Category Archives: General

Drawbacks to DIY – Pro Stone Installation is Your Best Bet

These days, perhaps more than ever before, it is popular to handle home improvement projects on a DIY – or do-it-yourself – basis. The appeal, of course, is the opportunity to save money over having to pay for professional installation. When you do-it-yourself, you can complete the job just as you want while saving hundreds or thousands of dollars in the process. What’s not to like?

It is true – handling projects on a DIY basis is a great option for many jobs. Assuming you have a little bit of skill around the house, and you have the right tools on hand, there are plenty of jobs that you can handle without the help of a pro. However, one of the best skills that a DIY-er needs to possess is the ability to know when to call in the experienced hand of a professional. It is a mistake to take on a project on a DIY basis when you don’t have the skills, tools, or experience to get the job done right. In most cases, that concept is going to apply to stone installation. If you are in the process of having stone counters or other surfaces added to your home, save yourself a huge headache and have the product professionally installed by an experienced team.

Stone is Heavy
Let’s start with the biggest, and most-obvious point of all with regard to this discussion – stone is heavy. Really heavy. If you are going to try to install your new counter on your own, you will need to have a plan for how you can move the product into place. You will need to have friends who are willing to help, and those friends should probably have an active gym membership as well. With a professional team, you will have installers who are used to moving around large pieces of stone on a daily basis. These installers will have the strength to handle the job, and they will have the gear to do so safely. An accident while trying to lift your stone can not only damage the expensive counter, but it can also injure someone (potentially in a serious manner). Saving some money on installation simply isn’t worth the risk you will take on by trying to do this yourself.

Getting It Right
A quality stone counter is a significant investment – and it is not one that you want to get wrong. When you attempt to install the stone yourself, you will need to make sure that you get the positioning right down to the smallest of margins. If not, the mistake is going to be obvious and the counter will never look as good as you had hoped. Again, this is where experience comes into the picture. A team of installers who know what they are doing – and who have done it over and over again – are far more likely to get this right than you are when doing it for the first time.

Working with Cabinets and Irregularities
Installing stone counter tops is more of an art than a science. Why? Because no two homes, and no two kitchens are exactly the same. Your kitchen is probably not as perfectly square as you think, meaning there will be some adjustments necessary when the stone goes in to make everything look great. Unfortunately, you might not know how to make those adjustments and ‘tweaks’ if you try to do the job yourself. With a pro on your side, however, you will have access to all of the tricks of the trade. Experienced installers have dealt with plenty of problems over the years, so they know how to get the job done even when things are a little bit less than perfect.

There are plenty of projects in and around your home that are a perfect fit for the DIY treatment – but the installation of a stone counter isn’t one of them. Work with a professional team, such as the team here at Stone World, and you can have confidence and peace of mind that the job is going to get done right the first time.

Contact us to request your free quote!

The Amazing Robo SawJet and How It Benefits Our Customers

Stoneworld Robo SawJet Delivery

The Baca Systems Robo SawJet day of delivery at Stone World in Nashville, TN!

One of the biggest challenges in the process of producing a quality stone counter top is the actual cutting of the stone. This is a part of the job that many customers don’t think twice about – but it is a major issue for the company producing the counter. Using the right equipment – equipment that can get the job done correctly, and quickly – is crucial to being successful in the stone fabrication business. Fortunately, here at Stone World, we have the power of the Robo SawJet on our side.

As you would probably guess, stones like granite and marble don’t come out of the ground already shaped perfectly for your kitchen countertops or bathroom countertops. Instead, it is up to a fabricator like Stone World to turn a raw slab of granite into a beautiful counter that can be installed in your kitchen, your bathroom, or anywhere else around your home. Of course, cutting an extremely heavy, dense product like a slab of granite or marble is a major challenge, which is why it is so important to have the right gear for the job. With the Robo SawJet, we are able to quickly and consistently produce beautiful pieces of stone in the perfect dimensions to meet the demands of our customers.

