When it comes to remodeling your kitchen, your cabinets, countertops, and flooring are the three biggest choices that define the style (and the budget) of your remodel project. You want each of those components to look great on their own, and fit well together in your brand new kitchen. In this kitchen remodel 101 guide, we want to help you find the perfect countertops for your new kitchen.
Use this kitchen remodel guide to countertops as a resource to help you figure out what countertops are best for you, from which style fits your new kitchen to what countertop materials are best for your budget.
Kitchen Remodel 101: Guide to Countertop Styles and Trends
The first step of any kitchen renovation is deciding on a style. From rustic farmhouse to contemporary and minimalist, each home style has unique features that make it stand out. Deciding on the style that’s right for your kitchen will go a long way to help you figure out what you want your kitchen to look like, and what style options you want to stay away from.
Here are a few countertop-specific design ideas for some of the most popular kitchen remodel styles we see today. Use these kitchen remodel countertop ideas to help get a better idea of what style features you want to incorporate in your new kitchen.
Contemporary Kitchen Countertop Trends
Contemporary kitchens favor clean lines, big, bold color contrasts, and unique design features that are as functional as they are beautiful. If a contemporary kitchen is what you’ve got in mind for this kitchen remodel, here are a couple of countertop trends to consider:
Undermount sinks aren’t new, but they are particularly popular in bright, contemporary kitchens, especially those kitchen remodels that put a big emphasis on the new countertops. An undermount sink is installed under your countertops so that your kitchen island or table looks like one seamless piece of countertop — whether you choose a solid stone or a laminate countertop option. It’s a seamless, modern look that feels clean and polished.
If you’re remodeling your kitchen with a contemporary vibe, waterfall countertops are a trend to know about. Typically done with quartz, these modern countertops flow in one seamless piece down the side of your island or cabinet. This is a beautiful way to add interest to your kitchen, without making your remodel feel too busy. Most countertops waterfall on just one side, but if you’re planning a waterfall countertop for your kitchen island, it’s easy to incorporate on both ends of the island as well.
Traditional Kitchen Countertop Trends
A traditional kitchen is both functional and beautiful. Typically featuring warm, inviting design and color choices, a traditional kitchen is somewhere you just feel at home. Here are a few popular countertop design trends for traditional kitchens.
Countertop with Backsplash
A classic traditional style, a countertop that comes in one piece with the backsplash is a great way to create continuity throughout your kitchen. Available in a range of countertop materials, a countertop with incorporated backsplash simply continues from the counter up the wall a few inches.
This is a design trend that’s also functional, as it provides a sturdy, easy-to-clean barrier, protecting the most at-risk parts of your wall from kitchen splashes and spills. Though this might not be a new trend, it’s certainly a favorite for a traditional kitchen and one that’s as functional as it is stylish.
A tiled backsplash is another traditional kitchen trend that’s always in style. Though this trend doesn’t exactly fall into the “countertop” field, it’s one that you have to pair well with your countertop, so we thought we’d include it.
Tiled backsplashes are classic, and with so many tile options on the market these days, it’s one of the best ways to add a bit of personality to your kitchen remodel. Choose bright colorful tiles for a fun, traditional kitchen, or opt for a classic white for the clean, farmhouse kitchen feel.
Minimalist Kitchen Countertop Trends
Minimalist styles are increasingly popular for kitchens. From simple, bright Scandanavian styles to minimalist kitchens that embrace natural colors, these kitchen countertop trends can help you design a kitchen remodel that’s simply beautiful.
If minimalist and modern are your favorite design trends, you can’t go wrong with a monochromatic kitchen. For a clean, white look choose bright quartz, or for a more industrial look, go with poured concrete. Monochromatic kitchens, whether they’re white, grey, or black, make the kitchen feel larger, especially when paired with beautiful accent lights and show-stopping countertops.
Neutral Tone Countertops
Neutral and natural tones are another great idea for a minimalist style. If monochromatic isn’t really your thing, you can still achieve a beautiful, minimalist kitchen remodel by looking to nature for neutral tones. Sandy stone countertops and natural wood are two recent countertop trends that look beautiful, especially in an otherwise simple kitchen with white cabinetry. Other neutral tones, like greys, very soft blue and green-greys, and warm browns also look beautiful in a minimalistic kitchen.
Honed Stone Countertops
If your kitchen remodel has budgeted for stone countertops, a new countertop design trend you should know about are honed stone countertops. These countertops are honed for a matte finish that’s beautiful, durable, and doesn’t show fingerprints. It’s a beautiful look for any minimalist style kitchen remodel.
