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February 10, 2018

Countertop Discussions, Part II, Concrete countertops

Oh, what to say about concrete countertops. I think you either like it or love it. Concrete started in the west coast, really grew in popularity and thanks to media like HGTV and Houzz, concrete countertops have increased in popularity all over the country. Because concrete is custom mixed and hand poured it can pretty […]

Oh, what to say about concrete countertops. I think you either like it or love it. Concrete started in the west coast, really grew in popularity and thanks to media like HGTV and Houzz, concrete countertops have increased in popularity all over the country. Because concrete is custom mixed and hand poured it can pretty much be any color you can think of and you can put almost anything you want in it, and make your tops almost any shape. Concrete can also go with a few very different styles, like rustic, transitional or contemporary/ modern. Concrete is so popular that even quartz and Corian offer their product in a selection that looks like concrete.

Grey Concrete Countertop.

Grey Concrete Countertop. 2″ thick, Flat edge profile.

But Why do people want concrete? And is a concrete countertop for me?

I tell all my clients who ask about concrete; “you have to really, really WANTΒ concrete countertops. or be in love with the look and the product, otherwise its really not for you. “Concrete just like the stuff outside on the sidewalk, has a risk of cracking, especially in new construction, but also just with really heavy wear and use, it can crack at overhangs if the kids are always pulling on it or hanging on it, or even sitting on it. This usually doesn’t effect the integrity of the product, just the look. Concrete is also very susceptible to hairline cracks, the very tiny thin cracks, which also, don’t hurt the top, they just only appeal to some people. You see, If you choose concrete, you will choose the cracks, the pin holes, the imperfections, this is the natural patina of the product, but that type of look does not to appeal to everyone, and if you like the look of concrete that is more “perfect” maybe a quartz in the concrete collection would be more for you.

Lite colored concrete island countertop

Concrete is very porous, and again, like with granite, there are a lot of sealers out there. And while I have only experimented with a few, I have noticed that you should really take care of your concrete countertops. The sealer will not make them indestructible. In fact, darker colors tend to fade sometimes in concrete if there is a lot of water sitting often, like where you might set your wet dishes to dry, and lighter colors will absorb and show some darkening. Also, concrete, like marble, is susceptible to etching. So acidic foods should be kept on a plate. Now I will say it again, if the worn look of concrete is for you, and the whole reason you want concrete is for the well worn, lived in look, than none of the things I mentioned should effect you, because this just all causes the concrete to look worn and loved. πŸ™‚

Concrete Farm Sink

Concrete Farm Sink

Concrete is so versatile! You can make it any color you want! You can put any sort of aggregates you want in all the colors. We have put broken beer bottles and wine bottles in some tops, wire grates for a drain board, tiny beach pebbles, even blue glass once. The possibilities are really endless. You can even get your name inset in the concrete, like we did in our showroom. So if you happen to love concrete, and really just want a top you can use hard and love that worn in, old patina look, then have fun coming up with cools ways to show your creativity with concrete!

One other nice thing about concrete, is that if your vanity countertop is small enough you can have seamless bowls, no seams, just a smooth surface.

Concrete trough sink

Concrete trough sink

The DIY debate. While there are a lot of consumers who would prefer to just hire someone for their concrete countertop needs, there are a few people out there who would really like to tackle their concrete countertop project themselves. To those people I say, more power to you, awesome! If you find yourself in the middle, unable to decide which side of the fence to get on, maybe I can clear things up for you with a pro and con list.

Pros to DIYing your concrete countertops:

  1. Cost – you will save a very decent amount of money if you do your countertops yourself.
  2. Pride – you can tell all your family and friend “look what I did” and they can ooo and aww πŸ™‚
  3. You can pretty much do whatever you want. While you can do whatever you want if you hire a professional, alot of details and customizations may cost extra,

Thats pretty much it….

Now here is a list of Pros to hiring a Professional :

  1. Peace of Mind – You can be compforted knowing that your professional actually know what they are doing, and they already worked out the kinks so to speak, so you don’t have to learn the hard way.
  2. Time – you don’t have to waste time researching how to make the tops, non-the-less the time it takes to actually make your tops and finish them.
  3. Less mess – a lot or most professionals make the concrete tops in their own shop, so the mess and the smells are at their place of business, not in your kitchen or bathroom πŸ™‚

The surface in the background of this picture is a black concrete outside table

Here are a few other pictures I have of some concrete countertops. Enjoy!

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