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The Granite House Blog

Preparing for granite and quartz kitchen worktops – When to do your wall cupboards and tiling

When you embark on a kitchen re-fit, including that special treat of new stone kitchen worktops as well as new wall tiles and new cabinets, it’s hard to know where to start. The first stage, other than choosing your granite, quartz or marble kitchen worktops, is templating. This is the day important measurements are taken. Once this is completed and agreed by you, we can move on to fitting. In this blog we will give you a guide on which jobs you can get on with first, helping you to avoid potential mishaps.

The-Granite-House-Granite-Quartz-Kitchen-Worktops

 

Should my kitchen wall cabinets be up before the worktops are fitted?

In short, yes. Ideally the walls will be clear of anything that could impede the template laser or reduce the manoeuvrability of the granite, quartz or sintered stone worktops. The large pieces of stone are very heavy and can be awkward to get into position. Of course, if the kitchen re-fit consists of worktops only, then it is not recommended that you remove the wall units or cooker hood in order to fit the stone worktops.

The-Granite-House-Granite-Quartz-Kitchen-Worktops

If the wall units and extractor fan have been fixed and there is a risk of damage to them, it will be necessary to protect them as best as you can. Before the fitters arrive for the templating measurements, the whole area will need to be free from other trades, dust, and objects such as dust sheets or kitchen accessories.

When can I tile the walls?

It is preferable to tile the walls last of all, unless you are laying a new floor. Floors are usually the last job in a kitchen re-fit, unless you require it to go right to the walls, rather than the front of the base units.

The-Granite-House-Granite-Quartz-Kitchen-Worktops

Protect your beautiful new stone worktops from splashed grout or dropped tiles by taping plenty of cloth across them. It is extremely difficult to damage the stone worktops that we supply, especially sintered stone such as Dekton or Lapitec, but if you do drop a tile, you will at least reduce the risk of wasting it!

In summary – Preparing for new kitchen worktops

The templating stage is the first time our fitters will visit your kitchen. This is the time when a laser measurement system will be used to get accurate measurements for the final worktops. Please make yourself or your spokesperson available on this day and be prepared for this visit by following these guidelines as closely as possible:

  • Remove old worktops
  • Clearing area of people, objects and dust – all of which could affect the laser accuracy
  • Base units in final position
  • Sinks, hobs, taps and sockets and units that meet the surface, available for measuring but not in position
  • Under-mounted sinks such as Belfast sinks and free-standing cookers such as AGA’s should be in final position
  • Wall mounted extractor fans, including over hob units, to be in final position
  • Plastering to be completed – not tiling.

With all these points taken care of, with a 3mm tolerance, our fitters can make the most accurate measurements for example, if the plaster is not complete, the worktops are likely to overhang at the front and if we are unable to take the sink measurements, even if it is not yet fixed, then the worktop may not be correct when we come to fit it.

Installation day

Before The Granite House comes to fit your new kitchen worktops, you need:

  • Base units in position
  • Oven in position
  • No wall tiles, or protected with newspaper and tape
  • Floors can be laid, if it is your preference – they will need protecting
  • Other ‘white goods’ can be in position – if they do obstruct the fitters they may be temporarily re-positioned.

The Granite House is always happy to answer any questions you may have regarding the whole process of choosing and fitting your new kitchen worktops. Please feel free to call our office on 01869 324442, or read more on our ‘How to Order Your Worktops’ page.

 

Granite and quartz worktops – perfect for pastry

Baked apple roses, granite, quartz kitchen worktops

An old cook’s saying is that pastry should be prepared with cool hands to get the best out of your bake. Both shortcrust and puff pastry need to be kept cool for the best results which means that a cool floured granite or quartz worktop is ideal.

