Calacatta Marble Kitchen Countertop

Granite, Quartz & Marble Concepts For Your Home

Leathered, Honed, Volcano Finishes with Granite/Quartz

Posted by Jonathan Wheller on Mon, May 30, 2011 @ 11:28 AM

Over the last few years, many different finishing options have come to market for granite and quartz countertops.  Before these last few years, we had only been able to see Granite and Quartz in polished finishes. Now that the industry has grown and quartz and granite are hugely popular in modern design, we are beginning to see a variety of available finishes for stone countertops. 

 

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Leathered and honed finishes are often related to each other, but do have specific differences between the two.  Honed finishes were first introduced to give stone a softer look compared to that of polished stone.  One of the only problems to consider with using a honed finish is that it can affect the overall performance of the stone when it comes to staining.  Leathered finishes have advanced the honed look to allow for better performance.  Leathering closes the stone pores, which make it much more difficult to stain than a honed finished.  Leathering also retains the natural stone colour while honed finishing tends to cloud out the natural colour of the stone.

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Silestone has been offering quartz countertop colours in a leathered finish for a nearly five years.  Coming very soon, Silestone will introduce a new texture to the market that has not yet been approached:  Volcano.  This new Volcano texture is said to give the feel of an orange peel, while continuing to offer the same performance standards as their leathered and polished finishes.  Silestone expects to release this finish, along with a variety of new and exciting colours this summer. Silestone is able to offer their remarkable 15 year warranty with these new finishes as well.

finished piece leather silestone resized 600

If you are interested in learning more about leathered, honed, or Volcano finishes to your granite or quartz products, please visit Latitude Countertops or speak with one of our knowledgeable and friendly sales team members. 

Topics: Granite, slabs, Silestone, bathroom design, bathroom ideas, Toronto, counter tops, counter tops, Quartz Kitchen Countertops, counter top, Countertops, Countertops, Kitchen Renovation, Quartz, Quartz, Cleaning granite counter top, difference between granite and quartz, kitchen countertop, Kitchen Countertops, Natural Stone, Granite countertops, kitchen design, Granite Kitchen Countertops, Cleaning granite, Granite Kitchen Countertop, Staining, care for Granite, cleaning quartz counter top, unique granite, Granite vs Quartz, Stone, Stone Fabricator, Natural Stone Fabricator

Quartz Countertops Vs Granite Countertops

Posted by Brett McLennan on Mon, Jul 26, 2010 @ 10:14 AM

Are you thinking of installing a new countertop for your kitchen or bathroom but are unable to decide between a granite kitchen countertop or a quartz kitchen countertop. Don’t worry, this is a common issue that many consumers face when embarking on a renovation journey.

 

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Properties of Quartz

 Quartz Slabs Factory

Quartz is found in large quantities on our planet and is a very hard substance even in its crude form. Diamond, sapphire and topaz are the only minerals that are more scratch-resistant than quartz. If we go by the Mohs' Hardness scale, which is used to determine the scratch resistance capacity of a mineral, quartz is ranked 7 on this scale while diamond is ranked 10.

The Properties of Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops come in a few different brands (Silestone, Caesarstone, Hanstone, Compac, etc) but they are all essentially the same, 93% Quartz and 7% resins and colours. These compositions make quartz countertops very hard and quite durable. Engineered quartz countertops are when compared to granite are much less porous and caring for them is quite a bit less maintenance. Since the quartz slabs are engineered they do not need sealing and the colours are very uniform throughout the slab. They do however have a ‘manufactured’ look to them which you will either love or hate.

 

Properties of Granite

 Granite Quarry

Granite is a strong and dense material when it’s extracted from the earth. It comes out in large blocks which are later broken down into smaller slab sizes. The granite slabs are polished using a polyurethane sealer which makes the granite more water resistant. Granite countertops are, when not cleaned properly, vulnerable to contamination from bacteria. A mild detergent and warm water can solve this problem.

The Properties of Granite Countertops

The quantity of quartz in granite countertops is about 50-60%. Because of this, granite countertops are not as hard, or as crack-resistant. A granite countertop is only about half has durable as a quartz countertop. The biggest advantage of granite countertops is that they have a very natural and elegant look to the surface and it gives a very rich look to your kitchen.

While installing a countertop, it makes sense to keep in mind that once the countertop is installed, it becomes the centre piece of any room and it’s important to take every measure to ensure that it adds value to the existing look of the house.

For a comparison chart please click here.

 

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Questions or comments? Feel free to email me at Jonw@latitudeonline.ca and I look forward to seeing you in our showroom.

 

-Jonathan

Topics: Granite, slabs, Silestone, vanity, bathroom design, Toronto, Quartz Kitchen Countertops, Countertops, Quartz, Kitchen Countertops, Granite Kitchen Countertops, Staining, Granite vs Quartz

Top three issues before choosing marble for your kitchen counter top.

Posted by Karen Yuen on Thu, Jun 24, 2010 @ 12:40 PM

 

People love the look of Bianca Carrara marble for their kitchen but how practical is it? 


(Bianca Carrara)

Bianca Carrara (compared to granite) is very soft and porous.  Acidic juices from tomatoes or lemons etc., can etch it, red wine can stain it, and it scratches easily. So in a  kitchen where the counter top meets oils, sauces and chopping regularly, it may not be the most practical choice. 

A good sealer is a must to help stop marble from staining.  Anything that spills on marble will have to be wiped up immediately.

Treat the marble with care

Whether or not the marble is the right material for you is a lifestyle choice. For those busy people that don't have the time to clean messes right away, they may not want to go with marble but a granite or even quartz counter top.  When purchasing a marble counter top, you have to be prepared to take the time to care for it. It is also interesting to note that marble  counter tops have been used in homes and restaurants for hundreds of years and they didn't have the sophisticated sealers that we have now, they let it stain, chip and etch and still consider it beautiful.

When customers come to Latitude for Bianca Carrara or other marbles for your kitchen counter top, we tell our customers that we don't recommend marble for kitchens; that it stains, chips and etches and ask you fill out a waiver to ensure that our customers understand the nature of marble. We want our customers to be informed and to make the best decisions. If you are choosing marble for you your kitchen, ask yourself these three important questions.

  1. Am I ready to seal it every year?
  2. Am I prepared to wipe all spills and messes right away?
  3. Can I continue to love my marble as it ages, even if it does stain, chip or etch? 

If you answer yes to these questions, then go for it! If you answer no or are unsure of your answers, then a granite or quartz counter top may be the better choice for you.

Topics: Granite, Silestone, vanity, Bianca Carrara, marble, marble, Toronto, Quartz, kitchen design, Staining, Marble vs Granite, Marble vs Quartz

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