Quartz has made its way into the spotlight and has decided to take shelter in our kitchens and stay there. As the world changes and technology advances, it’s becoming increasingly easier to replicate the natural beauty of stone. The wonderful thing about quartz, and perhaps the most alluring, is that it’s incredibly easy to maintain, so installing it and caring for it is hassle free. And let’s not forget its impeccable detail that sets the illusion of natural beauty.
According to Matthew Kahny, executive vice president of Dal-Tile Corporation, when you think of countertops and slabs, it starts with fashion, color, design and pattern. “The types and quality of visuals and colors that can now be produced are opening quartz up to even more applications,” said Kahny. “If you look at some of the most popular design and color trends right now, you see them leaning toward modern contemporary looks. Whites, off-whites and grays, as well as marble and stone looks with prominent veining, are really hot right now. Today’s technology is producing highly realistic visuals.”
Senior design consultant of Premier Surfaces Lise Smith strongly believes that the wonderful world of design has greatly affected the world of countertops with its heavy emphasis on light/white and grays, marble look. “Once our customers realize the porous nature, softness and maintenance of that material they are quickly deterred from marble, however they still want that look,” said Smith. “Marble inspired quartzes have become a desirable option. This also holds true for granite inspired quartz for the customers who do not want to seal or maintain their material.”
Kitchen islands are also growing in popularity which makes extra large quartz slabs the ideal solution. “We are building a new plant that will produce 79- x 136-inch slabs of quartz,” said Kahny. “These are huge chunks of quartz that our customers can really work with. The other thing that is helping quartz evolve is that we are doing interesting things with texture right now. There is a lot of innovation in matte and velvet finishes regarding texture.”
Now what of the future of quartz? Is this just a fad that will die out when the next big stone in town steps into the spotlight?
Some believe that this trend will only get more popular as technology advances. “I think the popularity of quartz will continue to get stronger and stronger. In the countertop and large slab market, quartz will continue to take a fair share,” said Kahny. “Although today’s technological abilities are exciting, they are still not fully developed yet when it comes to the visuals, textures and special effects that are possible.”
It all boils down to preference. Do you prefer the genuine truth of stone, or the fabricated sleekness of quartz?