In pastry making, it’s important not to let the dough heat up because the butter can start to melt which hinders flakiness, makes the dough difficult to roll and will make it more likely to stick to what it comes into contact with. This can then lead the chef into adding more flour to the surface, which inevitably alters the mix of the pastry itself and the result? A tough, overworked pastry case. The fact that a granite or quartz worktop maintains an ambient, cool temperature makes it the ultimate choice for bakers.

Why choose a granite or quartz offcut?

Granite and quartz worktops are made to order, which means there will often be some material left over. These offcuts can be easily utilised to make the ideal granite or quartz island worktop to enhance the natural beauty in your kitchen.

Granite, quartz, kitchen worktops

Now you’ve got your perfect surface for working pastry, why not try out one of these delicious and beautiful recipes…

Baked Apple Roses

Baked apple roses, granite, quartz kitchen worktops

Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen puff pastry sheet, thawed
  • 2 red organic apples
  • half lemon, juice
  • 1 tablespoon of flour, to sprinkle the counter
  • 3 tablespoons of apricot preserve
  • cinnamon (optional)
  • icing sugar for decorating (optional)

Directions:

1. Thaw the puff pastry if you haven’t done so yet. It should take about 20-30 minutes.

2. Prepare a bowl with some water and the lemon juice. Cut the apples in half, remove the core and cut the apples in paper thin slices, as shown in my picture. Leave the peel so it will give the red colour to your roses. Right away, place the sliced apples in the bowl with lemon and water, so that they won’t change colour.

3. Microwave the apples in the bowl, for about 3 minutes, to make them slightly softer. If you prefer, you can also simmer the apple slices in the water in a small pan (on the stove).

4. Unwrap the puff pastry over a clean and lightly floured counter. Using a rolling pin stretch the dough a little, trying to keep it in a rectangular shape. Cut the dough in 6 strips. These are about 2 in x 9 in (5 cm x 22 cm).

5. In a bowl, place three tablespoons of apricot preserve with two tablespoons of water. Microwave for about one minute, so that the preserve will be easier to spread. Spread the preserve on the dough.

6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Drain the apples.

7. Place the apples on the dough, as shown in the picture. Sprinkle with cinnamon if you’d like.

PAstry recipes, granite and quartz kitchen worktops

8. Fold up the bottom part of the dough.

Apple pastry recipe, granite and quartz kitchen worktop

9. Carefully roll, seal the edge, and place in a silicone muffin cup. No need to grease the muffin tin if it’s silicone. Otherwise, make sure to grease it.

10. Do the same for all 6 roses. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for about 40-45 minutes, until fully cooked.

baked apple roses, granite and quartz kitchen worktops

NOTE: make sure the pastry is fully cooked on the inside before removing the roses from the oven! If after 30 minutes the apples on top look fully cooked, move the pan to a lower rack in the oven, cover with tin foil to prevent the tops catching and wait for 10-15 more minutes to avoid undercooked pastry.

More recipes to try on your granite or quartz worktop

If baked apple roses aren’t to your taste, why not try our alternative recipes:

 

The Granite House may not be experts in cookery, but we are experts in stone choices. We have a large number of slabs in stock, available to view at our Bicester workshop. View our wide selection online at www.thegranitehouse.co.uk or to discuss your worktop requirements why not arrange a consultation? Telephone: 01869 324 442

 

 

 

Go for colour this Christmas with granite and quartz kitchen worktops

If you’re at home for Christmas, you’ll be spending a fair amount of time in the kitchen. There will be visitors to welcome, drinks to serve, and nibbles to, well… nibble on. Not to mention the minor task of cooking and clearing what can seem like a year’s worth of meals in a single fortnight. The kitchen really earns the title of ‘heart of the home’ over the Christmas break – so why wait until after the holidays to update your kitchen with a new granite or quartz worktop?

Our Range of Granite Colours

Formed over millions of years from compressed molten rock under the Earth’s surface, Granite is one of the hardest and most durable natural substances known to man.

It has heat-resistant qualities and is also unlikely to scratch or chip. When used for kitchen worktops, it is far superior to synthetic, laminate or wood. It is also much more beautiful and has a luminous, three dimensional quality that brings an element of luxury to the kitchen.

