Granite is composed of a variety of minerals such as quartz, mica and feldspar. Granite is known for it’s durability and varying colors and patterns. It is water resistant, antibacterial and stain-proof, making it ideal for kitchen countertops and other heavily used surfaces, including floors and outdoor areas. It is also scratch resistant and heat resistant, although direct contact with a localized heat source can cause thermal shock and lead to cracks.
Marble is known for its elegance and timelessness, as it is the same material that has been used throughout history, from Ancient Greece to the Taj Mahal to hotel lobbies. Marble is relatively hard, though not quite as hard as granite, making it more susceptible to staining, acid etching and scratching. However, with a good sealant and special care, it can be used anywhere. It is often used for bathroom vanities, showers and tubs, floors, and fireplaces.
Many of the most striking slabs seen in our warehouse are quartzite, coming in an amazing range of colors and patterns. Pure quartzite is typically white and translucent, making it ideal for backlighting. However, it also comes in a range of other colors. Hard, dense, and extremely scratch and chemical resistant, quartzite is a great choice for any area, from kitchens to bathrooms to outdoors.
Onyx is admired for its translucency and gem-like properties. With colors ranging from white, to honey colored neutrals, to stunning blues, greens, red and gold, the choices are more varied than ever. It is more fragile than other types of stone, susceptible to both chemical and abrasive deterioration, and therefore more suitable for low traffic areas. It is the perfect statement piece for almost any project, such as a backlit fireplace.
Soapstone is a popular choice for kitchens with its heat stability and non-reactivity to chemicals, such as acidic lemon and harsh cleaners. It is extremely dense, even more so than granite, and can easily withstand hot pans directly on the surface. It is often used for projects where direct heat is a factor, such as fire pits and pizza ovens. Unsealed, soapstone is naturally nonporous and resistant to liquids and stains, making it relatively maintenance free. While it is soft and scratches easily, many feel this adds character and only enhances the look of the stone as it darkens over its lifetime.
Limestone is a staple of historic European design and remains popular in contemporary design. Limestone occurs commonly in nature and is therefore extremely durable and holds up well to exposure to the elements. Available in neutral colors such as cream, beige, gold, blue grey and mushroom, with natural variation in shade and occasional shell fossils.
Mostly composed of natural quartz particles and compressed to create an extremely durable surface, resistant to stains, scratches, common household cleaners, and moderate heat. It does not accumulate bacteria and is available in consistent colors and patterns. Quartz is ideal for high traffic areas such as the kitchen, and can offer similar looks to natural stone with a more durable quality. There are a number of engineered stone suppliers, including Silestone, Caesarstone, and Vicostone.