Countertop Ideas for

Kitchen Remodeling

Your countertops serve as a focal point in your kitchen. They influence the space’s overall aesthetic and the harmony between different design elements in your culinary space. And, they affect the functionality of your work surfaces. This is why you need to evaluate your kitchen requirements and explore countertop ideas before deciding on which countertop material and design you will have for your kitchen.

From assessing your unique needs to exploring popular materials, trends, and innovative design ideas, this article covers everything you need to know about countertops to elevate the results of your kitchen remodel in Memphis.

How to Evaluate Your Countertop Needs

Choosing the right countertops is a crucial decision in any kitchen remodel. In this section, you will learn how to make this decision while ensuring your choice aligns with your lifestyle, design preferences, and budget.

1. Assess How You Use Your Kitchen

Assess how you use your current kitchen countertops on a daily basis. This will help you get an idea of which materials are the best countertop materials suitable for what you need and how you use your kitchen. Getting the material that matches your usage will help ensure your countertop lasts for a long time and retains its appeal. You can assess your countertop usage by taking note of the tasks and the manner it is performed by each family member, such as food preparation, cooking, baking, serving meals, cleaning, and organizing. Identify which areas of your kitchen and which countertops receive the most use and traffic. And, consider specific functional requirements a countertop for a specific area might need, like heat resistance near the cooking area or high durability for countertops near the sink.

2. Consider How Much Maintenance You Can Handle

Countertops need proper and regular maintenance to maintain their appearance and functionality and to ensure their longevity. However, countertop materials have different maintenance requirements. This is why you need to consider the maintenance requirements of the material before choosing it for your kitchen countertops. If you find it easy to do, you are more likely to clean and maintain it regularly and properly.

3. Choose a Material and Color That Suits The Design Of Your Kitchen

Choose a countertop with a color and pattern that complements your kitchen’s color scheme and design style. When choosing its color and pattern, consider how it matches your cabinets and flooring and how the natural and artificial light will bounce off of the countertop’s surface. If you are doing a kitchen remodel in Memphis, we recommend choosing the design of your countertops first before your cabinets and floors. You will have an easier time matching them since countertops already have limited colors and designs and your choices are further constrained when you limit it to your preferred material.

4. Determine Your Budget

Set a budget for your countertops when doing a kitchen remodel for your Memphis home then explore your options within the price range you set. To get the best value for your money, choose a countertop material within your budget that you can easily maintain and is recommended by professionals as one that can last a long time.

5. Explore Kitchen Countertop Materials

Each countertop material has something to offer and can be the perfect kitchen countertop for the right homeowner. Explore the different options you have and find out their unique functional and aesthetic characteristics, as well as their strengths and weaknesses. Doing so can help you find out which countertop materials align with your envisioned design and functional requirements.
home interior with a hardwood floor, a living room, a wooden dining table, a white and brown kitchen island with a sink, and chandelier lighting fixtures with candle designs.

6. Seek Professional Advice

Professional kitchen remodelers can provide valuable insight into countertop materials, finishes, and maintenance. They can also assess your kitchen layout and design to recommend countertop materials that fit within your budget.

Popular Countertop Materials

Whether you love to cook or simply want the most stylish kitchen for your Memphis home, your choice of countertop materials is an important decision. It will not only affect the style of your kitchen but also the durability and functionality of your culinary space. So, when choosing a countertop material, consider how well it can suit your lifestyle, habits in the kitchen, and preferences.

Below are the most popular countertop materials to consider for your kitchen:


Granite countertops are durable and heat and scratch-resistant, making them a great choice for a busy kitchen. It has a trademark speckled appearance but each slab is unique having a range of different colors like creamy white, deep black, gray, bright blue, and salmon pink. And, when sealed properly, granite countertops are easy to clean and can resist bacteria and stains. 

As for its disadvantages, granite is one of the more expensive materials for kitchen countertops. But, because of this, it is considered as a premium amenity and can add to the resale value of your home.


Limestone countertops give a kitchen a natural, timeless, and earthy appeal. It can withstand high temperatures. And, limestone’s softness makes it easy to cut into different shapes and sizes.

However, limestone is susceptible to stains, scratches, and etching due to its softer and more porous material. But, you can prevent these from occurring by regularly sealing it. Although it’s a durable material, it can still chip or crack when subjected to heavy impact.


Quartz is an engineered stone, made from quartz particles bound together with resin. Being a man-made material, it is available in a variety of colors and patterns, including designs that imitate the appearance of natural stone. Despite being man-made, quartz countertops are extremely durable and are less likely to crack or chip compared to natural stone countertops. It is also non-porous, so you don’t have to seal it or worry about staining it.

