A kitchen remodel is a great way to make your home more comfortable, and increase its value. One of the major decisions you will have to make is the right type and color of your countertops. Granite is always a good choice, but the color might become a bit of a dilemma.
Many people use the color of their granite countertops as the inspiration for their overall kitchen design. If that is the case for your kitchen remodel, choosing the right color granite is a crucial decision. Granite countertops come in a wide variety of colors, and since each slab is unique, you might have a problem deciding on just the right one. Here are some facts about granite colors that can help you decide on the right one for your kitchen remodel.
Basic granite information
Granite is a high-end material for kitchen countertops, but it is actually very common. In fact, more than 80% of the Earth’s crust is made of granite, so it is very likely your home is sitting on top of granite right now. However, getting them out of the ground and processing them into the smooth, dimension stone that makes its way to your kitchen is a long and costly process. This is the reason why people consider it a high-end product.
Granite is an igneous rock, which means it formed from magma. Magma is molten rock, and much like lava, except that lava is on the surface and cools quickly, while magma is under the surface. Granite is a result of molten rock that cooled over millions of years under great pressure, which makes it very dense. This type of rock formation also develops distinctive features of granite such as visible crystals, specks, and veins of minerals. The word granite refers to this visible minerals or “granum.”
Minerals of Granite
The composition of granite is widely varied, and the different minerals in its makeup are primarily responsible for the dominant color of a particular slab. A major component of any granite is quartz, a very hard mineral that makes granite so durable. True granite is at least 20% quartz, and more commonly have between 40% to 60% quartz. Generally, the more quartz you have in the mix, the more durable is the granite. However, quartz is mostly clear or a milky white, so it is a neutral element when it comes to color.
Other minerals are a definite color, however. Common granite colors include beige, brown, gray, pink, white, and black. Beige, gray, brown, and black granite may have a large component of biotite, which is brown or black. Pink granite gets its color from potassium feldspar, while yellow granite probably has a quantity of muscovite in the mix. Most granite has a good amount of potassium and plagioclase feldspar, anywhere from 10% to 65%. Plagioclase feldspar is mostly white or gray, which is why specked gray granite is quite common.
Granite is seldom a solid color, as the mix of minerals often gives it a unique combination of patterns, hues, and clusters. However, you can usually pick out one or two dominant colors that you can use to inspire the color palette for your kitchen remodel.
While granite colors are widely varied, some combinations are more common than others are. Here are some granite colors that are probably available from granite retailers and remodeling companies in your area.
Most people will have no trouble identifying speckled gray stone countertop as granite. The mix is equal parts of amphiboles, feldspar, and quartz, which produces the speckled pattern and gives the granite good durability. This makes it a good choice for kitchen countertops, hence its popularity.
Pink or red granite
Pink granite is also a popular choice, although it is not as common. The pink is due to the presence of potassium feldspar in combination with some dark amphibole, white feldspar, and quartz. It is light-colored granite, which makes it a good choice for dark or small kitchens to give it a brighter, larger look.
Red granite is really just a darker version of pink granite. The only difference is the potassium feldspar in the mix is a deeper red than normal, probably due to contamination with iron oxide compounds.
Rather uncommon, but a good choice if you can get it, white granite is very durable as it is primarily made of quartz and white feldspar. It will not be solid white, however, as there are likely to be some other minerals in the mix, most probably a small amount of amphiboles and feldspar that give the stone occasional streaks and speckles. You are most likely to find white granite in areas that have a paucity of amphiboles because the conditions hinder their formation. Usually these areas get little or no water or sources of silicates. Solid white granite slabs with no darker streaks or specks are probably not true granite, and most likely, some type of manmade stone.
Just like white granite, you are not likely to find true granite that is completely black. It will exhibit lighter colored streaks and specks, and even a constellation of lighter minerals. Solid black granite is most likely not true granite, but granite-like rock such as gabbro, which is an intrusive rock. It is not granite, but it does share many of the features of granite, and as such is a good choice for kitchen countertops.
Despite what you may hear, blue granite is unlikely to be true granite. It may be a type of igneous rock called monzonite, which is less than 5% quartz, or anorthosite, also an igneous rock which is composed mostly of a feldspar mineral called blue labradorite and no quartz. It is quite beautiful, but it still is not true granite.
Green granite is not actually common, but many retailers do carry green stone slabs that they pass on as granite. While granite with a healthy dose of amazonite, a type of green-colored feldspar, does occasionally make an appearance, it is most likely that green granite counters are actually marble or soapstone. These natural stones still look fantastic, but they are not as durable as granite. If you want durable green kitchen countertops, you might want to look at engineered quartz brands.
The granite colors described above are among the most desirable and/or common for kitchen countertops, but you will find many more colors available. To avoid feeling overwhelmed with everything else you need to think about for your kitchen remodel, consult with a reliable remodeling company in your area.
Mimosa Kitchen and Bath knows all about kitchen remodeling in the DC metro area, Columbia, Rockville, Bethesda, Jessup, Chevy Chase and surrounding areas.
Aside from expert remodeling services, we sell high-quality products manufactured by leading brands in the industry. When you purchase your products from us, we guarantee speedy delivery compared to ordering from big box stores. Our contractors will fabricate the product and install it into your kitchen quickly and with excellent artisanship.
You can visit our showroom in Ellicott City, Maryland to see the many products and stone slabs we have available. This includes a large selection of granite and marble as well as engineered quartz for your kitchen countertops. All of our products come backed with brand warranties.
We sell a host of products, from bathroom and kitchen cabinets, flooring, faucets and sinks, to vanities. Some of the brands we carry include Zodiaq, Fabuwood, Forevermark Cabinetry, Caesarstone, MSI, Kitchenmaid, Wolf Cabinets, Cambria and Hardware Resources.
Contact us today to get a free quote and design consultation for your kitchen remodeling project!