Category Archives: General

Safe Ways to Disinfect a Marble Countertop

Marble countertops are beautiful. Full stop. They are also a bit more delicate in some ways than formica countertops. Your marble countertop can not be cleaned with bleach – an all too common disinfectant used today – but it can still be disinfected completely if you know what you’re doing.

Here are a few disinfectant cleaners that you can safely use on your marble countertop in Nashville.

Disinfectant cleaners for a marble kitchen countertop

Soap + hot water + elbow grease = a clean marble countertop

Soapy water is great at removing pathogens, and taking these pathogens off a countertop is often the best way to disinfect any surface. Since you can’t use bleach, a little bit of soap in warm water, and your own effort via elbow grease, can get the job done. Is anyone here in Nashville afraid of a little hard work? Well, maybe the musicians… 😉

Constant soap and water use will, over time, build up on your marble countertop. Stop by your local hardware store in Nashville and pick up a stone cleaner, use it around four times a week or more if the shine starts to go out.

Using vinegar, bleach and hydrogen peroxide on a marble countertop

These are all powerful disinfects, but are absolute marble countertop destroyers as they cause etching almost immediately. You’d think that vinegar, safe for your favorite BBQ sauce and tummy, would fine but that isn’t the case. It is highly acidic. For homes in Nashville with salmonella concerns, vinegar won’t even kill that. All the more reason to get it far away from your marble countertops!

The best way to disinfectant marble countertops

Most of the mold and mildew removers you’ll find in Nashville have bleach levels that will be just low enough to not cause you a worry of etching your marble countertops. They’re down nearly every kitchen aisle in every store in Nashville that carries cleaning supplies. Be sure that you’re choosing one with the lowest amount of bleach, and do a small sample before covering your marble countertop in it.

There are also marble spray cleaners specifically for a marble countertop. These can be used to help get around the soap residue build up problems as you alternate between the two.

Be sure that whichever product above you choose is left on for at least 10 minutes. You’ll never instantly kill off pathogens and germs, let the sprays have the time they need to get their job done!

Marble countertop advice

If you want to learn more about marble countertops, the team here at Stone World can help. Our customers from all across Nashville were once like you – someone in need of a little help with their marble countertop. Contact us either before or after purchase and see why we’re so popular.

The Pros and Cons of Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops are not as well known as the mighty granite around the Nashville design scene. There is, however, a growing awareness amongst homeowners all over the Middle Tennessee area, and that has lead to lots of questions coming up.

Most of these questions can be answered by looking at the pros and cons of quartz countertops, which we will do below.

The pros and cons of quartz countertops

No material that you choose for your countertops will ever be all ‘pro’ and no ‘con.’ Finding the right mix is going to determine how satisfied you are with your new countertops, homeowners in Nashville who rush to one material or another often find themselves wondering if they made the wrong choice!

Pros for quartz countertops

  • Offering the same incredible strength as granite, quartz is nearly unbreakable during regular kitchen activities. What quartz countertops offer in addition to this strength is flexibility. This makes them easier to install once they make it to your home. Easier to install countertops make for less labor costs being passed to you.
  • Quartz countertops are non-porous. This means that they will never need to be resealed. This saves you money and time during the whole lifespan of the material.
  • Their non-porous nature also leads to them being stain resistant. Dropped a glass of red wine on your white quartz countertops? No biggie, just wipe it up and they’ll still be white!

These three pros of quartz countertops should not be overlooked by Nashville area homeowners. Each will add value to your home, and make it a better place to live.

Cons for quartz countertops

It’s not all big plus signs next to the score sheet for quartz countertops. There are three main points to look at before deciding if they’re right for your home in Nashville:

  • They can discolor when exposed to direct sunlight. This takes a long time, maybe even a decade. Partial exposure can lead to part of your quartz countertops being one color, and another part a separate color.
  • Quartz countertops are even heavier than already heavy granite. They must be professionally installed, not giving you the DIY option.
  • Seams where to pieces meet will be visible. Darker quartz countertops don’t have this problem as bad, but they’re still there.

Are quartz countertops the right choice for your home in Nashville?

If you’ve made up your mind that quartz countertops are right for your home, or if you still have more questions, contact the design team at Stone World today. They’ll help you get started right away, or answer those few remaining questions.