Farmhouse or Rustic Kitchen Countertop Trends
The farmhouse kitchen trend certainly isn’t slowing down. The feel of a cozy, comfy farmhouse kitchen that’s big and inviting for the whole family is a trend that will always be popular. If rustic, farmhouse styles are your favorite, these countertop trends might be for you:
Butcher Block Countertops
There’s nothing that says classic farmhouse kitchen like beautiful butcher block countertops. Typically paired with bright white cabinets and big windows to let in natural light, this is a design trend that’s here to stay. Butcher block countertops are super durable, and though they do take a bit more maintenance than a solid stone option, they’re easy keepers as far as scratches and dents go. The more weathered they become, the more rustic they look.
Poured Concrete Countertops
While butcher block has long been the staple of the rustic, farmhouse kitchen, poured concrete countertops have been gaining popularity as well. These countertops are prized for their lack of seams. Most concrete countertops are poured directly into a temporary mold that’s set up in your home — once the concrete is set, the mold is taken off, and you have one continuous piece of concrete countertop.
Not only does concrete look great, but it’s also ideal for the kitchen — it’s super durable, easy to maintain, and can be made to nearly any color you can think of. From traditional slate color to brighter options, concrete countertops are the perfect choice for a rustic kitchen remodel.
Farmhouse Blues and Whites
When it comes to remodeling a farmhouse kitchen, classic blues and whites are another design trend where you simply cannot go wrong. Consider giving this classic trend an update by choosing a fresh blue and white china pattern for backsplash tiles, or switching up the traditional white cabinets with a fun, welcoming blue. Paired with a white countertop, it’s a bright pop of color that nods to the traditional style, without feeling outdated.
Kitchen Remodel 101: Countertop Materials Best for Your Budget
Kitchen remodel 101: always decide on a style and a budget before your remodeling project gets underway. Now that you’ve decided on a style, and have gathered a few ideas for your kitchen remodel, set yourself a budget. With style and budget in mind, it should be easier to narrow down your ideal options for your kitchen remodel. Here’s a quick look at countertop materials best for each budget.
Modest Budget Kitchen Remodel
If you’re working with a smaller budget, a laminate countertop is likely your best bet. High-quality laminate is much more affordable than stone options and can be made to effectively mimic quartz, granite, marble and other natural materials. Given laminate countertop’s versatility, durability, and range of color and texture options, it’s a great choice for any kitchen remodel.
Another great option for a modest budget can be stone remnants, especially if your kitchen is small. Stone remnants are leftover pieces of larger slabs of quartz, granite, and other stone countertops. These remnants are usually too small to complete a full-size kitchen but are ideal for smaller projects like your kitchen island, or smaller countertops. Since remnants won’t otherwise be used, they’re often available at a steep discount, enabling you to get the stone countertops that are perfect for your kitchen remodel, at an investment that suits your budget.
Mid-Range Kitchen Remodel
If you’re planning a mid-range kitchen remodel, countertop options like quartz, solid surface countertops and butcher block are ideal for your investment level.
- Quartz tends to be a bit less expensive than granite or marble but offers a similar look and exceptional durability. More common patterns tend to be more affordable, and while quartz countertops are certainly an investment, it’s a kitchen remodel decision that will last.
- Solid Surface is a common option for many kitchen remodels, because it combines affordability with ease of maintenance and durability. While solid surface countertops aren’t stone, the material is a low-porosity composite that can stand up to anything and can be made to mimic stone more effectively than laminate. In the event that solid surface countertops do scratch, they’re easily repaired with an orbital sander or sandpaper.
- Butcher Block is the greatest investment of these choices, but another kitchen remodel style choice that can truly bring your project together, and last for years. Butcher block countertops are a beautiful addition to any kitchen, and when maintained properly, can last for decades.
High-End Kitchen Remodel
Most high-end kitchen remodels prefer solid stone like marble or granite. Either marble or granite can offer the beauty and one-of-a-kind style of natural stone. Both materials are non-repeatable, which means the granite or marble you install in your kitchen is the only one of its kind. Hard and durable, both stones require minimal maintenance beyond a yearly sealing and regular cleaning. Granite and marble are the obvious choices for any high-end kitchen remodel.
Poured concrete countertops are an up and coming countertop material that you may not yet have considered. As mentioned earlier in this guide, these countertops are poured right into their spaces in your kitchen remodel.
If your kitchen remodel has an industrial or clean, contemporary look, poured concrete countertops are a great option. They can be sealed to lock out any moisture and bacteria, and the benefit of pouring your countertops is that they will have virtually no seams. This means there’s nowhere for dust, dirt, or debris to collect on your countertops. Best of all, concrete countertops can be made in any color you can imagine. It’s the ultimate custom option for your newly remodeled kitchen.
Remodeling your kitchen and looking for new countertops? Let Zeeland Lumber & Supply help. We carry a number of countertops from name brands like Cambria, and our Kitchen & Bath team would love to match you with the perfect countertop for your kitchen remodel’s style and investment level. Stop into one of our showrooms, call our team at 888-772-2119 or contact us online today for more information.