For some people, the word remnant conjures up images of scraps, castaways and undesirable remains. However, particularly in the world of countertops and carpet, remnants are high quality pieces left over from cutting sizeable slabs or pieces for large projects. Remnants are typically not damaged or inferior in any way but are just smaller pieces of a larger unit.
When shopping for remnant countertops, go into the process with an open mind. You may want to have a color scheme or design in mind, but keep your options as non-committal as possible as you never know what the remnant selection will offer. Take a cabinet section or piece of tile along on the shopping trip to see what remnants complement them. You can show the sales associate what colors and textures you prefer in the full slab section of the store to help her make appropriate recommendations in the remnant department.
Common Remnant Applications
Although countertop remnants are most commonly used for small jobs, such as covering bathroom vanities or enhancing bathtub or sink areas, there are other good options. You can use them to top a kitchen island, coffee and end tables or small counters that are not part of the large kitchen counter, such as those located on side cabinets next to stoves or refrigerators. If you can find several remnants in the same color and design, they can be attached to create a large counter. Although the counter will have seams, they will be barely visible after installation and slight wear. Also consider that seams are quite common in very large countertops made from full-size countertop slabs.
Just because you are dealing with remnants does not mean you should settle for substandard installation. In fact, having a professional install the remnants helps ensure your countertop will be cut, detailed and polished with care, expertise and the proper tools. Cutting and installing the countertops yourself saves money, but the cost savings of purchasing remnants may be best applied to paying a professional to make them as attractive as possible.