The Power of Water

It seems impossible that something like water could be used to cut something like natural stone – but that is exactly what happens with the Robo SawJet. A high-pressure abrasive waterjet is used to cut the curves of the stone, along with the use of a 20HP direct-drive saw to cut the straight lines. Cutting through granite and other stones is not an easy task, but it is made to look easy with the use of this impressive machine.

A Dual-Table System

One of the important pieces of customer service that we are focused on here at Stone World is delivering quality stone products to our customers in a reasonable amount of time. We know that you are anxious to be able to have your home improvement project completed, and we want to be able to deliver and install your stone as quickly as possible. With that in mind, the Robo SawJet is a great advantage because we are able to take advantage of its dual-table setup in order to produce more finished pieces in a day. While one piece is being cut, another piece of stone can be prepped on the opposite table. This greatly reduces setup time, and allows our team to be tremendously more efficient.

Stoneworld Robo SawJet Delivery

The Robo SawJet getting installed in our Nashville stone fabrication building (overseen by our owner, Duan!)

In the end, the reason we have invested in this powerful and versatile machine is because it allows us to offer a better experience to you, the customer. The efficiency of this machine makes it possible for us to offer great prices (while producing less waste impacting our environment), and the turnaround times that it can achieve mean we will be installing your stone as soon as possible. If you would like to learn more about our process and how it can help you have a great experience, please feel free to contact Stone World right away. Thanks for visiting!

Make Sure Your Cabinets and Counters Work Together Nicely

Stone World Granite Counters with Two Tone Cabinets

Stone World Granite Counters with Two Tone Cabinets

Generally speaking, there are three (four if you include the flooring) main elements that are going to come together in order to create the overall ‘feel’ of your kitchen – the counters, the cabinets, and the appliances. Of those three, you really need to focus on the counters and the cabinets during the design phase of the kitchen remodeling process. The appliances are going to be picked out toward the end in most cases, and they will probably be either stainless steel or black in color. However, the whole spectrum of colors is available to you in terms of counters and cabinets, so you are going to want to make sure you get these choices right.

Here are some things to consider…

  • Think Function First
  • Don’t Look for a Perfect Match
  • Variety within the Cabinets

Think Function First

Assuming you are going to go with some form of stone counter – and you should, of course – you are going to need to make sure that your lower cabinets are up to the task of holding up the counters. Stone counters can get to be rather heavy, meaning your cabinets need to have the structural integrity necessary to act as a reliable base. Pretty much any new cabinet is going to be up to the task, but you may have to check on the strength of refurbished cabinets before setting a solid piece of stone on top.

Don’t Look for a Perfect Match

While you do want your cabinets and your counters to work together visually, you don’t necessarily want them to match perfectly. In fact, trying to match these two elements should be avoided, for a couple of reasons.

First, you are going to have a hard time perfectly matching a stone counter to a painted or stained wood cabinet. You might be able to get close – but getting close would only highlight the fact that they don’t match exactly. More likely, you will want to use the opportunity of picking out counters and cabinets to feature two different colors that can play off one another nicely.

Second, you should avoid trying to match your counters and cabinets perfectly is the fact that the end result would make for a rather boring décor. Between them, the counters and cabinets in your kitchen are going to take up a significant amount of space – if they are all the same color, there won’t be much to break up the monotony of the design.

Variety within the Cabinets

If you opt for a natural stone counter, you are probably going to have more than one color represented within that slab. When that is the case, consider using multiple colors for your cabinets in order to play off the various tones included in your stone. For instance, you could choose one color to use for the cabinets under the island, while a different color is used on the cabinets which hang on the wall and sit under your sink. Adding this kind of variety is an easy way to create a unique overall design while keeping everything properly coordinated. You can’t have a great cabinet and counter combination without first having a great counter – and that is where Stone World comes into the picture.

