Kitchen Countertop Update Tip and Ideas : Laminate
Partner post to 6 Ideas to Update your Kitchen on a Budget
Partner post to The New Era of Laminate Countertops and Why They Rock
In between flooring, faucets, countertops and cabinets, kitchens offer so many ways to spend spend spend and add to that never-ending ‘honey-do’ list. And while updating your kitchen is a great way to add value to your home, it’s also an easy way to suck the living daylights out of your bank account (it’s a yin/yang thing).
So today I want to talk to you about countertops and how to add value to your home, while not going unnecessarily buckwild (which I have been known to do on occasion).
Listed below are entry-level laminate countertops. To view luxury laminate countertops, check out this blog post… The New Era of Laminate Countertops and Why They Rock
Tip #1 – Not all laminate countertops are the same price
Many countertop suppliers have special groupings of countertops that are purchased in bulk and are then offered at a lower price. Locally, we have a grouping called ‘The Top 66’ which has some gorgeous high-end laminate selections (listed below).
These aren’t the least expensive because they are the least desirable. In fact, they are some of the most popular countertops which means they can be bought in bulk and then sold to you the buyer at a fan-tiddly-astic price.
Here’s a few of my faves…
Formica Mineral Jet
Mineral Jet is a mix of black, brown and gray and is best in the Radiance finish.
Mineral Jet by Formica (here)
Formica Crème Quarstone
Crème Quartstone is a light creamy mix with an amazing sheen. It also has a few wee flecks of orange and an almost there (but not really) greenish undertone.
Crème Quartstone by Formica (here)
Harold by Pionite
(and seriously, who names these? ‘I think I shall dub thee – Harold’.)
I just finished a new home/subdivision where we used good old Harold (shown below) and he’s had rave reviews! Harold has a beautiful mix of gray, brown, black, greige and even a whisper of green.
Pionite Harold (here)
Paloma Polar by Formica
Paloma Polar is essentially a white countertop with a gray fleck that has a slight purple undertone – it also has a fabulous sheen!
Paloma Polar by Formica (here)
See the rest of the Top 66 here
Now not every company will call their bulk items ‘The Top 66’, but most companies should have a range of products that are offered at a reduced price. Also, I generally avoid the big box stores when it comes to these products and try to find a local supplier (like BC’s Colonial Countertops) to avoid the whole ‘middle-man’ thing so I can flutter my eyelashes, wear a low-cut top and see how it goes (I do not encourage my male readers to do this…)
Idea #2 – The Profile
The profile is the front edge of your countertop and the profile you choose can make a HUGE difference to the overall look of your kitchen.
My fave is definitely the square wrap or double radius… (shown in Soapstone Sequoia – see more here)
- Rounded is dated, don’t do it…says me
- Don’t even consider doing your front profile in wood with your top in laminate. This costs more, wears easily and is soooo 1990’s
- A bevel edge profile (standard or micro-bevel) is a classy look, just keep in mind that it is an extra cost
- The square wrap or double radius is the most popular profile as it’s modern, but not too edgy. This edge/profile is included in the product pricing (aka – free)
This is the bevel edge…
I also want to take a moment to talk about the ‘Ogee’ profile (Oh gee it sucks – hehe)
The Ogee is popular because a lot of people think that this particular profile mimics the look of quartz/granite countertops. However, I find it not so hot for a couple of reasons…
1. When you wipe the counter, the shrapnel falls onto that 2nd ledge (or your floor if you get a good run at it) and you have to wipe that as well.
2. It’s an extra ‘per linear ft’ charge
3. Unless you specify your corners you will get a flat edge on one side which kills the whole idea of it ‘looking like a natural stone product’. While you risk this with any laminate product, it’s much more pronounced with the Ogee profile.
See how the front ‘Ogee’ edge looks like stone, but the side looks ‘Oh gee, just like laminate!’
Now here’s how you avoid that look…and yes, it will make your high-end laminate look quite a bit like quartz/granite, but it still won’t save you money or any crumb wiping.
Tip #3 Do you have 2 feet and a heartbeat? Well then you can save some money!
Okay, so it’s not THAT easy as you will also need some time and a moderate amount of muscle. You will pay per linear ft for the countertop company to remove and dispose of your old countertop. This usually costs $7 per ft which means the average kitchen is $150 – $200 (and is included in the overall price so you don’t really know it’s there). Just recently we removed our own countertops and took them to the recycle depot. This took about 1 hr and 1/2 a bottle of wine – well worth it if you ask me!
Tip: Take a blade and cut where your countertop meets your drywall as paint often binds the 2 together.
You can also save money by removing your own appliances and unhooking your plumbing (sans plumber butt). This can save you approx. $125.
There are even more fun and fabulous ways to save money when updating your kitchen, but that’s it for now my friends!
Need help picking the perfect countertop? Check out my Online Consulting Services!