In terms of colour and patterns , the choice is almost endless. Whether you want simple colours that compliment or vibrant patterns that make a statement, granite offers something for everyone.

Because Granite is a naturally formed, stone patterns and colours vary from slab to slab so it is worth coming to visit us at The Granite House to see for yourself the individual slabs available. Call to make an appointment on 01869 324 442.

So what festive colours can The Granite House offer?

Here are a few examples of granite with a festive feel to get you inspired this Christmas.

New Venetian Gold

New Venetian Gold granite originates from Brazil and is a light, golden granite colour with flecks of blacks and creams running throughout. Typically New Venetian Gold granite is used for kitchen worktops as it is extremely hard wearing.

 

Christmas-granite-kitchen-worktops

Marinace Red

Marinace Red granite is a red granite with stone shapes of grey, whites and pinks running throughout. It has a unique pattern formed from granite pieces deposited in moving water.

This granite originates from Brazil and is used predominately for kitchens as it is extremely durable and retains its beauty year upon year.

Christmas-Granite-kitchen-worktops

Verde Marinace granite

Verde Marinace granite is a green granite with shades of pinks, greys and lighter green. Again it’s unique pattern is formed from granite pieces deposited in moving water.

This granite colour will work well with most colour schemes and looks great with light cabinets including creams, ivory and beiges.

Christmas-granite-kitchen-worktops

Our Range of Quartz Colours

Quartz worktops are known as such due to the high content of natural quartz in the composite stone used for this versatile material. Quartz composite is highly durable, heat-resistant, and scratch-resistant. Similarly to Granite, Quartz surfaces are ideal for use in the kitchen due to their admirable characteristics and as it is a man-made alternative to Granite, patterns and colours are consistent.

There are many brands of quartz and we work with a selection of the leading manufactures to offer our customers the highest quality and choice.

Gold Stone.

Okite worktops are specially engineered from a combination of natural quartz, polyester resin and natural colour pigments. With Okite you are guaranteed a stunning finish. The sumptuous gold stone design works well against either light or dark cabinets to give your kitchen that ‘21st century’ modern touch.

Christmas-granite-kitchen-worktops

Rubi

Compac Quartz is ideal for those wanting to make a statement with their kitchen counters. ‘Rubi’ is like a fine wine, dark red kitchens are rich, full-bodied and designed to be shared so are perfect if you intend your kitchen as a sociable setting.

Christmas-granite-kitchen-worktops

 

Silestone Verde Fun

Silestone Verde Fun is a bright green quartz colour that works well with many colour schemes. This quartz also looks great with light, dark and wooden cabinets.

Verde Fun can brighten up any home and create a fantastic feature. This quartz colour is part of Silestone’s Life Series.

Christmas-quartz-kitchen-worktops

 

Quartz worktops are highly durable, heat resistant and scratch resistant so are considered a great investment for kitchens.

 

If Christmas colours aren’t to your taste have a look at our wide selection on line at www.thegranitehouse.co.uk or to discuss your worktop requirements and view our extensive range of Granite and Quartz samples, why not arrange a consultation? Telephone: 01869 324 442

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s the best kitchen worktop for improved hygiene in the home?

Good hygiene is important in the prevention of infection from a wide source of micro-organisms and this blog intends to help you determine the best kitchen worktops to maintain your hygiene standards at home. Whilst many of the micro-organisms present in the home do not cause us any problems and co-exist without any cause for concern, it is without doubt that good hygiene practice in the kitchen will prevent some contamination from bacteria and viruses among others.

