Monday, August 16, 2010

House Addition: Shopping - opinions please.

We've been shopping for flooring, newel posts, and the most fun of all, granite countertops.  I'm posting a few of my top picks for the granite here in hopes that any of you readers that have an opinion will speak up and help us pick one.

Most of these are not actually granite, geologically speaking.  Granite has specific proportions of various minerals that I won't get into here.  After we pick the best looking one that goes into our house, I am going to have a bunch of geologist friends come over and we'll try to identify as many minerals as we can and classify it into which rock type it is, but for now, I'm focussing on what will look the best with off-white painted Shaker style cabinets and medium toned oak hardwood flooring. In some of the pictures you can see one of my little flooring samples.  The actual floor might be a tad darker than that. We're trying to get a decent match with our existing oak floors in the dining and living room.

So here they are, in alphabetical order.  All of the pictures are kind of washed out, but I think you get the idea.  Which do you like best?


Celestial Blue (the plagioclase feldspar in this one has a little bit of blue tint, but it is mostly gray and rust)


 I think this one is called Lapidus as well but it was at a different store.

Nobel Gold

Spectrus (I absolutely love this one but am worried that when it is cut into 25" wide countertops, some of the character will be lost and the cost would not be justified.)

Lava (in person, this had more gold and tan in it than shows in the pic)

Purple Dunes (there isn't much purple in this; there are some garnets, which are pinkish, and the gray areas have a cool tone, but overall the slab is rusty colored)


Looking back, I love each one.  Choices, choices!


  1. Spectrus, Lava or Celestial Kingdom. I mean blue.

  2. I like the second lapidus. It will bring out the colors of your tile and flooring!!

  3. I think the volcano and spectrus would not work once they are cut up, because they are so segmented, so it might look like you did different blocks. I like the celetial blue, but how much blue does it have, and what type of lights are you going to have? If it is really blue then I would say no, for resale purposes only. Other than that I like it the best with capella second, and the second lapidus third.

    Good luck! I am sure whatever you pick out it is going to look great.


  4. I love Capella, Lapidus, and Nobel Gold all equally. From my experience, a mid-tone (rather than a light or dark) with more even variations shows less dirt, etc. I love having granite though, and I'm so excited for you :) Whatever one you choose will be beautiful :) Possibly you might think about staying away from the blue for resale....Looks like opinions might be widely spread!

  5. Thanks for all your opinions so far! I should note that Celestial Blue and Purple Dunes don't actually look blue or purple. They have swirls of iron oxide stained granite, which give them a rust/tan character, but where there are no stains, the unaltered granite is gray with purple garnet and blueish bits. Your comments on staying away from blues are heeded though. If it does come down to one of those, I would make sure I saw the slab outside in the natural light. I'm going to put compact fluorescent bulbs in the light fixtures in the kitchen, that is until Drew sneaks and changes them to incandescent.

  6. Granite update. We chose Volcano, but not the slab seen here. We saw it for the first time today and it is incredible! It is going to rock that kitchen.

  7. Lucy was so in enamored with the granite that I had to force her to leave the store. She agreed to go, but only after the sales woman allowed her to take a small piece of the granite that had seperated from the main slab during shipping with her.