White continues to be the color of choice in kitchen and bath design. Designers and homeowners are using it to create modern, clean, open spaces that reflect natural light and provide a subtle background for art and furnishings.

White can be used for virtually any design: traditional, modern, transitional, sophisticated, whimsical, classic or retro.

White Italian marble has long been the choice of architects, builders and designers for thousands of years. But for modern kitchens, it is a choice that requires a substantial budget and extra maintenance.

Today, new products have emerged that offer the look of marble along with the carefree maintenance of granite. One such product is PolarStone.

Like classic marble, PolarStone shows three-dimensional marble veins that change in shape, color and size throughout each slab, while achieving the identical natural translucency of marble.

The spirit and beauty of white Italian marble is captured in this modern product that appeals to today’s busy cooks and homeowners.

White kitchens have increasingly taken on a more sophisticated look. Using white-on-white, or mixing tones, textures and finishes of multiple white products within the same space, creates stunning visuals.

A stone surface can be finished in two or three different ways to create sophisticated and subtle differences within the same space that make a big statement about attention to detail and individual creativity.

White bath countertops can coordinate with white tiled floors, stone shower walls and borders in a sophisticated natural palette that encompasses tones, textures and a variety of white products.

Beyond white, for the slightly more adventurous, charcoal greys, natural pastels and tinted whites are attractive alternatives. In fact, grey and silver-grey granite are now considered neutral since they pair easily with white and accent colors.

Grey can be “cool” or “warm; depending on its tone. Grey is now a timeless kitchen and bath choice that is never outdated.

A visit to a local stone supplier and fabricator will open your eyes to the world of possibilities – white and otherwise – within every budget.

Andrea Antunes McGilton is project manager at Distinctive Granite and Marble, with showrooms in Okatie; Lady’s Island; Pooler, Ga., and on Hilton Head Island.