An igneous stone, granite originates as magma deep below the surface of the earth. When this molten material starts to cool, the varying rates at which it does, coupled with the immense pressure within the chamber, lead to an array of crystalline formations. Common formations included feldspar and quartz, the two primary minerals in granite, along with small amounts of mica and other minor minerals.
Luxurious and elegant, marble is composed of pure calcium carbonate that’s been metamorphosed into limestone by high temperatures and incredible pressure. The mineral make up of marble may lead to possible etching and stains from fruit juices, soda, or other acidic substances. Marble is quite soft and therefore more suceptible to dings and scratches. Before choosing it for a home, consider wear and tear.
Quartzite, not to be confused with quartz stone surfaces, is naturally occurring and formed when sandstone meets extreme heat and pressure, recrystallizing the quartz grains and cementing them into their present mosaic of silica crystals. The look of each quartzite slab is often striking and memorable: the colors can vary from clear, glass-like crystals, to smoky whites and greys, to deep reds and even creamy greens, many with striking mineral deposits such as veins of iron. If you’re looking to make a lasting impression that will have people talking, be sure to consider quartzite for you new kitchen or vanity tops.
Many of us are familar with soapstone tabletops from science class and remember the characteristic "soapy" feel. Soapstone’s primary mineral is talc, which is high in magnesium. This magnesite content, couple with it’s high density, allows it to absorb, store and evenly radiate heat, making it the perfect choice for a fireplace surround (or lab table). Many who choose to use soapstone for their homes will typically elect to deepen the hue with several applications of mineral oil.
Engineered Stone (Quartz) is a composite material made of crushed quartz bound together by an adhesive.
A form of limestone deposited by mineral springs, especially hot springs. Travertine often has a fibrous or concentric appearance and exists in white, tan, cream-colored, and even rusty varieties.