Category

DIY Soapstone Countertops

M. Teixeira DIY Soapstone Countertop Project Featured in Fine Homebuilding Magazine

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, Soapstone Countertop

Fine Homebuilding Magazine’s recent article, “Home Buyers Love Splurges in the Kitchen,” suggested that homeowners invest in high quality kitchen finishes before putting their home on the market. The kitchen has long been known as the heart of the home, and this sentiment is true whether your house is going on the market or will be kept in the family for years to come. M. Teixeira’s DIY Soapstone Countertop was used in Fine Homebuilding Magazine’s ProHOME kitchen for its durability and elegance. The kitchen featured is a mix between modern and traditional, which showcases soapstone’s ability to flawlessly blend with and accentuate any design aesthetic.

DIY soapstone countertopSome homeowners shy away from natural stones because they believe the cost isn’t within their budget. Soapstone is an affordable option, but can be even more affordable if you use M. Teixeira’s DIY Soapstone Countertop kits. More than half of the cost of soapstone counters comes from labor, which makes our DIY kits a smart choice for pennywise homeowners.

M. Teixeira’s DIY Soapstone Countertop selection ranges from complete DIY to fully fabricated, so no matter your skill set or tool collection, you can save money on renovating your kitchen, outdoor area, or bathroom counters. For those who may second guess their ability to tackle this project, we’ll even give you a practice piece to try before you commit to the full kit. Take a look at M. Teixeira’s DIY options today to get started on building the natural soapstone countertop you’ve always wanted!

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Belvedere Close UP

Just Arrived in Virginia! Stormy Black, Belvedere Soapstone & Alberene Soapstone

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, New Arrivals, Soapstone Countertop

We just received a new shipment of Belvedere Soapstone slabs in our Washington Metro Virginia location.  Come visit our showroom and soapstone slab yard to get the best selection.

 

Stormy Black Soapstone

 

Stormy Black Soapstone

 

Church Hill Soapstone

 

Church Hill Soapstone

 

Belvedere Soapstone

 

Belvedere Soapstone Closeup

Stormy Black Soapstone is a very tradition soapstone. Once treated with mineral oil the stone darkens and the beautiful veining shines through. Check out Roger Teixeira’s video describing this beautiful stone.

Belvedere Soapstone is very unique and if often chosen for contemporary applications.

Alberene Soapstone is a classic traditional soapstone that comes from the Alberene Quarry in Virginia. View owner Roger Teixeira’s video describing this classic stone.

New-Super-White-Quartzite

Just Arrived in Denver! Super White Quartzite and Belvedere Soapstone

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, New Arrivals, Soapstone Countertop

We just received a new shipment of Belvedere Soapstone slabs in our Denver Colorado location. Come visit our showroom and soapstone slab yard to get the best selection.

 

Belvedere Soapstone

 

Belvedere Soapstone

 

Belvedere Soapstone

 

Super White Quartzite

Belvedere Soapstone is very unique and if often chosen for contemporary applications.

Super White Quartzite has that classic look of Marble, but is more durable and easier to maintain.

kitchentogo

Renovate & Save with DIY Soapstone Kitchen Counters

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, New Soapstone Products

If the heart and soul of your home—the kitchen—is ready for some rehab, make it easier on yourself and your budget with DIY soapstone countertops. Most home renovations can be an expensive undertaking, and custom kitchens with professional installation are at the top of that list. To save money, consider DIY countertops made from soapstone, a material that is long-lasting, attractive, and easy to work with. If that sounds worth your sweat equity, M. Teixeira Soapstone offers a Kitchen-to-Go Soapstone Counter Kit for DIYers like you. Read on to see how you can make your own custom kitchen counters that are affordable and have all the advantages—and then some—of a traditional stone surface. 

Custom Counters Without the Contractor Costs

The ease of working with soapstone means you can DIY your own custom kitchen countertops without paying for the cost of a contractor. Steatite, another name for soapstone, doesn’t require specialty tools for cutting or sanding, so you won’t need to call in the pros for installation. You likely have the equipment to install your own soapstone countertops using our Kitchen-To-Go-Kit. You’ll get the pride of a DIY well done, plus save a lot of money in your kitchen renovation budget. If you’re more than a little handy, shop our selection of budget soapstone slabs, too.

