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Countertops and floors


kiliki
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I would think countertops should be seamless/groutless for ease of cleaning and that would, logically, go for floors, too.

I completely agree. I hate sweeping the floor at school. You can never get the flour out of the ultra-wide grout lines. And I've already said what I think of my tile counters. I'd think that even if they were the original 1923 tiles, too.

If you want tile, put it in the backsplash.

"I just hate health food"--Julia Child

Jennifer Garner

buttercream pastries

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In planning for my new kitchen, I've been seriously considering linoleum/marmoleum - but have some concerns about the manufacturer's instruction to apply 2-3 coats of "floor finish" aka "polish" after installation and then periodically after using floor cleaner several times. [The prospect takes me back to my childhood chores in a rather unpleasant fashion.] I currently have some industrial vinyl tile that only requires a no-rinse cleaner weekly or so. One of my concerns is being unable to keep the entire surface at the same "shine/color" level due to different numbers of coats of "polish" - that concern is due to my intention to keep the metro shelving work table I constructed - the lowest shelf is several inches off the ground. Would I need to empty it and move it each time I applied the polish to get en even look? Or am I just worrying about nothing?

I like the give that these floors have, as well as the ecological and allergenic properties, but I may need to stay with a heavy vinyl tile to get my carefree needs met - I'm no spring chicken and this kitchen is intended to carry me through the rest of my days....

I've had Marmoleum for about 10 years. Mine is black with slight hints of other colors running through it. I strip it and reapply the finish coat (2 coats) once or twice a year. If I didn't do the whole floor - well it wouldn't look right. It would look uneven. Note that I have a very bright kitchen (lots of light from windows and fixtures). Perhaps if you used a lighter color - or have less light in your kitchen - it wouldn't be as noticeable. Robyn

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If you want tile, put it in the backsplash.

That's what I did. I had planned for something different but decided to let them put on a very neutral (old ivory color) tile as a "temporary" measure.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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We are currently going from:

Linoleum floors in small squares in light brown which have been in place for 20 years - You cannot find dirt or anything on them anytime. They are virtually perfect for hiding dirt; however, perhaps too good.

White formica counters - clean easily, don't stain, and are perfectly functional; however, you can't put hot pans on them.

We are expanding our kitchen and getting rid of our den which sat two (and we want more friends and one another.

We are installing:

Wood floors in maple stained cinnamon (Bruce Hardwood Floor) - hopefully it will clean up great as it will also be in our mud room, but without kids, we should be able to control it.

Granite countertops - we really like it, and think it will probably hide too much dirt too.

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I don't "get" tile countertops or floors.  I was helping a friend, who has large-tiled countertops in her kitchen, make a large amount of stuffed won tons.  The countertop had a good coating of the flour on it by the time we were done and turned out to be difficult to wipe up, especially where it was on the rough grouting. We almost needed a brush to get it off the grout. 

I would think countertops should be seamless/groutless for ease of cleaning and that would, logically, go for floors, too.

Part of the reason I'm still leaning toward tile with grout is that I have a 5-foot x 2-foot stainless-topped work table I constructed out of Metro shelving that is, and will be, my primary work table for anything flour-y. I've never found a formica that I love, and I can't pour a fortune into countertop surfacing. It's all a trade-off.

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I think that the salesman was full of shit.

I hoped someone would say that! And yeah, patina, "character," that's all fine with me-that's one reason I think it will fit in with the house-but visible stains and scratches are not okay. I will try to get some samples.

Soapstone is not at all porous and it will not stain, period. It is not very hard and it definitely will scratch. All the scratches can be managed with simple care by the consumer, but it is a very different material from polished granite. There are somewhat different soapstones from different quarries and different countries. Some are softer than others but none are as hard as most granites. I got my soapstone from these people: M. Teixeira. They had a lot of information on their website (which appears to have been renovated since then) and were quite helpful on the phone and in person when I had questions or problems. (The problems were caused by my ex-general contractor, not by the soapstone.) When I was working on this a few years ago soapstone was not readily available in some areas. Teixeira will surely arrange to ship anywhere you want, but the cost may be unreasonable if you are far from NJ and don't have a source/importer in your region.

