When you think of countertops, you probably think of stone, especially granite or marble. These are some of the most popular choices for countertop materials. However, adding butcher block or doing your whole countertop in hardwood can be a beautiful idea for many kitchen styles. Utilize wood to beautify your kitchen countertops.
An attractive hardwood for a traditional or rustic kitchen is walnut. The wood grows dark and offers rich grain patterning. As your countertop shows wear, the material actually grows more lustrous. Because walnut starts out dark, this countertop pairs well with lighter cabinetry and walls. For instance, walnut looks beautiful atop distressed cream cabinetry finished with antique-look fixtures. Home and Garden TV recommends oiling any wooden countertops frequently to keep them sealed, which adds to the natural patina of walnut.
If you have wood floors, chances are there will be some material left over. What's more, they're also likely to be of a durable hardwood, such as cherry or pine. Consider having these leftovers made into countertops for your kitchen. It's important to seal the countertops differently than the flooring, such as with an oil-based urethane sealer. This protects the wood from the moisture typical of kitchen tasks.
Wood makes for an attractive cutting board. However, there's no need to hang the cutting board up when you're done. Instead, choose a pretty hardwood plank to serve as a permanent butcher block. It's very easy to have such an installation with concrete countertops because the concrete can be molded around the butcher block. However, a hardwood plank also looks attractive with other materials, especially granite or soapstone. You could even utilize a larger plank to distinguish task areas, such as on a multi-purpose island.
If you like patterning, consider countertops made of parquet. Just like manufacturers do with flooring, they piece together strips of wood to make parquet countertops. These feature not only the natural grain of the wood but also whatever pattern you choose to have laid. You can have the parquet designed to create shapes or to simply show a mosaic pattern.
For many homeowners, sustainability is an important byword. Bamboo is a prime material in this case because it's actually a hard grass that represents wood. As such, bamboo regenerates much more quickly. Yet the material makes a durable countertop with exotic graining. You can have bamboo stained to resemble another hardwood, such as maple, or let the natural coloration show through. Contractors can also stain the core a different color so that your countertop appears stacked.
Let the warmth of wood serve as a decorative and functional feature in your kitchen countertops.