“Bacteria can survive on surfaces in the home for long periods of time” – Hygiene Council

Other than following the recommendations of the Hygiene Council and regularly cleaning kitchen surfaces, there is something else you can do to improve the hygiene rating of the kitchen worktops themselves. Some kitchen worktop surfaces are more likely to retain food residues and present a risk of bacteria forming than others. Wooden worktops and cutting surfaces for example, which are naturally characteristically textured and more vulnerable to damage, require extensive treatment to improve their hygienic condition. Man-made stone surfaces such as quartz, or Lapitec and Dekton sintered stone kitchen worktops are manufactured to have the highest standards of hygiene.

“It is important that surfaces be made from materials that are resistant, smooth and impermeable” – Silestone by COSENTINO

Stone kitchen worktops, whether man made or natural have that smooth, impermeable surface that is important in increasing the resistance to viruses and bacteria.

  • Quartz kitchen worktops

Because of the compression system used in the production process of quartz kitchen worktops, they have a very low level of porosity. This ability to resist fluid absorption makes quartz extremely hygienic for use in kitchens.

The Granite House has an extensive choice of quartz kitchen worktop manufacturers, with an even greater choice of designs and colours.

Quartz kitchen work top manufacturers

  • Lapitec sintered stone kitchen worktops

Bio Care technology, used in the manufacturing process of Lapitec sintered stone, provides the material with antibacterial properties, baked right in. Sintered stones are highly scratch and chip resistant, making them ideal for food preparation areas, especially for smaller kitchens where every centimetre is in constant use. Please get in touch to discuss our range of Lapitec sintered stone kitchen worktops:

Lapitec kitchen worktops

  • Dekton sintered stone kitchen worktops

The most hardwearing of kitchen surfaces, Dekton is highly resistant to scratches, stains, extreme temperatures and abrasion. With zero porosity and lack of micro-defects Dekton sintered stone kitchen worktops can boast superior kitchen hygiene standards. Here is an example of the colours of Dekton sintered stone kitchen worktops available from The Granite House:

Dekton kitchen worktops

Sophisticated, neutral tones

 

  • Granite kitchen worktops

As a natural stone, granite will inevitably have a slightly higher porosity than the manmade alternatives above. However, granite kitchen worktops are still highly resistant to heat and damage, ensuring the surface stays smooth and easy to clean. A small sample of colours available is shown below, for a full catalogue of colours available, please click here:

Granite kitchen worktops

The Granite House works closely with a number of quartz manufacturers and granite suppliers, as well as with Lapitec and Dekton sintered stone suppliers. Please feel free to get in touch with any queries you may have regarding the replacement of your existing kitchen worktops, or with remodelling your entire kitchen – we are always happy to help.

The Granite House

Silestone by COSENTINO

Lapitec Kitchen Worktops

Dekton Kitchen Worktops

The Hygiene Council – pdf

Pretty in pink – Bathroom trends for 2016

Following on from last month’s trendy kitchens blog, we take a look at the latest trends for the bathrooms of 2016. More affordable than updating a kitchen, bathrooms are the room at the top of the list for increasing desirability to buyers. Even if you’re not selling, who doesn’t appreciate a bathroom with a touch of elegance?

Free standing tubs and walk in showers

Bathrooms in 2016 are expected to follow the example set by luxury hotels. Emanate the most popular looks in the world’s best high end hotels with two simple changes: add floor to ceiling tiles or fully clad walls in stone such as granite, quartz or marble and install a free standing bath tub. If the nostalgic claw footed tub of the 1800′s is not to your taste, modern free standing baths offer clean lines and contemporary shapes.

Some home-owners are taking the bold step of removing the bath all together and opting instead for a shower. With the space gained, you have the perfect opportunity to be adventurous with your trendy shower. Floor level shower trays, ceiling to floor glass enclosures with stone tiles and shower heads to mimic the rainfall in a tropical forest perfectly follow the style of luxurious hotels.

Think minimal, and the colour of choice for bathroom furniture in 2016? White.

