Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Modern Classics: Granite And Quartz Worktops For Beautiful Kitchens And Bathrooms

Kitchen decoration is back in a big way. The 80s, with their horrible faux technological ovens and microwaves, have died; the 90s, which bowdlerised farmhouse kitchens in a way that somehow took all the charm out of them, are no more; and the Noughties, with their appalling preponderance of white plastic, have turned up their little toes and gone to the great style graveyard in the sky. 2010 has been the year of proper kitchen decor: quartz worktops, granite worktops, lovely old school range cookers and monumental fridge freezers that took their lines, like all the best devices, from 50s Americana. Style and grace, welcome back to the place in which we cook.

There’s a thing about kitchens that people often overlook. We spend so much time in them; they should be decorated with as much care as the lounge or the bathroom. Indeed, kitchen and bathroom are the only two rooms in an entire house, be it never so huge, that a person is guaranteed to use every day. Obviously, people sleep in the bedroom every night – but waking hours can only call the kitchen and bathroom into play for certain. It’s no coincidence, then, that these are the two rooms in the house in which one would expect to find quartz worktops or granite worktops. Perhaps human kind responds better to this kind of material: long lasting, decorative, endlessly classy and fitting with anything. It’s like that natural cave substance has stayed with us through 100 million years of evolution and now we’ve used it to show off our civilisation and sophistication.

With great success, too. The bathroom is an ideal example of the ways in which quartz or granite can attune to every taste and style. Whether one’s feeling is for modern bathrooms, with huge walk in showers and the occasional minimalist planter in a corner, or classic country house rooms full of flowers and soap baskets – quartz worktops and granite worktops add that wow factor in both cases. One even gets the same effect from white granite in a “rock star” bathroom – you know, the kind where there’s two of everything and the bath is on a pedestal. No matter what the final look, those polished stone surfaces set it off just wonderfuly.

In the kitchen, the dark mass of granite, with its silver and blue flecks catching the glow from artfully placed spot lights, can make every meal (from snack to banquet) a joy to prepare. A super modern kitchen, with utility islands in open plan, looks frankly stunning when a bit of white marble is thrown into the mix. And don’t forget the colour matching capabilities of granite, which can come in any hue from dark black to light rose. Granite worktops fit all colour plans and decors because they blend: quartz worktops do the same thing because they add that perfect gleam of white, which goes with everything.

In both cases and both rooms, we all know there is something extra special about a polished stone surface. Do yourself and your house the favour you both deserve – get with the decade of good taste.