Contact us today to learn more about everything that we offer – thanks for reading!

Serious Home Cooks Love Granite Counters

Granite Countertops in Kitchen

Granite Countertops in Kitchen

If you are in the process of installing a new kitchen in your home, and you happen to love to cook, you should look closely at granite as your counter top material of choice.

While there are a variety of stone counters that could work for your needs, granite is a popular choice among serious cooks for a variety of reasons. Whether you are a chef by profession or just a passionate home cook, granite is likely to take your kitchen experience to a new level.

The four primary reasons for considering granite countertops in your new kitchen remodel are…

  • Can Stand the Heat
  • Usually a Big Surface
  • Sturdy and Stable
  • Resists Bacteria

Can Stand the Heat

Most granite counters can tolerate having hot items placed directly on their surface without any damage taking place. This is a great advantage for cooks who might not always have a hot holder or trivet available when something needs to come out of the oven. Of course, you want to make sure that your specific piece of granite can put up with the heat, which will depend on the kind of sealer that has been used. The ability to deal with heat is a great edge over laminate counters, which need to be insulated from heat at all times.

Usually a Big Surface

In addition to having a quality stove and a great set of knives, one of the things that serious cooks appreciate in a kitchen is having ample counter space. Usually, when you opt for granite, you are going to carve out a significant portion of the kitchen to dedicate to the surface so you can show off the beauty of the stone. By having plenty of counter real estate to work with as a cook, you will be able to spread out and really get the job done the right way. Whether you like to make your own pizza dough, your own pasta, or anything else that comes together from scratch, having a big piece of granite will improve your cooking experience.

Sturdy and Stable

When you are hard at work preparing a delicious meal, you will want to have a stable work surface to use – and that is exactly what is provided by granite. Of course, you aren’t going to be doing things like chopping and slicing directly on the counter, your cutting board will have a stable platform on which to rest. There is no room for slippage when you are going to work with a large chef’s knife, so provide yourself with a work surface that can be counted on for stability.

Resists Bacteria

You always want to serve safe food to your family, and that task will get a bit easier when you use granite counter tops. Since granite is sealed, there are no microscopic pores for bacteria to use as a ‘hiding place’. You still need to follow the basic rules of safe food handling in the kitchen, but it is nice to know that your counter will not be serving as a safe haven for harmful bacteria.

You don’t even have to be a serious cook in order to appreciate the many benefits of a granite counter top, but those who do love to cook are likely to fall even farther in love with a granite surface. To find out more about how you can have granite installed in your own kitchen, please contact Stone World today!

Great Kitchen Counters Can Add to the Holiday Experience

Holiday Experience with Granite Counters

With the holidays fast approaching, many people start to think about one thing – cooking. It seems that cooking and the holidays are forever intertwined, as all of the holidays have specific foods which are part of the common tradition. No matter which holidays and traditions are celebrated in your home, there is a good chance that food has something to do with the event.

Of course, celebrating the holidays with your favorite foods is going to be much easier with a great kitchen at your disposal. One of the reasons many people look for a large, functional kitchen when shopping for a new home is because they want to be able to cook with friends and family at the holidays. Specifically, it is kitchen counters that play a big role in how well your kitchen works this time of year.

Room for Everyone

The holidays are about spending time with family and friends, so you don’t want to have to kick people out of the kitchen because of a simple lack of space. When you have large kitchen counters with room to spread out, you can invite others to share in the cooking experience with you. Even if the others in the room aren’t lending a hand to the cooking process, having plenty of counter space will allow your guests to set down a drink while you chat about the holiday season and the year ahead.

The Right Surface

It is no secret that life tends to get a bit hectic around the holidays. If that is the case in your home, having a solid stone surface for your kitchen counters is a great advantage. Most stone surfaces can handle hot items without a problem, so you don’t have to hunt down a pot holder each time something comes off the stove (assuming your stone counter is heat-proof). Also, stone is incredibly tough and durable, so it can stand up to the pounding that might occur when you have large numbers of people over for parties.

