Design Ideas to Update Kitchen Style with Natural Stone
My new contemporary kitchen gets its surface style from natural stone. As a decorator, stone is my go-to material for its one-of-a-kind design— its unique colorations, patterns, timeless appeal and durability. My kitchen color palette is gray and white, so I naturally gravitate towards marble; however, the countertops, in particular the island top, are both workhorses and showpieces so I needed to select a stone that can stand up to food prep and daily dining.
I was able to render the look of marble with the durability of granite by choosing quartzite. Quartzite is generally harder and denser with the classic marble veining. My kitchen floors are marble tile in a classic white with gray veining conveying a crisp, airy, contemporary style that compliments the rest of my interior design choices. My signature decor style tends to mix different types of stone in living spaces from flooring to fireplace surrounds and wall inserts.
Natural stone works well with any kitchen—traditional, modern, rustic, transitional, industrial, and all the stylistic iterations in between, making it an ideal choice for a kitchen makeover. Here’s how I use natural stone as my creative muse in home decor and design for surface style in the kitchen.
I like to create a focal point in the kitchen with a stone clad wall and niche that frames the range hood as a functional and sculptural element. In this kitchen by Artistic Tile, the niche wall framing a stainless steel range hood is crafted of Calacatta Gold marble subway tile that complements the Calacatta Gold marble slab of the island top. The flooring is Ash limestone.
Natural stone such as soapstone is a sanitary choice for kitchen sinks because it’s non-porous so it doesn’t trap bacteria and it never stains. This Soapstone sink crafted by Vermont Soapstone, seamlessly blends with the adjacent countertops for a monolithic look. This deep sink’s apron front showcases the veining and colorations.
A built-in niche to charge cellphones, and accommodate a laptop or other smart device is on the must-have list of today’s kitchen renovations and new construction. Now more than ever, the cook is connected to technology, consulting smart devices for recipes and needing a place to organize household paraphernalia. Ripano Stoneworks designed a pocket office in this kitchen with a granite desk top that matches the perimeter counters for style and function.
A wine rack designed to match kitchen counters and cabinets adds a custom touch with natural stone. This one from Ripano Stoneworks showcases a quartzite top and wood storage rack that looks as if it’s an extension of the adjacent countertop and base cabinets.
Natural stone is easy to clean and decorative as a kitchen backsplash with a wide variety of creative choices from semiprecious stones to travertine, marble, limestone, granite and quartzite. This stunning backsplash by ROCKin’teriors is backlit to bring out the translucent beauty of agate, a semi precious stone
Natural stone is a popular choice for the island countertop tying together the look as a focal point and command central for the cook. The latest kitchen island designs incorporate a countertop with an overhang for seating, a sink, dishwasher and/or a cooktop. The island countertop can either match or contrast with the perimeter counters.
Natural stone is a timeless, trend-proof choice for flooring and provides the durability to endure high traffic areas. To preserve its look and luster, natural stone, unlike porcelain and ceramic tile floors, can be polished, resurfaced and resealed, extending its life. There are many different finishes for stone flooring to choose from. Polished is a smooth, glossy, highly reflective surface. Honed is a smooth, satin-like matte finish. Brushed is a slightly rough surface with an aged or antique look. Tumbled is a smooth surface that looks weathered and scuffed. Bush-hammered is a fairly smooth, non-slippery surface ideal for outdoor applications. Leathered is a suede-like appearance and feel with a soft non-reflective shine. Flamed is a rough texture and relief with a non-slippery surface ideal for outdoor applications. Sandblasted is a textured surface with a matte gloss so the stone looks weathered.
The latest kitchen styles mix stone materials, colors and patterns in counters and island tops. This kitchen by Stoneshop pairs Silver Pearl leathered granite on the perimeter counters with Mont Blanc honed quartzite on the island top.
For more design ideas with natural stone, check out www.usenaturalstone.com
Thanks in part to MIA+BSI: TheNatural Stone Institute for sponsoring this post.