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bathroom-trends-granite-house

Heated Stone floors

According to interior designer Loretta J Willis, heated stone floors are one of the most sought after bathroom trends for 2016. And if you want to reflect the world’s most luxurious hotel bathrooms in your own bathroom floor, then marble is the stone of choice. Affordable options that mimic the depth and decadence of true marble come in the form of sintered stones, such as Dekton and Lapitec, or versatile composite stone like quartz. Whatever your budget and whatever the size of your bathroom, you are sure to find the perfect stone for a truly luxurious under foot feel.

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Dekton bathroom, from The Granite House, marble and classic black and white checks in stone tiles

The colour pink

Maria Killam, the ‘Colour me Happy’ blogger,  assures us that the colour of choice for on-trend bathrooms in 2016 is pink. But, far from the dated shades of the 70′s, the shade to go for is known as ’tissue pink’. Less of a garish retro look, tissue pink has a soft, pastel hue, with a hint of beige. Stick with a white bathroom suite and update the room with new vanity tops in a choice of naturally stately stones such as granite, or marble, or composite and sintered stones like quartz, Dekton and Lapitec.

bathroom-trends-granite-house

Wall colours and vanity top accessories in complimentary colours or vintage floral patterns complete the look.

Our top pick for bathrooms in 2016

The Granite House loves heated stone floors. We think the incandescent beauty of natural stone adds a touch of pure luxury to any room and in a bathroom it brings true elegance, worthy of the best hotels in the world. An affordable, particularly durable, but just as luxurious option is to choose a quartz that emanates natural stone.

To achieve an on trend look for your bathroom in 2016, we recommend Starlight Red from Technistone for the floor and walls around the shower and basin. The pinkish hue is just enough to be on-trend for 2016 whilst still neutral enough to be in good taste.

bathroom-trends-starlight-red-technistone-granite-house

Starlight Red, by Technistone

For advice on choosing the perfect stone for your bathroom renovation project, or if you would like to view off cuts to use on a smaller project such as vanity tops, please get in touch. We are always happy to help.

The Granite House

Maria Killam – Colour Me Happy

Loretta J Willis, Interior Designer

Kitchen trends for 2016

Already there are predictions for the hottest new looks for kitchens in 2016. There’s a lot of choice out there and we’ll take you through the design trends with kitchen worktops, open shelving and the themes that are emerging for 2016

Industrial Chic

Industrial chic and mid-century modern designs are set to be the top choices of kitchen design in 2016.  Think brick, stone, copper and man-made textures mixed in with modern stainless steel and white appliances; iron and wood industrial tables, steel stools, weathered metal mirrors, all designed to reflect the ‘working life’.

The beauty of this Industrial style is that it’s timeless, neutral, simple and natural.  Given this, you can mix individual pieces in with any other type of design style. You can achieve this look by replacing kitchen countertops for a naturally luxurious stone like granite, or choose a contemporary colour with quartz or sintered stone. Open shelves and eclectic furniture will look great teamed with bare stonework and an industrial style, clean edged kitchen worktop, like this one from Caesarstone:

Caesarstone-Kitchen-Worktops-Granite-House

Piatra Grey kitchen worktops by Caesarstone at The Granite House

Open shelving

Replacing your kitchen doors has always been a quick fix in redesigning your kitchen but for 2016 one hot new design tip is to bare your kitchen collections to the world and go with open shelves. Be brave and remove the doors, or remove the whole unit and go for a dresser.

We are all becoming more discerning in our collections of goods and more eclectic in the mix of modern and retro crockery and accessories that we use. The increased interest in all kinds of cooking and entertaining has given way to a trend of showing off all these items as evidence of our tastes and cooking prowess.

Select the appropriate cupboards to reveal to your visitors and embrace the trend for the use of Kilner jars and Scandinavian style wooden racks and shelving to ensure the items that are usually hidden away are showcased in the best possible way. Hooks and kitchen maids make for great displays of pans, veg and utensils. Don’t forget ‘shabby chic’ is still going to be popular next year, so an eclectic collection of crockery and cookbooks will look simply stunning to your visitors.