Less Stress, More Fun

As mentioned above, stone counters tend to be tougher and more durable than the other options on the market today. What does that mean for you at holiday time? You won’t need to spend time during your parties trying to make sure every treats your counters nicely. Knowing that there isn’t much that can happen which will damage a solid stone surface, you can relax and spend time with your family and friends without stress in the back of your mind.

You probably aren’t going to want to invest in a great kitchen counter specifically for the holiday season, but the benefits that great counters provide during this time of year are another reason to consider having a beautiful stone surface added to your home. Contact Stone World today to learn more about the amazing products and installation services that we offer!

Have Kids? Consider These Countertop Points

Considerations when designing your countertops

Considerations when designing your countertops

As a parent, you already know how important it is to think about your kids when it comes to designing and decorating your home. You want your house to be as ‘kid friendly’ as possible, both from a functionality and a safety perspective. Knowing your home is safe for your kids will help give you peace of mind, and designing features that work well for kids will make it easy to enjoy your time at home as a family.

Your kids certainly need to be considered when picking out the countertops that you will install in your kitchen. Counters are a significant investment, and they will likely be one of the most expensive (if not the most expensive) thing that you purchase for the kitchen project. Choosing countertops that don’t work well for a family with young children could prove to be an expensive mistake.

Kids Spill!

One of the things that you need to think about when picking counters for a house with kids is the fact that children are prone to spilling while eating or drinking. If you plan to set up a place for them at the counter, you want to make sure your counter is ready to hold up to the punishment that might be coming its way. For instance, marble counters are prone to staining when they experience regular spills. If your kids may be dropping juice cups on the counter from time to time, that expensive marble may quickly lose its brilliant white appearance. Opting for a stone choice with better stain resistance would be wise in this case.

In keeping with the point about kids spilling things on your counters, make sure you also pick a color of stone that won’t show spills as easily. Using dark stone for your counter will be much more forgiving to any spilling that takes place, enabling your counter to look its best for many years to come.

Shape is Important

Sharp corners are never a good thing when kids are around, so think about the shape of your counter in addition to the type of stone and color that you pick. By using rounded edges wherever possible, you will take away dangerous points that could cause harm to your kids. In addition, think about the overall design of the counter when it comes to where your kids are going to sit and eat. If you would like to be able to have them sit at the counter to eat breakfast, for example, there needs to be a safe and comfortable place for them to do just that.

One of the best things about owning a home rather than renting a property is being able to make changes as you wish. With kids in the picture, many of those changes will need to be designed around their needs. To learn more about how you can tailor your countertops to the needs of your children, please contact Stone World today. We look forward to working with you soon!

How to Budget for Your New Kitchen This Summer

Summer time - New Kitchen Remodel - Stone World TN

Summer time – New Kitchen Remodel – Stone World TN

Updating the kitchen in your home this summer is certainly an exciting proposition, but it is also an expensive project to undertake. You will likely love the finished product when all the work has been completed and the mess is gone – however, you don’t want to check your bank account at that point to see that you have drained away all of your savings in the process. Budgeting is a crucial part of any renovation project, as you need to arrive at the end of the work knowing that you haven’t blown every last penny on the job.

With that in mind, thinking about how to budget your job should be one of the first steps in a kitchen rebuild. After the math has been done, you can then move on toward the fun parts of the job such as picking out a design, selecting materials, choosing colors, and more.

Big Items First

It is the big, expensive items that are going to go most of the way toward determining your budget for this project. Sure, there are countless little expenses that can also pile up along the way, but those will seem rather insignificant in comparison to the big ticket items. Specifically, there are four items that you should carefully consider from a budget perspective right from the start of the job –

  • Labor
  • Countertops
  • Appliances
  • Cabinets

These four points are going to make up the majority of your budget for any given kitchen remodel (you may need to add flooring to this list as well, depending on your specific plans and the size of your kitchen). Labor often accounts for about half of the overall job, depending on whether or not you are going to do some of the work yourself. Countertops, specifically stone counters, can become expensive in large sizes, so you want to ballpark that expense early on as well. The story is the same with appliances and cabinets, each of which can run well into the thousands and beyond.