However, quartz countertops are among the more expensive countertops. It is not as heat resistant as natural stone countertops. It is also extremely heavy, so it may require additional support structures to install it in your kitchen.


Quartzite countertops can resist heat and scratches and are less likely to chip or crack than other natural stones. It has a close resemblance to marble but requires less maintenance and is easier to care for, making it a good alternative to the material. Overall, quartzite is a good natural stone countertop for homeowners who love to cook or simply have busy kitchens. 

On the other hand, quartzite is among the most expensive countertop materials. And, with its weight, it is recommended to invest in additional supports to ensure your cabinets can hold their weight. Plus, like any natural stone countertop, it needs regular sealing as part of its maintenance, or else it will stain and harbor bacteria given its very porous nature.

Sintered Stone

Sintered stone is becoming popular as a countertop material thanks to its durability and aesthetic appeal. It has incredible hardness and impermeability, making it scratch-resistant and difficult to stain. It is suitable for indoor and outdoor use thanks to resistance to heat, freezing temperatures, ice, and UV rays.

However, there are some drawbacks to sintered stone. Since it’s a relatively new countertop material, sintered stone has a higher price tag than other materials. It is also prone to damage borne from impact, especially around its edges. And, the textures and patterns are only visible on one part of the slab, which some might find unappealing.


Marble is a popular countertop material for their luxurious appearance and added value to a property. It offers timeless appeal and a one-of-a-kind look. And, with its naturally cool surface, marble countertops make an excellent surface for baking, pastry making, and chocolate making. 

Marble countertops are porous like any other natural stone material, making them prone to staining. It is also soft, so it is prone to scratches or being etched by acidic substances. Because of this, marble countertops require proper and regular sealing to maintain their durability and appearance.


Travertine countertops have a rich and polished appearance, which makes them perfect for creating a warm and sophisticated look for your kitchen. It comes in various colors that work well with just about any style or color combination. Travertine countertops can also withstand extreme weather conditions, so you can install them in indoor and outdoor settings. 

However, you need to be careful with acidic substances spilling on travertine countertops, since these can damage or discolor them. It also requires special cleaning and maintenance supplies, along with periodic polishing and resealing to maintain its attractive appearance.


Laminate is one of the most affordable materials in the market for countertops. It is easy to clean and maintain, which can be done with a soft sponge, mild soap, and any non-acidic cleaners. And, minor cracks, burn marks, and dents on laminate material can be repaired by a professional. You can easily find a laminate countertop for the look you want to create in your kitchen with its wide range of textures, colors, patterns, and designs. These include designs mimicking the appearance of natural stone and wood. 

Laminate countertops are susceptible to burns, scratches, and delamination. It also has a short lifespan of 10-15 years. And, laminate countertops are often perceived as cheap and less appealing, so it is unlikely to increase the resale value of your property.

Butcher Block

Butcher block countertops come in a variety of wood species, including cherry, maple, oak, walnut, and bamboo. It can last as long as granite countertops (around 20 years) with regular cleaning and maintenance. Cleaning and maintaining butcher block countertops are quite easy, which involves the use of household products like dish soap and vinegar. And, any nicks and scratches can be sanded down and refinished with food-safe oil to return it to its pristine condition. 

As for its drawbacks, butcher block countertops require sealing with food-safe oil at least once a month to prevent the build-up of germs and mold and the warping and drying of the wood. It is not heat resistant so you need to be careful with placing hot items on it, or else it will scorch the wood.

Color and Texture Trends in Countertops

There are several colors, designs, and finishes that you can choose from for your kitchen countertops. Whether you want to create a timeless appearance or a more modern look, you have several choices to create the look that you want. Here are some popular ideas to help you create a design that is unique and that reflects your style and personality:

Nature Themes

Design inspired by nature is on the rise. You can see this in countertops with neutral colors, like warm undertones, bolder designs, such as colorful marbling, and unconventional colors like deep blues and terracotta hues. Some countertops even have a honed finish to add a textured look that appears more natural.

Soft and Neutral Tones

Countertops with softer and more neutral colors, like whites and dove grays, are becoming more popular. These colors blend easily with different kitchen styles, including modern and traditional. And, neutral colors are also good choices for creating contrast with more colorful or dark cabinets and backsplashes.

Contrasting Countertop and Cabinet Colors

Some of the latest modern kitchen designs have countertops and cabinets that contrast each other or the rest of the space. It can even go beyond colors by applying contrast between textures, like a smooth countertop finish against a textured cabinet finish. This can create a striking impression and add depth to the space without adding visual clutter to the kitchen.

