From Jennifer on October 5th, 2009 in Kitchen Remodel
I love my kitchen. I spend most of my days there, so it’s a good thing that my kitchen has so many features that tickle my fancy, including my fabulous granite countertop.
Here are eight great kitchen tops:
#1 – Granite has quickly become one of the most popular kitchen countertop materials. It’s cool to the touch, which is nice when you’re slaving over hot pots and pans. Not to mention the beauty! Granite is exceedingly aesthetic and comes in so many different patterns and color blends. Plus, it’s durable – three and a half years later, it has survived my mad cooking skills, my husband’s heavy handling and the blatant beatings from my two tweenage boys. Not a single gouge, scratch, nick or chip, it’s even kept that beautiful sheen.
Although I couldn’t ask for anything more, I know that there are a growing number of equally mesmerizing kitchen countertop materials out there:
#2 - Recycled Glass. There are a few different brands out there, but the finished product is always amazing. Like Alkemi, recycled glass countertops save materials from the landfill and re-use them in a resin of assorted colors. This method achieves a modern and unique kitchen top. IceStone and EnviroGlas are two of the most prominent manufacturers of the recycled glass top. The shiny tops with their luminescent flecks of crushed glass peering through the resin are just breathtaking.
#3 - Alkemi. This is a brand-new eco-friendly product. Alkemi countertop material is essentially recycled aluminum that’s been chipped up and embedded in a resin. It becomes nearly iridescent, capturing light from all angles and reflecting it back in a rainbow of colors. It’s extremely durable and approved for LEED credit. Alkemi countertops can come in different colors, allowing the metal to show through in a more subtle tone or totally visible display of the scraps – both are astonishingly unique and oddly beautiful.
#4 – Glass Tile. Tile has come a long way. We’re no longer locked into the single choice of terra cotta or ceramic. Glass tiles have become extremely popular, and not just because they’re pretty to look at, with their transparency and playfulness under the light, but because they offer a unique finish to countertops. Oceanside Glasstile offers a wide range of tiles with surfaces you would never guess are made of glass. You can get them in varying shapes and sizes for unique patterns or mosaics.
#5 – Metal Tiles. Eleek creates 100% recycled aluminum tiles for kitchen countertops and other surfaces. It’s a great solution if you like stainless steel countertops but have been itching for something a bit more unique. The aluminum tiles are available in a myriad of finishes. Eleek also makes other kitchen items from recycled aluminum, such as sinks and hardware, so you can have a nice theme throughout the kitchen.
#6 – Recycled Paper. It’s hard to believe, but what you have in your office shredder could be your next kitchen countertop. PaperStone and a few other companies have found a way to recycle regular paper and cardboard, combine it with industrial-strength resin and manufacture a durable, good-looking kitchen countertop. It comes in a handful of color options, but I’m sure as the technology for these types of countertops advances, the color selection will too.
#7 – Concrete. Although concrete has been around since near the beginning of time itself, it’s only recently that we’ve begun to use it to its full potential. With applications mostly known for outdoor spaces, concrete is finally making its way into the home. Concrete makes wonderful kitchen countertops, with its strength and ability to be molded into anything you can imagine. Concrete tops can be shaped and finished in a number of beautiful colors, patterns and styles and are easily custom-made.
#8 – Slate. We think of it as roofing and chalkboard material, but slate can also make great kitchen countertops. Surprisingly, slate has the durability and strength of other natural stones like marble and granite, but is a very low-maintenance material. Because slate is nonporous, it doesn’t have to be sealed like other stones, which makes for a more natural, unprocessed look.