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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Soapstone, Carrara or Both?

We've chosen our counter tops! So... one decision down- one million, two hundred, seventy six to go!!!
The counters will be soapstone and the 3'x 7' island is bianco carrara marble. In keeping with the spirit of an antique farmhouse we loved that both stones would have been used in a turn-of-the-century kitchen. We started off looking for solid soapstone, but fell for the gorgeous veins in the slab we picked out. We will need two slabs of soapstone. The slabs are about 5' x 9' which we are told is large for soapstone. I will only have two seams, both will fall behind the sink (really only one is needed, but for structural integrity they put in two.) Initially I contemplated all soapstone or all carrara, but in the end all of one type just seemed too much for our kitchen. Ever since our first trip to France I have always coveted marble for a kitchen surface, so I am very happy to have incorporated both. There was just something about the veining in both stones that made them look perfect together. The word on the street is that carrara is running very grey and muddy these days; several of the slabs we looked at were very nondescript or overly busy, but not pretty. I was very happy to find an articulate piece! The marble will be honed.

The water on the second chosen slab was starting to dry which is why is appears blotchy.

Pictures of the carrara are a little washed out. It's really a pretty piece!

The indoor warehouse had "lovely" fluorescent lighting...this photo shows the guys moving the soapstone after I asked if I could see it in natural light! They had to move it to a garage door opening in another building! They really loved me for that! But hey, I don't have a windowless box with fluorescent lights as a kitchen!


  1. Wow! it is going to look spectacular! Great job! I just finished my soapstone kitchen renovation and my marble pantry! They look lovely together! It is posted on my blog-check it out! I am so excited for you!

  2. Great choices Joan!
    They will look lovely together. I love my honed carrera counter tops. Can't wait to see them in your kitchen.


  3. Good girl! Stick to your guns! When you are spending that amount of money on something, you should be absolutely sure you LOVE it, because it's not like wallpaper. You'll have it forever!
    Great choice going with both. Sometimes in a larger space, breaking it up keeps it interesting.
    Enjoy! Can't wait to see more pictures!

  4. Wowy! Gorgeous!!!! I cannot wait to see your kitchen. I can only imagine soapstone + carrera = stunningly beautiful. Thanks for your comments today, they made my day. xo julia

  5. Oooooooooh! I love 'em! Both. And I agree that they both will look perfect with your old/new kitchen. Honed marble I assume?

    It'll be stunning...ABSOLUTELY!!!

  6. Thank you all! We are really excited to see them in!
    Gina- You know I LOVE your buttler's pantry and gorgeous kitchen!! Remember I asked about the T&C fireplace (ours just got ordered btw!!) Seriously, when I think of "the" perfect bulters pantry I get this mental image of yours!!

  7. the soapstone is gorgeous! and lucky for you to find pretty marble. you made the exact correct choice in two stones. I can NOT wait to see the final results!!!

  8. Thank you Joni!!
    And Linda, I forgot to say Yes, the marble will be honed! j.

  9. Hi, I came across your blog from Cote de Texas and found her blog from someplace else. I love your choice. I also wanted to add that I envy your move. I know exactly how you feel. I was born in New Hampshire and my son goes to school in VT. We love the drive to VT and I so want to move there. In fact I have found 3 houses that I wanted to buy, but my husband is afraid to make the move. He said after he retires, maybe and by then well, I feel I will be too old! I am happy for you and your move. I get it when you talk about the people, that is the reception we get when we go up to New England. In fact when we visit my son at school we rent a little cottage with an attached antique shop, the owner tells us, take what you like and leave the money on the table when you leave us! So trusting, my son said they never lock the doors to the dorms or cars! He is in Craftsbury Commons, VT at Sterling College.
    Wishing you the best of luck and I will be sure to stop by and visit again.

  10. Martha, Thank you for your, oh so sweet, comment! I love hearing how other people have had the same NE experience- that way I know we aren't imagining it! We truly understand your husband's fear of making such a big move, so if you ever want some "ammunition" just email me and I know Dan would be happy to tell his tale! Maybe another man's point of view would help him, and help you to get one of those houses!! We weighed the "just wait til retirement" to move too, and I can not tell you how glad we are that we jumped!
    I just looked up Sterling College, and Wow!, what a gorgeous place to go to college! Your lucky son!!
    I'm so happy you're here with us on our journey! Welcome. joan

  11. Hi -

    I used statuary marble on the island and soapstone on the perimeter countertops. Looks pretty good to me. I think you'll be very happy with what you've chosen

  12. Lovely choices! Your kitchen will be beautiful. I thought you might like to know that it should be spelled Carrara marble (no e), after the place in Italy where it is quarried. It was Michelangelo's favorite; his David is carved from Carrara marble.


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