High Heat Resistant Granite Countertop

Functionality for bakers in the kitchen

Have you ever been in this situation at your home in Nashville before: You’ve just finished baking something delicious in your oven, it’s right at the point where if you bake it any longer it will burn, but, horror of horrors, you don’t have anywhere to put it down without burning your kitchen countertop.

This is a situation that I found myself in just last week at my girlfriend’s apartment with her laminate kitchen countertops. There I was, with my fingers feeling way too warm, as I searched for a wood cutting board to place the hot baking dish on. It’s no secret why granite countertops are popular amongst frequent bakers: they never have to worry about where to put a dish down as granite is incredibly heat resistant.

Granite Countertop

Granite Countertop

Why you need a high heat resistant granite countertop

Lesser kitchen countertop materials, such as laminate, are prone to warping, cracking, and even melting when hot items are placed on them. My secret to cooking, which isn’t that big a secret, is “Put it in a pot and make it hot.”

The entire point of your kitchen is to make things hot so that they’re edible for your family – why shouldn’t your kitchen countertop be able to stand the heat? How does that saying go about not standing heat and getting out of the kitchen?

Why is a granite countertop so heat resistant?

Granite is a natural material which has an upper hand when it comes to heat as it is formed in the pressure and heat of volcanic activity. When you think about where it comes from there is no questioning why it is the best material for your kitchen countertop. A hot pan full of cupcakes is nothing next to liquid hot magma!

A second aspect of how it handles heat is that it doesn’t absorb heat readily through conduction. Another material that people use for heat resistance is stainless steel, the problem with a stainless steel kitchen countertop is that it will quickly heat up and burn you if you put your hand on it soon after removing the hot pan.

How to choose a granite countertop

The team here at Stone World are ready to help you choose the correct granite slab for your kitchen countertop. Contact us now, or take a look through our kitchen gallery, for design tips and ideas. We’ve helped many homeowners in Nashville, Tennessee find the high heat resistant granite countertop that meets their needs as bakers, as well as matching their design goals.

Expand Countertops to Boost Kitchens

Countertops that complement your kitchen

If your kitchen is starting to feel small and cluttered, odds are good that you need more kitchen countertop space. But what material will you use to complement your kitchen designs and color scheme when you expand?

The answer that many homeowners and kitchen renovators in Nashville come up with is stone. If you’re getting ready for a big renovation project in your kitchen, the odds are good that you want it to last. Nothing lasts and looks as great as a good stone kitchen countertop.

Expand Countertops

Expand Countertops

Which stones countertops complement a modern kitchen design?

Modern kitchen designs are the current trend. With all of that stainless steel and hard lines, what room is there for stone? Plenty! Many modern kitchen designs are perfectly complemented by a granite, marble or quartz countertop.

Granite and quartz countertops tend to be more popular as they have a wider color choice to perfectly match a monochromatic modern kitchen, but we have seen some get away with white marble countertops before.

Color choice for a granite or quartz countertop in a modern kitchen comes down to your design. Many choose stark blacks for their kitchen countertop, quartz and granite can certainly do black. Check out our own Absolute Black granite, or Dreis quartz as examples. Other tones can be used, our granite and quartz lines combine for over 110 colors!

Which stone countertops complement a country kitchen design?

The other popular kitchen design scheme in Nashville is the classic country kitchen. Stone is a natural fit in these kitchens, with a roughly finished granite being a popular choice. The name of the game here is ‘natural,’ and that’s what stone kitchen countertops are!

A perfectly smooth and glistening granite countertop is quite a pretty sight, but a slightly more roughly finished style is more common, and a better fit, for country kitchen styles. Color choices are almost always earthy, for a true fit try a more local looking stone than an exotic one.

Where to find that perfect stone countertop to complement your kitchen design

Our team here at Stone World are the go to stone kitchen countertop group in the Middle Tennessee area. Contact us today for advice on how to expand countertops to boost kitchens, or take a look through our kitchen gallery to start finding inspiration.

Eco Friendly Countertops

Going green in the kitchen or bathroom

We’re going green in the kitchen and bathroom in this article, and I’m not talking about eating your vegetables, or even breaking out a can of forest green paint. People here in Nashville are becoming just as green conscious as people everywhere else across the USA.

I’m going to look at the most eco friendly countertops that we offer here at Stone World.