Soapstone Is Ideal for DIY Kitchens 

Self-installing your soapstone counters not only saves you money, but it’s a great way to ensure that your DIY kitchen isn’t ruined in a d-a-y thanks to the heat and stain resistance of the stone. Whether the kitchen is your family’s activity hub, the drop zone, or your personal sourdough sanctuary, soapstone is a smart solution for countertops that can handle it all without staining. Denser than marble, slate, limestone, and even granite, this remarkably durable material is virtually impervious to stains. Soapstone’s nonporous surface won’t permanently discolor from a coffee cup ring, wine spill, or household cleaner. Its hard, heat-resistance means you’re safe from burn marks or cracks from hot pans, too. 

Soapstone Offers Low Maintenance, High Value

DIYing your countertop takes a little work upfront, but the years of low maintenance are well worth it. Soapstone is easy to care for whether in your kitchen, for your bathroom sink and tub, or for your outdoor living space. The solid surface resists bacteria and germs, which is a huge bonus for increased hygiene. Worry less about wear-and-tear, and quickly care for minor scratches and scrapes with the right maintenance wax and oils. Your Do-It-Yourself project will Pay-for-Itself as the surface outlasts other materials, aging to an organic, vintage-looking patina. Whether you speed up its aging with mineral oils or waxing or leave it untreated, you can look forward to your soapstone looking more unique and attractive as time passes without additional work.

Choose Your Soapstone Fabrication Level

Our soapstone DIY counter kit has multiple options, so you decide what the “it” in Do-It-Yourself means.

  • Choose Complete DIY to do it all—you’ll receive a slab to cut, fabricate, and install.
  • If you’re less comfortable, consider our custom Cut-to-Size offerings—we cut the pieces to your specifications, with or without a finished edge, and you install.
  • We also offer Full Prefabrication: We do all the prep and you receive finished countertops, ready to install.

Whatever package you choose, you’ll save money compared to ordering out-of-the-box with a professional kitchen renovator.

Recently, homeowners Matt and Laura reached out to report their success with our DIY kit and soapstone sink, and they shared this message: 

“I have never worked with stone countertops before and I want your customers to know how easy soapstone is to work with. I was very nervous to take on this project, but it was not technically difficult and the end result exceeded my expectations.”

We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how easy it is to fabricate or install your own soapstone countertops, and we’re available to answer questions from start to finish. The end result—an attractive, durable countertop—returns on your sweat equity for years to come. The hardest thing for you to decide on now is the best soapstone, so order a sample pack to explore our available color choices and explore our blog for inspiration.

 
 
 
 
 

Our New Soapstone Kitchen Visualizer – Explore Endless Possibilities

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, M Teixeira News, New Soapstone Products, Soapstone Backsplash, Soapstone Countertop

Envision Your Dream Kitchen

The kitchen is the focal point and heart of any home, where functionality and aesthetics come together to embody your personal taste and style. Release your inner designer with our easy-to-use Kitchen Visualizer. Whether you have a small or large kitchen, designing a new kitchen can be overwhelming, but this new tool will help you take the guesswork out of the design process and your new kitchen plan.

From Inspiration to Reality

When you first make the choice to upgrade or remodel your kitchen, you probably begin your search for inspiration. You bookmark blog posts and kitchen galleries or save magazine clippings of kitchen pictures. Perhaps you have a friend or relative who recently remodeled their kitchen and you find yourself imagining it in your home. At a certain point throughout this process, you have ideas of your favorite kitchen design ideas, and then you hit an inspiration roadblock. You like the wall color in one image, the counters in another…

Bring Your Kitchen Design Elements Together

M. Teixeira’s new Kitchen Visualizer is here to help! Bring your favorite design elements together in one easy place. With a few clicks, our easy online tool lets you build your dream custom kitchen with soapstone countertops and backsplash. Don’t give in to the roadblock, use our interactive guide to help you visualize the kitchen of your dreams!

Soapstone Kitchen VisualizerEasy to Use Features

This great new web tool allows you to quickly and easily choose your favorite kitchen design elements in one place. Our visualizer also allows you to print, email, or save your designs.

Choose from a variety of applications, such as:

  • Countertop
  • Backsplash
  • Appliance finish
  • Flooring
  • Cabinet style
  • Cabinet color
  • Wall color

See For Yourself

Our Kitchen Visualizer is right at your fingertips to help you create the kitchen of your dreams – get started today!

Homeowner Achieves Dream Kitchen with Soapstone DIY Countertops

By DIY Soapstone Countertops

Justin of Bridgewater, NJ recently reached out to let us know how beautiful his newly remodeled kitchen looks with our affordable DIY Soapstone Slabs. Justin touted the project as a unique aspect of his remodel and only requiring a little patience, diamond blades and routers, and a few strong friends to help lift the slabs. He also managed to complete the whole countertop installation with only one small seam, barely visible behind the sink.

