The Design Blog

Megan Herr

Granite

No, granite is a natural, porous material which can absorb liquids such as water or oil. When absorbed, liquids can leave a dark colored spot in the stone. Water will evaporate in time but oil substances can leave stains if not wiped up within minutes. Most stains can be removed using a poultice or paste that will draw the oil from the stone. With that said, granite does qualify as being impervious to water and is actually less absorbent than some other solid surface (plastic) products. To keep this material more stain resistant, it is essential that you reseal it using a natural stone sealer at least once a year.

Marble

No, marble is a very porous material. Marble is more prone to staining than its competitors Granite and Quartz. Since it is also a lot softer than other solid surfaces, it is crucial that you don’t use anything acidic or harsh when cleaning up spills. Cleaning products or tools that are too abrasive can leave an etch mark or stain on the stone. It’s also very important to wipe spills away completely and quickly. A good quality sealant should be reapplied on marble every 3-6 months to help prevent stains.

Quartz

No, but it is highly stain-resistant due to its nonporous and repellant aspect. It can repel even the most common types of stains such as wine, coffee, make up, oil and vinegar. Since it is a nonporous material, pathogens are less likely to develop in the material and will be easier for a homeowner to keep a clean kitchen. Quartz does not require an initial sealing or continued sealing like granite or marble does.

No, not necessarily. All three types of material are not in inexpensive, however, they are all beautiful, durable surfaces that will last for many years to come. Granite can be a more affordable option considering it has lowered its square foot cost in the recent years. Depending on the level of granite or marble and the particular company or pattern of quartz; granite can be a significantly more cost effective material. However, if you are considering a level 3-4 granite/marble, or an exotic stone; quartz is most likely going to be a more affordable way to go. Some factors that change the cost of granite are the extraction of the stone, and the shipping of the material which consumes a lot of time, money and energy. Factors that change the price of quartz are company, pattern or color of material, demand, labor rates, thickness and edge treatment, among others.

Granite and marble are 100% natural material, which is why no two slabs alike. The slabs are sliced directly from the quarry, cut to size, and honed until smooth. Quartz is somewhere around 93-97% natural quartz, mixed with color pigments and polymer resins to bind the particles together to form a solid surface.

Since granite and marble are a natural material, there are lots of options of colors and patterns. Even one type of granite can vary so significantly from lot to lot that you would not believe they share the same name.

Quartz tends to be a bit more uniformed in patterns and coloring. As the hues and patterns use to be limited, quartz companies now have various options. For example, Cambria has up to 100+ designs.

Since granite and marble are quarried from the earth, slab sizes will depend on what they can remove. Typically they are somewhere around 4 to 5-1/2 feet wide and 7-9 feet long.

Most quartz come in a standard slab size of 55” x 120”, while some also come in a jumbo size of 63” x 120”.

One thing to keep in mind if you are planning on putting a large island in your kitchen is to remember the slab size and where a seam may need to go.

FAQ: Granite, Marble & Quartz Countertops

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Shannon Hockenberry

Raise your hand if you LOVE to clean? (Anyone? Anyone at all?)

Since cleaning is low on our list of “things we love to do”… We’re here to take a little pressure off of you by providing some information about what cleaners and sealers to use on what products. At Indoor City, we carry the products detailed below to help make your chores a little bit easier. Feel free to contact one of our designers or stop in the showroom – we’d be happy to help you make the right choice on what product to use on your new or existing flooring or countertops. We’d also love to hear about what fun plans you have in store for AFTER your pesky cleaning is out of the way… Let’s get down to business:

Once ‘n Done

Used on: no-wax vinyl, ceramic, marble, granite, terrazzo, slate, and stone.

