north carolina vacation home renovation

Coastal Vacation Homes

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Hey North Carolina Costal Residents,

Is your vacation home in need of some updates before the summer season begins? Here are a few fun kitchen and bath design staples that will surely shake things up and leave your beachfront vacation home standing out from the rest!

Kitchen or Bathroom Countertop Updates

Let your countertops act as a vibrant asset to your home instead of cluttering them with décor. Installing new countertops in your North Carolina vacation home is a fun and unique way to set it apart from ordinary vacation homes. Whether in the kitchen or bathroom, your countertop can be a statement piece that evokes good vibes for your guests. 

Tip: Check out Aura by Spectrum Quartz! This quartz countertop brings the coastal feeling right into your home. 

Pops of Color in the Kitchen

Why stick to one color scheme when you can have them all? Play around with your favorite set of swatches to create a beautiful color palette for your kitchen. This will brighten up the room and bring a personal feel to your home design. Adding color to your kitchen can instantly transform it from a cookie-cutter builder project to authentically YOURS.

Tip: Make sure not to clash with the beautiful array of colors by picking a neutral-colored countertop such as Calacatta Classique.

A Bold Bathroom

There is something so thrilling about a unique bathroom. It is uncommon, yet highly valued. Our opinion? You can’t go wrong with color and texture in this space! Pick a color and get creative! From tile to wallpaper, there are a variety of options.

Tip: Check out our classic granite selections, which come in a variety of colors from neutral to bold and will blend great with any accent color. Granite countertops are a timeless choice, despite your other design choices.

These concepts are a wonderful way to bring a new, fun flare to the typical vacation-style home. If you are located in the North Carolina area (Swansboro, New Bern, and Morehead City), make sure to keep these ideas in mind when renovating your beachfront home! Our experts here at Onslow Stoneworks are available to discuss the best material for your project and can help you make design selections that you’ll enjoy for years to come.

For more design tips and countertop information follow along on our blog!

spring cleaning tips

Spring Cleaning Tips For Your Kitchen

By | Blog

The kitchen is the heart of the home where many messy and wonderful memories are made. It is important to keep this space clean throughout all the activities that occur so that your kitchen can function to the best of its ability. Here are 5 quick and easy kitchen cleaning tips that will help you achieve a cleaner home this Spring!

Clean Your Countertops

For quartz surfaces use a soft cloth with mild liquid soap and warm water, or a quartz cleaner such as Granite Gold. For tougher stains, scrub gently with a soft non-abrasive bristled brush. Wipe down with a clean damp cloth, and towel dry to prevent spotting.

If you have natural stone countertops, simply clean surfaces with a soft cloth using a mild liquid soap and warm water, or a natural stone cleaner. For stubborn stains, use a soft non-abrasive bristled brush and scrub lightly. Be sure to rinse and towel dry the surface to prevent spotting.

If you have Ultra-Compact countertops we recommend the use of neutral soap and water with a sponge or scouring pad. In the case of aggressive stains, either from products that are resistant to normal cleaning agents or because they have remained on the countertop without being removed, we recommend using more specific products such as: cream detergents with abrasive particles or solvents.

Polish Your Appliances

Give your oven, stove, and fridge a good scrub and polish. Deep clean the fridge by taking out the drawers and wipe down the inside. Give those burners a new life by getting off all of that baked-on gunk. You’ll feel like you have a brand new kitchen afterward!

countertop cleaning

Declutter Drawers

Now that you tackled your kitchen countertops and appliances move on to decluttering your kitchen drawers. Though we may not want to admit it, we all just dump things in our drawers every once in a while. Out of sight out of mind is often the mindset when trying to clean quickly. It’s time to go through those drawers and throw away all the junk. This is also a good time to clean your utensil drawer organizers. The amount of crumbs that can fall from your counters into your drawers is shocking.

Organize the Tupperware

Let’s be honest, we all hate opening this cabinet because no matter how many times we reorganize and match the lids to containers there seems to always be an avalanche of plastic. There are many ways to organize your tupperware from manufactured closet systems to DIY resources. Some DIY things to keep those lids in place are baking cooling racks, dish drying racks, or large bins to help keep that plastic tamed.

Finish With The Floors

As homeowners we sweep and vacuum the floors regularly but now is a chance to deep clean and disinfect. Gather all your rugs that need to be washed and get out the mop. Be sure to pay attention to cracks, corners, and the grout in your flooring.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to clean it all in a day. Take it step by step and soon your home will be in tip-top shape for the Spring season! 

For more information on how to care for your countertops visit our blog. At Onslow Stoneworks, we are proud to provide countertop fabrication and installation services to surrounding areas in North Carolina! Our countertop showrooms are located in Swansboro, New Bern, and Morehead City.

polished and honed marble countertops

Marble Countertops – Polished vs Honed

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Polished vs Honed Marble Countertops – What’s The Difference? 

Are you interested in installing marble countertops in your North Carolina home but don’t know what the difference between polished and honed is? When choosing natural stone such as marble for your countertops there is a lot of choices to make. From the color to edges and finishes. Something that seems simple, such as the finish, can drastically change the appearance of the marble and the overall look of your space. We have had a lot of questions in regard to what finish to choose when adding marble to your home, so here is the low-down on polished vs honed marble!

Let’s start off by defining what polished is. A polished surface creates a beautiful glossy shine from the natural reflection of the stone’s crystals. Now honed is when the stone slab has been grounded to a smooth, flat consistent surface. This finish is created by stopping short of the last stage of polishing, leaving the stone with a non-shiny, matte look and velvet-like touch. 

