Good Questions: Help me Fix My Kitchen Counter!

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Hi AT,

I'd love some input on how to overhaul my kitchen counter. I'm in a one-bedroom in a brooklyn heights brownstone, with an open kitchen divided from my living room by a peeling-formica counter (see pics).

My budget's somewhat flexible, but I'm figuring on spending about $1,000.
I like granite or soapstone....

but I'm wondering if the dark color might overwhelm the space a bit. I also like wood, but then there's the problem of it matching the floor. Tile?

Many thanks! Marian

Dear Marian, you have a light, warm kitchen that is very much in the "country kitchen" direction. In keeping with this, we would recommend a nice, long butcher block top. It would fit in, look beautiful from a distance and be easy to maintain, since it is not next to your sink.

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Go for a proper, unpolyurethaned butcher block that you oil to seal. The poly ones look good at first, but then they show cuts and marks which you can't get rid of. Other opinions? (Thanks, Marian!) MGR

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Good Questions, Kitchen

Maxwell left teaching in 2001 to start Apartment Therapy as a design business helping people to make their homes more beautiful, organized AND healthy. The website started up in 2004 with the help of his brother, Oliver.