Unconventional Countertop Colors and Veining Patterns

Kitchen countertops with bold colors and designs are used to add a unique and personal touch to a kitchen’s design. Some examples include countertop colors like deep blue and terracotta hues, and natural or engineered stone with colorful and bold marbling of emerald green or amethyst-like purple veining, The use of these countertop colors and designs creates a unique look that sways away from the conventional kitchen countertop colors of whites, off-whites, grays, beiges, creams, and blacks.

Varying Countertop Finishes

Polished or matte finishes continue to be the choice by designers and homeowners for their kitchen countertops. But, rougher finishes with raised textures are entering the scene. These textures add a natural influence to the kitchen, especially in modern design where the clean and straight lines may make the space look monotonous.

Combination of Different Countertop Colors or Materials

Combining different countertop colors, materials, or finishes is one way some homeowners and designers use countertops to create a personalized and dynamic appearance. Different combinations can also be used to accommodate specific uses in different zones in the kitchen. For example, marble countertops for rolling dough and sintered stone for kitchen surfaces beside the stove.

Elevate Your Kitchen with Innovative Countertop Design Ideas

Several innovative and creative countertop designs increase the aesthetic appeal of your kitchen. Here are some examples to inspire you:

Waterfall Edges

Waterfall edges consist of a continuous slab of material extending vertically down the sides of your kitchen island or cabinets. This creates a sleek and modern look for your kitchen and highlights the beauty of your countertop material.

Integrated Sinks

Integrating your sinks with your countertops creates a smooth and cohesive look between these two parts of your kitchen. This design gets rid of the raised edges around your kitchen sink, making it easier to clean and maintain while also maximizing the countertop space available.

Customized Inlays and Patterns

Customized inlays and patterns allow you to personalize with geometric patterns, mosaic tile inlays, a personalized monogram, and more. These give your kitchen a touch of your personality and charm that is unique to your home.

Backlit Countertops

Backlit countertops have built-in lighting that illuminates its surface from below. This creates a dramatic and striking effect that adds ambiance to the kitchen and highlights the surface and details of the countertop material. Translucent materials, like onyx and quartzite, get the best effect from backlighting.

Hidden Storage and Features

Incorporating hidden storage and features into your countertops improves the functionality and efficiency of your kitchen while allowing you to maximize the space available. Some examples of these features include pull-out cutting boards, built-in knife blocks, and concealed charging stations.

Tips for Maximizing Countertop Space and Utility for Smaller Kitchens

When selecting countertops and designing the space for your smaller kitchen, here are some tips to consider to create a more appealing and functional culinary space for your home.

1. Choose Light-Colored Countertops

White, light gray, beige, and other light-colored countertops can help make your small kitchen appear more spacious and brighter. This effect results from natural and artificial light bouncing off the countertops.

2. Choose Materials with Minimal Seams

Countertop materials with no or minimal seams have a smoother appearance. This reduces the visual clutter and creates a cleaner, more streamlined look in your kitchen.

3. Use Thin or Low-Profile Countertops

Thin and low-profile countertops take up less space in your kitchen, allowing you to maximize the available space for your work area and storage. Plus, these countertops take up less visual space, which makes your kitchen appear larger.

4. Prioritize Functionality in Your Kitchen Design

Every square inch in your kitchen matters. Prioritizing functionality allows you to design a kitchen that optimizes its layout for efficient movement and optimal storage capacity in your limited space. This maximizes the usability of your space and makes using your kitchen more enjoyable.

5. Maximize Vertical Space in Your Kitchen

Maximize the vertical space in your kitchen by installing shelves, cabinets, or racks above the countertops. This frees up your countertop space and keeps clutter to a minimum, making the limited space look cleaner. 

If you want to learn more about the different options for your kitchen storage needs, click here to learn more about our extensive collection of cabinets.

6. Utilize Your Kitchen’s Corner Space for Storage

Utilize your kitchen’s corner space by installing corner cabinets, open shelving units, pull-out shelves, or Lazy Susans. This gives your kitchen more storage and allows you to keep items off of your countertops.

7. Install Undermount Sinks

Undermount sinks do not have a sink rim. This makes the design more space-efficient and allows for more usable countertop space. And, without the sink rim, your countertop looks more spacious.

Are you ready to revitalize your space? Reach out to Southern Stone & Cabinets today for the best kitchen remodeling in Memphis.

Inspired to Revamp Your Kitchen with Stunning New Countertops?

Start your journey of turning the vision you have created with these countertop ideas into reality with Memphis’ expert kitchen remodeling builder! Whether you’re drawn to a timeless design or a modern look, our team can help you design one that fits your preferences and satisfies your functional requirements. Contact us today to explore the wide range of countertop options we offer, receive expert design and material advice, and start the kitchen remodel of your Memphis home!