beautiful kitchen with granite countertops

Six Design Tips for Kitchen Countertops

Choosing the right kitchen countertops can give most people a headache. It isn’t enough to match the color or stay with the safe choices in terms of color, layout, function, and of course, material. You want your kitchen to pop, and that usually requires a bit of creative thinking and design chops. Here are six design tips for kitchen countertops from interior designers.

Tip #1: Choose the countertops first

distinctive quartz countertops
Kitchen countertops are visually prominent, so your choice makes a lot of difference to the overall look of your kitchen. Additionally, kitchen countertops tend to account for a big chunk of your remodeling budget, so you want to get that one right the first time. Picking out the material for your kitchen countertops first ensures all the other elements in your kitchen tie in nicely.
This is particularly important if you are choosing quartz or granite countertops. These are available in robust colors and designs, and they can be a bit overwhelming. Choose a neutral color for your kitchen cabinets and walls to complement a complex design for your countertops, and your kitchen will look fantastic.

Tip #2: Consider other rooms

open floor layout with granite countertops
Open floor layouts are very popular for kitchens nowadays. If you have one in your home, you need to choose countertops that will match or complement the colors, finishes, and lighting in other rooms. As mentioned earlier, kitchen countertops are visually prominent. Even if you are in the dining room in an open floor layout, you cannot help but see them.
To be sure your new countertops will look good in your home, bring samples home to see how they look in the kitchen as well as the other room. Light can make a big difference to the look of the stone, so you want to make sure your existing lights will bring out the best in your material. For example, some types of granite look flat under white light, while others look spectacular.

Tip #3: Go with your top choice

marble countertops
Many people would love to have marble countertops in their kitchens, but fear they are not as sturdy as granite or quartz. While these are perfectly great options for kitchen countertops, you will not feel the same satisfaction you would have if you had gone for marble countertops. On the other hand, if you want durability over everything else, then you want granite or quartz.
Don’t be afraid to go with your top choice, even if you think they will not last. You might have to work a little harder to keep them in good condition, but you will get the countertops you actually want in your kitchen.

Tip #4: Consider tiles

granite tile countertops
While slabs give you the seamless look most people want for kitchen countertops, tiles can be attractive in its own way. They are available in many colors and styles, and strategic installation can make your kitchen quite distinctive. Granite tiles do not use grout, so the seams may be all but invisible if installed by an expert. If you choose ceramic tiles, the grout can also add depth to your countertops.

Tip #5: Mix it up

There is no reason to choose just one material for your countertops. Mixing different materials is trending nowadays, precisely because it opens up many design and functional options. You can choose quartz for perimeter countertops and near the sink where water and other sources of stains might be a problem. Put granite near cook tops because it is highly resistant to heat. Use marble for pastry tables, as marble countertops tend to be a few degrees cooler than the ambient temperature.
Mixing materials might pose a challenge for cohesiveness, but you have many colors from which to choose. Pick solid colors for one type of material and pattern for another to make matching simpler.

Tip #6: Keep the details in mind

colorful mosaic backsplash
You might be surprised at how much difference edge treatments and backsplashes can make to the look of your kitchen countertops. The edge profile can build up a slab to give it substance or temper a complex design. Mitered edges, for example, can make your 3-cm thick slab look double the thickness.
The backsplash can also serve as the accent for your kitchen. Some homeowners stick with the standard 4-inch high backsplash in the same material as the countertops, while others choose to go for full or stepped backsplashes. You can also consider mosaic tiles for a budget friendly but unique look.


Kitchen countertops can make or break your kitchen design and function, so it is important to choose the right ones when remodeling. While there are many factors to consider when making your choice, these six tips from interior designers should help simplify the process.
You might also want to consider consulting with a countertop specialist that will walk you through different materials and provide designs to help you visualize your new countertops. KNC Granite can provide you with free in-house design consultation and 3D designs.

We have a large array of granite and marble slabs from which to choose. You can check actual slabs at our showroom in Lanham, Maryland. We service Washington DC, many areas in Maryland (Baltimore, Annapolis, Bethesda, Rockville) and Virginia (Alexandria, Arlington).
If you prefer quartz countertops, we can also help. Also we carry some of the top brands of engineered stone, including Cambria, Caesarstone, Silestone, and MSI, all of which come with manufacturer warranties.

We do not only supply top quality natural and engineered stones, however. We are experts at fabricating and installing kitchen counters or bathroom vanities. Also we specialize in kitchen remodeling and bathroom upgrade projects, delivering on time and on budget.
Give us a call or email us for your free in-home consultation and quote for your kitchen countertops!

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