Polished Marble Countertops


Polished marble is coated which acts as a protectant, making it less susceptible to stains. But due to the glossy finish, it is highly reflective making scratches more visible. Because polished marble is a smooth surface it can be a dangerous option for flooring in high traffic areas because it can potentially be very slippery when wet. It is, however, a classic choice for kitchen and bathroom countertops.


  • Look: Glossy & Shiny
  • Feel: Smooth
  • Durability: Scratch and etch easily, but more stain-resistant.
  • Maintenance: Regular wipe down with water and mild detergent, clean spills immediately.
  • Suggested Application: Kitchen and bathroom countertops, fireplace surrounds, and walls.

Honed Marble Countertops


Honed marble is a matte finish so it is more resistant to scratches. Scratches on hone marble countertops are less noticeable because the scratch won’t be as easy to see when light reflects off it, like with a polished surface. Honed marble is more susceptible to stains, so it important to clean them up spills immediately. Because it is matte, when the surface gets wet, it is less slippery than polished making it a better choice for flooring than polished.


  • Looks: Matte
  • Feel: Velvet/Satin
  • Durability: Scratch resistant, but easily stained.
  • Maintenance: Regular wipe down with water and mild detergent, clean up spills immediately, re-sealing suggested over time.
  • Suggested Application: Countertops and high traffic areas, such as floors for the bathroom, foyer, or living room.

For more content about kitchen design trends, countertops surfaces, and more visit our blog. At Onslow Stoneworks, we are proud to provide countertop fabrication and installation services to surrounding areas in North Carolina! Our countertop showrooms are located in Swansboro, New Bern, and Morehead City. We also offer services to cities including Greenville, Jacksonville, Grantsboro, Aurora, Hakers Island, Wilmington and more!

2021 Design Trends For Your North Carolina Home

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Color Trends

Although traditional all-white kitchens remain popular amongst homeowners, warm beige colors and varied green hues that reflect lush gardens or other natural elements are expected to trend in 2021. 

Check out these popular colors for 2021 from several top paint companies:
  • Sherwin-Williams: Urbane Bronze – gray paint color that has deep brown/bronze undertones in it
  • Benjamin Moore:  Aegean Teal – a blend of blue-green and gray
  • Behr®: Smoky White – a soft and serene color and really sets a peaceful vibe for the room
  • Pantone®: Ultimate Gray – emblematic of solid and dependable elements
Cambria Quartz Montgomery Kitchen Countertops
Countertop Design Trends 2021

Countertop Trends

If you are thinking about renovating your home in North Carolina in 2021, consider quartz countertops! Quartz is a favorite among types of kitchen and bathroom countertops because it comes in many colors and patterns. Quartz is at the top of most North Carolina designers’ lists for nearly any kitchen or bathroom renovation due to its lasting beauty, durability and easy maintenance. More specifically, light colored quartz is trending and is currently the most popular style of countertop on the market. Cambria and Viatera  countertops are two of the top quartz brands and both offer a wide array of different styles. 

Other countertop options include natural stone like marble and granite, although these materials require a little more maintenance than quartz. If necessary, you can have a countertop specialist from an Onslow Stoneworks near you come in and repair any damages to your countertop should the worst happen.

Cabinetry Trends

Cabinets are a major piece of your kitchen or bathroom design and have a huge impact on the final look of a space. It’s important to always select cabinet finishes that complement your wall color and countertop, whether a similar shade or a contrasting color.


Sticking with the latest color trends in 2021, light colored cabinets are not losing their popularity any time soon. With a wide range of shades to choose from, our Design Consultants at Onslow Stoneworks are experts at helping you choose the perfect shade of white, cream, beige, or even gray to help bring your kitchen or bathroom vision to life.

cabinetry trends 2021
stainless steel appliances

Appliance Trends

Stainless steel appliances will likely always be a popular choice amongst homeowners and designer and are another popular trend we’ll see continue into 2021. The light gray color of stainless steel appliances goes with every cabinet, wall, and flooring color you can come up with and often gives off a stylish appeal.

We can’t leave out another trend that has emerged in recent years though that we don’t see away any time soon, colored appliances! Maybe you are looking for a pristine look in the kitchen but want to add a pop of color by using an appliance manufacturer that puts out a whole set in hunter green or matte black. You can find alternative options to the standard stainless steel at popular appliance manufacturers like KitchenAid and Sub-Zero.

Make The Most Out of Your Next Renovation With These 2021 Design Trends

There are a lot of choices available when you decide you want to redesign your kitchen. You can do a complete overhaul down to the bare bones, or you may choose to do your redesign in phases, such as refacing your current kitchen cabinets then upgrading your countertops. Your decision can be solely based your needs, wants, and budget.

For more information on how to start your 2021 kitchen or bathroom renovation or how to incorporate some of these design trends in your home project contact us or schedule an appointment to visit us! At Onslow Stoneworks, we are proud to provide countertop fabrication and installation services to surrounding areas in North Carolina! Our countertop showrooms are located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City. We also offer services to cities including Greenville, Jacksonville, Grantsboro, Aurora, Hakers Island, Wilmington and more!

Empty Bowls New Bern NC

Onslow Stoneworks Teams Up With Empty Bowls New Bern, NC

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Proud To Sponsor

Onslow Stoneworks is proud to be a Diamond sponsor for Empty Bowls New Bern, NC 2021! Now more than ever, we understand the importance of coming together in order to make a difference in the lives of others and supporting our local communities. We are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of sponsoring this event which helps raise money for local stop-hunger and arts programing in Craven County. 

About Empty Bowls New Bern, NC

Empty Bowls New Bern, NC is a partnership between Religious Community Services and Craven Arts Council and Gallery. This uplifting event unites businesses, religious and civic groups, professional and amateur potters, restaurants and others, as we use our collective creative energies to make a difference in the lives of others.

