The Women's Journal

Before Purchasing Stone Countertops . . .

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By Fernando & Biriviana  De Leon, Owners, Stone Nation

Seeking stone countertops should be a fun and exciting process for any homeowner, from the 1st time home buyer to the most experienced remodeler. But in many cases, people feel overwhelmed through the process. Clearly, it’s not like choosing paint. Truly, we can get ourself lost in the midst of the colors and trends. There are 3 things you should know before purchasing stone countertops: Know your materials, know your base structure, and, most importantly, know your fabricator. Stone Nation is here to help you. 

Know your materials

The stone industry keeps revolutionizing with new materials and techniques. Granite, marble, quartzite, and precious stone are all part of mother nature’s beauty and can be unique pieces in your home, carved out of quarries in the mountains. It is porous; therefore, sealant is a must, especially for lighter colors, to avoid ketchup and coffee stains. Natural stones have lots of character, they are imperfect, they can have very elaborate vein movement, with a multitude of colors mixed, and for that reason, people move away due to design issues. A highly requested trend is honed (matte) or leather finished, which changes the texture. 

I tell my customers, “We can’t tell mother nature how we want our stone; we have to appreciate the beauty of how she makes it.”  On the other hand, we have man-made products including quartz and porcelain. Quartz is made from quartz stone. Quartz designs mimic granite and marble. Vein options are endless, from thick veins to pencil veins, different colors, or no veins. Quartz is not a porous surface, so low to no maintenance is required. I do warn customers of extreme high heat with quartz. Porcelain, on the other hand, is extremely heat resistant, and is thus a great application for any wall covering like fireplaces and showers. 

Know your base structure

The most important part of choosing stone countertops starts by making sure your base or cabinet structure is adequate. Understanding the weight distribution of the stone, supports and overhangs is crucial. Stone countertops are heavy. Cabinets need to be sturdy; all plywood sides construction cabinets are preferred. All particle board/furniture board or MDF construction cabinets need to be re-enforced before installation. Metal and other stone base structures are great to hold the weight, and can be ideal for outdoor kitchens or tables. 

Know your fabricator

Knowing your fabricator is crucial for the overall outcome of your project. Stone countertops are an investment. Know their quality of work, and if they have invested in their own knowledge in order to give you the best quality that you deserve. I love it when customers do their due diligence and have read through reviews, have spoken to neighbors, and when they ask questions. Customer service is key. You want a company to response even after the installation has been completed and the project paid for. Look for a local fabricator, maybe a family-owned or woman-owned shop and support your community. I enjoy answering the infamous question, “why should we choose you as our fabricator,” because I know we have a reputation that precedes us. 

Stone Nation was Established with one Goal in Mind; to make high quality countertops available to the entire Delmarva Peninsula.


Fernando De Leon, our founder, honed his skills as an artisan stone fabricator by traveling across the country before settling in Delaware in 2008. His passion for his craft motivated him to start his own business, Stone Nation, with his wife Biriviana. They gathered a team of qualified professionals who are committed to providing excellent customer service and quality work. Our years of experience, knowledge, and competitive pricing make us the perfect choice for all your stone needs. We sincerely hope that everyone can appreciate the beauty and durability of both natural and man-made stone. 

“This is my passion: I love what I do, at the end I feel accomplished when I see the beautiful countertop installed and to know that I created that beauty pleases me.”   ~ Founder, Fernando De Leon

Stone Nation


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“Great supplier of granite, in our case, but they have a variety of different stone options depending on your need. The owners, Fernando, and Biriviana, along with everyone else we dealt with were very knowledgeable and attentive to our needs. We replaced the stone facade on our fireplace. The work was done in record time. Fernando really knows the trade. You could not have asked for a better company to help with your special project. We will go back to them for our next project.”  ~ Beatriz S.

“We were looking to have a larger sink installed in the kitchen granite countertop and went to numerous granite fabricators in the area, almost all of which recommended replacing the entire granite countertop. When asked about cutting the existing countertop and putting in the larger sink, almost all would not do it. We went to Stone Nation and explained what we were looking for to Biriviana De Leon. She immediately suggested cutting the existing counter to save money, and that her husband, Fernando, could do it. Within days, a couple of their employees came out to verify that the under cabinet was big enough for a larger sink and we started the process to have Stone Nation do the work. Fernando (the company owner) showed up on the day of the scheduled appointment and we realized that there was a slight miscommunication about the scope of the work involved. He was able to adjust his schedule and came back a little later that day and performed the requested work. He and his crew did a fantastic job of cutting the granite, polishing it, and installing the new sink, at a very reasonable price. Fernando and his workers were very polite, professional, and efficient, completing the work in a timely manner with very little mess involved.”   ~ Gerard C.

“They did a beautiful job. They came in and took charge of my kitchen, removed all of the old countertops, and replaced them with new granite tops. They also replaced a new sink which I love, it is so deep. They cleaned up after they finished. They were very professional and did a wonderful job. I would recommend them to anyone.”  ~ Madeline B.

“Best remodeling experience I’ve ever had. Appointments were always kept, workers came when they were supposed to, and additional contractors also came when scheduled. AND! The workmanship is first-class! They clean up after themselves, too. And, Biriviana, She’s amazing! I highly recommend this company. I’m going to redo the bathroom next…. with Stone Nation’s help and expertise, of course.”   ~ Joe-Anne C.