Marble Kitchens: Interiors Inspiration
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Have you been yearning for a marble kitchen to complete your home? Us too. But what kind of marble should you use for kitchen surfaces? Which designers make the best marble kitchens? And how can you achieve an ultra-modern marble kitchen? C&TH have enlisted the expert advice of kitchen design king Charlie Smallbone, Jamie Blake of Blakes London and interior designer Alessia Mainardi to answer all your questions.
Consider your surface options
Lesson number one: marble ‘look’ surfaces certainly don’t mean compromising quality. As the founder of bespoke kitchen design service Ledbury Studio – Charlie Smallbone should know. ‘The essential requirement for a kitchen surface is its performance,’ says Charlie. ‘Surfaces such as marble or wood are wonderful and beautiful materials, but they’re vulnerable to certain actions’ (meaning they’re not ideal for cooking, chopping, and other things you might want to put your kitchen surfaces through). Instead, Ledbury Studio kitchens like this one use Quartzite. ‘Quartzite is a fairly interesting but high-cost material,’ says Charlie. ‘It’s harder than granite and has good resistance to acid. At our Ledbury Mews showroom, I have used Bianco Macaubas Quartzite, which is close to marble in character but with all the positive functional properties of granite.’ ledburystudio.com
What colours go well with a marble kitchen?
Almost any will go well (that’s the beauty of versatile marble surfaces). But don’t be afraid to opt for shades that are richer, darker and more dramatic. In this Peckham Rye kitchen, deVOL Kitchens have mastered a contemporary feel with rich pine-green paint. Industrial brass fittings, skylights and acres of weathered wood infuse the design with modernity and intrigue. devolkitchens.co.uk
Keep it simple
‘Keep the design simple and functional’ suggests interior designer Alessia Mainardi – who recommends a less-is-more approach when designing marble kitchens for her clients. ‘Use a maximum of two materials, one for the door and one for the worktop.’ This kitchen by Blakes London is a perfect example. Whilst maximalist in feel: clean lines, two-tone colours and clean, modern fittings keep the design classic and elegant.
Tips for simple marble kitchens
Generally; you can never go wrong with a beautiful piece of freestanding furniture. Neptune’s Chichester collection combines pared-down elegance with handy features (like vegetable draws, window seat cabinets and ladders and rails). To create a simple Scandi feel to your marble kitchen: take note from the bleached wood and cool grey tones in this design. Freestanding kitchen islands, butler’s sinks and minimal shelving are also brilliantly useful additions, while enhancing the sense of structured simplicity. neptune.com
Where can I find a marble kitchen island?
A short-cut to the marble kitchen trend without going all-out is to create a focal point out of a marble kitchen island. Caesarstone has a vast array of marble-look worktops to choose from for a statement kitchen island (which are actually made from hard-wearing quartz). Even better, it pioneers environmental and sustainability standards – recycling 97% of the water used in manufacturing. caesarstone.co.uk
What other materials go well with marble in the kitchen?
‘Wooden materials are a good combination for a Scandi look’ suggests Alessia Mainardi, ‘and then a matt lacquer finish for a more contemporary look.’ If you’re going for maximum impact, try layering unusual combinations; wire mesh, gilded glass, velvet, brass and plush chairs all come together in this Smallbone Mulberry Collection kitchen. Going all-out Art Deco: it’s a maximalist’s dream. smallbone.co.uk
Tips for designing a traditional marble kitchen
Dreaming of a kitchen that combines marble with country-house elegance? The key is to look for kitchen designers who specialise in joinery and cabinet making, so your marble surface can sit alongside materials that enhance and emphasize its best natural qualities.
This design by Artichoke hits all the right notes. Artisan-made cabinets blend with contrasting materials, and subtle splashes of earthy, muted colours. Modern accents like minimal metal handles and contemporary subway tiles on a backsplash keep the design up-to-date. To add a touch of marble without going all-out: a marble sink will never go out of style. artichoke-ltd.com
What should you look for in marble surfaces?
‘The four essential elements to consider when choosing marble surfaces are practicality, beauty, context, and movement,’ says Jamie Blake, of Blakes London. ‘Consider what complimenting colours you have in the kitchen; blue, for instance, looks best with Statuario, Carrara and most white-based marbles with blue or grey-bleeding veins. Why? because whites look whiter with blue surrounding, and the bleeds really stand out.’ When looking for marble for your kitchen that makes a statement, ‘it’s best to use subtle and softer tones around the marble. In a very dark kitchen it’s best the marble either compliments in bleeds, or that it’s much subtler in colour.’ blakeslondon.com
Layer marble with other materials
If you have a little more space to play with, consider contrasting a statement marble island with wooden cabinets. ‘Use geometric straight lines and lines and pay attention to the alignment of the different elements,’ says Alessia Mainardi. ‘Plain doors with no handles and playing more with materials and less with the design makes for a contemporary kitchen.’ Grigio carnico leather and corian designer white have been used for the statement island by Eggersmann. The contrasting cabinets in smoked oak planked veneer create a dynamic layering of material and texture. eggersmann.com
Navy marble kitchens never go out of style
Still conflicted over the design your marble kitchen? If in doubt, opt for navy. A dramatic contrast to snow-white marble: this classic and simple combination will keep everyone in the family happy no matter their taste in design. This beautiful example from Stoneham was designed by Phillip Ozorio at Connaught kitchens. With simple details offset against dark, rich woods, it’s the type of design that turns heads whilst never going out of style. stoneham-kitchens.co.uk; connaughtkitchens.co.uk