Is busy granite out??

October 14, 2018
last modified: October 14, 2018

We are in the middle of a kitchen renovation, not a fancy or big kitchen. Getting white shaker cabinets, put in medium stain scraped oak floors, brushed nickel fixtures, light gray walls and white or gray subway tiles. My husband is pushing for a busier granite since everything else is so plain while I had my heart set on a marble looking quartz. Is this granite going to look outdated?

Comments (105)

  • C L

    I agree that beautiful granite is a value adder. I picked granite because I loved it the most within my budget. my favorite countertops are quartzite. I don’t like quartz personally but it has its place and it’s nice looking. I think quartz is the next “laminate.” Granite is a natural stone. You could also consider a busy granite on the island and solid on the perimeter. I am posting pictures of my kitchen on another thread... so here’s a pic of my “busy” granite!

  • Mary Leeth
    We’ve had Super White in our very busy kitchen for 5 months, and it is great. I read all the warnings here about its potential for staining and etching, but I couldn’t find anything I liked more, and we are very good at wiping up spills immediately. We just treat it like marble.
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    I think the paint color on the top half of the wall is a good choice for the room. I would remove the chair rail and paint the walls to match the top color so that the walls are all consistent and one color (above the fireplace too). I think that alone will quiet things down a bit. Bring your personality into the room with some art on the walls, a few items on the fireplace mantle, and maybe a few larger accessories atop the cabinets. Next, I would tackle the fireplace and remove the top mantle that juts out into the room (for safety reasons) and replace that with something simple and squared off. Then, paint the surround something similar to your current gray on the lower walls. Over time, maybe you could add a hanging light fixture over your dining table and island to bring in another layer and some more of your personality. All in all, not a bad kitchen to have.
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  • CurryUp

    Hi Mona

    since your stone has variations ( love it ) make sure you are present for the templating.

    we have river bordeaux grante- lots if movement and variation. So happy that we were able to highlight the parts we loved (for the island ) vs the less showy parts for the periphery.

    heres our slab and pic just post installation


    Mona thanked CurryUp
  • JF JFroject

    Hi, Go for natural stone. Just no to speckled granite; marble-like quartz look fake. Some Quartz look good when not pretending to be marble. I’ve just completed a kitchen remodel and had seen thousands of slabs: Silestones, Caesarstone, Neoliths, Quartzites & Granite. I ended up with quartzite. Good luck.

  • jill302

    We have granite in our current kitchen and had it in our last kitchen for 10 years before we sold. While although it is not the “it” stone this year, I have found it easy to care and attractive. Would not hesitate to get it again. Do not like marble for my home. While I find it pretty in others homes, it just feels too cold to me. I do understand others have the exact opposite reaction to marble, finding it warm. Quartz looks nice but I am a bit put off, when we were house shopping one of the homes we viewed had a white quartz counter beautiful except for the huge red wine stain. If I was leaning toward quartz I would do a lot of testing before committing.

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    Karen mt,,,that was a typo on my part. I was thinking of quartzite and then remembered I had a pic of my Super White because she said she liked the look of marble. I got sidetracked and posted it w/quartzite on my brain. yes, I'm aware super white is dolomite. I don't know why I put in quartzite. I'm always the one correcting people who list it as a quartzite! mea culpa. My particular slab, although dolomite, is very hardy. it acts like a granite or a quartzite.

    And Diana Bier,,,,are you serious? I"t's bad enough that the stone yards mislabel their products, but when Pros do it's doubly bad"

    If you look back to anything pertaining to the Super White, I'm the one that always corrects it and says it's Dolomite. I made a typo error above because, unlike you, I'm actually human and do make mistakes. However, since you love to hover on my comments and play 'gotcha!', to point out any mistakes on my part, what does that make you? Houzz police? Insecure? what? don't you have any other job rather than to hound-dog my comments so you can play Superior Susan?? This is not the first time you've done this to me. Also, refrain from sending me your angry personal messages.

    Mona,,, I love your slab you've chosen.

  • PRO
    Studio Geiger Architecture

    My best advice would be to visit a stone yard together so you can choose a slab you both LOVE. It's a very important choice.

  • kariyava

    Great choice!

  • karin_mt

    Thanks Beth - typos happen, and I agree, you are frequently the one helping to clear up confusing or incorrect information. Glad to hear it was a simple mistake.

    And it sounds like you've had a particularly good experience with your Super White - good for you!

