This countertop hack is an inexpensive way to elevate a kitchen sink

When it comes to renovating a kitchen, unless you have unlimited funds, you'll always have to make compromises. It can be difficult to weigh up how to stretch your budget to get exactly what you want, but a good designer can help you balance the books.

And sometimes, as in the case of this gorgeous modern kitchen, a designer can help you achieve your goal with a clever design trick. “Originally, we wanted a fully integrated marble sink,” explains Danielle Palm, the interior designer of this space and founder of RockRose918. “But when we found out the cost, it didn't fit into our budget.”

For her clever sink design, Danielle used a leftover kitchen countertop to recreate the look. Here's how it was done.

How to raise an undermount sink

(Image credit: Tony Li. Design: RoseRock918)

So what was the solution to create the look of a marble kitchen sink? “By using a marble front for the kitchen sink, we killed two birds with one stone,” says Danielle. “The mitered marble front allowed us to achieve this look without the high cost.”

“Visually, we feel it enhances the aesthetic and overall look of the kitchen,” adds Danielle. “It adds a touch of classic elegance to the space and is a stunning focal point. It also creates a cohesive and unified look.”

But there's more to this idea than just good looks. “By installing a marble or stone front, you can protect the vanity unit from potential water damage and other signs of wear and tear, ensuring its longevity,” Danielle tells us.

This idea offers the best of both worlds, even if your budget stretches to marble. “Plus, it's less maintenance than an all-marble sink, which would be very susceptible to stains and etching,” says Danielle.

“We love the function and material options of an undermount sink. With no rim or lip on the kitchen countertop, cleaning the countertop is more efficient. We chose a countertop-style stainless steel sink that includes built-in components that fit into the sink, such as cutting boards, colanders, drying racks, drain grates and other accessories that allow the sink to be customized for specific tasks,” she adds.

How big was the price difference?

a modern kitchen design in Shaker style

(Image credit: Tony Li. Design: RoseRock918)

OK, let's get to what we really want to know – how much was saved on this kitchen renovation? “It all depends on which undermount sink you choose,” says Danielle. “Countertop sinks can cost anywhere from a few hundred to thousands of dollars (depending on the brand and style). We went with a relatively simple stainless steel design to keep costs down.”

“While an integrated marble sink would be stunning, it would be very expensive,” says Danielle. “The cost of the marble (we didn't have enough left over from our slab) and the craftsmanship required to create a perfect, seamless installation was beyond our very tight budget.”

For this project, the cost of this feature was a very small part of the budget. “Always discuss installation costs up front,” advises Danielle. “We used a leftover piece of our panel, so the material was included in the price. Our manufacturer only charged us for the time they spent cutting the piece, which was only $150.”

a woven bar stool

Threshold Ceylon Kitchen Counter Stool

Price: 170 USD
material: Rubberwood

How can I implement this idea?

This idea needs to be communicated up front to your countertop fabricators and installers when remodeling a kitchen, and you need to be thorough in your explanations. “When you're talking to a marble fabricator about installing a marble apron sink, you want to be as detailed as possible,” Danielle tells us. “We pulled several inspirational photos from Pinterest as examples. We explained that it's basically a mitered apron installation.”

Similar to an apron-front bathroom vanity, the cuts should be made at a 45-degree angle to create the mitered edges,” she adds. “Our installer applied a marble adhesive to the back of the mitered edge and then aligned the mitered edges to the corners of the cabinet. Then, gaps and seams were filled and smoothed.”

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