Armstrong’s Once ‘n Done is a no rinse floor cleaner. It can be used on no-wax vinyl, ceramic, marble, granite, terrazzo, slate, and stone! It is safe on ceramic tile grout, but do not use on linoleum, hardwood, or cork. For standard cleaning just mop on 1 cap to 1 gallon warm water and you’re done! You do not have to worry about rinsing off as well as any dulling or sticky film. If you’re looking to do some extra-strength cleaning, mop on 5 caps to 1 gallon of warm water. For any of those tough spots use full strength, let it soak 2-3 minutes, loosen with a scrub brush or pad, and wipe away! However, do not use full strength on ceramic tile. This is a wonderful product for busy households looking for an effective one step cleaner!

Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner

Used on: Unwaxed, polyurethane finished wood floors.

Bona is a spray on hardwood floor cleaner specifically used on unwaxed, polyurethane finished wood only. To use Bona just lightly mist product in approximately a 4’ X 6’ area, then mop over and you are done! The cleaner does dry quickly so spray small portions at a time to avoid stickiness. If stickiness does occur, re-spray and mop the area immediately after.

Capture

Used on: all carpet

Capture is a 4-step carpet cleaning system. It is safe on all types of fibers and fabrics. You may use Capture on all stain resistant carpets and even wool rugs! It is great for use on pesky stains, as well as on your entire carpet to keep it looking new. Enjoy a clean carpet with these 4 easy steps! Step 1) Pre-Mist: Lightly spray soiled area with Soil Release Pre-Mist approximately 2’ away from carpet. For heavily soiled traffic areas, very gently brush pre-mist into the carpet. Step 2) Sprinkle Powder: Sprinkle entire area with Capture Deep Cleaning Powder. Step 3) To active powder, spread over area with brush from left, right, up and down. There is no need for heavy scrubbing. Step 4) Wait 30 minutes and vacuum up product. Although there are 4 steps to this method, it is still a very fast and easy solution to getting your carpets looking brand new again.

Revitalizer

Used on: natural stone countertops

DuPont’s Revitalizer Cleaner and Protector is great for cleaning spills and messes on your natural stone countertop’s and surfaces. It is recommended for uses on natural stone surfaces such as granite, marble, limestone, travertine, slate, and sandstone. It features a built in sealer that reinforces protection for easy cleaning! To use, spray product directly on soiled area and remove with a dry towel, lint-free cloth, or sponge, and you are done! This product has a gentle formula and is available in citrus or cucumber scents.

DuPont BulletProof Sealer

Used on: natural stones such as marble, granite, limestone, slate, bluestone, Saltillo, travertine, and sandstone.

DuPont BulletProof Sealer is used for natural stones such as marble, granite, limestone, slate, bluestone, Saltillo, travertine, and sandstone. This product features advanced microband protection and can be used for interiors as well as exteriors. Before using, allow new grout installations to cure for a minimum of 72 hours. Make sure surfaces are clean, free of any waxes or cleaners, and retain a surface temperature of 50-80 degrees. Here’s how to apply sealer: liberally apply an even coat using a paint pad, roller, brush or low-pressure sprayer. Allow sealer to penetrate the surface for 10-15 minutes. During this time, keep the surface wet with sealer, adding more sealer as needed. Do not let sealer dry completely on surface. A second coat may be needed for porous, absorbent surfaces. If a second coat is required, it should be applied 30-40 minutes after the initial application. Following the final application, thoroughly wipe dry the entire surface with clean absorbent towels. Should a sealer residue appear, rewet the impacted section of the surface with sealer. Agitate the surface with a white nylon scrubbing pad to loosen residue and wipe dry with a clean, absorbent towel. A full cure is achieved in 24-72 hours. Use of the treated surface may resume in 6-8 hours.

DuPont Aerosol Grout Spray

Used on: sanded and unsanded grout

DuPont Advanced Grout Sealer is a product that protects grout from stains and keeps it looking brand new. It can be used for grout on natural stone, ceramic, and porcelain tile. For new installations, product may be applied within 2 hours of grouting! Although, for best results we recommend you wait 4 hours or more. For cured installations, grout must be clean, dry, and free of sealers and coatings. To use sealer, hold can 10 to 16 inches from the grout surface and spray evenly along grout line. After 10 to 15 minutes, wipe the entire surface with a dry cloth to remove any excess sealer. A second coat is recommended and may be applied within one hour of first coat. Traffic may begin 2 hours after application on cured grout. For newly installed grout, follow grout manufacturer’s guidance.