  • Becky H

    I agree with be there when they template

  • cpartist

    Cpartist, that is the most beautiful piece of granite I have ever seen! I have a busy colorful granite as well. My advice to anyone is when you see the slab that you love you will know it.

    In reality it's quartzite but I do have to agree with you that it is the most beautiful piece of stone I've ever seen. Every time I walk into my kitchen it makes me smile.

  • cpartist

    Mona that slab you picked is stunning and will be just the right accent in your kitchen. Also remember what looks more busy vertically will look less busy horizontally.

  • spindle22
    Cpartist, thank you for the clarification.
  • Nicole Cooley

    I have that same granite! We will be puttting in wood floors so it will look better when that is done.

  • mrswaves
    Nicole- love your sink. We are getting a similar one, but offset bowls :)
  • traci_from_seattle

    I am a fan of choosing what you want, and also of bold choices. Mine is a bold stone and not to everyone’s liking, but I love it.

  • cpartist

    traci that looks similar to my stone. Is it fascination? It's stunning!

  • Laura Mac

    Love your choice and can't wait to see it when in! Be sure to post pics! REAL STONE (marble/granite/quartzite) is a piece of art, and no two alike!!! (except for the speckly contractor grade cheap stuff like Beth mentioned).

    I'm really shocked that tile/granite yards, and I'm talking stores that you see on Flip or Flop, etc., in Anaheim (capital of stone/slabs), mis-mark their slabs. And they call their tiles, Carerra and Calcutta even though they are porcelain. It's wrong to call faux stones (like quartz carerra counters) the same name as real stone. If the stone yards mis-represent the names, how are customers going to figure it out?

    I did see a new blue Cambria quartz a few weeks ago that was really pretty even though I'm not a faux slab lover. Navy's and blues tiles/slabs are gaining popularity....

  • traci_from_seattle

    cpartist, it’s Fusion. It’s very similar to yours. I’ve been in love with these wild stones for years and honestly, seeing how your kitchen came together is one of last pushes I needed to go for it. My remodel starts next month so I’ll post photos when it’s done (and probably during as well!).

  • Anne Duke
    Quartz is a good product, but when it’s a fake something else, it’s going to go the way of cultured marble fast. Do the granite.
  • Mona

    Wow so many great granites being shared on this post! Thanks everyone. You are making me excited for my counters. Unfortunately, there is a three week wait for installation so I must be patient.

  • PRO
    Debbi Washburn

    Quartz, quartzite, marble, dolomite, granite...

    I believe that in the end none of those labels matter... all that matters is that you find something you love and you know how to maintain it and any issues it may have - etching, staining, fogging, scratching, chipping etc. Nothing is indestructible.

    Unless you are flipping house, please stop worrying about retail and what the trends are...

    Enjoy your space!

  • HoJo1

    Major Kitchen update · More Info

    We went with this for the 5' x 9' island. It's the centerpiece of the kitchen. There were so many beautiful slabs to pick from it was hard to pick one.

  • Becky Richardson
    HoJo that slab is stunning!
  • Shannon_WI

    @Mona - my friend has Alaska White granite that looks similar to the beautiful slab you’ve chosen. While everyone can go on and on about its beauty, I would like to add that my friend has two teenage boys - and all their friends - who hang out in the kitchen with those granite counters, and leave their coke glasses rings on the counter, chips and salsa grabbed from the fridge and not put back with drips on the counter, sloshed OJ in the morning, you name it. The granite remains beautiful. My friend seals it once a year, and cleans with only diluted mild dish soap, no ammonia, bleach or harsh abrasives. So it’s beautiful, and you don’t have to tiptoe around it and be worried about it the way you do with some counters.

    Mona thanked Shannon_WI
  • stir_fryi SE Mich

    Ok I just fell in love with that Fantasy Brown -- but than I read it is marble, not granite. Don't know anything about marble and it sounds expensive! Beautiful though!

  • lucky998877

    Mona, I'm glad that you are excited about your counters coming soon! I made my final choice yesterday for the slabs needed, and I kept my granite with some crazy and wild areas. I was so drawn to those slabs that there was no plan B. I think the stone chose me :)

  • felizlady
    I think your white cabinetry may be too white next to that granite....the granite doesn't seem to have any white white in it. I would go to another stone yard and look some more.
  • Mona

    Hi Everyone! I had the slab I posted earlier installed yesterday. After all the discussion I thought I'd post some final pics! There is a sparkle in it and on the island the big chunks of quartz light up if I shine a flashlight from underneath. Definitely jazzes up my fairly basic remodel. I'm glad we took the time to really think about what we wanted.