Quartz: The greenest choice in stone kitchen countertops

Quartz is chosen as the greenest stone for your bathroom or kitchen countertop for the following reasons:

  • It is incredibly dense, the fourth hardest natural substance on earth, and will not need to be replaced due to chipping or scratching.
  • Quartz countertops are low maintenance, saving on harmful cleaning materials
  • You will not have to use chemical sealers on your quartz countertop, it doesn’t require sealing
  • Quartz countertops are typically Greenguard approved, meaning that they offer a high indoor air quality rating.

Not only does quartz offer these green features, but it also looks great with a wide variety of kitchen and bathroom styles – keeping you, or the next person to own your home, from having to install new kitchen countertops when design ideas change.

Granite as a green kitchen countertop

Granite countertops are incredibly popular. Since they are mostly made up of quartz, they offer a number of the same features as the greenest choice above.

The difference is that a granite countertop will have to be sealed periodically. These sealing chemicals are commonly of a complex chemical composition, their constant manufacture can not match with the need to never seal quartz.

Marble is beautiful, but…

There is no questioning how beautiful marble countertops are. Marble has been used for countless years to decorate the most remarkable of homes.

The problem with marble as a green kitchen countertop material is that it needs to be sealed fairly often, more often that granite at least, and it is softer and more prone to having to be replaced after a few decades.

Eco Friendly Countertops

Eco Friendly Countertops

How to choose a green kitchen countertop that meets your design ideas

There is a balance that can be reached between being green and getting the bathroom or kitchen countertop that you want. Our team at Stone World will be able to help you find the right combination of longevity and ease of maintenance that will make your choices for eco friendly countertops to be a good ones.

Our team of stone experts, and design consultants, have helped many homeowners in Nashville, and the surrounding Middle Tennessee area, make the choices that best suit their eco friendly goals, as well as their design goals.

Breakfast Bar for Your Kitchen

The possibilities of a breakfast bar for your kitchen

Diversifying the living spaces in your kitchen or dining area is a popular trend amongst homeowners in Nashville. They’re looking for new ways to use and enjoy their space, and a breakfast bar is a great way to do this.

But where and how will you build one in your kitchen? Here are our tips.

Breakfast Bar

Breakfast Bar

A breakfast bar as part of your island

A breakfast bar is, most commonly, an extension of your kitchen countertop. Chairs and people can tuck up under the kitchen countertop extension. There are many different ways to extend your kitchen countertop past the cabinets of your island.

This is an easy breakfast bar addition as all you have to do is purchase a new kitchen countertop that will accommodate those seated at the bar.

Extending your kitchen pass through to include a breakfast bar

Many kitchens feature a pass through, that window which is cut into a wall and leads from your kitchen to a dining or living area. Adding a breakfast bar to this space is similar to adding it to an island, but with some slight complications.

The shape of your island will likely be some sort of rectangle, extending it is easily done. The shape of the kitchen countertop that connects to the pass through is likely already a rectangle, and will need another shape added on to it.

If you want your kitchen countertop and breakfast bar to all be one piece you’ll have to find a way to get one heck of an interesting piece cut. It is more common for the kitchen countertop and breakfast bar to be two separate pieces of material in this case.

Fold your breakfast bar down from the wall

For those that don’t have an island or a pass through, many people in Nashville are adding a simple fold down table that is attached to the wall as their breakfast bar. The advantage is that you can put it anywhere you like: near a window, out of the way, or right next to the fridge so you can reach in for orange juice whenever you want.

Design tips for breakfast bars

Check out our kitchen gallery for ideas on what’s possible with kitchen islands, pass throughs and your breakfast bar. Contact our design team for help with your kitchen countertop and breakfast bar questions, or when you’re ready to get building!

What is Right for Your Kitchen

Replace Refinish or Resurface: The difference and benefits of each

We have had many homeowners in Nashville ask us the question “Do I need to replace, refinish, or resurface my kitchen countertops?”

Each one is different, and offers something different to you during a remodel or update. I will outline the differences and benefits of each so that you have a clear understanding about What is Right for Your Kitchen so you may have the ultimate benefit.

Right for Your Kitchen

Right for Your Kitchen

What’s the difference between a refinish and resurface of your kitchen countertops?

It is common for people to think of resurfacing and refinishing as the same thing. This is not the case as they do differ:

  • Refinishing is when you repair and re-coat the surface by adding more material on top of the current surface. This is done quite often with laminate kitchen countertops.
  • Resurfacing a kitchen countertop involves removing an amount of the countertop itself, either by sanding or stripping a layer off, and then adding a new surface on top of this.