Floors & Countertops: Keep Them Clean & Looking Like New!

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Shannon Hockenberry

Here at the Indoor City Granite & Marble Yard, we fabricate and install granite, marble, soapstone, and quartz countertops! Not sure which countertop surface is right for you? This video explains the differences, and the pros and cons to all the stone surfaces we offer.

The Indoor City Granite & Marble Yard is located at 1284 Loop Rd., Lancaster Pa – just off of Manheim Pike (Rt. 72).  Call the Granite & Marble Yard at 717-393-3931

Video Transcript:

Hi, I’m Shannon, the design manager here at Indoor City Flooring.
If you’re familiar with our blog and website, you’ve been introduced to our talented design team, who is always willing to help you with your flooring needs. But, did you know that indoor city does more than just flooring? We also fabricate and install granite, quartz, and marble countertops! There is a constant debate on what type of material is considered the best countertop today. I’ll be sharing some information about different types of popular countertop materials and let you decide what is best for your home and lifestyle.

Granite is a natural stone that is mined from many different places around the world. The beauty of granite is that no two slabs are exactly the same. When selecting a granite for your home, it’s often best to pick your exact flat, so you know what you’re getting. Granite comes in a variety of finishes polished, honed, and leathered, however not all granites are offered in every finish. Granite is heat-resistant and durable, but it’s porous and can absorb stains if not properly sealed. If you’re looking for one-of-a-kind countertop that is durable and unique Granite is a great choice for you.

Marble countertops are without a doubt some of the most beautiful natural surfaces you can put into your home. Marble slabs come in a variety of colors from solid white and solid Black, to heavily veined and unique colors. Like granite, no two slabs are the same. Also, like granite, marble is heat resistant, however, it is much softer than granite, making it a less durable countertop option. It is also more porous and more susceptible to scratching so keep this in mind if you’re considering a marble countertop for your kitchen, and be sure to keep it properly sealed and protected from substances that may stain or scratch the surface. If properly cared for, a marble countertop could easily be the star of your kitchen. 

Quartz is a man-made product that is comprised of natural quartz and resin unlike granite and marble which require sealing, quartz countertops don’t require any maintenance based on their non-porous surface. while quartz offers some heat resistant, manufacturers recommend the use of hot pads or trivets to protect the countertop surface. There are many different styles and colors available in quartz. You can get solids, mixed colors, and natural patterns. When selecting a quartz countertop many times what-you-see-is-what-you-get since labs are very similar to the samples we showcase in our showroom, which will often eliminate the need to select your exact slab from the yard.  Once you select the material for your countertops there are still other decisions to make.

Our designers at Indoor City would be happy to help you with your edge treatment selection, sink options, and care and maintenance information for your new countertop. Our fabrication happens in house, and we’d love to start working on your next kitchen countertop. Stop in to see us today. We would be happy to show you the beautiful slabs of granite, marble & quartz we have in our yard. For more information check out our website at www.Indoorcity.com.

The Indoor City Granite & Marble Yard

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Indoor City

Although choosing your tile may be a difficult decision, another crucial decision is choosing the appropriate grout for your tile installation. There are many factors that come into play when choosing the right grout, such as color, durability/cleanability, grout joint size, type of tile and surface.

Most grout types come in a vast range of colors, making the coordination between grout color and tile color feasible. There are even grouts with a sparkle quality including products such as Laticrete, Spectralock, Dazzle, Bostik, Dimension and Custom Fusion Pro. These glittering grouts are perfect for a glass tile installation. In picking grout colors, another important factor to take into account is contrast. Often times adding a little contrast with your grout selection is a great way to spruce up your tile schematic. If you choose to use a white subway, perhaps consider using a light or dark gray grout to create some contrast and interest with the grout joints. If the tile you are working with is of natural stone, typically from a design stand point, picking a grout that blends with the stone and does not take away from its natural qualities is suggested.