Good luck in your research. I thought it was exciting but eventually exhausting and I'm very glad it's all done and behind me.

Fern

Edited for spelling

Edited by Fernwood (log)
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Floor: solid hardwood

Wet prep countertop: stainless steel with seamless integrated sinks

Dry countertop: solid hardwood

(if not hardwood, I'd go with slate. Relatively soft, but I like patina and scratches. The first scratch is the deepest, but over time ... Just like in real live.)

Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler.

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I replaced the harvest gold leatherette textured formica (get out the toothbrush to clean) with granite. Absolutely no regrets. My family knows not to use good knives directly on the granite, and I love than I can put hot stuff on it, and love that pastry rolls out so easily. Love that there are no nooks and crannies. Love that is is speckled enough to hide stuff.

Although replacing the harvest gold vinyl sheet good flooring (again, full of nicks and crannies, and a bazzilioon cigarette burns -- understandable once I'd met the sellers :wink:), things like wiring problems have taken center stage. I think, however, that I've decided in CVT. It can be a DIY project, and I'm a glutton for punishment. Ceramic is out because Heidi falls fairly often, and we've been to the ER for a few too many concussions. And, the realtor we worked with to buy this house has a brother in the flooring business that gives good deals to customer's of his sister...

I'm thinking that installing this floor might be stinky, so am prepped to wait until summer when we can install it and just go to the cabin and avoid the stink and disruption. I may even splurge and just have it done!

I had thought hardwood, but the DR and kitchen are open to the living room, which has hard wood, and I want to define the DR/kitchen space with flooring.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I have granite tile countertops and backsplash, and it works very nicely. The tile is the 12x12 black & chocolate speckled, and the grout lines are smooth black, 1/16". Only occasionally do I have a problem with flour getting caught in the grout lines, and its usually nothing that a good wet rag can't clean up. It gives me that beautiful granite look at fraction of the cost over a solid granite slab. The only other countertop option I had considered was an acid-stained concrete countertop, but my house is a tract home and not custom, and concrete was just a little too eccentric for my developer/contractor. Granite tiles they understood!

For flooring, the kitchen (and well, whole downstairs) is a 7-layer engineered hardwood hickory in wider 4" planks. It's a rich caramel red brown with a lot of black speckles, looks more rustic than a lot of other engineered hardwoods. I think that in addition to being lower-cost, the engineered hardwood is better in the dry heat of Arizona, where I might have to deal with a lot of warping in regular solid hardwood. In a dream world I would have the super-wide plank reclaimed barn wood, but my choice makes me happy in reality.

Edited by viva (log)

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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I am seriously considering putting carpeting in the kitchen. My contractor brought me some samples of a cut-pile high density carpeting made for either indoor/outdoor/heavy/traffic or kitchen/bath areas exposed to wet, stains and etc.

It is the same stuff that is in several convention centers around southern California and also in several areas at LAX.

It has a thick rubber base that will not absorb moisture and is very resiliant. It won't last as long as hard surface flooring but I don't care about that, I want something that will give if I fall and won't ever be slippery. I can afford to replace it whenever I want. It can be fitted like wall-to-wall carpet but can be kept in place by tape around the edges and across wide areas and where joined to other pieces, but the joining fuses the sections together.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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i'm planning on redoing my galley kitchen from Ikea -- I can do all the cabinets for about $3000. But I don't want to use Ikea countertops -- mostly because the customer service sucks and I'm fed-up with them. Should I be able to get countertops from another source that install on Ikea cabinets?

