Laminate brands like Formica® have been a mainstay of countertops since the 1950’s, and can still play a role as a countertop alternative, even if they are no longer the first choice. With its low cost and abundance of pattern and color offerings, laminate counters can expediently take care of a variety of countertop needs throughout the house. Companies like Formica® have worked hard to stay up with the fashion front in terms of designs, so there is literally something for everyone. Some colors can be upgraded somewhat by selecting ColorCore®, which has the color extending through the full thickness of the laminate, or by adding custom wood edges.
Copper, Zinc And Stainless Steel
Copper is a beautiful material that saw some use for countertops in higher end Victorian and turn-of-the-century homes. It had the advantage of water and corrosion resistance and offered the possibility of soldered sinks – the original integral undermount sinks! Although it does not rust, it is prone to staining and discoloration, but most of that falls into the category of ‘patina’ as long as that is the authentic look you are after.
Like Copper, Zink has played a role in historic kitchens, but like copper, it too is going to develop its own coloration variations. Whether you see those variations as stains or patina will help you decide if it is for you.
Stainless Steel has long been a mainstay for commercial kitchens, but in residential use it has mainly been for kitchen sinks, or sink and drain board integrated pieces. Contrary to its name, it is not 100% stain free, although it is certainly more ‘stain-less’ than Copper and Zinc.
Copper, Zinc and Stainless Steel can all be custom fabricated for anything from a simple counter piece to an entire kitchen. All three of these materials can bridge the spectrum from traditional to contemporary.
Concrete for countertops is a fairly recent trend, and generally only used in contemporary designs. Finishing the concrete is the key to its appearance, which can be tinted right within the aggregate mix to add integral shades of color. We work with a specialty fabricator.