When it comes to grout, there are two main types, sanded and unsanded. An unsanded grout is typically used when the grout joint is 1/8th of an inch or less. The use of an unsanded grout is suggested when the tile is made of a scratch susceptible material such as glass or a polished natural stone such as marble. A sanded grout is appropriate when you are working with a larger grout joint, larger than 1/8th of an inch. Typically grout joints this large are used in flooring applications.

An additional type of grout is an epoxy grout. Epoxy grout consists of an epoxy resin and a hardener. Epoxy grout is highly resistant to staining and chemicals and has a very high bonding strength, making it virtually maintenance free. Using an epoxy grout is pertinent in certain tile applications such as steam showers.

For help choosing the perfect grout for your tile project, any of our designers here at the Indoor City Showroom would be more than happy to assist!

To find more information about these products, please visit https://www.shawcontract.com/neocon/

 

What You Need to Know About Grout

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Emily Fella

As a designer nothing is more exciting than a new trend in design materials. In the world of tile, some of the most recent popular design trends have included gray tones and wood looks. Although, I am a huge fan of both of these looks, nothing excites me more than when something new and different makes a statement in the design industry. A product that just recently hit our showroom floor (no pun intended) is the Noga Cement Tile line from Garden State Tile.

Handmade Cement Tiles were largely popular in the 19th century and are since making a comeback. These bold looking tiles are not only hand-made but are created using sustainable and environmentally friendly materials, just as they were back in the 19th century. These particular cement tiles are made with white and gray cements, quartz, marble dust and various other pigments. The tiles are not fired or glazed but are pressed and then placed in a water bath and left to cure for 28 days in a mist room. During the 28 day curing process, the tiles are continuously misted with water to aid in making them more durable. The Noga Cement tile line incorporates original and historically accurate designs, as well as exclusive, modern motifs. These tiles are available in 8×8 sizes (with 5/8” thickness), and in a variety of solid and patterned colors to be used in commercial or residential flooring. These tiles are also suitable to be used in wall and backsplash applications.

For those of you that know me as a designer, you know that I am a sucker for black and white color palettes. One of my favorite designs in this particular tile line is the Abigale Tile. I think this tile would be a lovely selection for use in a bathroom or laundry room/mudroom area. Coupled with white cabinetry, gold hardware and perhaps a marble look quartz countertop material, a room sporting this tile would make quite the sophisticated statement.  Being that these cement tiles are 8”x8” they would probably look best used in a small to mid-sized room application. The scale of a tile is extremely important when considering what room it should be used in. For those individuals who are looking to add color and interest to a small or mid-sized room, these tiles would be an excellent option to consider. Check out all of the available designs and colors at: http://gstile.com/manufacturer/nogacementtiles/.

Cement Tiles, The Next Big Thing

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Shannon Hockenberry

Indoor City is so excited to have worked on a number of homes that have been entered in the 2016 Parade of Homes. If you followed along with our blog last year, you’ll remember that we highlighted the flooring and countertop finishes that we installed in some of the entries. We’re back again this year to do the same.

The first home we’ll be featuring this year is the model home at Landis Farm – built by EG Stoltzfus Homes. This beautiful single family home is situated in Landisville, PA and offers an open floorplan, outdoor living space and high-end finishes.

Keep reading to learn more about the flooring and countertops that Indoor City installed in this beautiful home.

 

 

KITCHEN

The heart of the home is always the kitchen. With an open-concept, abundant counter space and a “Costco” closet, this kitchen is perfect for entertaining.

Countertops: Super White (polished) quartzite with a straight polish edge treatment

Tile backsplash: Spirited II “Frost” 4×12 glass installed in a subway pattern

 

POWDER ROOM

With the powder room located right off of the kitchen, it only made sense to carry the same lovely Super White quartzite on this vanity suited for guests. A rectangular undermount bowl gives it a little personality!

