Marble worktop ideas: how we created our dream kitchen

three images of veined white marble worktops in a navy kitchen with fluted cabinets

Wish your space oozed a sense of luxury? Well, for this month’s Been There Done That feature, renovator Vivian Wong, from Instagram account The Project Home, shares why it’s important to take your time when choosing your work surfaces.

So if you’ve been looking for marble worktop ideas, you’re in the right place. Let’s find out how Vivian has created her space…

Vivian, what did you want your space to look like?

“We were very excited to take on the renovation project and decided to change the layout of the house from its original plan. We removed walls to open up the space and let more natural light in, and what was once a family living space is now our open-plan kitchen-diner.”

Where did you find marble worktop ideas and inspiration?

“Pinterest and interior design books were the first places I visited for inspiration, and Instagram was another great source of ideas. However, talking to kitchen makers and visiting wood supply shops were also good starting points. I learnt so much – from getting to know the materials and how the professionals use them for kitchen making.”

a marble worktop on a kitchen island underneath three pendant lights
Marble worktop ideas: The fluted panel on the cabinet doors was a custom feature.

What was your brief for the kitchen?

“I had a concept and style of how I wanted my scheme to look in my head. However, I needed assistance to fine tune the details of the design, the proportion of the units, and the functional layout of the overall kitchen. With the help of my kitchen manufacturer, I was able to turn my sketches into actual layout plans and renderings.

“Through several face-to-face meetings at the workshop, we ironed out all the fine details. These included slim Shaker-style oak veneer doors, the brass strip finishes and a reeded glass door design. In addition, we included some custom features such as the fluted panel on the cabinet doors and the curved island.”

What was the process of finding the right marble worktops like?

“We visited a number of stone merchants to find the perfect marble for our kitchen. We got our sample cabinet door painted in the colour Railings by Farrow & Ball. So, we brought it along with us when we picked out our slab, just so we were sure they would be the perfect match. It took a while, but we knew it was important not to rush the decision until we found the perfect marble and fell in love with it. The slabs could not be more perfect.”

an arch featuring a shelf and accessories above a sink in a kitchen
Marble worktop ideas: Vivian included an arch in her kitchen as the house has arched windows.

What type of marble did you decide on?

“We chose 20mm Arabescato marble in a honed finish. The slabs are very heavy. It took four strong men to move and install our island worktop as it was a massive piece with no joint. We used the same marble throughout the kitchen including the countertop around the sink, island, and the splashback and upstand.

“To create a contemporary look, we reduced the height of the upstand to 5cm instead of the standard 10cm. Even though they need slightly more maintenance than other types of worktops, I would have no hesitation in choosing marble surfaces again.”

fluted navy cabinetry with a brass trim
Marble worktop ideas: Vivian went for a white hob on the island to match the marble.
a curved island with a marble worktop and fluted navy cabinetry with a brass trim
The curved island was a custom feature.

Vivian’s top tips on choosing marble worktops

“A marble worktop is one of the most beautiful features you can add to your kitchen. The natural beauty of it is unbeatable. However, if you are considering this material, you need to be realistic about what comes with it.”

  • Marble is a so natural stone which will stain, scratch, etch and chip if it is not cared for properly. Unlike manmade stone worktops or granite surfaces, marble needs to be sealed by a professional once every one or two years so that it can be protected.
  • In terms of maintenance, I always keep a clean wet cloth close by. It’s easy to wipe up any spillages – especially if it is acidic or dark, such as red wine or lemon juice.
  • I use a stone rejuvenating spray once every two or three weeks to give the worktops a fresh look.
  • I would suggest picking a honed rather than a polished finish. This can hide imperfections more effectively if your worktop gets etched or stained. Also, a marble with more veins or colours would also help to disguise any scratches or stains.
  • Do your research when choosing a kitchen manufacturer. Talk to the people who actually make the cabinetry, not a salesperson.
a walnut shelf featuring several accessories above a veined kitchen splashback
Marble worktop ideas: The walnut shelf showcases Vivian’s collectibles.
a veined marble worktop and kitchen splashback above a sink with a brass tap
Vivian advises that veining in the marble can help disguise stains or scratches.

Enjoyed this feature? Make sure to grab your KBB magazine April issue in newsagents nationwide – on sale 2 March 2023.

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