Gorgeous Granite Let’s Get Stone’d
Granite countertops are all the rage for a very good reason—actually several
reasons. They are incomparably beautiful; they are tough and durable and they
are cost effective.
This sturdy natural stone is found in the kitchens and bathrooms of most new
homes. But it is increasingly found in laundry room counters, fireplace surrounds, bar tops, and even tables. Owners of older homes also make it their countertop of choice when they decide it’s time to remodel.
Kirk Raysky, who owns and operates Let’s Get Stone’d with his father Eric, understands the appeal and isn’t surprised.
“The beauty of natural stone is the difference,” he says. “No two slabs of granite are alike. And it has so many other qualities—all of them good.”
Granite is an igneous rock found deep under the surface of the earth. Used for many years in the construction of bridges and buildings for its strength and in outdoor monuments and landscaping for its ability to withstand extremes of weather, it has more recently become a staple in the interior design business.
Let’s Get Stone’d sells granite, marble, travertine and limestone for counters, backsplashes and flooring from its shop on Route 611 in Warrington. They’re a member of the Marble Institute of America, the trade organization that sets the industry standard for quality craftsmanship.
Inside the showroom, sample squares of granite and marble in a wide array of colors line the walls, and fat sample books offer hundreds of choices.
Outside, in the rear of the shop, a crane holds a huge slab of granite just delivered from the supplier, MS International in Edison, NJ. A couple of LGS workers carefully guide the slab down and into a lineup of other slabs.
Customers first choose their color and stone. Then a fabricator visits their home to take measurements and create a template of strips of plywood. After the granite has been delivered to the shop, the customer returns to work with the fabricator again.
“The template is placed over the slab and moved around so the homeowner can help choose exactly how the coloration of the granite will appear once we cut it to size,” Raysky explains. “This type of customer service you don’t get anywhere else.”
The client is a part of the planning process from beginning to end, collaborating with Raysky and his 12-person crew through every step. There are so many choices, the decision can seem daunting. But LGS’s trained personnel help their clients pick what is right for their home décor and lifestyle. The whole process from first visit to the shop to final installation takes from two to four weeks.
“We knew we wanted granite, because it’s natural and it has a beautiful depth,” says John Hierholzer of Chalfont, who used LGS for a recent kitchen renovation. “We went to Home Depot and Lowe’s then Let’s Get Stone’d and they were less expensive, and more helpful.”
“We want the customer to be a part of it all because this granite they choose is not just a counter, it becomes a piece of art that is unique to them and to their house. It’s all very personal,” Raysky adds.
Hierholzer is an electrician and was able to do most of the kitchen remodel on his own with help from a carpenter friend. “The only thing I couldn’t do was the granite.” He says his choice of layout allowed the counters to be placed with no seams, and he and his wife plan to live with the black shining countertops for a long, long time.
For years, synthetic, manmade surfaces, such as Formica, Ceramic and Corian, were the choice of builders and homeowners for countertops because they were less expensive than natural stone. With the advent of improved mining methods and new custom fabrication technologies, the cost of granite has come down, and is now within the budgets of many more people.
Besides, there is no manmade material that has the lifespan of granite.
“Granite is just so durable, it’s almost impossible to damage,” Raysky says. A pan can go from the oven right onto the counter, and it won’t burn. It’s possible to carve that steak or loaf of bread right on the countertop without scratching the surface. And once polished, (and it should be sealed at least once a year) granite will retain its glossy surface virtually forever. The only element that can damage the granite countertop is another piece of granite or a diamond.
The Rayskys started Let’s Get Stone’d in 2001 with the goal of providing the very best, in materials, craftsmanship and customer service. Raysky proudly shows off the plaque honoring them with a “Best of Bucks 2008 & 2009” award from The Intelligencer, proof their customers are pleased and loyal.
By Brenda Lange