If you're in the building materials industry, you know the trend is for larger format surface installations with designers. And what usually follows is the building products market.
When we talk to designers and see other new developments, we notice more and more full wall marble backsplashes, expansive islands with book matched waterfall ends. Shower walls and feature walls installed with full porcelain or natural stone slabs.
Whether it's at KBIS ( Kitchen and Bath Industry Show) or The International Surfacing Event (TISE). We see the design and building trade modify towards larger slab formats.
The slim profiled look on countertops has actually been popular in Europe for quite some time already. The clean-lined look fits perfectly towards, modern, minimalistic high-end kitchen and bath designs.
For a long time, 2 cm thick natural stone was the most popular thickness for kitchen and bath countertops. It slowly changed to 1.8 ~ 1.6cm as the industry realized 2cm thickness wasn't really necessary and was just added weight/material. Then Canada started promoting 1cm thick marble and granite slabs.
Can you see how the trend yet?
Maybe we can attribute this to Steve Jobs & Apple for this minimalistic and functional approach in design. The driving force behind the "ultra-thin marble" in interior design is due to the popularity of the integrated kitchen concept. Designers want appliances to blend into the surrounding cabinetry, and to have functionality without compromising design.
The marble wireless charging pad is so popular because it is a decorative design piece for the home or office, and also carries functionality to power your mobile device.
Canada did a good job growing the popularity of 1 cm thick (about ⅜ inch), ultra-thin granite tops. This clean streamlined look was perfect for high-end, modern spaces. And with a growing metropolitan population, the super-slim countertops worked perfectly in smaller kitchen and bath spaces, helping these areas appear larger. But now the trend shows 2mm ultra-thin marble slabs and countertops are becoming more desirable not just because of the aesthetic feature. But because it also allows better integration for smart home devices.
Sometimes less is more! With the recent shift in design trends, simple and clean are the sought after looks.
Kitchen and bathroom designs have shifted towards more open spaces, featuring that modern slick look. Designers and architects are pushing for larger, more grand looking stone walls, backsplashes, and fireplace surround. And when you use the traditional 2cm or 3cm thick slabs, it becomes quite a challenge. It also extends designs to cabinetry, home appliances, and many more with ultra-thin marble slabs, taking design to another level!
Thin slabs are stronger, lighter, and much easier to work with during the fabrication process, yielding more cost savings and shortening the duration of each project.
The best part is that there are no special tools needed to work with these panels. Treat them as regular stone slabs.
Ultra-thin reinforced 2mm marble slabs are recommended for the following surfaces:
With thin marble and granite panels, it becomes so much easier to reach the back of the countertop or behind faucets and fixtures. With a fraction of the weight, handling the material and working on various types of installments becomes a breeze in comparison to working with traditional thick stone.
You can also see designers and homeowners looking for larger panels not just for the contemporary style, but also because of the low maintenance, minimal grout lines, and more surface area of stone. Seamless shower walls feel so much nicer and cleaner.
Many people have a misconception that thinner means it is more fragile, since marble is fragile, to begin with. Through modern technology and science, we are able to reinforce the marble slabs to become stronger and more durable.
Think about mobile phones. They used to be big and bulky but does that mean they are more powerful or functional than the slimmer & lighter iPhones?
What if I asked you if you think "glass" is fragile and breakable? If you answered yes, then what about bulletproof glass?
If we can make bulletproof glass, why is it so hard to believe we can make natural stones durable and thin at the same time?
Are we limiting our thoughts because of past experiences and what the industry tells us?
The increased flexural strength of the reinforced 2mm marble and granite slabs are enabling designers and fabricators to take their projects bigger and higher to the next level.
Do you think you are ready for a change?
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