Contingency Fund

Very few construction projects go exactly as expected from start to finish, so you shouldn’t be expecting your project to include nothing but smooth sailing. Unexpected costs are a standard part of the construction business, and you need to be prepared accordingly. When budgeting for the job, plan on having between 10% and 20% of the total project cost available for overruns. Hopefully you won’t actually need to use this money, but it should be available just in case. Having a contingency fund for the project will allow you to relax a bit and enjoy the process.

If you are getting ready to start with a kitchen remodel, feel free to contact Stone World at your convenience to get an estimate on the cost of a stunning stone countertop. We will be happy to work with you right from the start of your project so that you know exactly what kind of a bill you will be looking at for your counter. We believe that no new kitchen is complete without a beautiful stone surface, so call us today to get started!

A Stone Island Countertop is the Perfect Finish to an Island

Stone Island Countertop

Stone Island Countertop

One of the best ways to add functional space to a kitchen is through the addition of an island. If your current kitchen doesn’t have an island, or some form of peninsula, you are probably wasting floor space that could be better used through the addition of an island with some cabinets. There are two things that no kitchen can ever have too much of – counter space, and cabinet space. Adding an island addresses both of those issues, so you should strongly consider this kind of addition if you need to enhance your kitchen functionality.

Subtle Storage

The cabinets that rest under your new kitchen island are a great storage addition because they seamlessly fit in with the rest of the kitchen – in fact, you will hardly notice that they are there until you need to use them. Unlike cabinets which are hung from the wall, which have a tendency to make the space feel smaller, your island cabinets will do nothing but enhance the space. Rather than having to get rid of some of your cooking equipment or extra dishes due to a lack of space, you will suddenly have a great landing spot for countless items.

Working Space

Even in a nice kitchen, it can sometimes be difficult to find enough open counter space to work on your food preparations. The ‘main’ portion of the counter has a cut out for a sink, a spot for the oven and stove top, and more. Also, you probably have a toaster, a knife block, and other pieces of gear on the counter, even further cutting into your work space. Therefore, it is great to have an island that you can keep clean and free from clutter. With a big open workspace in the center of the kitchen, cooking will be more enjoyable than ever before.

Top It Off Right

Pretty much any kind of countertop can be used to finish off your island, but a great looking stone counter is naturally the best choice. Something like granite or marble will look stunning in the middle of the room, and it will provide you with all of the great functions that stone counters are known for providing. Remember, this piece is going to be right in the middle of one of the most important rooms of your home, so you want it to look great. It may require a rather large upfront investment to have your kitchen island stone counter installed, but that cost will quickly be justified when you see how stunning the final product looks in person.

If you would like to learn more about the options that you have available to you for a stone island countertop, please contact Stone World TN at your convenience. We have plenty of beautiful stone options available, and most of them would work perfectly as an island countertop. Don’t settle for a man-made product which will lower the appearance of your overall kitchen when you can get an impressive stone counter from Stone World for a great price.

Take a look at our Kitchen Countertop Photo Gallery

Three Great Ways to Complement Your Beautiful Countertops

Complimenting Countertops in Your Home

Complimenting Countertops in Your Home

Countertops are an integral part of any kitchen design. Obviously, at Stone World, we take countertops very seriously. Whether you are looking for a granite counter, a marble or quartz option, or just about any other stone, we would love to help you bring your vision to life. However, while countertops are obviously important, there is more to a great kitchen than just a great counter. It takes an overall vision of what you want from your kitchen if you are going to be thrilled with the final product.

