Are Black Kitchen Countertops a Good Idea?
Top FCI London designer, Ricardo Jarjoura, believes that there’s nothing more exciting than a beautifully considered kitchen complete with state-of-the-art appliances, elegant cabinetry and all the trimmings. But, if you’re looking for the ultimate in both style and functionality, are black countertops a good idea?
“Absolutely! There are so many benefits to installing them”, he enthuses. “And we’re not talking about the glitzy granite monstrosities from the ’80s because today’s offerings are sleek, refined and will suit just about any genre. I’d say that they’re currently one of the most popular choices out there”.
Here’s his take on why this décor trend is absolutely fabulous!
The pros and cons of using black kitchen countertops
“Black kitchen countertops certainly aren’t just for modern spaces; they can enhance many different styles from rustic and traditional to a more contemporary, industrial look”, is Ricardo’s take on where you should use them. In fact, he believes that they’re as adaptable as their white counterparts and are the equivalent in versatility to fashion’s “little black number”.
Here are some of the things he loves about them along with a couple of negatives that might need considering:
The pros of black kitchen countertops:
- They are classy, bold, beautiful and timeless, making them a great option if you want to futureproof your kitchen.
- They are suitable for almost any style and will match modern, Boho, minimalist and even farmhouse aesthetics.
- They hide chips and cracks and make it easier for you to see crumbs, spills and kitchen grime.
- They don’t stain easily.
- From soft tones like pinks and greys to bright oranges, sunshine yellow and metallic accents, black goes with absolutely everything.
The cons of black kitchen countertops:
- If used incorrectly, they can over-dominate your kitchen space.
- They show up fingerprints, wipe marks, soapy residue and water splashes. However, as you clean all countertops every day, keeping them spic and span shouldn’t be any extra effort.
- If you don’t know what you’re doing, they could make a tiny kitchen look even smaller, so if in doubt, enlist the help of a specialist.
What are the best kitchen countertop materials available?
These days, black kitchen countertops come in just about every material available, but what are your best options if you want optimal functionality?
“Think about the purpose of your kitchen and how a countertop is used before you make a final decision”, advises Ben. “You have to remember that it will be subjected to extreme temperatures, sharp knives and lots of wear and tear, so aside from choosing something that matches the overall style of your kitchen, make sure it is enduring”.
Here are some of the available options and what you can expect:
Tough and durable, granite is a top choice. Not only can it withstand heat and resist stains and scratches, but it’s also extremely durable, is relatively affordable and will last for decades.
On the downside it’s an extremely porous stone and therefore needs to be sealed on a regular basis. It is also very heavy, so don’t install it without the help of a pro.
Marble is the darling of the design world and is known for its extraordinary beauty and uniqueness. In fact, every installation is one-of-a-kind. It is also heat resistant and, once properly installed and maintained, shouldn’t crack or break, making it one of the most long-lasting options available.
Over and above the heavy price tag, marble also stains easily. However, this will be less obvious in a black kitchen countertop. Also, if you are prepared to make the initial investment it will increase the value of your home, making it worthwhile in the long run.
Quartz is an engineered stone that gives you an affordable solution if you want the uniqueness and durability of marble or granite but can’t stretch your budget that far. It is easy to maintain, doesn’t need to be sealed, and is stain, mildew and mould resistant.
Although it sounds like a dream come true, quartz scratches easily, is vulnerable to heat and will fade in direct sunlight. Before you decide, consider your lifestyle and weigh up your options carefully.
Although the above are the three most highly recommended materials for kitchen use, there are, of course, several other options including tiles, laminate and even paper. Yes, you heard right – and it’s not as soggy as you might imagine!
Paper composite kitchen countertops are made from a mixture of paper or wood-based fibres, petroleum-free resins and natural pigments which are baked to produce robust, nonporous slabs that are inexpensive, environmentally friendly alternatives to stone and plastic. If you’re looking for a softer aesthetic that is still durable and long-lasting, it’s a definite contender.
Do black kitchen countertops work in small spaces?
If you think that you can’t have black kitchen countertops in a small space, you’re wrong. In fact, there are plenty of things you can do to make it happen without your environment looking even more diminutive. Here are some useful suggestions:
- Paint your walls with a bright, reflective colour that bounces the natural light and makes your space look airy and luminant.
- Create some contrast by pairing them with lighter cabinets. White will create a bright, contemporary vibe while a warmer wood will give your kitchen a more traditional, homely feel.
- Install cupboards with glass fronts – they trick the eye into thinking your room is much larger.
- Choose a pale flooring option and pay attention to your use of patterns. Diamonds create a sense of additional space while other motifs might do the opposite.
3 Black kitchen countertop styling ideas
Pair your black kitchen countertop with a patterned splashback in monochromatic tones. It will add visual interest, lighten your aesthetics and add a sense of playfulness to your ensemble.
As seen in our award-winning Elm Park project, use an oversized pendant lamp with a metallic accent to soften the black, create some sheen and add a touch of glam. This look works particularly well with natural wood cabinetry or a biophilic green for a more Boho feel.
Opt for a black countertop on your central island and keep the rest of your work surfaces grey or white. This will create a focal point, ground your colour palette and allow the rest of your fittings to lighten up your space.
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