A Guide to Choosing Worktops

So, you are planning your new kitchen, and have been busy making decisions.  You know what appliances you want.  You have chosen the style and colour of your kitchen cabinets.   You have even picked out tester pots for the colour of the walls!  But what about your worktops?   With so many different materials and styles available for worktops, how do you choose what’s right for you and your kitchen?   Not only do your worktops need to be hard-wearing and practical, they also need to suit your personal taste and lifestyle, plus fit in with your budget.

Costs for worktops vary according to what material you opt for, with laminates at the lower end of the pricing scale and natural stone such as granite and marble at the upper end.

A good way to make a budget work harder is to have more than one material for your worktops.   For example, using a hard-wearing granite for the main working areas (sink, oven, food prep area), and then having a material with a lower price tag in the rest of the kitchen – such as a laminate or wood.

Combining materials like this is a look that is very much on trend, it adds interest to the room and, as you can see from our photo, it looks great.

 

 

 

 

The thickness of your worktops can alter the look of your kitchen.  In general, a quartz worktop is 20mm thick and granite is 30mm thick.  We can however give you very trendy slimline worktops (eg 12mm ) and extra thick worktops (eg 50mm).

You can mix and match worktop thicknesses in your kitchen to create interest.  For example have a 20mm thick quartz worktop on your island unit and use a thicker, wood effect worktop to make a breakfast bar.

The photo shows a Nobilia German kitchen with a 100mm thick wood effect breakfast bar.

 

 

 

Below are some of the main worktop options, with a bit of information to help you decide what is right for you.

Laminate:   Man made.  Comes in lots of design and colour choices, including imitation wood and granite.  Easy to maintain and clean.  Suits any style of kitchen.  Budget friendly.

This photo is one of our Nolte German kitchens with 25mm wood effect worktops that match the tall cabinets.

 

 

 

 

 

Natural Wood:   Gives a lovely, homely feel to a kitchen and is warm to the touch.  Looks great in traditional / country kitchens but also suits modern kitchen styles. Available in a variety of wood grains and colours.

The worktop shown is iroko, a beautiful hardwood, that is used as a substitute for teak.  When aged, the wood becomes a rich nutty brown colour. It reminds Chris of the chemistry labs at school!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quartz:  Popular choice.   Created by mixing natural quartz with resins.  Hard-wearing.  Low maintenance.  Non porous.  Easy to clean.  Cool to the touch – great for rolling out your pastry on!  Comes in a variety of finishes including gloss and matt.  Brand names include Silestone and Quartzforms.

This gorgeous worktop is White Arabesque from Silestone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Granite:  Is natural stone.  The veining and colouring are unique to each slab.  A luxury material that never falls out of fashion. Suits traditional and modern kitchen styles.  Can have a matt or a polished finish. Hard wearing.  Resistant to heat and scratches.  Easy to clean and maintain.

Our client opted for this stunning polished black granite worktop as a contrast to her white kitchen cabinets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Solid Surface:   Made from a blend of acrylic resins, minerals and colours.  Non porous and hygienic.  Warm to the touch. Low maintenance.  Seamless.  Can be moulded into any shape.  Brand names include Corian and Durasein.

This photo is from a recent project where a Durasein solid surface worktop was fitted to the island unit.  Corona Virus and the Lockdown has prevented us from putting the finishing touches to this kitchen but we hope to be able to return soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ceramic:   Extremely hard wearing surface.  Heat and moisture resistant.  Easy to maintain.  Brand names include Dekton by Cosentino and Neolith.

Glass:  A relatively new material for worktops but gaining in popularity.  Can be produced in almost any colour.  Made from toughened glass.  Durable.  Has a reflective sheen that helps boost light levels.  Non porous.  Easily wiped clean.

Stainless Steel:  Normally associated with commercial kitchens.  Gaining in popularity for domestic kitchens.  Extremely heat resistant.  Super strong  material.  Hygienic.  Non porous.  Low maintenance.  Easy to clean.  Look best with contemporary kitchen furniture.

If you have any questions about worktops, or would like to see samples, we would be delighted to assist.

 

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