Carrara - Marble or Quartz?The term 'carrara' is affiliated with a well known marble, 'Carrara marble', and defines 7 major types, as well as a huge range of varieties. Numerous quarries stretch approximately 35 miles in the marble mountains near the city of Carrara, in the Apuan Alps region of Northern Tuscany, Central Italy. All 7 major types of carrara marble appearances are seen duplicated in quartz surfaces, some of which use or take on variations of the names given to each. White carrara quartz, an engineered quartz surface, obtains its name from the most commonly known Bianco Carrara Marble. The Other carrara types are Venato, Arabescato, Statuario, Bardiglio, Nuvolato, and Calacata. Although Calacata is a type of carrara, it is regarded as a different marble, and spelt with an extra 't' ~ Calacatta. It is often mispelt and mistakenly associated with the city of Calcutta in india! Carrara Quartz surfaces do well to imitate the rarest of precious marbles, and new manufacturing techniques push boundaries with newer colours of broken, fine veins, and surface opacity.
Italian NamesWhite Carrara, Bianco Carrara, Carrara Bianca Quartz imitations of the well-known Carrara Marble, are named after the Italian City of Carrara and province of Massa and Carrara. 'Bianco' (an Italian surname) translates as 'White'. 'Bianca' is a feminine Italian word, meaning 'white' or 'pure'. Both Bianco and Bianca are used to describe the same marble, but, in the case of quartz, they are used to differentiate between manufacturers and the variations they make. Other quartz carrara's will use the names from the other six types of Natural Marble Carrara.
Designs and BudgetWith all quartz surface manufacturers having their own unique designs, it would be fair to say that White Carrara is the most popular manufactured design. With a multitude of variations to choose from, getting the right look is relatively straight forward. Maybe the most challenging aspect, is finding a White Carrara Quartz that compliments your designer kitchen, and fits within your budget. Each quartz surface manufacturer or supplier, have their own pricing structures for their products. The closer they feel the patterning and colouration imitates its natural counterpart, the higher you can expect the cost of the quartz material to be. Generally, though, the costs for Carrara Quartz rests within the low to mid range price groups.
White BackgroundMost veined quartz colours such as most well known Calacatta and Carrara quartz have an off-white to brilliant white background. If you are particular in finding a white to match another white eleswhere in your kitchen design, be warned, as white is the hardest to match. We strongly recommend that you visit us for samples to help with matching whites, or better still, we can arrange for you to see the whole slab if we do not have it in our yard. Carrara backgrounds, apart from white carrara quartz colours, are off white to cream, and can be flat white to opaque.
VeinsMost white Veined quartz colours imitate a traditional natural Calacatta marble which forms part of the Carrara family of marbles quarried in Italy. The variations in calacatta quartz veins can differ substantially in many ways and can be loosely divided into the following four styles:
Colours of Quartz VeinsA multitude of worktop surfaces with streaking veins have become available in recent years. Warm shades of cream, brown and greys with gentle thin veins that streak and criss cross the surface. Jet black and contrasting compact white veins make for a striking contrasting quartz worktop to any coloured kitchen. Nero Marquina imitation quartz, often duplicated in name from a popular Spanish marble from the Northern Basque County.
ChoosingAs one of the most desired kitchen worktops, Calacatta quartz is diverse in its appearances, and the choice just gets bigger! With manufacturers each having one or several designs, its commonplace to find the same names for different designs. However, despite the name, choosing the calcatta quartz that resonates with you is made difficult by small samples or 5.5 metres2 of calacatta quartz condensed into a small, poor quality image. We strongly recommend that you visit the quartz material either in our yard or at the many local quartz suppliers that stock them.
Kitchen DesignIt is extremely important that you discuss your kitchen design choice of a calacatta worktop with a proffessional quartz worktop fabricator as early as possible. Advice, guidance and the considerations that need to be made with regards to material, joins, vein direction and vein matching can only be assessed by the fabricator that will cut the calacatta quartz material. Guidance that could making a substantial difference in the final appearance as well as the overall cost of your calacatta quartz kitchen worktop.
Cutting Veined SlabsUnless you have a good idea on how the cutting process works, visualising how the veins will look as worktops may be difficult. We are happy to provide an indicative cut diagram overlayed on the slab image, this can help you see how joins and any splashbacks will look. This also helps with seeing how the vein directions will appear when worktops are joined at right angles and similar. Veins vary tremendously according to each manufacturer designs in many ways.
CostAn indicator of the price of veined quartz worktop colours is the quality of the vein. In more expensive calacatta designs, the edges of veins will bleed or fade more into the background. Also, some off shooting veins may disappear into opaqueness. Carrara quartz veins tend to be more broken and although most are of grey colouration.