With each ticket you will receive:

  • Your choice of one handcrafted bowl from hundreds donated by local potters
  • In order to maintain social distancing, A $5 coupon to participating restaurants will come with each ticket instead of hosting the traditional Empty Bowls event.
  • The great feeling of knowing you helped better your community with your purchase



empty bowls new bern

Join Us In Fighting Hunger!

If you would like to learn more about Empty Bowls New Bern, NC or support the event by purchasing tickets, you can find additional information below! We thank you in advance for your support as we unite the community to make a difference in the lives of others. 

For more information and news about Onslow Stoneworks, visit our blog

granite kitchen countertops

How To Protect Granite Countertops During The Holidays

By | Blog

Tis’ the season! The holidays are here. Whether you celebrate with breakfast, brunch or dinner, there’s a lot of time being spent in the kitchen and food being prepared, and it’s all going to land on the kitchen countertop at some point. 

Thankfully, if you’re reading this, you probably already did yourself a favor by choosing granite countertops. Granite countertops are extremely durable and will last for years to come with the proper care. But, we understand. You want to go that extra mile so that you can confident that the holidays don’t destroy your beloved granite countertops from Onslow Stoneworks. So, we have gathered a few tips for you!

Clean Your Granite Countertops Immediately 

Don’t wait to clean up your granite countertops till the very end, clean up any messes as they happen. Hot foods, acidic ingredients and drinks will leave dull spots on the stone if not taken care of immediately. Keep in mind, the most dangerous messes are ones having to do with acids: tomato, wine, lemon, etc. They’ll not only leave dull spots, also know as etching, but leave difficult stains. And, though it goes without saying, give your counters a thorough cleaning with soft dish soap after the cooking baking is over.

Invest In Protective Tools For Your Granite Countertops

Not fan of the potholders you have hidden away in your kitchen drawers? Here are few other options to choose from!


Trivets are essential for anyone who love hosting. Trivets come in cute, stylish designs and they keep your granite counter from being damaged. Win-win! Trivets come in a variety of designs including marble, cast iron, aluminum, and more. Some have little plastic feet so you don’t have to worry about scratching your granite countertop. Some are round, some square. Trendy, traditional, bright-colored, or neutral. The options are endless, so you are sure to find one that fits your style and looks great in the kitchen!


Silicone mats are really handy for setting pots on, but what if it’s Christmas, foods are getting done at different times, and you need a spot to set two or three pots or dishes? Silicone mats come in larger sizes! And they’re multi-functional if you need a place to dry pots that don’t fit in the dishwasher or sink. If you’re not a fan of silicone, there are other options like fabric.

Baking Racks

granite countertops new bern

Baking racks will not only hold your famous holiday cookies, but they’ll also hold cakes and other baked goods. Every chef and baker needs a few baking racks for cooling their one-of-a-kind dishes.


Coasters are a great investment to protect your granite countertops. Buy a set of coasters and place a few on each area of the counter where guests will be standing and most likely put down their drinks. Guest are more likely to put their glass on a coaster if it’s sitting there in front of them instead of directly on the countertop. Most guest will not remember to come asking for one.

Seal Your Granite Countertops

Because granite is a natural stone, it needs to resealed. The number one way you can protect your granite countertops is getting your counters resealed regularly. If you haven’t gotten your granite countertops sealed within the last few years, then you may want to make this your number one priority! A newly sealed countertop will resist spills, stains, and heat, which takes stress off your shoulders worrying about any damage being caused. Plus, resealing is simply a good habit to get into. If you have further questions on resealing your granite countertops, contact your granite fabricator directly. 

If you are looking for a kitchen countertop that does not require you to reseal it, check out our quartz selection. Quartz is an engineered surface that mimics the look of natural stone, such as marble

Enjoy Your Holiday!

Now you can rest easy knowing how to care for your granite countertops during the holiday season. Hosting is hard work, but by implementing these tips above you don’t have to worry about damaging your granite countertops. It’s time to relax, eat good food, and spend quality time with your friends and family. Whether you plan to seal your granite counters, invest in a few new kitchen items, or clean up the messes as they happen, you’re well on your way to keeping your granite countertops in tip-top shape during the holidays.

Need more tips? Check out our blog or contact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next project!

white calacatta quartz kitchen countertops

Enhance Your Kitchen With White Quartz Countertops

By | Blog

Why You Should Incorporate White Quartz Countertops In Your Kitchen

White quartz countertops are a great way to improve the functionality and aesthetic of your kitchen. Adding white quartz in your North Carolina home offers many benefits that make it a smart long term investment. Many people are not aware of the many different quartz countertop options available that mimic the look of natural stone. This can lead to homeowners, contractors and builders opting for granite or marble, but quartz is also a great choice! 

Quartz is one of the top kitchen countertop materials in the industry. Below are a few reasons why white quartz is a great countertop material for your kitchen and some unique design that will give you a bit of inspiration for your remodeling project! 

Characteristics Of Quartz Countertops

horizon white quartz kitchen countertops

White quartz is one of the most durable kitchen countertop materials. Quartz has strength and durability that goes well in busy kitchens! You can count on getting a countertop material that will stand strong against daily use when you choose quartz for your kitchen. No matter what your lifestyle, with quartz, you will be getting everything you could ask for and more. The impressionable strength of quartz is synonymous to that of concrete and granite. Quartz stone is, however, a little more forgiving. In fact, quartz is so strong that it will not crack or even chip that easily. It is truly an outstanding countertop option for any home!