Kitchen-Worktops-Granite-House-Kitchen-Trends-2016

www.ao.com

Lounge style

The kitchen has always been considered to be the heart of the home. The place that food comes from to feed your appetites as well as your love for those you feed. Modern homes are continually opening up smaller kitchen areas and creating kitchen diners, with extensions or the addition of conservatories.

And the design choice for the larger kitchen? Lounge furniture. Comfort is key in the kitchen for 2016. Bring in contemporary pieces from high street shops or keep to the eclectic style and choose an antique signature piece such as a rug or comfy armchair for those lazy Sunday mornings.

Kitchen-Worktops-Granite-House-Kitchen-Trends-2016

Perlino Kitchen worktops by Compac at The Granite House

So now you know what to aim for when refurbishing your kitchen, give The Granite House a call to discover a vast choice of natural and modern kitchen worktops and find the perfect match for your new design.

Kitchen-Worktops-The-Granite-House-Contact-Kitchen-Trends-2016

http://alightreflection.com/2015/02/11/top-10-kitchen-trends-for-2015-2016/
http://mobalpa-richmond.co.uk/kitchen-design-trends-2016-mobalpa-richmond

More than just a Granite, Marble & Stone supplier, a day in the life of our Office Manager

 

 

 

 

 

At The Granite House, the office opens at 8.30am, although the workshop starts at 7.30am. The most important job when I get in is to make a cup of tea for both myself and the boss! That is Tim Rotherham, Tim began the business in his garage, importing granite and marble direct from source visiting quarries and stone shows around the world. Tim soon built relationships with suppliers and learnt all he could about the different types of natural stone available. The natural progression was for Tim to cut and fit the granite and quartz worktops for domestic and commercial customers, with that The Granite House was created.

Once I have delivered Tim’s tea, we have a quick catch up and I check and respond to emails and on line quote requests. Our website lets customers go through all the options and questions needed for us to give them an initial quote; things such as timings, material choice and worktop colour, thickness of stone, worktop measurements, what edges will need to be polished, number of tap holes, drainer grooves, upstands and splashbacks. You wouldn’t believe how much there is to consider and the amount of choices there are. Errors are easily made if everything is not considered, but this is just the initial quote. When our customers decide to proceed with their order, one of the team goes to the house and professionally measures the kitchen or bathroom and checks all these details with the customer.

There are two stages to getting a stone worktop once quotes have been agreed. Firstly, we come out to complete an accurate template from which to fabricate your new worktops and I need to ensure the following is all in place:
• All base cabinets have to be fixed and perfectly level.
• All end panels must be in place.
• Units must not move once the template is complete, as even a millimetre of movement can jeopardise the quality of the final fit.
• All sinks and hobs must be onsite and available to the team.
• All Agas, ranges and free standing cookers must be in their final place.
• Any plastering that is required needs to be done either before we template or after we complete the installation.

Once the template appointments are in the diary I can order materials for upcoming jobs and book new jobs which involve taking payments. We require a deposit as a commitment to projects before any stone is ordered or cut, this is usually 25% of the estimate value.

The Granite House has a team of highly skilled stoneworkers, who between them have over 75 years’ of experience of cutting and fitting granite, quartz and marble. I liaise with the workshop daily to check on the progress of the jobs that are currently underway and check everything is on the same schedule as I have in the office and there are no issues I will need to deal with.

Our phone is busy all day long, we get a lot of phone enquiries which I deal with; I am also here at the showroom to help any walk in customers. The Granite House prides itself in its customer service and we welcome customers to our workshops to look at stone samples or choose their granite or marble. Unlike man-made stone that comes in ‘uniform’ colours and patterns naturally occurring stones like granite or marble have unique patterns and colours that vary according to where they come from and from slab to slab, so we highly recommend customers visit us to choose the perfect slab for their project.
I have seen the company change over the years as we have grown but Tim’s original idea remains the same. The Granite House prides itself on supplying its customers with exceptional service and premium quality granite, quartz and marble all at affordable prices and I am proud to be a daily part of that. We are quite often a small part of a renovation project and I thrive on customers sending photos of their completed bathroom, kitchen or hallway. I love interiors and quite often over lunch I will be flicking through a home or renovation magazine, the one lovely thing about this job is that you get to see some great projects. I quite often go home with a little house envy!

