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Published: Friday, 7/24/2009

A New Edge For Countertops

(MS) - The variety of styles and the mix of materials that can be used to edge laminate countertops can be an advantage over other countertop materials. Here s a look at some traditional and new options that are shaping countertops today.

The Basics

The most familiar laminate edge treatment is the self edge or straight edge. This edge treatment leaves a thin line of exposed core (often called the brown line ) which can be used cleverly as an accent.

Laminate can be wrapped around an edge to create rounded shapes. This process is called post-forming. The most common post-formed edges are the waterfall and the bull nose.

The waterfall, as the name implies, is rounded on the top -- the laminate falls over the top to the front edge. Bullnose edges are fully rounded edges in which the laminate wraps back under the countertop. A variation on the bullnose, called the double wrap has a softened square effect.

Beveled, wood and even solid surface edges bring out laminate s true potential. Wilsonart beveled edge molding is available in any laminate pattern and can be either matched or contrasted to the laminate used on the top surface. New stone patterns look even richer with the monolithic treatments while wood edges can be stained or painted to match your cabinetry and finished into a variety of profiles. Be sure to ask your fabricator what type of edges he offers.

New on the Scene

Some countertop manufacturers have greatly expanded the variety of edge looks with proprietary sculpted edges available on a post-formed countertop.

Capitoline Products Inc, Hartson-Kennedy, and VT Industries all offer ogee edge profiles that give the upscale look of carved stone and solid surface tops. When paired with the new granite and stone designs in laminate, this creates an elegant countertop look at a fraction of the cost of high-priced alternatives.

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