Countertops for everything you need to know about custom countertop materials. We provide comprehensive deep dives into various aspects of the design and installation process, as well as helpful tips for choosing the best material for your home. Our goal is to equip you with the information you need to commission the perfect countertops! Stonehouse Countertops carries an array of granite, marble, quartz, quartzite, soapstone, silestone, limestone, travertine, onyx, glass, sodalite, slate, and porcelain materials in its inventory. In addition to countertops, we offer fireplace surrounds, patios, floors, and walls. Whatever your design goals, we’re happy to help you achieve your unique vision!
Our last article was a continuation of our All About series—articles which shine a spotlight on the unique attributes of various stone materials. Our first post, ‘All About Marble,’ explored marble’s association with luxury, how its composition contributes to its luminosity, and how designers are pushing the limits on how marble can be used in residential and commercial spaces. Our second post, ‘All About Granite,’ recounted the interesting history of granite, how the stone’s versatility has been put to good use by designers across the globe, as well as how granite is graded. Our third post, ‘All About Quartz,’ served to complete the trifecta of the most popular stone countertop materials on the market. We explained the oft-misunderstood difference between quartz and quartzite, detailed the pros and cons of quartz, and quoted a few stone experts on what makes quartz a worthy investment. Our most recent article delved into soapstone, a luxuriant, talc-based material. The All About series is everything you need to know to plan the next custom stone addition to your household or commercial space and we hope you’ll give articles a read!
Stone is known for its durability and longevity. Therefore, stone countertops aren’t necessarily something you replace after a few years (unless something has gone horribly wrong). You might assume countertops do not have distinct trends in the same way fashion and technology do, but you’d be mistaken. Just like any other item, countertops cycle through various stages of popularity and eventual disrepute. Just think, in the 80s laminate countertops were all the rage. Affordable and easy to install, these countertops could be found in plenty of homes. However, as time passed and stone options became more accessible, laminate countertops soon became dated and undesirable. Trends often reflect our priorities as a society, as well as our shifting sense of style. Today, as a means of inspiration, we’re taking a look at what designers have predicted will be “all the rage” next year. Although no one’s ever bragged about their countertops being “on trend,” it never hurts to keep up with the times. Who knows? If you start planning for your countertop renovation now, you just might be in a position to ring in the new year with the hottest countertops. If you’re interested in the countertop trends which will define 2022, keep reading!
While investing in stone walls may seem like a hefty undertaking, even applying your countertop stone instead of backsplash can achieve the unified appearance of this trend. This design trend can be minimal or overwhelming, depending on the color and texture of your countertop material. The logos behind such a design choice is to cultivate an “intentional space,” where the emphasis of your chosen stone stands above other, disparate design elements. If you do not like the idea of mirroring your countertops on your walls, featuring a waterfall island achieves the same effect with its expansiveness.
All-White is a No-Go
During the 2010s, all-white kitchens were dominating the interior design scene. White floors. White walls. White cabinets. White countertops. Now, in the 2020s, we’re eschewing this monochromatic design scheme and making efforts in our design strategy to bring balance to our spaces. While shooting for a simplistic, bright kitchen is still common, homeowners are more likely to choose white marble countertops with grey veining. This can be paired with black fixtures and ashwood floors to give the space a sleek, sophisticated look.
It’s hard to imagine this trend taking off, but trust us: People are investing in double islands. Perhaps it’s double the opportunity to show off their amazing countertops? Or is it the double seating space? Double cooking space? Whatever it is, double kitchen islands are an interesting trend sure to take 2022 by storm! These separate work stations allow homeowners to partition their kitchens into multi-functional spaces, with one island dedicated prepping food and another island serving as a work area. Double islands work best in open-layout kitchens, as they add dimension and weight to the space. Tom Howley, a kitchen designer, had this to say about the trend: “Kitchen island ideas are a perennial favorite; our homes are evolving, and with this comes the surge in demand for double island kitchens. We are now taking it to the next level and expanding our kitchen islands by doubling up as the extra counter space takes multifunctional living to a new dimension.” With the pandemic and the increased time family units are spending indoors, “[k]itchens have become the hub of the home during the last two years and as our lives and habits have changed, so have the demands that we make on our kitchens,” said Howley, “and investing in two kitchen islands can simply elevate a kitchen area to a multitude of social spaces to cater for all the family.”
This trend is great news for us! Natural materials like stone and wood are in high demand. Particularly marble, which features a uniquely specific natural texture. The inherent variation found in natural stone is a draw for those designers who want to bring an aspect of Mother Nature into their indoor spaces. While marble is a popular option, granite, soapstone, and quartzite are other natural stone options. In fact, quartzite is a perfect substitute for those who want the look of marble with extra durability, too.
While thickness is often equated with strength, countertops can be fabricated to thinner thickness and still be durable. While thickness adds weight to a space, thinness conveys lightness. Countertops can be fabricated to a thickness of one centimeter and still serve their desired purpose. As well, due to their lighter weight, they are easier and cheaper to install than thick slabs. Thin countertops are reminiscent of European aesthetics, which are modern and subtle in comparison to traditional western design styles.
Floating countertops are just as they sound—countertops which appear to float above their underlying cabinetry. This appearance is achieved by a layer of substrate underneath the countertop material, which facilitates the creation of a shadow along the edge of the counter. Thin countertops are often used for floating counters, as they are lighter and do not place as much strain on the substrate layer. Floating countertops are dynamic, adding height and dimension to otherwise straightforward kitchen designs. Imagine those islands in the film Avatar which floated above the planet’s surface. Floating countertops are like that.
Edge profiles are a hugely important part of designing kitchen countertops due to their level of visibility. Since the edges of countertops often hang over the underlying cabinetry, they are a focal point. For this reason, those commissioning countertops must choose from at least a dozen countertop edge profiles to decide which is best for their kitchen. Flush edges nearly eliminate this burden. Flush countertops end at the same point as their underlying cabinetry and, for the most part, have straight, flat edges. The flush look is understated. By nature of its lack of overhang, a flush edge does not call attention to itself. If you want to emphasize your cabinetry or achieve the appearance of seamlessness then flush edges might just be the way to go!
While high-shine, glossy finishes are the standard on countertops, more and more homeowners are opting for matte finishes on their countertops. Why? Well, plenty of reasons! Glossy finishes are unkind to sticky fingers, meaning after daily use, they need to be wiped down to avoid tell-tale smudges. In fact, most substances leave behind incredibly visible marks on glossy finishes. On the other hand, matte finishes are much more forgiving. They handle oils, grease, and other messy substances quite well. Beyond practicality, many individuals simply enjoy the way their matte countertops look. Matte is understated, allowing other elements of the design to stand out, while also flattering when combined with muted colors and simple textures.
Do you feel ready for 2022 now? Well, that’s alright. We’ll help you prepare! Schedule a free consultation and we’ll discuss your ideas for your new kitchen, bathroom, patio, or other custom stone addition. At Stonehouse Countertops, we are willing and able to work with you to your specifications. We offer a wide range of different materials and always have someone on hand to answer your questions! Don’t hesitate to reach out for a consultation or for help forming a plan. We want to ensure your vision becomes a reality! Until next time—thanks for reading!