Slate is a durable, beautiful and easily maintained material that looks striking when mounted on top of knotty pine. You can buy slate for counters in the form of tiles or in large pieces for each countertop section. The large pieces are substantially more expensive. You can get slate in a variety of colors, ranging from black through various shades of gray, purple and blue. Knotty pine cabinets with a natural finish on them, topped by dark slate counters, can form a dramatic contrast that is an improvement for any kitchen.
To maintain the rustic feel of knotty pine cabinets, match them with counters that are made of the same type of wood. Pine can be used for counters, but you should avoid pine with large knots in it for countertops because the knots will be difficult to clean and will trap water and food particles. Clear pine boards with several coats of food-safe polyurethane on them will make a counter that matches your knotty pine cabinets perfectly. Other forms of wood, such as maple and cherry, can also be used to create attractive wood counters.
Concrete can be formed into counters that are nearly indistinguishable from stone at a fraction of the cost for what you would pay for granite or marble. You can add pigments to the concrete to change its color and create countertops that harmonize with the color of your pine cabinets. Concrete counters can also be livened up by adding bits of recycled glass to the mix, creating accents of lively color that make a pleasing contrast to the knotty pine below them.
Tile countertops can be built in a wide range of styles and colors. Earth tones and deep colors are the most effective for use with knotty pine. The deep red of terracotta tiles harmonizes with the woody tones of knotty pine to create a homey and informal feel. Counters can be made out of tiles of any size, ranging from 12 inches square to tiny 1-inch square pieces that can be used to create mosaics of different colors.