Selecting just the right granite for your kitchen is a personal choice; however, if you break it down logically the choice becomes less over whelming and a bit easier. I must admit that they are all so beautiful that sometimes it is just hard to decide.
- What are the pros and cons of light vs.: dark color granites?
- Should I go with tight grained or large format patterns?
- Should I match or contrast the cabinets, or the back-splash, or the floor or the paint color.
- What material is the best choice? Granite, Marble, Quartz or Soapstone Light vs. Dark color granite
If your kitchen receives a lot of natural light, has big windows and the home is receiving direct southern exposure light into the kitchen, you can get away with dark color stones more easily. If your lighting is limited and the kitchen is small, a dark colored stone will make the kitchen feel smaller and darker.
The choice is yours. There is no right and wrong but consider the amount of light, the size of the kitchen and the existing or selected choice of cabinetry and what you plan to do with your back-splash before falling in love with a counter-top stone choice.
Tight grain vs. large format granite choices
The tight grained stone are typically inexpensive and uniform. Large format patterns have veins and color variation and are typically more expensive stone choices. The size of your kitchen can make or break the overall look.
A large format slab can be breathtaking but when cut into smaller pieces then installed in a smaller kitchen it tends to loose some of the expansive beauty of the stone that is best shown off on large islands and visa-versa.
Match or contrast the Cabinetry
I see many men come in to select granite and they are fixated on matching the cabinetry as if they were getting dressed for work in the morning and needed to match. They seem oblivious to the fact that the cabinetry is not the only item with color in the kitchen but because they spent a lot of money on the cabinetry they seem to want to match it. When you ask them what color the floor, back-splash or walls might be it becomes obvious they are selecting one item at a time as opposed to seeing or envisioning a finished kitchen and working toward that vision.
I recommend that you look at photos of finished kitchens that appeal to you and get ideas about the look you want to create and start with a vision based upon the size, shape and amount of light you have in your kitchen and work with what you have to make the most of the overall design. Start with a vision and then select the materials, textures and finishes to make that be the end product. Remember that you are not selecting an x-mass tree for the next few weeks; you are going to live with these choices of flooring, cabinetry, counters back-splash etc for decades to come.
To make a kitchen pop, do not try to blend; try to contrast and highlight the item that you want to be the visual centerpiece of your overall design. If all the items are eye-popping they may fight for center stage. It is alright to have the cabinets or back-splash be more background and have the counter be the focal point or visa-versa. I wouldn’t try to make every item command attention.
Two Tone counters and two different color cabinetry. My advice is, one or the other, but not both. I see spectacular kitchens which have two different stone counter choices, one for the island and another color on the counters. I also see two different cabinet colors and it is beautiful if done in moderation. Do not try to have too much going on it becomes visually overwhelming.
Material Choice, and the recommended usage:
Granite Kitchen, bath, bar, laundry, inside or outside.
Marble Bath, Fireplace surround, furniture topper inside only.
Quartz Kitchen, Bathroom, Bar, Inside only.
Soapstone Kitchen, Bath, Fireplace, Bar, Laundry, inside or outside.