Quartz Offers A Wide Color And Design Selection

You might be surprised to discover that white quartz countertops do not just come in a sold color, quartz countertops can mimic the look or natural stone like marble and granite. At Onslow stoneworks, you can find a variety of quartz countertops in the best colors, patters and styles for your unique kitchen design at our countertop showrooms in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City. If you find that white quartz countertops are not the best fit for you kitchen remodeling project, we also cary other countertop materials such granite, marble and ultra compact.  

Leading Quartz Brands At Onslow Stoneworks

cambria white quartz kitchen countertops in north carolina

Not only will you get top-quality quartz countertops when you visit one of our countertop showrooms in Swansboro, New Bern or Morehead City, but you will also find quartz made from leading quartz brands in the the industry. We strive to give our customers the best quality in all of North Carolina. Some of the top brands we offer are Cambria, Viatera, Daltile, Q Premium Natural Quartz from MSI and Spectrum Quartz. 

Advantages Of Quartz Countertops

White quartz countertops offer many advantages like standing up against spills because it is a nonporous material. Because quartz is nonporous it is great at resisting stains from liquids so you don’t have to worry about the wear and tear of a well lived life ruining your beautiful countertops. We recommend cleaning up your countertop as soon as you can though so that they will last for years to come. Remember, quartz is a stain resistant countertop but it is not stain proof.


If you are considering updating the kitchen in your North Carolina home, white quartz countertops will enhance the look of your space and are a great investment. With white quartz countertops you can improve the design and the value of your property. If you are looking for more countertop information or design tips, check out our blogContact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next project!


How To Clean Quartz Kitchen And Bathroom Countertops

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How To Keep Quartz Countertops Clean

If you are thinking about investing in quartz countertops for your home you may be wondering what the maintenance will be to ensure your countertops are properly taken care of. Whether you are seeking to buy quartz counters for your kitchen or your bathroom, it is a countertop material that many homeowners are extremely happy with. Quartz countertops are often described as a low maintenance surface. Proper care and maintenance are quite essential if you are wanting to keep your kitchen or bathroom countertops in tip-top shape! Follow along with Onslow Stoneworks for tips on how to clean quartz countertops. 

Steps For Cleaning Quartz Countertops

Step 1: Wipe Your Quartz Counters With Mild Dish Soap And A Soft Rag

Take a non abrasive or microfiber cloth and dip it in a warm water mixed with soap. Take the cloth and begin to gently but firmly wipe down the quartz countertop. Wipe them down as often as you need.

Step 2: Scrape Off Dried Gunk From The Quartz Surface

We recommend using a putty knife to scrape off any dirt or food. Be mindful and only scrape gently when you are removing any excess buildup so you don’t permanently damage your quartz countertop. For easy and fast access, we suggest keeping a putty knife in a nearby drawer so you can grab it when you need to remove buildup off of your quartz countertops. Countertop care is quite simple. All it takes is getting the right information and doing a little bit of research.

Step 3: Wipe Off Grease Using A Degreaser

Take the degreasing agent of choice (make sure it is safe to use on quartz) and spray it generously on your quartz countertops. make sure the spray does not have any bleach because this will damage your quartz countertop. If you are going to use disinfectant wipes they must also be free of bleach. After all of this, you are going to want to immediately rinse off the surface using a sponge or wet towel. 

  • Only get cleaning sprays or products that are made specifically to be used on quartz counters
  • Contact our team at Onslow Stoneworks anytime you are not sure about a specific product when you are wanting to clean quartz countertops
  • At Onslow Stoneworks we recommend using Granite Gold products. The Granite Gold Daily Cleaner has a pH neutral, non-toxic, safe for use on all food-prep surfaces and doesn’t damage the protective seal! You can find these approved stone cleaning products available at our showrooms located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City!

How To Remove Stains From Quartz Counters

Step 1: Removing Tough Stains From Your Quartz Countertops

You will need some adhesive remover to rub away tough stains. Pour the cleaner directly on the stain and let it stay there for 5 to 10 minutes before you wipe it off. Once you have wiped off the counter, you should wipe it off again using warm water. 

Step 2: Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol

Take a wet, non abrasive cloth with some isopropyl rubbing alcohol and rub the stain using the cloth. Next, you are going to want to wipe the counter again using just warm water. Be sure to throughly wipe down the countertop after. This will help with any tough stains that would not come off with a simple water and soap mix.

How To Prevent Quartz Countertop Damage

Step 1: Stay Away From Harsh Cleaners

Using highly alkaline or acidic cleaners will damage your quartz countertops. If an extremely acidic or alkaline solution falls on your countertops immediately grab a wet cloth dipped in water and clean it up. Keep nail polish, oven cleaner, turpentine, drain cleaners, bleach, methylene chloride and all other harsh agents away.

Step 2: Clean Up Spills Immediately

Even though engineered stone like quartz countertops are nonporous, you should not let the stains just sit on the surface for too long. You still run the risk of damaging your countertops if you do. You should clean quartz countertops as soon as the spill happens. Permanent stains can occur if the spill was coffee, win, or tea. 

Step 3: Quartz Countertop Protection From High Temperatures

To protect your quartz countertops from really hot temperatures you can use mats or trivets to place your hot pans and skillets on. You do not want to place an extremely hot pan directly on your quartz countertop because it will damage the surface. If you will be sipping on citrus like drinks, make sure to use coasters. Citrus liquids can damage quartz counters. 

Step 4: Use A Cutting Board

Cutting and chopping food directly on your quartz can be tempting because quartz is durable but we do not recommend it. We encourage you to keep a cutting board close by and use it when chopping, cutting or slicing food. Quartz is scratch resistant but they are not scratch proof. Another reason why cutting boards matter is because your knives will get dull if you are cutting directly on the countertop.