HARDWOOD

The majority of the first floor is covered in ¾” solid handscraped hardwood which gives so much warmth to the home’s main living areas. The warm grey tones in the wood provide a great contrast with the white kitchen cabinets and light colored countertops.

Hardwood: Shaw ¾” Prelude, color: Recital

LAUNDRY ROOM

The laundry room, or the room sometimes referred to as the “mud room”, requires a floor that can withstand soccer cleats, dirty laundry and lots of foot traffic. The LVT (or luxury vinyl tile) installed in this room looks great and will remain looking great for years to come.

LVT: Mannington Adura Athena 12×24 “Maiden’s Veil” set in a brick pattern

CARPET

Everyone loves a soft landing when getting out of bed in the morning. The upstairs hallway and bedrooms in this home have soft, light carpet that feels good under your feet and looks good with any décor.

Carpet: Shaw Bright Ideas II, Color: Antique Pearl

FAMILY BATH

Is that hardwood!? Take a closer look – this wood-look porcelain tile has all the characteristics of hardwood yet will withstand being in a bathroom with no concerns of getting water damaged. How cool is that? The warms tones and soft variation in the floor pair nicely with the simple (& durable) quartz countertop on the double vanity. The products in this bathroom are attractive yet require very little maintenance. Bring on the kids!

Floor tile: Isla Kingwood “White” 6×36 set in a random plank pattern

Countertop: Silestone “Calypso” (quartz)

MASTER BATHROOM

A master bath should always be a place that makes you feel at home. The beautiful white & grey tones in this bathroom give a clean and bright feeling to a space that gets used throughout the day. With a fun, yet traditional, herringbone tile floor and a spacious tile shower, this space might end up being a room you’d hate to leave in the morning.

Vanity countertop: Honed White Carrara

Bathroom floor tile: Carrara series 4×12 porcelain tile set in a herringbone pattern

Shower floor tile: Time 2.0 natural 2×2 “Silver”

Shower wall tile: Carrara series 4×12 porcelain tile set in a subway pattern with AKDO’s Signature glass in “Arctic White” used as an accent

Shower accessories: Honed White Carrara to match bathroom vanity

EG Stoltzfus is using this beautiful home as their single family model in Landis Farm. The garage been converted to a sales office, which has a good-looking and durable LVT floor as well as quartz countertops.

LVT: Mannington Adura Dockside “Pier”

Countertops: Indoor City’s The Avenue “Prince Street” (quartz)

Tile backsplash: Spirited II “Frost” 4×12 glass installed in a subway pattern

What is YOUR favorite feature in this home? We love the hardwood flooring as well as the awesome sliding barn door in the family room.

 

Parade of Homes #69 – Landis Farm

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Indoor City

Green is not just for children anymore. Many people underestimate the color green and what it can do for your home. It is not only beautiful, but it’s diverse and customizable to your taste. Stick with subdued and muted tones to create a mature look while keeping a sense of whimsy. Above all, do not be afraid to play with color. It is even said that green brings a sense of ambition, freshness, and harmony. Have a happy St. Patrick’s Day from Indoor City. Think Green!

PRODUCTS FEATURED

Carpet

  • Easy Option, #533 Everglade
  • Easy Option, #527 Oasis Green
  • Easy Option, #528 Spanish Moss
    • All of these are 100% SmartStrand Ultra BCF Triexta

Countertop

  • Silestone, Blanco Orion
  • Silestone, Stellar Black
  • Silestone, Dreis

Backsplash

  • ENCORE Ceramics Versailles Mosaic blend
  • Helen Mosaic

Hardwood

  • Mirage Admiration Collection, Nordic Maple (5” wide, Semi-Gloss finish)

Paint

  • SW 7631 City Loft
  • SW 6385 Dover White
  • SW 6177 Softened Green

Think Green For Saint Patty’s Day – And For Your Home!

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