  • kim k
    Looks beautiful Mona! Great choice :)
  • barrowp
    Love it!
  • PRO
    Debbi Washburn

    That's beautiful!

  • Tina
    Looks great. Enjoy your new kitchen.
  • PRO
    I don’t think it looks outdated I just think it looks like every other kitchen being done right now. Have you thought about maybe adding a pop of color in the backsplash. There’s so many amazing mosaics out now. Look into Glazzio tile.
  • mrswaves
    Looks beautiful, love that granite and your kitchen is awesome.
  • Miranda33

    Mona - I am in love! It looks great!

    I am not sure I agree with m_Murphy97's suggestion to do a colorful backsplash. The granite counters are for sure the star. You don't want to have a backsplash either diminish and/or compete with it. I would just do Daltile Rittenhouse Square white subway tile (which is reasonably priced too), but I suggest to make it more interesting with the Rittenhouse Square in the 2" x 4" size brick joint semi-gloss (rather than the standard 3 x 6 subway tile).

    Here are a couple pics:

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    I wouldn't do anything small. 2x4, even 3x6. why? because it will look like this. blah. If you had dark cabinets, it would offer a nice contrast. you don't.

    go longer. 3x9, 2x8, would be perfectly. Love these handmade look tiles and they offer a little more than the plain, regular tiles. (make sure the wall is flat). a med. gray grout would be perfect.

    there is a pic w/your granite and a larger picket, white, tile, but I can't find it. That choice looks really nice. Walker Zanger 6th ave cocoon, maybe?

    Similar to these Hive tiles. another poster just chose these. Would be a much better look than plain white subways.

    some other options that still look nice.

    one of the few times I like the glass bars as a backsplash. If you did a solid color, any of these would work.

    a nice subtle color.

    plain old subway, but in gray. don't really care for this look

  • salonva

    Those hive tiles are amazing. I saw when the other poster selected them yesterday and I just think they are the cat's pajamas! I am trying to figure out what I am going to do with my remodel but I think at least I might have figured out the backsplash. Those hive tiles......sigh.

  • Mona

    Thanks everyone!!

    Beth H : I have another post going on about backsplash and posted some glass tiles a while ago. We are leaning towards larger subway tiles in glass. Take a look and let me know what you think.

  • Sharon Perkins

    My countert

    op is very busy; it’s a quartzite called (depending on who you talk to) Marine blue, Van Gogh, Blue Louise, or Azul Del Mar. I fell in love with it in the warehouse and got a very good price on it because it was mismarked. Like someone else said, it makes me smile every time I walk in the kitchen. Will it appeal to everyone, probably not. But I’m the one living with it now, and I love it.

  • Mona

    Sharon, it's gorgeous!! I love the colors, thanks for sharing the pics. Enjoy your counters.

  • mrswaves
    Wow Sharon, so cool! It looks like a painting!
  • PRO
    D Old Granite LLC

    Sharon Perkins: I bet in few years from now people will look for the same stone you have and won`t be able to find :)

  • Cheryl Hannebauer

    love how it turned out Mona :)

  • Becky Richardson

    Fantasy brown countertops finally installed

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    Beautiful Mona. So good to see something different in kitchens. Ya done good!!!
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
  • Becky Richardson

    granite I used in guest bath rooms and power room.

  • Melissa Losos

    I have a question about the "busy" granite counter tops for kitchens... do you find it hard to see things on the counter? Some of the stones are so busy, I am wondering about not seeing items set on top, reading glasses, crumbs little things? I am trying to choose, and love the big natural veins but when I see photos of the granite in newly finished kitchens I just wondered if there was a con to having the counter too busy ... ( I am still looking for the right stone)

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    melissa, I had a very busy granite in mine (I just remodeled). the only con is design-wise. a very busy countertop usually means other elements need to be tamed. (flooring, backsplash) .

    the pro's? I never saw fingerprints, smudges, crumbs, etc. But I always keep a very tidy kitchen, so that point was moot. having a dark, solid countertop and you're a slave to oil smudges, fingerprints, breadcrumbs, etc. not w/a busy stone. if you miss a crumb during the wipe down, it's no big deal.

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