Confused? Most people are!
So you’ve designed your new kitchen layout, but all your friends and family have their opinions on whether you should use granite or engineered stone. Hopefully today we will answer a few questions for you.
Difference between Granite & Engineered stone:
Granite is a natural product that comes from a quarry. Literally a pit in a mountain! So after digging up the stone, it will be sliced into slabs. Slabs from the same block will more or less look the same. Therefore slabs are all categorised & numbered to match them up in case you need more than one slab for your kitchen. There are hundreds of pits in the world, so granite differ from region to region, and even slab to slab. So if our clients prefer to use granite as a bench top, we always send them to a stone mason to choose their own slabs. Then there are no surprises when installation takes place and suddenly there is a vein or colour change one did not expect somewhere. As you can see on images below, with natural granite you can get the most amazing and unique veins. They also come in different sizes, so you might even be lucky and find a smaller off cut piece, perfect for your vanity in a bathroom.
Engineered stone (Caesarstone, Quantum Quartz and Smartstone) is a composite material made of crushed stone that is bound together by an adhesive, normally polymer resin. Every piece of stone can be exactly reproduced and that’s why we as designers can walk around with sample books and help clients choose colours. We know exactly what the stone will look like when installed.
Granite is a natural, tough product and probably much easier to keep clean and use as you wish. If it chips, it can be fixed, but of course you can’t go back to Italy to find the same pit and exact match…
Engineered stone also requires little maintenance to keep clean. You can buy special products to keep it clean or just use water and a light detergent. It should withstand most normal households! It can also be fixed when chipped.
Granite is a dearer product than Engineered stone. You can imagine that the labour costs to dig and transport them can be quite expensive. Stone is so heavy too, so transport is probably a nightmare on digging sites.
Engineered stone is manufactured in a factory where pricing and labour costs can be more controlled.
The most important advice is:
When you choose granite, make sure you visit the stone mason yourself and choose your own stone!
Even if you choose Engineered stone, it is sometimes useful to go to your local engineered stone supplier’s showroom and see what a full slab looks like. It’s not always easy to choose on a sample the size of your hand palm. It is such an important and expensive decision for your kitchen. Your bench top will cost you a few thousand dollars and it defines your kitchen. Why not spend at least one day in making sure you are happy with the look?
Remember, we design lots of kitchens for clients. We help you with possible layouts that suit your family life, budget & the style and design of the rest of your home. Then we arrange the quote and installation by reputable kitchen installers. We also help you choose the colours, finishes, tiles, taps etc to make your kitchen design look unique and give it the wow factor. So give us a call if you need help!
Until next time,