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Modern, Lightweight Marble Design

March 22, 2011
[caption id="attachment_338" align="alignright" width="300" caption="This bar table is perfect for small spaces and casual dining."][/caption]

Traditional marble furniture may feel too heavy for people with modern design tastes but the durability, shine, and natural beauty of marble makes it an irreplaceable design element. Jardan solves that conundrum by creating a table that appears lightweight and modern but is still unmistakably marble.

Australian designer Nick Garnham of Jardan was inspired by the breezy, fresh motifs of the tropics when designing the Iko table. The marble table tops are finished with a bullnose edge (rounded and smooth). Since no two slabs of marble are identical, each surface is unique. Choose between Carrara and Calacarra marbles. The bases are constructed of solid American oak that can be completed with 7 standard finishes. The wood is painted in a variety of bright and cool speed stain colors.

The tables are sold in numerous sizes and heights that are ideal for any size kitchen, kitchenette, dining room or outdoor eating area. Think outside of the box by using these tables in gardens and living areas.

Marble and Granite provides an array of natural stone products and services. Contact us at 866.950.8443 or visit our website at marbleandgranite.com for details.

Source: designmilk
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Marble Home Accents

March 18, 2011
[caption id="attachment_325" align="alignleft" width="170" caption="Cloud Marble coasters are elegant and understated."][/caption]

Complement your marble floors or counter tops with marble home accents. Artwork and accessories that use marble are an excellent way to create a unified design motif throughout your home.

[caption id="attachment_323" align="alignright" width="163" caption="This vase complements red marble floors beautifully."][/caption]

Coasters: Marble coasters can be displayed on coffee tables and side tables, instantly pulling the color and texture of your marble flooring into the seating area.

Candles: Set the mood with romantic marble candle holders. Candle holders come in a variety of shapes and styles to accommodate a room of any size and design.

Vases: Because of the intricate vein pattern in most marble, we recommend using your marble vase as the center of attention (centerpiece or feature on a bookshelf) instead of storing flowers in it. Why distract from the natural beauty of the stone?

Clock: Marble clocks are a great way to merge beauty and function. There are marble freestanding clocks as well as wall mount varieties. Be mindful when hanging marble clocks. Large clocks will need to be mounted carefully.

Marble designs are a timeless way to add elegance to your home. To get started, contact Marble and Granite , Inc. at 877.39.STONE or visit marbleandgranite.com.

Image Source: Pebblez.com
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Common Myths About Stone Sealers

March 17, 2011
[caption id="attachment_318" align="alignleft" width="240" caption="Sealers do not add shine to surfaces, nor completely protect them from stains."][/caption]

Sealers can be great tools for protecting your natural stone but it is important to understand their limitations.

Myth: Natural stone sealers prevent staining.

Fact: Some stones, like granite and soapstone, rarely stain. Some marble and travertine may stain if the spill is not wiped up immediately. Either way, a sealer only slows down the natural rate at which stone absorbs liquids; sealers do not create some impenetrable force field around your stone.

Not all sealers are created equal. SenGuard Permanent Bond Sealer is an excellent liquid repellent and dramatically reduces stones' absorption rates. But if a cracked bottle of oil or unnoticed drop of wine remains on the surface too long, you will still have stained stone.

This also means that sealers do not protect your stone from etching and water stains either. Find an etch remover polish or contact a professional to correct etching issues with your marble and other stones.

Myth: Sealing natural stone will keep it shiny.

Fact: Sealers do not enhance shine. Polish does. In some cases, such as with granite, only a mechanical process using diamond abrasives can restore or increase shine.

It is important to note that acids (coffee, soda) slowly damage the shine on marble, limestone and travertine counter tops so it is important to clean up spills immediately to prevent staining and to maintain shine.

For further information on natural stone care, or to add natural stone to your home, call Marble and Granite Inc. at 877.39-STONE or visit marbleandgranite.com.

Source: countertopspecialty.com

Image Source: HansNYC
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Understanding Countertop Fabrication Costs

March 10, 2011
After reading an article about countertop pricing, which begins on p. 74, in the January 2011 issue of Stone World, we want to offer this advice to countertop fabricators:

Taking the time to relay important details to your customer is a key factor in selling your service.  The Home Depots and Lowes of the industry sell their countertops as a SKU, so competing on price is not a competition at all.  Also, break down an ad that lists multiple offers because the listed items are not always relevant (they might already be included in the service and are not really a deal.)

