by Walter Bilyakovskyy / August 14, 2019
Last updated on December 20, 2019
Table of Contents
Kitchen Countertop Ideas
Kitchen design, like any other interior design project, consists of many smaller components that should come together in perfect harmony to create a space that is both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Kitchen cabinet layout is one of the most important decisions to be made while working on kitchen design, and countertops go right along with it to create a suitable area for cooking, prepping and entertaining. Most homeowners and designers chose to select their countertop material and color prior to flooring and backsplashes, simply due to the relative cost of materials, such as granite, marble or quartz. With dozens of options, in thousands of colors, picking the right material may seem like a challenge at first glance; however it doesn’t have to be. Follow our kitchen countertop ideas guide to find a material that’s not only durable enough to keep up with your busy lifestyle, but that reflects your personality and style as well.
Make the Most of Your Space
Living in a big city often means your space will be limited, and that should reflect in kitchen countertop design. Selecting the most durable material is crucial in a kitchen where every square foot is considered precious. Quartz or granite are perfect choices that can be found in any color palette; however, we recommend using lighter stone to make the kitchen feel more specious. If possible, upper cabinets should be brought up all the way to the ceiling, providing extra storage. Don’t skimp out on a backsplash in small spaces either, whether cooking or washing the dishes, tile or stone is far easier to clean than paint or wallpaper.
Shape the Island to Fit Your Needs
Space permitting, a kitchen island is a great addition for any home. It gives you the extra space you need for food prep, and often doubles as an informal dining room table. Most commonly islands are rectangular in shape, with an overhang on one side to accommodate for stools to create extra seating. However this rule is meant to be broken. Because kitchen countertops, in most cases, are cut and polished to size, consider creating an island that best fits your needs. For example, overhang on the wings of this island creates a natural flow between the kitchen and living room while still providing the option for informal dining.
Two Tier Countertops
If you want to make most of the open concept kitchen layout, a two-tier countertop is a great way to incorporate extra seating. Unlike islands which are built at a countertop height, the second countertop tier is built about eight inches higher and a few barstools will transform it into a great dining spot. Most professionals will recommend leaving between eight and twelve inches of overhang for comfortable seating.
Waterfall island has become a staple of high-end renovation and this trend is here to stay. This design feature is best utilized when the stone selected for the countertops is veiny, and when the veins spill over from the counter to the leg of the island it creates a waterfall effect. The addition of a waterfall will serve multiple purposes as well, it’s not only aesthetically pleasing, but it will also hide barstools and appliances in the island. If you’re looking for a more sophisticated, contemporary kitchen look, a waterfall island will deliver.
Medium and smaller sized kitchens often don’t include an island because of the limited space. However, a prep island can be a great solution to this problem. A prep island does not provide any extra seating, but it does add valuable countertop space. The sizes can vary, but the starting width should be at least 18”. You may also consider using a base that could be moved, such as cart on wheels, which can be hidden at any time.