Stoneshop is a one stop shop for finely detailed fabrication of natural stone kitchen countertops, incredible marble and tile baths and everything else you can imagine in granite, marble or tile. You will be guided by interior designers with decades of experience, in a showroom and stone gallery stocked with the latest in hand-picked, quality slabs and tile including granite, marble, quartzite, limestone, travertine, quartz and exotics such as onyx.
Questions & Answers
New countertops and upgraded kitchens and baths are an investment, and as many studies have shown, a very good one, adding value to your home more than any other improvement. So like any other investment, it is important to be a smart investor, armed with the tools and knowledge to make an informed decision.
Make sure that you choose someone who is licensed, insured and OSHA compliant. You do not want anyone on your property that might create a risk to you and your family. Ask if the salespeople are designers with experience in stone and tile as the last thing you want is a product that is not suitable for the use intended. Check with friends and check reviews online to be sure you are dealing with a reputable company. STONESHOP is New Jersey’s only Marble Institute of America Accredited Fabricator.
- Are the slabs I choose the actual slabs I will get?
- How many seams will there be and where are they located? (Some low price providers can charge less because they use more seams than necessary)
- If I am going over existing cabinets, can you remove the existing tops AND dispose of them? (Ask that they can “template over” existing to reduce downtime)
- Do you re-polish the surface of the stone to correct any dull spots that may exist on the slab? (Stoneshop has surface polishing equipment to “touch-up” the factory finish…many shops do not
- Can I see the layout of my kitchen on the slabs?
- Do you refinish under large overhangs such a an island?
- Is sealer applied at the factory?
- Do you have a written guaranty?
- What red flags should steer me from a fabricator?
- No fabrication facility (they will dry cut in your driveway)
- Slabs with dull spots, faded, many imperfections (this is commercial grade stone)
- Multiple bad reviews on web searches, even bankruptcy
Generally speaking, no. Very low prices might mean commercial grade stone is being used, so be sure to see the slabs you are ordering. Some stone is available from multiple sources, so the base price is low. There is, however, First Choice, Second Choice and Commercial Grade, with First Choice having even looking color and movement (veining). All three will perform perfectly but the “quality” is based on the appearance and your personal taste. Other than that, price is based on the country of origin, the rarity of the products and the difficulty in the mining and finishing of the slabs at the quarry.
Starting its life as sandstone, quartzite forms when sandstone and quartz are together, under tremendous amounts of heat and pressure. This causes the empty grains of sandstone to become filled with quartz—a process that actually makes the quartzite harder than quartz. Quartzite is a very strong and durable material that possesses a high resistance to heat and stains. Since it’s made primarily of silica, quartzite actually has a very high resistance to anything acidic (which is the culprit of etching). But, in some quartzite slabs, there can be traces of calcium carbonate—a substance that reacts very easily to acid. If these areas come into contact with acids, this can cause localized etching. Etching can range from feeling smooth to rough and may be cloudy looking. You’ll want to contact a stone restoration professional to address these etches.
Keep in mind that quartzite also offers a resistance to absorption and a high hardness rating. Granite has a hardness rating of 6-6.5, Quartzite is around 7, Diamonds are 10. So even if quartzite does come into contact with acidic materials, it will give you more time to clean up before it starts to etch.
Quartzite is extremely popular not only because of its durability, hardness, resistance to heat, scratches, and water absorption, but also because it looks a lot like marble and has granite like properties. Many quartzite colors come in shades of light grey and white, which are stylistically very popular today. With just a few protective measures, such as choosing a honed finish over a polished finish or adding a stone sealant for an extra layer of protection, quartzite can be a beautiful countertop that offers style, practicality, and longevity.
Quartz, or engineered stone, is a man- made product that is sold under many different brands such as Silestone, Cambria, Caesarstone and Zodiaq. It is a composite material made of crushed stone bound together by an adhesive, (most commonly polymer resin, with some newer versions using cement mix). The two common stones used in producing these products are marbles and quartz, the application of this product depends on the original stone used, for engineered marbles the most common application is indoor flooring and walls, while the quartz based product is used primarily for kitchen countertops.
It is important to remember that these products exhibit variation of pattern and color similar to natural stone and none of the manufacturers will guarantee a blemish free surface. Regarding heat and scratch resistance, most colors will behave like granite. These products are used mostly when a color not found in nature is desired.
Your countertop will be delivered sealed and will be sealed again upon installation and final inspection. We use sealers that are designed specifically for the stone you are using. Some stone needs a more aggressive impregnator, some need very little. We recommend resealing every 4-5 years, but if you see water starting to leave a temporary dark mark, it may be time to reseal. It is not a difficult task and can be done in just a few hours.
There is a sealer product available for marble and quartzite that carries a 15 year warranty offering protection for these more delicate surfaces