Lynne – Office Manager.

Drainer grooves in Granite and Quartz Kitchen worktops

Choosing your kitchen worktops is probably one of the first things you’ll do when designing a new kitchen, or you may have simply decided to replace the worktops themselves.

Choosing your sink
The style of your kitchen may dictate the type of basin you’ll choose, white Belfast sinks for that country cottage look or stainless steel for a more modern look. Whichever style of sink you choose drainage will have to be considered. Some sinks are designed with an integrated draining board, particularly stainless steel and plastic options, but for sinks that are mounted under the counter, Belfast sinks and bowls you need to add drainage from the worktop into the basin in the form of drainer grooves if you’re using stone kitchen worktops.

Drainer Groove options
There are a few choices in the design of your drainer grooves such as the length, shapes and the number of grooves you can have.  You can also decide if you would like them on the left or right hand side of your sink or on both sides.

Drainer grooves stop the water creeping along the counter top, getting everything wet in its path and eventually dripping onto your kitchen floor.  By having the grooves in the stone excess water drains away into the sink and you’ll avoid a puddle of water after your washing-up or vegetable preparation.  If you choose to have a stone worktop, drainer grooves are an excellent way to create a beautiful aesthetic feature that offers a practical use.  At Granite House, our stone masons make them in sets of 5 and the customer can select the positions, lengths and patterns to suit them.

 

 

 

 

 

There are lots of details to be thought about when choosing sinks, drainer grooves and the details of your worktop. Our easy to use quotation page will give you an indication of all the elements you will need to consider such as drainer grooves, polished edges, the polished edges of cut outs for your sink, tap holes, upstands and splash backs as an alternative to tiles behind your sink and hob/range area.
The Granite House prides itself in its customer service and whatever you’re looking for we will talk you through all your options to ensure you get the perfect worktop for your kitchen.

 

 

 

3 hot looks for your kitchen worktops in Spring 2015

Granite – Nature’s choice for natural beauty

The buzz word for fashionable home decorating this Spring is ‘natural’ and how better to bring nature into your kitchen worktops than with a luminescent piece of stone that has been formed over millions of years, deep beneath the earth’s surface? Granite is born out of volcanic rock, bringing with it the stirring passion of the earth. The colours and patterns are all formed naturally from the earth’s resources giving us an almost endless choice. You can choose cool colours like Imperial White or River White or warmer hues such as Kashmir Gold and New Venetian Gold. If vibrancy and statement patterns are more your style, try Ivory Brown or Surf Green – You will be amazed at the stunning qualities natural granite can offer your kitchen worktops.

Quartz – Man-made alternative to granite

With man-made quartz kitchen worktops, you can bring a modern look to your home this Spring. Quartz kitchen worktops are very durable, highly heat-resistant and scratch resistant. Colours and patterns are varied with something to suit all tastes.

Go bold and bright with Verde Fun or New Passion, if you want to keep it things more natural try Shitake and Cyssus. For crisp and clean choose Blanco Zeus or Diamond White.

Sintered Stone with Dekton and Lapitec

As fashionable as a home can be, it needs to stand up to the rigours of life. The superior surface for kitchen worktops, sintered stone comprises of 100% mineral, with no resins or hydrocarbon based binder components. Again the stone can be made to simulate the natural beauty of granite, but can withstand the hardest of knocks and highest of temperatures. The colours are endless, the choice of finishes is vast. And as a man-made kitchen worktop, sintered stones such as Dekton or Lapitec can be as fashionable as you want.

