Granite is natural rock, quarried directly from Mother Earth. When cut into blocks and layers, the material’s many patterns, layers and colours are highlighted. It is this mottling and the range of colours that are so favoured in the building industry. But, granite has some competition for your benchtop dollar. If you’re the type that likes to think outside the box, you may also consider one of these four materials.
Quartz is similar to granite, but it is not a porous rock. In fact, if you look at a piece of granite you’ll usually find shiny bits of quartz crystals in the veins. Benchtop slabs are made by mixing bits of quartz with binding agents and pigments. This is a composite material that is stain resistant and easy to clean. The colour pigments can be adjusted to match almost any kitchen colour scheme. Another plus is that these benchtops can be recycled. The used ones are chopped up, mixed with new pigments and binders and reformed.
You may not think of recycled glass as a benchtop material, but this is a viable eco-friendly option. Glass chips are mixed in with cement and poured into moulds. Once the mixture has set, the surface is smoothed down with grinders, then buffed to a mirror-like finish. Like the quartz, this benchtop is easy to care for and stain resistant. Recycled glass benchtops are available in an array of colours, making it easy to match your kitchen décor.
Cement may seem like an odd material for a benchtop, but add a bit of colour and it becomes an attractive, durable surface. You also have the option of buying the benchtops pre-cast or having them poured onsite. One of the latest trends is to pour the benchtop and the sink as one unit. This means no seams between the benchtop and the sink, and no place for dirt and germs to hide. You can opt for a smooth benchtop or a patterned variety made by pressing stamps into the cement when it’s still wet.
Once only found in commercial kitchens, stainless steel benchtops are catching on in the residential market. They have a sleek look and are easy to take care off. You can go with the seamless benchtop/sink scenario, or you can have a sink dropped in separately. These benchtops are a particular hit in high-end home gourmet kitchens where durability and a classy design are a must.
For more information, contact a company like Cabinetry Solutions.