If you are looking for more countertop information or design tips, check out our blogContact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next project!


granite countertops

Quartz vs Granite Countertops

By | Blog

A big part of renovating your kitchen or bathroom is choosing the right countertop material for your design and lifestyle needs. Choosing your countertop material has a significant impact on the rest of your renovation given that it will impact the overall look and function of the room. There are a variety of materials available for countertops, but today, we’ll discuss the most popular options — quartz vs. granite countertops. We will take a closer look at the pros and cons of quartz and granite to help you decide which surface material is right for your project.

What To Know About Quartz Countertops: Pros & Cons 

quartz countertops
quartz countertops

Quartz countertops are engineered stone made up of up to 90% quartz content that mimics the look of natural stone. Quartz countertops are the result of crushed quartz combined with coloring pigment and bound by polymer resin. Unlike the color variation you find in granite countertops, quartz countertops are more consistent.

At Onslow Stoneworks we carry a variety of quartz options for your kitchen or bathroom project. Color variations range from white and black to more vibrant hues. Quartz designs are inspired by the unique veining of marble, the industrial feel and look of concrete and the natural movement of granite. When it comes to appearance if you are looking for the freedom to customize the design of your kitchen and bathroom quartz is a great option. Consider the pros and cons of quartz countertops if you are thinking about using this material for your kitchen or bathroom renovation.

Pros Of Quartz Countertops

  • Nonporous: Quartz is a nonporous countertop. They resist mold, mildew and bacteria. Quartz countertops are also water-resistant, making it a better option than granite when used in wet locations such as wet bars, bathrooms, and showers.
  • Low Maintenance: Unlike granite, you do not need annual resealing to maintain your quartz countertops due to its nonporous nature. Quartz countertops will simply need regular cleaning with a stone friendly cleaner. 
  • Durability: Quartz is harder compared to granite making it more durable and less susceptible to chipping.

Cons of Quartz Countertops

  • Susceptible to Heat Damage: Unlike granite, quartz can get damaged by excessive heat. It is important to avoid placing hot pots and pans directly on the countertop so you do not damage the material.
  • Cost of Quartz: Quartz countertops can cost you a bit more depending on quality. The price of quartz per square foot can range from $65 to $100.
  • Susceptible to Sun Damage: Quartz countertops don’t perform as well as granite for outdoor installations. Quartz cannot handle extreme sunlight exposure and too much sun can result in discolorations and fading.

What To Know About Granite Countertops: Pros & Cons 

granite countertops
granite countertops

Granite countertops remain a popular surface choice due to its quality and durability. Homeowners and interior designers who prefer a natural stone material often turn to granite for their countertops. Granite offers many unique colors and patterns to choose from. The colors of granite range from white and black to blues and greens. Most granite countertops often have a speckled appearance or wavelike design.

Granite countertops are a combination of interlocking mineral crystals that come from various quarries around the world. Each of the unique granite slabs Onslow Stoneworks supplies goes through inspection and polishing process before they are ready for installation. Consider the pros and cons of granite countertops.

Pros of Granite Countertops

  • Authentic: Compared to natural stone surface materials like marble, granite is the most durable. Besides their aesthetic appeal, granite countertops tend to resist chips and cracks. Granite countertops are worthy investments that can last decades when properly maintained.
  • Heat Resistance: Granite countertops are known for their resistance to heat. Granite countertops are recommended for outdoor applications as these countertops can withstand extreme exposure to the sun without fading.
  • Cost: You can get the beauty of a natural stone countertop for a somewhat lower price. The prices between granite and quartz are close, with granite averaging around $50 per square foot. Quality and availability also play a significant role in the price.

Cons of Granite Countertops

  • Porosity: Granite is porous, which can make liquid spills harder to clean. Granite can also harbor bacteria, viruses, mold, and mildew if not properly cleaned and sealed regularly.
  • Maintenance: Maintaining your granite countertops requires you to invest a little more money so they last for years to come. Along with regular cleaning, you should have your granite countertops resealed annually.
  • Hardness: Granite is sturdy and the most durable of the natural stone surfaces. When compared to quartz, granite surfaces are a touch less resistant to chips, cracks, and scratches. Use caution when handling sharp or heavy objects near your granite countertops.

Now that you have learned quartz vs granite countertops pros, cons, and what to consider the final decision depends on your lifestyle and design preferences. Visit our kitchen visualizer or bathroom visualizer to pair your favorite countertop designs with cabinets, backsplashes, flooring, and more.

If you are looking for more countertop information or design tips, check out our blogContact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next project!

Natural Stone Countertops

How To Care For Natural Stone Countertops

By | Blog

There is little that compares to the mirror-like finish on newly installed granite, marble or other natural stone countertops. Whether you are wanting to maintain the finish of your countertops, or needing to give your countertops a little TLC and get the shine back, here are a few best practices when caring for granite, marble or other natural stones. 

You will see a lot of well-intended information online when you search “how to care for natural stone countertops”. Such as DIY and life-hacks that offer tips and tricks for cleaning and maintaining granite, marble or other natural stone, unfortunately, more often than not some of this information can actually damage your surface. So, we are going to be setting the record straight when it comes to caring for your natural stone countertops and explaining how to maintain the shine. 

How To Properly Clean Natural Stone Countertops

You will want to avoid cleaning your granite, marble or other natural stone countertops with regular household cleaners, these can potentially dull or chemically etch the surface of your stone. Acid-based cleaners such as vinegar, lemon juice or citric acid will wear down the protective seal on your stone. This then leads to the breakdown and dissolve of the minerals on the surface. The result is what looks like a hard water stain or a general dulling of the stone. This is permanent physical damage that can require the expensive help of a stone restoration specialist to resolve.