These approaches are both used to extend the useful life of a kitchen countertop for around 10-15 years on average. They will not, however, do much to add brand new value to your home.

You can, however, do them both at a cost which is lower than completely replacing the kitchen countertop. You still get something which will look close to brand new, all at a savings of around 30 – 50%

Replacing your kitchen countertops

When you want to give your kitchen an all new look, there is nothing quite like adding a brand new kitchen countertop. There are a number of reasons why people will want to install a new kitchen countertop over just resurfacing or refinishing, the reasons include:

  • Needing to replace water damaged structures underneath the surface layer
  • Wanting to use a value adding material such as granite, quartz, or marble
  • A desire for a complete remodel that the current kitchen countertop material can not offer

Replacing your kitchen countertop is beneficial for those with the above three points in mind. You’ll be able to add all new value to your home, and give your kitchen an all new look.

What is right for your kitchen: Refinishing, resurfacing or replacing your kitchen countertops?

If you’re unsure of what is right to do after reading the article above, our team at Stone World are ready to answer the specific needs of your unique kitchen countertop situation. Our design team has helped many people in the Middle Tennessee area find the right option thanks to their expert knowledge.

Custom Countertops in the Kitchen

The process is not as intrusive as you may think

Your kitchen is one of your most often used rooms, and is certainly the one which you want to stay clean and not have intruded upon. This leads to many people in Nashville looking for ways to cut down on the intrusiveness of a remodel of their cabinets and kitchen countertops.

I’ll give you a few tips on how you can cut down on visits to your home, while still getting an exceptional cabinet and kitchen countertop installed in your home.

Custom Countertops

Custom Countertops

Finalize your design plans and measurements before going to a designer or fabricator

Having people come over to your home to help with design plans, and to take measurements of your kitchen countertops, is a step that you can take care of yourself. Be sure that you’re taking accurate measurements of everything in your kitchen:

  • the size of your fridge, stove and other appliances
  • the desired height of your countertop and how it fits with your cooktop
  • height and placement of drain pipes and electrical outlets

You can get these measurements done yourself, and minimize the invasiveness of a kitchen countertop installation. As an added benefit, you can sit back and know that the finished kitchen you’re in was your idea and vision.

Have the cabinets and kitchen countertops built in the factory

If you dread having to clean up dirt that is tracked all over your house from workers going in and out, find a manufacturer that will have your cabinets ready-made, and will pre-cut your kitchen countertop at their facility.

There will inevitably be a few screws sunk into the walls, but the sawdust and dirt associated with building your kitchen cabinets right in your home or backyard is not something which must happen. The best kitchen countertop suppliers will also be able to cut your chosen material to size before it arrives at your home.

Choose a kitchen countertop supplier that won’t invade your home

The team here at Stone World can help you design, find, and cut your kitchen countertop in granite, marble, or quartz, without ever setting foot in your home until we deliver the finished product.

Our designers are here to help anyone in the Middle Tennessee area who are making decisions about custom countertops in the kitchen. They’ll work with you to make your custom kitchen remodel go as smoothly, quickly, and noninvasively as possible.

Advantages Using Granite

Learn the great aspects to granite countertops and the advantages using granite

Granite countertops have often been synonymous with quality. There are a lot of reasons for this, and despite new trends emerging over the years, granite is still a top choice for homeowners because there are several advantages to using granite. First and foremost, granite is timeless. Because it’s a natural surface, it has an ability to be strong, illustrious and durable all at the same time. The durability, specifically, is one of granite’s major advantages because after installing granite countertops, it’s likely you won’t have to replace them for quite some time.

Advantages Using Granite

Advantages Using Granite

Another great aspect of granite is that because it is natural, it’s able to withstand high amounts of heat; that means if you bring a pan straight out of the oven you don’t have to worry about ruining your countertop if you set it directly on granite. It can take the heat.

More great advantages using granite is the value of granite also doesn’t go down over time like other surfaces, which means that it can only help increase the value of your home. Plus, because it is found naturally, there are essentially endless varieties of granites in terms of color and style — this variability can give you a lot of options if you’re looking to add granite countertops to your home.

Last, but certainly not least: granite is low-maintenance and quite easy to clean. You don’t have to worry about stains setting in or water or other liquids ruining the surface. Even though it runs more expensive than other countertop options, you will certainly get what you paid for when it comes to granite.

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