Thoughts on Soapstone Counters

Fifty one weeks ago, I shared our thought process and decision on soapstone countertops for our kitchen.

Kitchen-Soap-Stone-Counters-Detail

To be completely honest, the owner of the stone yard didn’t do much to upsell the product.  In fact, in a way, he made us somewhat apprehensive about soapstone saying it’s soft, easy to scratch and chip.  They only sell a few kinds locally, and he said a few customers have returned to share they hated that they had to be careful so as not to damage their new, expensive counters.  But at $100 for everything we needed, it was a low risk situation to try something different.  If we really hated it, neither of us would have felt too bad replacing it.  After a year of living with the counters, we can safely say we’re big fans of this dense, but soft stone.

Soapstone-Counter-Left-Side

In addition to the amazing price, we love that it is non pourus, can handle direct heat from pots and pans, can’t stain, and doesn’t require sealing.  All great points, especially if you’re a germaphobe.  Every few months I apply light coat of mineral oil, even so that’s strictly because I like the darker look.

Soapstone-Counter-Toward-Ovens

It’s true that it is softer, much softer, than granite.  Our old brown granite counters didn’t have a single chip, but we have a few small ones in these.  Near the sink there’s a chip about the size of a pencil eraser in diameter.

Soapstone-Small-Chip-by-Sink

If the stone had a glossy sheen, it might be more noticeable, but thanks to the matte finish, it’s hard to find unless looking for it.  Can you spot it in the photo below?

Soapstone-Counter-Left-Detail

No?  I’ve circled it now to show where it is.

Soapstone-Counter-Left-Detail

Comparing the soapstone to the old granite, it’s no more work to maintain, and we aren’t any more or less carfeul working on these.

Soapstone-Counter-Sink-Edge

Occasionally sealing granite can be annoying simply because the counters can’t be used while the sealer cures.  When I apply the oil to darken and enhance the soap stone, it’s quick.  I wash the counters as usual, then pour on a little mineral and spread with an old cotton cloth before rubbing off the extra with a different one.  As I mentioned before, this step is unnecessary, but I like the look of the darker stone.  Here’s how it looks without:

Soapstone-Counter-Unoiled

And the difference a light rub of oil makes:

Soapstone-Counter-Half-Oiled

If a kitchen or bath remodel are in your future, and solid surface counters are on your list, I’d highly recomment checking into soapstone options.  In fact, my cousin asked my opinion and that’s what spurred this post.  One hundred plus years ago, soapstone was common in homes, either as countertops and/or sinks.  More recently, granite has become popular, but I’ve never been a big fan of the glossy finish.  For us, and perhaps for you, soapstone was the perfect choice.

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Thoughts on Soapstone Counters

  1. I’m so glad you are happy with the soapstone! It’s really beautiful. And I’ll repeat myself from your previous post about it – what a lucky deal! A steal!

  2. I have followed you for quite sometime…and I love your soapstone counter tops! They remind me of a couple that I met on a garden web site years ago. We would all meet up and talk flowers and food for hours and eventually went to several outings to take that next step in our friendship. We went to Nashville Tenn, St Catherine’s Ontario, Mount Vernon, Ohio, Missouri and several other places that I couldn’t attend. The couple that we met from Canada were artists and Sandy brought us all a chunk of Soapstone to carve. I would love to have you see what it is we carved from this ‘magical’ piece of olive and black stone. If you were to google Sandy Cline it brings up soapstone carvings .. but an easier way is to click on this link http://www.soapstonesculpture.com/ make sure and look at the links along the left side of the page.. and when you see loon.. that was us.. Crazy as a loon for Soapstone! Happy Day to you!

Now it's your turn! Share your thoughts and opinions, stories and links. We love hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s