Color Variances: Why you must see your slab

Color Variances: Why you must see your slab

August 26, 2014


Q: I bought a marble countertop for my kitchen remodel through a popular big box outlet. When it arrived for installation, the color just seemed “off.” They “reassured” me that this was the color that I had selected. However when I held my sample up to it, there was a clear difference in both the pattern and overall color. I had little choice but to go ahead with the installation, but I’m wondering…how could there have been such a mix-up?

A: Actually, it’s very likely that this wasn’t a mix-up. Just like the tomatoes that grow in your garden are all slightly different in size, shape, and shade of red, any natural occurring stone (including marble, granite, slate, soapstone, etc.) will have variations in color, tone, granularity, and pattern.

Sometimes these differences are slight. Sometimes they are pretty dramatic. We expect these variations. In fact, they are part of what makes natural stone so beautiful and unique.

Alpine Granite

This picture of Alpine granite is a perfect example of why it's difficult to get a truly representative 6x6 sample. Photo via Marble and Granite, Inc.

Always remember that a sample is just that…a portion of one random slab. It’s meant to give you a general idea, but it’s not indicative of the precise piece of stone that you’ll have in your home.

We strongly encourage all of our customers to come to our showrooms to see your slabs in person.  This is the best way to be 100 percent sure that you get exactly what you want. All of our slabs are housed indoors, and our facilities are well lit with natural lighting so you’ll be able to see the slabs and their true color. We’ll take you into the slab showroom and let you preview your actual slab before you buy it. We’ll help you look over as many slabs as you like, answering any questions that you have and educating you along the way. Sahara Noir Marble

Here is another example of variance. A 6x6 sample of this Sahara Noir marble can't show this pattern in its entirety.

Think of picking out the exact slabs you’ll use as part of the “fun.” It’s one of the few times you get to select something for your home that’s completely one-of-a-kind. You can view our complete inventory online at And while this is useful, keep in mind that it won’t take the place of actually seeing your slabs up close and personal.

We strongly recommend verifying your slab color and pattern in person, but it’s also a very good idea to look for any imperfections with your own eyes. Natural stone will always have variations. And an “imperfection” can be a completely subjective detail. The only way to be completely sure you’ll be totally happy with your final product is to see it, touch it, and experience it with your own eyes and hands.


Show Comments