The Watson Farmhouse DIYs with 180fx® Laminate

Discover why Calacatta Cava laminate ultimately replaced quartz as the top option for this family of six

Watson Farmhouse Formica Case Study Calacatta Cava countertops

Lindsay and Tanner Watson took over a rundown family property located in western Massachusetts with visions of slowly turning it into their dream home. Lindsay’s been documenting their renovation journey on both Instagram and the family’s website.

But when it came to the kitchen, Lindsay states that quartz countertops were always at the top of her list.

“I wanted to create a warm, open, and inviting space,” Lindsay said. “I knew I wanted black cabinets with a light countertop and to incorporate wood tones to achieve this feel.”

But as it often does (especially with four kids), life gets in the way. With budget cuts staring her in the face, Lindsay came across another option.

“As I looked for different options that would fit within our budget, I came across a few posts on Pinterest about installing laminate countertops,” Lindsay said. “I had to do a double take because the photos did NOT look like what my mind had remembered laminate countertops to be.”

What Lindsay had found was our innovative 180fx® laminates, with true-to-scale, high resolution granite, stone, and wood patterns. She was drawn to the popular Calacatta Cava design.

“I knew I wanted veining but did not want it to be too dark,” Lindsay said. “The Calacatta Cava pattern was perfect!”

Watson Farmhouse Formica Case Study Calacatta Cava countertops

For Lindsay and her family of six, durability was as important as design.

“I knew we would spend a lot of time in the kitchen,” Lindsay explains. “I wanted to make sure our counters would withstand all cooking needs and the occasional tiny feet that may sneak up on them!”

So how are they holding up?

“I knew they would be durable, but they really have been ‘lived’ in already and they are holding up perfectly,” Lindsay reports. “They clean really easy too, as a mom of four I really appreciate this!”

Watson Farmhouse Formica Case Study Calacatta Cava countertops

Lindsay’s website talks about doing a lot of these projects “with the help of a handy husband,” so we asked her for her thoughts on DIYing laminate countertops.

“Take your time, measure twice and make sure your base is square,” Lindsay said. “We used MDF as our countertop base as it is the most cost effective. Invest in a router, this will help your edges come out nicer. Overall, this is a very DIY friendly project!”

Beyond the countertops, Lindsay and Tanner had strict divides as to what they were willing to pay for and what they felt they could DIY.

“Throughout our build we limited what we contracted out to: foundation, framing, septic and well, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical,” Lindsay said. “This opened up our budget to be able to install things like hardwood flooring throughout, tiled showers, custom kitchen cabinets, and more. This also kept our overall investment low and high on equity!”

Watson Farmhouse Formica Case Study Calacatta Cava countertops DIY

While we won’t speak for all the other elements in the home, it sure sounds like Lindsay would tackle Formica® laminate counters again.

“I love how the marble look countertops flow with the black cabinets and seeing the pops of wood tones in our island and range hood,” Lindsay reports. “We are always in the kitchen! We made sure to incorporate an oversized island that we could all fit around, and when we have guests over everyone gathers around the island as well.”

Watson Farmhouse Formica Case Study Calacatta Cava countertops

Lindsay Watson

You're using an unsupported browser and some features may not work properly. Please upgrade to a modern browser, such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Safari.