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i'm planning on redoing my galley kitchen from Ikea -- I can do all the cabinets for about $3000.  But I don't want to use Ikea countertops -- mostly because the customer service sucks and I'm fed-up with them.  Should I be able to get countertops from another source that install on Ikea cabinets?

Yes, no worries at all. Just make sure whoever makes the countertops understands that the cabinest are "full-overlay" and will require "build-up". i.e. you don't want the front edge of the countertops hanging in front of the doors.

A.

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I am seriously considering putting carpeting in the kitchen...

Take a look at Flor modular floor coverings. It's a type of carpeting "tile" that can be easily put down anywhere and can be custom cut with a regular carpet knife. There are lots of different styles, from traditional to funky-mod patterns, even one that looks like poured concrete. I imagine it would be practical for a kitchen because you can remove an individual tile if necesary and (according to the catalogue) wash it in the sink or replace the one and not the whole room. I'm thinking of using some in the eat-in area of my kitchen to cover some wood flooring that's not in great condition. I've seen some samples in a local high-end interior design shop, the quality is really good.


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They look nice but I want something with no seams. I sometimes use a power chair and need something that the wheels will roll on without pulling up edges of tile.

I have a large commercial carpet machine that will steam clean any kind of carpet but might pull up the edges of carpet tile.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Soapstone is not at all porous and it will not stain, period.  It is not very hard and it definitely will scratch.  All the scratches can be managed with simple care by the consumer, but it is a very different material from polished granite.  There are somewhat different soapstones from different quarries and different countries.  Some are softer than others but none are as hard as most granites.  I got my soapstone from these people:  M. Teixeira.  They had a lot of information on their website (which appears to have been renovated since then) and were quite helpful on the phone and in person when I had questions or problems.

I also got my soapstone countertops [and breakfast bar and half wall ledge] from M. Teixeira. Very pleased with my choice.

Erica

:smile:

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gallery_17399_60_30521.jpg

This is the carpet I have chosen for the kitchen.

The top one will be the main carpeting. The bottom one will be edging and cut-in design elements.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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OK carpet in the kitchen or bath is too scarey for me! I'm thinking mold and grease and what the floor looks like after a few years of wear!

I actually prefer the laminate floating woodlike floor. Easy to assemble and install, is bouncy underfoot and easy to clean. Plus it looks like wood and is very reasonably priced. Easy to remove or replace when necessary.

For counters I go granite all the way. It looks good, wipes clean and unlike tiled counters there isn't the fear of disinfecting grout lines or keeping up with the mold issue that can happen in dark wet spots.

Am I about 6 months too late for this topic too!?

Life! what's life!? Just natures way of keeping meat fresh - Dr. who

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This is commercial carpeting designed for heavy traffic areas, restaurants, casinos, airports and etc. I want padding for me, in case I fall and an absolutely non-slip surface.

It actually is designed to arrest the growth of molds and spores, is hypoallerginic.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Counter

I would agree that soapstone is a great look and better yet when the cabinet are finished with a light wood stain or painted white.

You might also consider using different materials in different areas. Such as butcher block for an island, stainless steel for the dishwashing area and stone every where else.

I saw an episode of This Old House where they were in Chicago an Chef Rick Bayless gave a tour of his home kitchen which included soap stone counters.

I've also seen homes from the 1940's with sheet linoleum counter tops. These had a chrome or stainless steel edge like a diner tables.

Plumbing Fixtures

Use under mounted stainless steel sink(s) highlighted with a spot light above. Select plumbing fixtures from a manufacturer that produces restaurant fixtures such as T&S. They will provide a classic look along with better quality and sometimes at a similar or lower cost. You may also custom design a faucet with a vegetable rinse etc. by ordering individual components instead of a standard assembly.

Flooring

If you would like to use wood see if you can find reclaimed flooring material that matches the flooring in the rest of your home.

Small square mosaic or hexagon tiles were common when your home was constructed. I just moved out of an apartment with a great hexagon tiled bathroom floor that was over 60 years old.

Good luck.

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