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Home Contractors

Stone Countertops Honed

Granite and marble countertops have become the classic choice for the kitchen and bathrooms. For an updated, fresh twist on stone countertops, select a honed finish.
Granite
Since there are so many color options with granite countertops, only the most popular or better looking colors are available in a honed finish. A highly popular granite color for the last two decades has been black. It is available in a wide range of options from the solid-looking Absolute Black granite to the glitzy variety Black Galaxy with gold flecks. Other more exotic black granite options are the largely veined Eclipse that looks like zebra stripes or even Magma Extra with its swirling contrast of black and gold. Any of these stones take on a whole new look with a honed finish. Highly polished Absolute Black, for example, has a modern appearance when installed in a sleek kitchen with stainless steel appliances and maple cabinetry. The same Absolute Black granite with a honed finish in the same kitchen gives the space a more organic or natural feel. By simply using a countertop stone with a honed finish the entire space will feel more casual and comfortable. Countertops have a large impact on any space, whether it’s in the kitchen, bathroom, or media room.
Travertine
Travertine and limestone countertops are more commonly available with a honed finish instead of a polished finish since it is a more popular selection. These stones are often the countertop of choice for bathroom vanities and utility rooms since they naturally appear more casual than granite or marble. However, a honed marble can have the same relaxed feeling as travertine when done in the right color. There are fewer color options with travertine and limestone than with granite or marble. The color range is light neutrals including beige, tan, and gray, but the patterning in the stone can range much more. Travertine is a type of limestone, which is found in the earth with natural pits or holes that can vary from dime to greater than fist sizes. When the stone is quarried and cut into slabs, these pits are filled to make a suitable countertop. These fills vary greatly in size and shape that determines the overall style of the stone. The large fills have a more rustic appearance, especially with a honed finish.
Soapstone
Soapstone and slate are almost exclusively available in honed finishes. Another popular finish with these stones is a subtle texture called leathered or flamed. These textures have the same eggshell sheen as a flat honed finish, making them suitable for casual and nature-inspired spaces. Soapstone is typically a solid charcoal or gray with little movement or patterning. Although this stone is solid, it has a great deal of character with a honed finish. Slate has more movement and color variation, but has a similar feel as soapstone. These stones are softer to the touch than other natural stone countertops and have an ease about them that greatly compliments other natural materials like wood and metal. Honed natural stone countertops have a softer and more casual feel in today’s homes than the classic polished surfaces.…

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Room Additions

Granite Countertops: A Buyer’s Guide

Granite is an attractive stone that adds color and warmth to any room. Granite is a natural stone like marble that is as old as the planet and can be found around the globe. It is an igneous rock that is almost always massive, hard and tough, and therefore it has gained widespread use as a construction stone. It can be found in hundreds of color variations that normally have dazzling flecks of quartz crystal embedded within. Granite is complimentary to any architectural or interior design style from ultra-modern to country.
In ancient times it was utilized in public buildings such as temples. In the past few centuries it was still being utilized for the exteriors and columns of prominent buildings. Then in the 19th century, stone suppliers perfected the polishing of granite making it even more sought after to beautify not only the exterior but also the interiors of grand homes and buildings.
The use of granite for kitchen and bathroom countertops, fireplace facades and flooring has been a top tier choice of the best architects and interior designers for decades. Due to its’ perpetual allure and unwavering strength granite is now in high demand for homes of every socio-economic realm.
Although in high-demand across the board, granite remains one of the most expensive choices for a home’s countertops. The price of granite starts at $60 a square foot installed. The majority of the cost is due to the excavation and transportation as well as the cutting, polishing and installation. Since granite is the hardest stone, second only to diamonds, special equipment is needed to work with the massive sheets that must be cut to specification. This in part is why it is not a recommended task for the do-it-yourself homeowner. Cabinetry must be reinforced to be able to handle the weight of the stone. The slab of granite must be cut to precision and set exactly level. If it is not exactly level then the granite is at risk for cracking during regular use.
If you want the look and durability of granite countertops but can’t afford the cost of solid slabs then consider granite tiles. Granite tiles are made from left over pieces of granite and cost considerably less. The effect can be just as stunning. The do-it-yourself homeowner can easily handle the installation of the precut granite tiles which will also save money by avoiding the high installation cost.
Regardless of if you choose to install or have installed granite slabs or granite tiles your home value will increase. Prospective home buyers and renters are now making granite countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms a priority. Apartment complexes are having granite installed to attract renters and it’s now the number one update that people make to their older homes. Due to its’ incredible durability and beauty, granite is now becoming the norm for kitchens and bathrooms. It’s not a passing fad but a staple similar to a home having a brick exterior that will remain part of a home’s integrity to last a lifetime.…