Disclosure: This post is sponsored by HanStone Quartz. As always, all opinions expressed are honest and my own.
I am so excited to finally share my new kitchen counters!
More than one person thought I was a little crazy for replacing granite counters, but they weren’t my taste and we hope to live in this house for a long time. The kitchen is the heart of the home and we want it to be “us”.
And, I have to say, I am completely over the moon with how it turned out. I have wanted white marble counters for as long as I can remember and now I have beautiful quartz counters (HanStone Quartz in Monterey) that give me the exact look I want without the concern about etching and staining. They are perfect.
Before I gush, here is how the kitchen looked when we first moved in…
What a difference, right? It’s not that the “before” was bad at all. I want to be clear about that. The cabinets are solid wood and in great shape, the counters were an upgrade, the configuration is practical and has a good flow. There is a lot of good stuff going on. As I said earlier, it just wasn’t my style.
Now? It’s my style.
It is light and bright and is the perfect balance between my aesthetic and the traditional style of the home. It looks gourmet and high-end with just a few splurges (like the stove and the counters) and a lot of DIY (buckets of paint, changing the hardware, swapping the fixtures).
They are absolutely beautiful. Even the guy who installed our marble backsplash was impressed with how realistic the veining is. HanStone really addressed the biggest beef I had (and others had) with quartz counters – the repetitive pattern that looks unnatural. I’m sure if you have enough counter, you’ll eventually notice a repeat, but I can’t see one in all of my 60 sq. ft. of counter.
It also has white flecks and graining in addition to the gray, for more depth and realism.
I really can’t say enough about what a beautiful job they did capturing the soul of marble in a man-made material. I love the way HanStone puts it on their website…
“We’ve successfully simulated marble’s beauty. As for its fragility, we completely failed.”
I had the counters fabricated and installed by a local company, The Pinske Edge. There were several choices for a edge and I picked a traditional ogee. I like that it’s a soft edge and it looks very custom, even though it was a standard edge.
The area around the sink is one of my favorite spots…
They were able to move the sink a little closer to the edge, so that we don’t have to lean over so far when washing dishes. It’s a small change, but it makes a big difference in the functionality of that area.
And the new sink looks so pretty as well! I’ll share more about that in another post, but it looks perfect with the new counters.
It’s hard to talk about the counters without talking about the backsplash, but I’ll share all about those in a separate post.
Now that all of the big stuff is done, I’ll focus on finishing details. I need to live with the wall color a little while, but it might be a touch warm in comparison to the cool grays in the tile and counter. I can’t decide if I like the warm white or if it looks like I picked the paint color before I picked the counters and tile, which I did! Paint is cheap and easy to change, though, so I can if and when I decide to. I’m thinking a cooler off white might flow a little nicer.
The second bit of finessing I’m going to do is add some color. I painted the island Stonington Gray last summer, so it wouldn’t fight with the dark granite counters. I had no idea when we would be able to replace the counters, so I wanted to keep it light and neutral. I love the color and have it in the adjoining living room, on the kitchen doors, and in the back stairway, but because all of the light on the island, it just looks white. Now that I have white counters, I think it’s time for a dramatic paint color on the island. I’m pretty sure I know what color I’m going to paint it, so I’ll work on that when I’m painting out the butler’s pantry.
Many people have asked about the cost of the counters and how they compare to natural stone, like marble and granite. I priced it out and the HanStone Quartz in Monterey was $77/sq. ft. (not including removal of the old counters, fabrication and installation). I did a Google search to find the average costs of other counter materials and here is what I found…
- Marble – $60-100/sq ft
- Granite – $45-200/st ft
- Quartz – $75/sq ft
These are just based on Google searches, so I’m not sure how accurate they are and how a comparable marble would stack up dollar for dollar with the HanStone we selected, but that gives you a sense. Based on the ranges, they can all be in the same neighborhood, with granite and marble being more or less expensive depending on the rarity of the stone.
I’ll share all about the tile backsplash as well as some follow-up posts on the kitchen, including details on the sink, the island makeover, a cost breakdown, etc…