There is a need to determine fixed costs (business costs that do not change) and variable costs (business costs that change with level of production.)  Direct costs such as freight, materials, power, tools, commissions, labor, etc., do not change.  “Indirect costs” are things such as administrative staff, insurance, marketing, and safety programs.

There are various pricing strategies in the market:

  • Square-foot pricing: not very effective when differentiating businesses

  • Good/Better/Best pricing: varied pricing for different market segments (retail, k&b, designer, contractor, etc.

  • Bundle pricing: encourages the use of a product in quantity by offering a discount   for volume, allows for profit maximization

  • De-bundled pricing: encourages customer to upgrade and choose

  • Premium pricing: geared towards unique and high quality, maximizes profit

  • Penetration pricing: for use in new and different markets


Tools such as software, time sheets, and job cost sheets help determine the level of cost in a fabrication business.  Detailed pricing sheets that list cut-outs, edgework, radius corners, bump outs, lamination, seams, etc., are itemized so you are able to break down every detail of the customer's particular job. This is where you can possibly negotiate details with the customer if they do not like the price.

In a competitive market where price is always the first topic of conversation, it is important to outline the details and importance of your service. Check out our post about the factors affecting the price of granite.
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Quartz Countertops a 2011 Kitchen and Bath Trend

January 29, 2011
The National Kitchen & Bath Association has released its 11 Kitchen and Bath Trends for 2011, and on the list is quartz countertops. Though granite is still the most popular countertop option, quartz countertops such as Caesarstone are taking some of the share of the market.

Caesarstone is an engineered stone surface containing ground up pieces of quartz held together with a resin to form a durable solid surface. Consumers like Caesarstone because it is more affordable than granite and comes in a wide variety of colors to match interiors. Quartz countertops are most popular in kitchens, but they can be used in bathrooms as well.

Besides countertops, designers and product manufacturers are using Caesarstone in a host of creative applications, including texturized Motivo wall panels and Sonobath vessel sinks, which are both available at Marble and Granite Inc.

Want to get in on the quartz countertop trend? Caesarstone countertops in Sandalwood are on special this month at Marble and Granite Inc. while supplies last because they are being discontinued.
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2011 Kitchen Trends Debut at International Trade Show

January 21, 2011
As trade show season in the design industry is underway, 2011 kitchen trends are emerging. The new Living Kitchen trade show, billed as the first International Kitchen Show, has kicked off in Cologne, Germany, and we want to take a look at how design and technology are evolving in the coming year:

  • Kitchen layouts are changing as kitchens become part of the living space

  • The evolution of the "smart" kitchen, which feature "integrated sound systems, LED and digital lighting concepts as well as remote controls and electronic cabinet opening mechanisms"

  • Matte finished surface and countertops create the natural, organic look that is popular

  • Kitchen colors are being selected to create either a warm atmosphere or high contrast

  • Classic style cabinetry is making a comeback as a backlash against the minimalist look

  • Energy-saving and integrated kitchen appliances in simple black and white.


For the latest kitchen trends sent straight to your inbox, sign up to receive e-mail updates from Marble & Granite Inc. in Westwood, Mass.

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Stone 101 from Marble and Granite Inc.

January 08, 2011
Continuing our video series on natural stone properties, we present "Introduction to Natural Stone, Part 2."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoxYW0EWXW0

Browse our inventory of imported marble and granite, available wholesale at Marble and Granite Inc. in Westwood, Mass., and Milford, Conn.
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Get Extra-Large Slab of Green Marble

January 06, 2011
There is only one slab left of our extra-large verde saltan marble, an elegant and durable natural stone material ideal for any application. It is from Lot #8569 and measures 140-by-58 inches. Green-colored stones, or serpentines, are glamorous options for kitchen and bath countertops, replacing neutral beiges and whites. Due to the high concentration of serpentine minerals, these green stones are significantly less porous and much denser than other marbles. This allows for installation in high traffic areas such as kitchens and even kitchen islands. Plus, you can't beat a seamless countertop this big!

Contact Marble and Granite Inc. for more information.

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