As many of you know, updating elements of your home can be an intense process similar to a game of domino's. Typically one decision leads to another, and so on and so on. During the 5 months between the time we purchased our home and the time we moved in we were in a WHIRLWIND. Smack dab in the middle of wedding planning and house renovations - things were crazy! We spent nearly every moment we were not sleeping, eating or working, at the house getting it move-in ready. We had about 100 balls in the air and were making decisions left and right - hoping for the best. So, 16 months later I thought it might be fun to visit some of the selections we made and discuss whether or not we feel we made the right decision. And maybe more importantly, if given the opportunity would we do it again?
The first topic - White Marble.
Brent and I chose white marble for our kitchen and downstairs bath countertops.
While we did have a lot going on we did NOT make this decision on the fly. Countertops are not cheap so we really considered the options - read all about the selection process here. As a designer I knew all about marble and it's porous ways. However, I was also very much aware of the unique beauty marble has to offer. At the 11th hour we finally felt comfortable biting the bullet and buying the marble slabs we loved after the nice people at Construction Resources introduced us to a 15 year sealer from DuPont that protects marble from food and drink stains.
|Photo from Google.|
No stains = happy consumers. HOWEVER, while there are no red wine splotches there are water marks AKA light etching. As far as I know, and according to everything I have ever read about marble, etching is unavoidable. Etching is a chemical reaction between the calcium carbonate in your marble and acid. Acid can come from a slew of different foods, drinks and cleaning materials and etching can happen in a flash. Basically the chemical reaction instantly causes the marble to loose it's shine, creating a dull spot.
For us, our etching has been caused by water sitting on the top too long. For example, if I'm drinking a glass of water and sit it on the countertop and it begins to sweat, a ring will form on the countertop where the glass was sitting.
I took a picture of the peninsula in the kitchen and if you really look (and follow the arrows) you will see the spots.
Our etching/water marks are not glaringly obvious, but are more apparent when the light hits the spots just right. Because our marble is polished (shiny) the spots show up more so then they would if the marble had been honed (not polished). We went with polished for the texture. I know I haven't officially debuted the kitchen on the blog, but it's a whole lot of white on white on white. This may sound sterile and scary, but thanks to the layering of textures (cabinets, countertops and backsplash) the space has life.
Lucky for us, almost immediately after our countertops were installed we got married and headed to Italy for a 2 week honeymoon. While there, we saw marble EVERYWHERE! It wasn't pristine, it was worn and scratched and etched and stained, but it was still beautiful. We decided then and there that we were not going to stress about our marble. We were going to use our kitchen, entertain our family and friends and live our lives and just let the marble be the natural, porous stone that it is. We invested in the 15 year warranty which gave us some peace of mind, but outside of that we knew that our investment would be wasted, no matter how beautiful the countertops were, if they kept us from really enjoying the spaces we had worked so hard to create.
So, in summary, our love affair is still strong for our Marble. Aesthetically, we have absolutely no complaints. Function wise, it would be nice if water marks were not an issue HOWEVER, it's a small price to pay for the look of the marble we so love. If I had it all to do again, I would still go with marble, but this time I would have it honed to help camouflage those inevitable water marks!
Unless otherwise noted all photos are my own.