Justin’s kitchen is a prime example of achieving your dream kitchen for just a fraction of the cost. Fabricating and installing your own soapstone slabs is an incredibly affordable way to produce a high-end, tasteful result on a tight budget. We love to see these success stories; if you have one to share please email us at info@soapstones.com!

Click here to read Justin’s blog post about his beautiful new kitchen.

 
 
 
 
 
 
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BIG Savings With Our Kitchen-to-Go Kit

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, New Soapstone Products

Our Kitchen-to-Go Kit is ideal for the handy homeowner who would like a beautiful soapstone kitchen countertop at considerable savings.

Unlike granite, soapstone is soft enough that it doesn’t require special tools for fabrication. All you need is a circular saw, a jigsaw, a drill/driver, a grinder, and a sander, making your kitchen soapstone countertop an inexpensive DIY project.

For pricing and kit details, visit our store.

About the Hardness of Soapstone

By DIY Soapstone Countertops, Soapstone, Soapstone 101
Roger Teixeira

There are a lot of questions, rumors, myths, and misinformation about the hardness of soapstone. I’d like to inform you about the facts of this stone, its characteristics, its hardness and uses, and how to test it so you are fully informed about this durable, natural material.

Soapstone Mineral Composition and Uses

Since soapstone is made mostly of talc, it is naturally softer than many stones. What determines its hardness or softness comes down to how much talc is present among other minerals in soapstone’s composition. Average architectural grade soapstone contains approximately 50% talc and is commonly used for countertops, wood burning stoves, sinks, and floor tiles. This composition is also called steatite. Harder soapstone is likely 30% talc, while softer stone—used by the art industry for carvings and other installations—will often have 80% talc in its mineral makeup.

Differences Between Soapstone and Serpentinite

There are natural stones falsely labeled as soapstone that fail to meet one very important requirement: talc content. Some very hard “soapstone” has no talc in it, and in petrological terms, it cannot be called soapstone; it is serpentinite.

I have heard references to the “new generation” of soapstone being harder; this is comical because in geological terms, serpentinite metamorphosed into soapstone, which makes these harder stones the “old generation,” and the softer soapstone you know today is its new iteration.

How does an average person tell soapstone from serpentinite? Testing the stone’s hardness is a common characteristic to measure. If a stone is so hard that it cannot be scratched with a knife blade, chances are that it is a serpentinite and not a true soapstone.

Serpentinite hardness isn’t the only characteristic that makes it different from soapstone. It also differs in its thermal properties. While one cannot use serpentinite in an application with extreme heat, soapstone boasts heat retention and durability in excessive temperatures including fireplace linings and mantels. 

Measuring Mineral Hardness With Mohs’ Scale

Mohs’ scale of hardness is one way to determine the actual hardness of soapstone. Although Mohs’ scale was classified using 10 basic minerals (not rocks or stones), it can be used as a guideline to determine the hardness of all materials, including soapstone.

To determine where any material falls on the Mohs’ scale of hardness, it needs to be tested against a mineral on the scale. As an example, a fingernail cannot scratch Calcite (3) but it will scratch Gypsum (2), so it can be concluded that a fingernail is approximately a 2.5 on the scale.

With that mode of comparison in mind, if you scratch soapstone with something that has a confirmed hardness and the soapstone scratches, we know it is the softer material and we can begin to make additional comparisons to rank the stone. We’ve provided some hardness values for common materials below for your own use to see the actual hardness of soapstone or other materials.

  • Fingernail: 2.5
  • Copper penny: 3.5
  • Knife blade: 5.5

Keep in mind that anything harder than the knife blade is definitely a serpentinite and not a soapstone. 

Is Soapstone Fragile?

No, soapstone is not fragile. Even though it is softer than other stones, namely serpentinite, the mineral makeup creates a pliable material that isn’t brittle or susceptible to cracking. Its various grades make soapstone adequate for many uses, from artistic carvings to outdoor furniture, countertops, and floor tiles.

Does Soapstone Scratch Easily?

Most soapstone will only scratch if one purposely tries to damage the stone; how easy it is to scratch depends on the grade—how much talc is present—and the softness of the stone. If your stone does become scratched, the beauty of it is that you can easily buff the area with regular sandpaper or apply a dab of mineral oil or soapstone wax to hide the scratch; this easy fix is one of its distinctive features.  

Explore more soapstone facts and tips at our blog. Thanks for reading,

Rogerio M. Teixeira

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