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Energize Your Kitchen: The Counter top Makeover

Posted by Kevin Hughes on Friday, January 18th, 2013 at 4:30pm.

The average American spends about forty-five minutes preparing food, cleaning, and organizing in the kitchen each day (www.bls.gov). Although this portion of the day is relatively small, the enjoyment you get out of it can make all the difference. Who wants to prepare their meals in a grubby looking kitchen? No one. Not only is the environment uninviting, it also creates the illusion of an unhealthy meal, no matter how well you’ve scrubbed those stained and scratched counter tops. Having a location where you actually enjoy spending time makes cooking a treat rather than a chore. One element of your kitchen that can have a huge impact on the atmosphere is the countertops. Here are a few hip ideas to beautify your kitchen.

Wood

If you like an earthy look, wood countertops are a must have. Some options in this category are butcher block, reclaimed wood, and cork counters. The butcher block warms up your kitchen and is a cheap alternative to stone, although it is advisable to use cutting boards when slicing up your food since the wood is susceptible to getting grooves. The surface requires regular oiling and sealing to keep it from cracking, but apart from that is easy to clean and maintain. Reclaimed wood is material salvaged from a demolition project and is typically the strong, old wood that is hard to come by nowadays. If you are environmentally conscious, this material is a great way to conserve and reuse resources. When buffed and sealed, the counter surface adds a rustic character to your kitchen space.  If neither of these appeal to you, consider installing cork countertops. This isn’t your pinning board cork, but a sturdy, lightweight, and inexpensive counter space that is great for all of your kitchen needs. It is heat and water resistant and requires little maintenance.

 

Stone

Stone is a popular material for countertops. It is sturdy, textured, and reliable. Although you may be thinking of granite, some other types of stone are also popular materials. Soapstone, slate, quartz, and a pseudo stone, poured concrete, are making their debut in the kitchen scene. Soapstone is composed of talc and quartz, and is a gray color that darkens as it ages. The countertop variety also typically contains more quartz and is sturdy, as opposed to its softer relative. Slate, a metamorphic rock, meaning it has been subject to either high pressure or temperature, formed from mud, varies in color and has a distinct dull matte finish. This hides any scratches or dents that may form over time. Quartz is one of the hardest, most scratch resistant minerals on earth. This, and the fact that it can vary greatly in color, makes it an excellent, long lasting, and easy to clean surface. 

 

Metal

Stainless steel and pewter counter tops add a sleek style to your kitchen design. Stainless steel has a highly modern feel to it and is resistant to water, heat, and stains. Pewter counter tops employ the same smooth look, except their orange-brown hue is considerably warmer than steel. 

If you are considering remodeling your kitchen, check out some of the latest materials to hit the market. Not only will your remodel increase the value of your home, it will also make your cooking experience much more enjoyable.

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