One of the reasons kitchen renovations can become such a costly endeavor is because all of the various elements that need to be purchased in order to complete the job. Fortunately, when the project is complete and everything is in its place, you are likely to love cooking and spending time in your new kitchen. Following are three important elements that you want to make sure are present in your design, along with a stunning counter.

Beautiful Cabinets

This one is probably the most obvious of all. Adding great cabinets to your kitchen is a perfect way to compliment your new counter and the rest of the décor. Cabinets come in a wide-range of styles and sizes, and they can be finished in just about any color under the sun. Picking the right cabinets can be something of a painstaking process simply because of the number of options involved, but you need to commit yourself to sorting through the market until you locate just the perfect look. Also, the cost of cabinets can rival your counter in terms of the most expensive part of the project, so you want to leave nothing to chance with this part of the job.

Stunning Appliances

Installing great looking appliances that also are highly functional is one of the best things you can do to raise the overall level of your kitchen. More specifically, using cheap appliances in an otherwise upscale kitchen will quickly lower the appeal of the space from a visual perspective. You want to make sure that you are picking appliances that fit your décor, whether you are going for a modern look or something more traditional. Just as there are plenty of cabinets on the market to consider, there is also an incredible number of appliances available depending on the budget you have in mind.

Lighting Matters

As a nice break from the expensive elements of appliances and cabinetry, lighting is something that you can add to your kitchen for a modest price tag which will have a major impact. Pendant lights that hang down over counters are increasingly popular, but lights which are recessed into the ceiling remain popular as well. Good lighting will not only give a wonderful feel to the space, but it will also make it easier to prepare food when your work spaces are well lit. You might not wind up putting as much time or effort into lighting as you will the other elements, but it certainly is going to have a major impact on the final appearance of the project.

A Stone Countertop as an Investment

Invest in Stone Counters for Your Home

Invest in Stone Counters for Your Home

Everything you do in your home is an investment. Very few people live in their homes for the rest of their lives, meaning that some day you will sell your house and the return that you get will be largely dictated by the choices you made along the way. All of the changes that you make to your house will affect its market value, so you can either add or take away from what you will receive when that ‘Sold’ sign finally goes up.

Kitchen renovations are one of the biggest projects that you can take on in a house, and the countertop that you select is a big part of the work. Adding a new counter can give your whole kitchen a new look, and it can give it added functionality as well. Chances are, if you are going to renovate your kitchen, you are going to think long and hard about the countertop that will be the centerpiece of the project.

It’s Not Cheap

There is no getting around the fact that adding a stone countertop to your kitchen is a costly investment. Whether you are going with granite, marble, or any other option, you are going to have to write a serious check in order to make this great addition to your house. The bill will likely be in the thousands, as the cost of installation can quickly add to the cost of the material itself. So, the question is simple – is it worth it?
In almost every circumstance, the answer is yes. Stone countertops are a great addition to a kitchen, not only for your own enjoyment, but also for the resale value of your home. Given two otherwise identical homes next to each other, the home with a quality stone countertop in the kitchen will always be considered more valuable.

Performance Over the Long Run

One of the reasons why stone counters are such a good investment is that they last over the long haul. That means that even if you aren’t going to sell your house in the near future, those counters should still be offering value many years from now. That point stands in contrast to something like carpet, which will wear out and not have the same value down the line. If you go with a good stone counter, you can count on it to look and perform great long into the future.

Understanding Marginal Cost

When pricing out granite or marble options, remember that you shouldn’t be comparing those prices to spending nothing at all. If you are renovating your kitchen, you are going to need to put in some form of countertop, and that counter will have some specific cost associated with it. So, even if you go with a cheaper laminate option, that option will not be free. It is the difference between the cost of stone and the cheaper alternative that you need to be concerned with. More times than not, that difference will be more than worth it when you consider the value that you are adding to your home.

Adding value is only one reason to go with stone counters – there are many others! Contact Stone World today to learn more.