Black Granite Woman (or Back to Black)

Black Granite Woman (or Back to Black)

So my favorite boat name ever is “Never Again II.” Which comes to mind as I announce our decision for the color of our granite.

Never Again 2

Here’s the story.

Generally a pretty restrained guy, Fred shocked me when he declared he wanted to go with Golden River granite. Fred has excellent taste–as illustrated by his choice of (second) wife and craftsman furniture. If you Google images of Golden River, you’ll see that it’s not particularly restrained. (Come to think of it, neither am I.) Here’s a small sample:Golden River Granite

While the colors are beautiful, I actually get a little jittery looking at it, I think it’s because my eye never knows where to land and I’m pretty neurotic about stuff being totally symmetrical. The person at the granite store called the vivid and varied colors swirling through the stone “movement.” She assured me that movement is something people either love or hate. Clearly, Fred and I fell into two camps on this one.

But I trust Fred’s design sense so much, this has become the toughest decision on the house yet. I really want to like the stone, the colors are beautiful. And, in a remarkable side-note, dear friends of ours came to visit the other day and showed us the pictures of their new kitchen: which features Golden River granite. It looks fantastic in their water-view house with lots of wood colors in it–a perfect replacement for their tile, which was predominately the same base color. But I still wasn’t convinced it’d work in our Craftsman-style kitchen. Back in the day, they didn’t have exotic granite. They either used metal or, if wealthy, marble. Marble is notoriously hard to keep up, so that was out.

After being determined to go with Fred’s choice, after sleeping (not sleeping, actually) on it, I chickened out.

So, to get away from the Golden River–as well as the many granite colors that have a lot of glitter (quartz) in them–I wanted to go with a boring, consistent speckled color. Like this lovely Crème Perla, which seemed right for the Craftsman design:

Boring Granite


But Fred was as uncomfortable with my choice as I was with his. And he didn’t have to sleep on it to decide he didn’t like it.

So we compromised. With black. Which, as you know, goes with everything. And makes you look thinner. Not sure if it makes your kitchen look smaller. What do you think?

18003 1st Ave NW 01 05 15 (18)

Here’s the black granite from our Shoreline house. We loved how it looked, but not how hard it was to keep clean. Every crumb and fingerprint showed, and to keep it looking nice you had to clean it after each use.

So we swore we’d never, ever, ever get black granite again. And then we started trying to choose another color. So even though I’d said “never again” for more than 20 years, as the color stalemate drug on, I came to see cleaning black granite as a delightful alternative to the possibility I couldn’t learn to love the eternal movement of the Golden River. Besides, since I’m retired, I’ll have plenty of time to clean our counters. Or I can just leave my glasses off.

So there you have it. Sometimes compromise really does boil down to black and white. Only without the white.

Speaking of white, our next decision is the specific tone of off-white to use on the cabinets. And unlike the granite, there is an infinite selection of off-white colors. This should be good.

July 31 update

We found a better compromise for the granite. We’re not polishing the black stone, so it ends up looking more like slate. Which feels much more appropriate for the house style.

Honed Granite close up

Black granite with a matte finish
Black granite with a matte finish