Even some dish soap brands can lead to issues, although less severe. There are some substances that are included in many dish soaps that can lead to a film on the surface of your stone, causing streaking, hazing or a generally cloudy look over time. That’s why it’s important to use a cleaner that is formulated specifically for use on natural stone. At Onslow Stoneworks we recommend using Granite Gold. The Granite Gold Daily Cleaner has a pH neutral, non-toxic, safe for use on all food-prep surfaces and doesn’t damage the protective seal! You can find these approved natural stone cleaning products available at our showrooms, just ask our team!

Maintaining The Seal On Your Countertops 

When your granite, marble or other natural stone countertops are installed, they are treated with a sealer. This sealer will protect the stone from damaging chemicals as well as liquids seeping beneath the surface, leaving a stain. It is important to know that this not a permanent solution and needs to be maintained and reapplied. If you have further questions on the sealing of natural stone countertops, ask the stone experts on our team and they will be happy to assist you. 

How will you know when it is time to reseal your natural stone countertops? You can conduct the at-home water test or contact us at Onslow Stoneworks. The water test will help you determine the integrity of your seal. You can do this by pouring a small spot of water, around 3 inches in diameter, onto the stone in various locations, and letting it sit for 30 minutes before wiping away. If this leaves a dark mark or ring is visible in those locations, that means the water is penetrating the surface of your stone and needs to be resealed.

Cleaning Granite Countertops

Clean Up Spills Immediately 

Common household spills that come from wine, coffee, soda and citrus can cause etching in the surface if left to sit. In order to prevent stains and other damage to the stone’s seal, you should always be quick to clean up food and drink stains when they happen. You should also implement the use of a coaster or placemats, for this reason, this will help you avoid that dreaded ring under a glass that can leave a stain or damage.

Even something as innocent as cooking oil can leave a stain when left sitting too long and penetrates the surface. Unlike quartz which is a nonporous material, granite, marble and other natural stones are porous. If liquids sit on a stone that is poorly sealed, they will penetrate the surface, leaving a stain that can be difficult to lift. 

Avoid Scratching Your Countertops

Granite Stone Cleaner

While granite is one of the most durable material options on the market, it isn’t invincible to chipping and scratching. It’s important to avoid dragging things across your countertop so you do not cause permanent damage. The number one tip here is to always use a cutting board and never cut directly on the surface of your stone. 

It’s also important to not use abrasive cleaning materials such as brillo pads or steel wool, no matter how tough a stain might be. These materials can cause micro-scratches over time that accumulate to show themselves as a general dulling effect on the surface. They can also strip away and damage the stone’s seal.

Regularly Polish Your Countertops

A nice polish brings out its natural beauty in your countertops and also helps to reinforce the seal as well as protects against minor annoyances such as water spots and fingerprints. If you are interested in purchasing a stone polish we recommend the Granite Gold Polish which is available at our showrooms located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City for purchase. 

You can apply these tips to all natural-stone countertops, from granite and marble to quartzite and soapstone. If you are looking for more countertop information or design tips, check out our blogContact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next project!

Designer Spotlight – Nancy Bradley

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We love seeing Onslow Stoneworks countertops featured in designer’s work that we are now featuring them! Introducing the first of many, our new blog series, Designer Spotlight’s! Each month we will feature a North Carolina interior designer and their work using our countertops! First up is Nancy Bradley from The Sum of Its Parts Designs! Check out her Q&A below.

“I love the selection at Onslow, it is one-stop shopping. We can easily pick out a countertop and add a sink and backsplash at the same time. This is important to clients who may have trouble visualizing a space. And the staff is very accommodating and patient. They strive to make the process as easy as possible.” – Nancy 


A: I studied art but fell into a retail career many years ago. My husband was a contractor in Tucson AZ and I would often help him with design plans. I did this for years part-time while working retail, gaining confidence with each project and taking design courses along the way. Right before we moved to New Bern we finished an eco-friendly renovation that included the kitchen and I was hooked, I loved every aspect of the project. After we moved I decided to open my own business and make interior design my career.


A: I love mid-century modern as well as Art Deco but when designing a space it is never about me, its all about finding a style that fits with the client’s home and life and collaborating to achieve the look they want. My biggest compliment was from a colleague that said, “all your designs look so different”, and that’s because all my clients have different styles and the design should be a reflection of them.


A: After Florence, I worked on a few flooded homes and there is nothing more gratifying than bringing a damaged home back to life and making it even better than it was before. I worked on a home in Trent Woods that was flooded, with clients who had never used a designer and the process was eye-opening for them. We took their home and redesigned it top to bottom and in the end, achieved a space that was perfect for their lifestyle and family.


A: My favorites change constantly! Right now I am in love with Cambria Quartz in Bentley and I am dying to use that in a kitchen but it needs to be the right space. But granite will forever be a top choice for myself and my clients. There is something so special about a natural stone that never gets old, and being able to choose a slab and then work with Onslow to have it cut perfectly to accentuate the patterns and variations is a huge plus.


A: I am an artist at heart so when I actually have free time I enjoy painting and photography. 


A: These photos are of the Knowles home, we used LG Viatera Rococco quartz to achieve a timeless classic look!

A: The photos below are of the Clouser home, we used Bianco Romano granite which is perfect for their busy family.


A: I can be reached through my website at, by email at or by calling 520-591-3373.

We had so much fun chatting with Nancy from The Sum of Its Parts Designs and can’t wait to see what she designs next! Are you an Interior Designer in North Carolina who has used Onslow Stoneworks in one of your projects? Contact us to be featured!

Looking for countertops in North Carolina for your next design project? We service all of Eastern North Carolina including the following areas at our three showrooms:

New Bern | Morehead City | Jacksonville | Swansboro | Hampstead | Kinston | Goldsboro | Greenville 

Which Countertop Material Is Best?

