Many materials offer endless options for countertop creativity. Quartz continues to be introduced in ever-more complex hues, whether deep and luxurious, light and ephemeral, or in colors drawn from nature. Laminates simulate natural materials, such as stone and metal, in new shades and textures, as well.

Seieffe. Available in translucent colors of red, green, orange, and yellow, which glow when spotlighted or backlit, Okite quartz is made of 93% natural quartz crystal and resists stains, scratches, and heat. A wide range of colors is available, as are textured, veined surfaces that resemble natural marble. The material is nonporous and can be polished on both sides. (713) 849-3800.

Crossville Porcelain Stone. Now available in a 14-by-28-inch size that is ideal for countertops, the Empire Series offers the appearance of marble in a porcelain stone tile. Three new colors are also available: Parisian White, Cognac, and Elba Night. The tiles come in polished and unpolished finishes, and a marble counter edge trim is available. (800) 221-9093.

Courtesy Transolid

Transolid. Available in 15 colors, the Transolid Quartz Collection of vanity tops is made of 93% natural quartz crystal and offers a nonporous alternative to granite countertops. The countertops resist cracking, chipping, scratching, and staining and do not require sealing, buffing, or polishing. (704) 660-7660.

Courtesy Nevamar

Nevamar. The subtle fractured pattern of Piazza high-pressure laminate was inspired by the effects of weathering on natural materials. Available in four natural colors, Gesso, Solare, Terra, and Vigna Verde, the collection also comes in the maker's LamMates thermalfused melamine panels. (800) 638-4380.

Courtesy Cambria

Cambria. Blending gray, white, creamy brown, and caramel to provide the appearance of natural granite, the Windsor color has been added to the company's collection. The quartz's low porosity makes it safe for food preparation, and it does not require sealing, polishing, or reconditioning. (866) 226-2742.

Courtesy Cosentino U.S.A.

Cosentino U.S.A. Made of 93% natural quartz, Silestone quartz countertops are now available in a series of soft pastel colors. The Cielo Series color palette includes Orange Fuego, Silver Nube, Blue Cielo, Amarillo Sand, Verde Agua, and White Dune. The material is scratch resistant and nonporous and requires no sealing. (800) 291-1311.

Courtesy DuPont Zodiaq

DuPont Zodiaq. Zodiaq quartz surfacing is now available in 25 colors with the addition of five new shades: Autumn Light, Cappuccino, Cinnamon Spice, Copper Sunset, and Dorado Blue. Available in 2- and 3-centimeter thicknesses, the surfacing can be used for kitchen and bath countertops, wet bars, and backsplashes and is made of 93% natural quartz. (877) 229-3935.

Courtesy Formica

Formica. The Authentix Metal Collection of high-pressure laminate surfaces offers the appearance and texture of metal. Four colors -- Aluminum, Stainless, Brass, and Copper -- are available in four patterns: powdered, brushed, punched with embossed squares, and quilted with raised diamond shapes. Shown is brushed Aluminum. (800) 367-6422.

Courtesy Richlite

Richlite. Made of a combination of cellulose fiber and resin that resists moisture, stains, knife marks, and extreme heat, Richlite countertops are available in three new colors: merlot, indigo, and sage. The dense material also makes the countertop nonporous. Other colors are available. (888) 383-5533.

Courtesy Sonoma Cast Stone

Sonoma Cast Stone. Concrete Countertops come in standard modules but are also available in custom sizes and shapes. A variety of optional details can be cast into the countertops, including integral drain boards or embedded accent tiles. Each countertop is cast to a minimum thickness of 1 3/4 inches and is reinforced with steel bars. A wide array of colors is available. (877) 939-9929.

For more product information, visit ebuild, Hanley Wood's interactive product catalog.