Feel free to ask us

This Spring, kitchen decor trends favour natural colours and patterns with a durable high gloss finish. The Granite House is always happy to advise you on your stone choices. We have a large number of slabs in stock, available to view at our Bicester workshop. Just give us a call and ask us anything.

Which worktop do I choose for my kitchen?

There are actually quite a lot of choices for your kitchen worktops. Laminate, Wood, Marble, Granite, Quartz and Sintered Stone. Whether you’re looking to re-model your entire kitchen, or just update the look  by replacing the worktops, making the right choice of surface is the point to start from, to achieve a stunning new kitchen.

Laminate

Laminate can be very good looking. There is never any difference in pattern or colour as it is produced in the same way every time, so the look is always consistent, meaning you can choose colours from a brochure. You can certainly achieve a cheap finish in laminate by choosing a pattern that emanates stone or wood. Affordable and easy to fit yourself, laminate is a popular choice. However, it is also the material that gets replaced most often, possibly due to water and heat damage, staining and chips revealing the fibre board beneath.

Wood

Charming, rustic, traditional, wood brings warmth, natural depth of colour and life into the kitchen. Natural beauty is, beautiful, but is the soft, porous and damage prone material the best for your kitchen worktop? If you want to achieve a rustic look, I would opt for a statement piece of furniture or window sill and stick to a more hygienic, low porosity and highly resistant material for your kitchen worktop.

 

Marble

Marble is definitely a beautiful stone. It brings decadence to any area it is displayed in, but without proper treatment, it has a higher porosity than Granite and can  be more prone to damage. The choice of colours is more limited than quartz, for example as it is a naturally occurring stone but again, you can limit the difference in pattern by selecting ‘sister slabs’. Marble may be considered better fro your bathroom or vanity areas.

Granite

Granite is the superior material for kitchen worktops due the high heat resistance, high stain resistance and high resistance to damage. Granite has a natural luminescence that can’t be imitated, is naturally hygienic and comes in a range of thickness and size of slabs. The colour and pattern can be maintained throughout by choosing ‘sister slabs’, so there is no risk of mismatched worktops.

Quartz

Quartz is man-made material, produced to assume the natural qualities of both Granite and marble. As with any man made product, you can guarantee continuity of pattern and colour, which penetrates the whole depth of the surface. These products are very high stain resistant, heat resistant and easy to maintain. The fact that is it non porous means that it is more hygienic and easy to clean and the choice of colours and design is the widest it has ever been. By choosing Quartz you are choosing quality, beauty, hygiene and low maintenance worktops.

 

Sintered Stone

As with Quartz, sintered stone such as Dekton and Lapitec are man-made materials. They possess the same qualities in the range and continuity of colours available due to the manufacturing processes and guarantee perfection. Sintered stone is highly resistant to damage; a blow from a hammer may not leave any marks and acid won’t penetrate it. Resistant to extremely high temperatures sintered stone will keep it’s sleek, clean lines for many years.

 

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Have a look at our easy to read comparison table to help you decide which kitchen worktop material is best for you. Then give us a call to discuss your requirements.

Material

Cost

Stain Resistance

Damage Resistance

Heat Resistance

Laminate

Low

Low

Low

Low

Wood

Med

Low

Low

Low

Quartz

Med

High

High

High

Granite

Med

Med

High

High

Sintered Stone

High

High +

High +

High +

 


The Granite House, 42 Murdock Road, Bicester, Oxfordshire. OX26 4PP
Tel: 01869 324 442, Fax: 01869 241175, Company Reg: 05213040

Areas we operate within:
Abingdon, Amersham, Aylesbury, Banbury, Bicester, Birmingham, Buckingham, Bracknell, Chesham, Cheltenham, Coventry, Gloucester, High Wycombe, Milton Keynes, Newbury, Northampton, Oxford, Portsmouth, Reading, Slough, Southampton, Stratford Upon Avon, Swindon, Uxbridge, Warwick, Witney

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