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At Onslow Stoneworks, we offer a variety of different surfaces and materials to suit your design preference. Various veining, colors, compositions, and characteristics are offered at each of our Onslow Stoneworks locations in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to provide every customer with the countertop of their dreams. But, with so many options and a world full of beauty, how do you know which countertop material is best for you?



One of our top-sellers at the moment is Spectrum Quartz! Quartz has grown tremendously over the years, offering various styles, colors, and designs. But you might be wondering why has become so popular and why do people love it so much?

Composition: Quartz is an extremely strong material. Quartz is a 7 on Mohs Scale of Hardness, meaning that it is tougher than natural stone such as granite, quartzite and marble. Quartz is a man-made material so it is non-porous and resists staining. Common kitchen spills of coffee or juice will not have an effect on these quartz countertops.

Lifestyle: Quartz countertops are perfect for any lifestyle. With its tough composition and ability to withstand a life well-lived, this is the perfect countertop for families with kids or busy lifestyles!

Looks: Quartz comes in a variety of options from marble-looking quartz countertops, plain and simple colors, extravagant veining and more! Quartz is unbeatable and it is easy to see why it has gained a significant following within the past year.





Granite is one of the most commonly used materials for kitchen and bathroom countertops. Granite remains popular amongst homeowners and will likely always be popular because of its attractive look that can’t be duplicated. But is granite right for you?

Composition: Granite is once of the toughest materials and stands up well against wearing and tearing. More specifically, damages are not commonly seen with granite countertops because of its tough composition. It ranks roughly a 6 to 7 on Mohs Scale of Hardness, meaning that it is quite resistant to scratching and chipping. However, because of granite’s porous nature, it is susceptible to absorb liquids and stains.

Lifestyle: Many lifestyles are suitable for granite countertops. Because of its strong durability, families with kids will feel at ease with these tough stones. It will hold up against your typical day-to-day interactions within the kitchen and cooking will be a piece of cake with its worry-free capabilities.

Looks: Each slab of granite is one of a kind so your countertops will be unique to your home. Granite comes in vibrant and neutral shades that are speckled with distinctive, natural characteristics. 




Marble is known for its beauty and charm. Many homeowners gravitate toward marble because of its classic look and unique veining.

Composition: Marble is a very soft material. It ranks roughly a 3 on Mohs Scale of Hardness, so it can easily be scratched, chipped or stained. Marble cannot withstand heavy objects or hot items placed atop like granite can. Heat may damage the surface by creating unwanted cracks or discoloration. But don’t worry, this can easily be avoided by using hot plates or other materials to maintain the elegant look!

Lifestyle: Because of marble’s delicate nature, a laid-back lifestyle is a perfect scenario for this countertop. Or perhaps, instead of installing marble in your kitchen or bathroom, it could be a great addition elsewhere in your home! Add marble in a room that is often not in contact with a harsh environment.

Looks: It’s obvious that marble is loved and adored for its appearance. It is often defined as a white stone with subtle grey veining, however, at Onslow Stoneworks we offer various marbles of different colors! Add this stone in a modern home for a chic and lavish design!




Ultra-Compact/Porcelain has gained significant popularity in recent years due to its unmatched characteristics and offerings. It may just be the next best thing!

Composition: Ultra-Compact is one of the strongest countertops within the design industry. It can hold up against heavyweight without scratching or chipping, it can easily resist heat and stains, and it can even withstand the sun’s strong UV rays!

Lifestyle: Ultra-Compact/Porcelain is a magnificent countertop for various lifestyles. Whether it is applied to an outdoor kitchen or fireplace, or flooring for the entertainment area, ultra-compact/porcelain countertops will definitely meet your lifestyle needs!

Looks: Most of our ultra-compact/porcelain countertops mimic the same looks we all know and love. Every countertop brings a luxurious feel into a home and transforms a space from ordinary to extraordinary!



Recycled Surface 

Recycled surface countertops are customizable and environmentally friendly. Although oftentimes overlooked, recycled surface is a great countertop to bring a unique spin on things!

Composition: Recycled surface is a one-of-a-kind material because it is one of the only countertops that can truly promote its eco-friendly culture. It is made up of recycled glass that is both tough and stunning in its own way! The durability that recycled surface possesses is relatively medium compared to those on the market.

Lifestyle: If living an eco-friendly lifestyle is important to you, there is no doubt that recycled surface is the choice for you! You cannot go wrong with a durable surface that offers these unique characteristics. Recycled surface countertops are also easy to maintain. 

Looks: Recycled surface is one of the only materials on the market that offer such colorful features within one slab. Several hues and various shades sparkle in each of these countertops, making them the perfect addition for a pop of color! Recycled surface countertops are great for beach houses and kids rooms for a fun and playful vibe!





Another eco-friendly option that we carry at Onslow Stoneworks is Paperstone. 

Composition: Paperstone countertops are made up of recycled paper and non-petroleum resin. It is manufactured in the USA with 100% raw materials. This product is highly resistant to scratching, staining and chemicals making it a very durable surface

Lifestyle: If the bright colors of recycled surface countertops don’t fit your needs, Paperstone countertops are a great alternative and still allow you to live an eco-friendly lifestyle. It is a durable surface perfect for people on the go, home chefs and children!

Looks: Paperstone countertops come in a variety of colors from deep cabernet and vibrant blue to calming neutrals like charcoal and sand.   



We hope this break down of various countertop material help you decipher the best surface for your next design project! If you are looking for more news, information or creativity, check out our blogContact us today or visit one of our showrooms in North Carolina located in Swansboro, New Bern and Morehead City to get started on your next design project!


