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  • Writer's pictureDesigner James Treble

Selecting From Large Samples

Ah, showroom visits – they're like stepping into a treasure trove of possibilities! ✓ ✓ ✓

When it comes to kitchen bench-tops, there are numerous options available: natural stone, man-made stone, porcelain, timber, laminate... and an array of colours and patterns to suit every taste. It can be overwhelming for the unexperienced, and that's why the help of a professional is not only welcome but often necessary. I know my products well, for example, it's my job, but even I cannot possibly know all there is to know about every brand and the range they offer ...

If you are at this stage in your selections and feel unsure which product to choose for your own kitchen, well, here's my top tip: head to a showroom armed with samples of other finishes you're considering. With large format slabs on display, you can truly visualise how each option will complement your palette ... it's a fun game of mix and match until you find the perfect combination.

Recently, I had the pleasure of visiting the Caesarstone showroom in Alexandria, NSW, where I took my time to select a few favourite samples. I wished for an organic vein through the stone, and the only way to pick the right one for my project was to look at large format slabs rather than selecting from a small sample. Arabetto won me over right away. Its blend of organic elegance, and subtle greens and gold, complements my palette perfectly. A match made in kitchen heaven!

Selecting the finishes for a kitchen is a bit like cooking a recipe – it's all about balance, and the benchtop is definitely one of the major ingredients. But there's more involved in its selections than just good looks. Your kitchen benchtop needs to withstand the hustle and bustle of daily life. Whether you're whipping up a gourmet feast or simply enjoying your morning coffee, your benchtop should be up to the task. That's why it's paramount to select a product of tested quality.

My advice? Consider (1) your lifestyle first and how you use the space, (2) the overall aesthetic of your desired kitchen, and of course (3) your budget. With the right guidance and a bit of exploration, you'll find the perfect benchtop that not only looks great but also stands the test of time.

So, do your homework first, research what you like and what you don't, then embark on your showroom adventure and remember to enjoy the experience. I'm sure you will discover the benchtop of your dreams, just like I did.

Happy hunting!

For more info about the products used in this renovation click HERE and watch the online renovation show to see more of this house transformation: James Bought A House is online and free to stream on YouTube or at

James Treble has three decades of accumulated experience in the Building Industry, Real Estate and Interior Design and regularly shares his knowledge and experience in adding value to properties through effective design & styling. James is also an ambassador for Planet Ark and firmly believes in sensible purchasing, recycling and creative re-purposing. Watch his free videos on YouTube, and follow him on Facebook and Instagram for plenty of Design information. Watch his free Online Series to see how an Interior Designer renovates his own home.


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