By Sarah Battiato, East Coast Marble and Granite

In 2016, I traveled to Greece for a wedding. A few days into my trip, while I was having lunch, I heard a voice behind me with the same Boston accent as mine. I introduced myself and found out she lives 20 minutes away from me and our families knew each other growing up! We instantly became friends. So, of course, when it came time to redo her kitchen, she called me.

When I am working on a kitchen for a client, the first thing I do is ask if they have photos of what they want, and we go over their style preferences and color palette. But if they have no idea, I’ll pull samples to help them picture their end result. I’ll ask what type of home they live in; does it have a city or country feel and is it formal or informal. For example, an end goal could be to modernize a colonial or complement its antique finishes. In my new friend’s case, her favorite colors are gold and blue. So that’s where we started.

After we went over kitchen trends for 2020, we talked about her countertop, floor, cabinet hardware and tile backsplash. I’m a good listener, and I enjoyed pulling things together for her. For example, she didn’t want a stainless-steel sink, so we sourced a white undermount sink to complement her countertop. Her upper cabinets were white and already looked great, so all we did was change out the hardware to satisfy her gold cravings.

To select the stone for her countertop and island top, I took her to one of my favorite showrooms to explore stones, the Haverhill showroom of Boston Granite Exchange. As importers of natural stone with their own quartz collection, The BGE Quartz Collection, I am always confident that we will find what we are looking for. In this case, she picked Statuario Quartz, from BGE’s own Eterno Collection. As always, people at BGE were helpful, moving material so we could see a whole slab, and they showed us a different lot when we asked. I personally inspect the material with my clients and help them select the actual slab or slabs that will become their countertop or island. I keep a record of which slab they choose; I take photos of both the slab and the tag. I’d say that’s why my clients choose to do business with me: my thoroughness and willingness to guide them along every step of the way.

We had so much fun together! And her kitchen looks amazing! The cabinets in the island now pop in a true blue, especially with the gold hardware she selected. And, as the island is shared with the family room, those cabinets really tie in with her new tile surround for the fireplace. She has her dream kitchen and family room and I was happy to help.

Sarah Battiato works at East Coast Marble and Granite, her family-owned business that has provided top quality natural stone and quartz installations since 1997. They serve clients throughout eastern Massachusetts, the North Shore, New Hampshire and Maine. Sarah has been a kitchen consultant for 10 years.