A Guide to Quartz Countertops

By | Blog

Quartz countertops can take any bathroom or kitchen to the next level. Quartz is one of the most durable countertop materials on the market and quartz can withstand the demands of a well-lived life all while maintaining its beauty. If you are considering quartz countertops for your kitchen or bathroom renovation, you’ll find the information you need that will help you decide if it is the right material for you in this guide.


What are quartz countertops made of? 


Quartz countertops are comprised of around 93 percent quartz, a natural material, and 7 percent binder and color. The result of this combination is a beautiful yet extremely durable stone. Quartz countertops differ from granite and marble countertops because they are a part of the engineered stone family while granite and marble are natural stones. When you go shopping for quartz countertops you’ll find a variety of colors and patterns inspired by natural stone to fit your design needs at one of our Onslow Stoneworks showrooms located in Swansboro, New Bern, or Morehead City.

Is quartz or granite more expensive? 


The price of quartz and granite will vary considerably from one fabricator in North Carolina to the next. There are many factors that play into the price of a material such as where it originates from, the design of the countertop and the complexity of the project. In regards to kitchen and bathroom countertops, homeowners can expect to pay about the same for granite and quartz. 


Is quartz a better countertop material than granite?


Quartz and granite are both premium countertop materials that will increase the value of your property. To say if quartz is better than granite depends on the design preferences, where the material will be placed and the lifestyle needs of the buyer. Granite often appeals to customers who are wanting to use all-natural materials, while quartz offers easier maintenance, slightly better durability and a modern look.


What are the pros vs. cons of quartz countertops?


Quartz countertops have a number of attractive qualities such as the durability and beauty they offer. Let’s take a look at a few of the strengths and weaknesses of quartz countertops.


  • Quartz is one of the most durable countertops materials 
  • Quartz will not need to be resealed regularly 
  • Variety of options for color and pattern
  • Non-porous which makes it resistant to staining and bacteria
  • Resistant to scratches


  • Quartz is an engineered stone and will not have the natural look when compared to marble and granite
  • Direct sunlight over an extended period of time can cause damage
  • Not as resistant to heat as granite


What color do quartz countertops come in?


Quartz countertops, as a man-made stone, are uniform in appearance. This material comes in a variety of colors and patterns, from deep black to bright white. It is inspired by the most breathtaking hues and textures in nature and can be made to mimic the color, pattern, and veining of other stones. 


What are some popular quartz colors?




White Sands 









Quartz is a great investment for any home and is a great material for both kitchen and bathroom renovations! If you are looking for quartz countertops in Swansboro, New Bern, or Morehead City contact our team at Onslow Stoneworks to learn more about our selection!



Granite Countertops 101 – Everything you need to know!

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At Onslow Stoneworks our goal is to bring you high-quality countertops. We know that searching for new countertops can feel intimidating due to the multiple considerations involved. To help you through the process, we’ve prepared a brief overview of some essential granite information.



Where Does Granite Come From? 


Granite is sourced from places around the world like Italy, India, and Brazil. It is quarried from the earth in large blocks, which are then sliced into slabs to make countertops. Some granite is only available from specific locations, and the cost of transport from that location can factor into the price of your countertops.



What is Granite? 



Granite is made up of the minerals quartz and feldspar. It is an igneous rock that formed millions of years ago, hardening from molten slag. The formation of granite occurs under intense heat and pressure beneath the earth. As a result, granite becomes strong, hard and dense. Granite falls into the natural stone category and has been used for years in numerous ways. It is a timeless material with great characteristics, one being strength, which makes it a top choice for a countertop surface. It is a perfect option for high traffic areas such as the kitchen countertops or a fireplace surround for a unique design feature.



What Are The Characteristics of Granite? 



Granite is widely known for its durability and is highly resistant to scratches. When properly cared for it will not be affected by common sources of stains. Granite is a popular countertop material amongst homeowners for the kitchen because it is heat-resistant, making it an ideal choice for around the range or cooktop. Also making it ideal for kitchens or bathrooms is its resistance to bacteria–although nothing is completely impervious to bacteria growth, granite is so easy to clean that what bacteria do grow can simply be wiped away.





What Color is Granite?



Granite slabs come in various colors. This can be attributed to the minerals that become trapped inside the stone during the cooling of the molten rock. The color of granite will vary from slab to slab and that’s why it is important to view your stone of choice in person so you can see the variation in color and shading. Granite slabs can feature blues, grays, greens, yellows, whites and blacks so you are sure to find the color that fits the vision of your project.


Popular Granite Colors


Alaska White Granite



This granite is a frosty blend of whites and pale silvers, marketed with onyx hues and warm neutrals. Alaska White granite is a striking stone that works well with many different color schemes and designs. 


White Ice Granite


White Ice granite has a pale steel grey and white background flecked with black. Most slabs also include sparkling quartz deposits giving it a great shine and luxurious appearance!


Blue Flower Granite


Blue Flower is a stunning white stone swirled with blue, brown and white patches. The shades of the mineral deposits can vary greatly giving depth to this gorgeous stone. You can also see white quartz crystals deposited throughout, although not extremely noticeable this feature gives the stone a subtle sparkle and shine.


How Much do Granite Countertops Cost? 


The cost of granite countertops can vary depending on where the stone comes from. A few other factors that affect the price of a slab are things such as the thickness of the stone, the design of the countertop, the difficulty level of the project and the size of the countertops. Many homeowners are willing to pay more for granite countertops because they offer a great return on investment. Unique, high-quality granite counters improve the look of the whole room and stay gorgeous for years.

 All in all, granite is a great investment for any home! If you are looking for granite countertops in North Carolina or have additional questions contact our team here at Onslow Stoneworks to help you make the best selection!