New Kitchen Countertops or Not?

December 1, 2019
last modified: December 1, 2019


I am trying to decide if I should update my kitchen countertops and backsplash in my city townhome or just update the backsplash with a plain white subway tile and leverage the current granite. I did have the cabinets repainted with BM Winter White. Attached are 3 pics of my current kitchen. If I update, I would be installing marble on the center island (pic attached of slab) and a medium grey quartz on surrounding counters (bar extension on island would be removed). Another option would be installing honed marble everywhere (see 2nd marble pic). My concern is the current granite may now look dated. Thoughts?

Comments (26)

  • Ig222

    Do you like the granite you have? I think it is nice, but it is personal. If you do, change only the backsplash. If you have the budget and do not like the stone, change it, but I am not sure this marble is a good choice. I am not an expert, but it reads cold for your kitchen. If you want to change the island, find a nice stone that works with your kitchen and redo the island countertop only.

  • design1008

    Thank you for comment! I don't mind the granite either. Just want to update the overall look. I may just update the backsplash for now. Thanks again!

  • Zalco/bring back Sophie!

    I like your backsplash (and your gorgeous breakfast bar.)

  • AJCN

    I think your kitchen is very beautiful and I wouldn't change a thing! I especially like the wood part of the breakfast bar, and the under-cabinet lighting. Your color scheme has a nice warm, balanced, and layered affect to it with the darker floors, medium toned counters and lighter backsplash and then white cabinets. You could be opening up a whole can of worms if you change the counters to that "cool" toned marble: meaning that you might replace that and the backsplash, and then suddenly not like your wall paint, furniture, rugs, pillows, accessories, etc, etc. My home is more in the cool tones of grays, whites, blues, greens, with pops of orange and wood. If I decided to reaplce my countertop with a warm tone like yours, I'd have to buy all new furniture, repaint all the walls, replace carpets, etc, etc. It would snowball very quickly. Just my opinion of course, but I like your kitchen how it is right now.

  • Kate

    Maybe update the bar stools? Kitchen already looks good.

  • Gcubed

    It’s a lovely kitchen and I think the island with wooden bar is unique and beautiful. If anything, I’d remove the travertine backsplash and replace with subway tiles or something more current. And, if possible, remove the travertine tiles on the bottom edge of the peninsula. If you can patch and paint, maybe use the same wood as the bar to edge/face that part of the peninsula

  • cathesper

    You’ve got a lovely kitchen. Everybody and their brother has gone to white subway tile with gray toned marble and IMHO it is completely overdone and will be out of style soon. I really like your backsplash. If you are just really itching to do something different, find some quartzite that goes with your granite and use on your island. Otherwise, be proud of yourself for not following the crowd.

  • ShadyWillowFarm

    Love the countertops and will vote with those who think that a white subway tile backsplash would look great.

  • PRO
    Skippack Tile & Stone

    A white subway tile will bring out the yellow tones in the counter more; don't do white if you keep the current counter.

  • design1008

    Thank you all for your comments! So helpful. I think I will go with just updating the backsplash with a white handmade subway tile. There are white specs in the granite so it should go well. Thanks again!!

  • live_wire_oak

    Don’t do white. Pick out one of the creams in the granite.

  • kudzu9

    Keep the countertops. They look fine. There is no need to spend lots of money on something that you think "may now look dated." What you have is something with nice color and character that is fairly classic, understated, and does not jump out at you. In fact, I just re-did my master bath 2 years or so ago and picked a granite vanity counter that is close in appearance to what you have.

    Also, please don't redo them because you are concerned about what your friends might think. And if you are thinking about selling, there is no guarantee that a buyer will like the replacement any better than what you have now, so a realtor will tell you to save your money. People either tend to love my house or are put off by its modern starkness, but I only care about what I think. If you like your counters, keep them.

  • kristaj

    Yes, I agree with you and others...keep counters and change the backsplash.
    Change barstools also to bring in more of the same wood tone as your counter bar and then possibly add in a few leaning wood cutting boards in that same wood tone to bring the wood colour over into another area of your kitchen.

  • mnmamax3

    I would also look at the under cabinet lighting to be sure the bulbs are a nice neutral white (3000-4000K) to keep from making the yellow more so. A nice handmade backsplash in a creamy white will be awesome.

  • felizlady

    The backsplash does not work with the granite. There is nothing wrong with the granite. The backsplash should be simpler, and it should match one of the colors in the granite. Mixing different materials in different colors on other surfaces is not a good idea. It will look like you couldn’t make up your mind so you used everything.

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    I don't think your current granite is bad, but the backsplash has to go. (and the travertine over on the bar side)

    if you did a different tile, replaced your knobs w/some nice handles, and brought in some diff counter stools, I think it would look a lot better.

    I happen to like the wood on the island.

    I also like your other option. I just redid my cabs and did a marble island and a gray quartz perimeter.

    It's up to you on how much money you want to spend. option 1 is a lot cheaper.

  • design1008

    Thank you all for your suggestions! I do hear some suggesting to use a cream colored backsplash. My cabinets of course are white and the walls and trim are white (I like white with contrasting colors). So not sure a cream colored tile would look good against all the existing true white?

  • Kath Furt

    The backsplash does not go with the granite. If you can easily afford to replace it all as planned, it would look fabulous and really update the house. Your granite is not bad, but I love the last slab everywhere with new backsplash if you can afford it. We painted our cabinets BM dove white and refinished hardwoods before sold our house. New buyer replaced countertops backsplash added shelving, it look a little busy for me but really pretty!! The difference is amazing. Your granite is not bad but is a little dated. You have nice appliance too!

    design1008 thanked Kath Furt
  • Kath Furt

    I love the wood on the island! It’s almost live edge looking

  • Kath Furt

    My old pics had cream color tile with white cabinets which I thought looked ok to sell would not purposely do that. A grayish green like other photo would look nice. Soooo many backsplash options!!

  • Kath Furt

    My sister just removed that exact granite and replaced it with 2 beautiful quartzite counters and left her tumbled marble backsplash and got a copper sink. Looks gorgeous and she had a lot of backsplash and had just remodeled the MBR and bath!

  • btydrvn

    I love your island and the stools as well...the whole kitchen has a sort of asian esoteric that could go a step further by adding a bold backsplash with some black in it...or a more dominant pattern...keeping the clean sleek vibe that the island has...

    design1008 thanked btydrvn
  • HU-527663426

    I vote to not change anything. Your kitchen is already beautiful. The color palette is calm and soothing. Look, I love re-doing things. I’ve re-done almost my whole house. I’m not saying this because I like shaming people about always wanting to remodel. I’m saying your kitchen looks really welcoming, warm, clean and inviting. If you are feeling the itch to re-do something, maybe look at another area of your house, or make minor changes to the kitchen such as new bar stools or a nice red Dutch Oven to put on the cooktop,

    design1008 thanked HU-527663426
  • Kath Furt

    I vote for just changing backsplash and taking tile off breakfast bar. Get a backsplash something like this one. It will update everything !

  • Kath Furt

    What is the name of your granite? Is it a Giallo?

  • anna_682

    Your kitchen is gorgeous. I would add decorative wooden bowls (fruit) and plants on the counters. That's it.

    I like the backsplash. It adds a softer texture to the kitchen. I would remove the travertine from the breakfast bar. It doesn't work.

    Subway tile would look really nice, but it will be dated at some point, too. If you love what you have why change it just to be on trend? I understand the temptation, but chasing trends will become exhausting at some point.

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