A great article on Kitchen Design Trends from Dallas Interior Decorating Examiner Nancy Baldwin and www.examiner.com
Kitchen design trends are a reflection of changes in how we use our homes. As our families have become more mobile, and as entertaining has become a regular occurrence, the kitchen has evolved into a multi-purpose space combining function and style. Floor plans have become more open, and kitchens have merged with family rooms and dining rooms, forcing those areas to accommodate each other. The latest kitchen design trends reflect our need for a more livable, comfortable and flexible environment.
Below is a quick recao of the key trends. Future articles will go into more depth with each of these décor directions.
Kitchen color runs the gamut from bold reds and yellows, now a bold complement to contemporary décor, to clear blues, neutral grays and warm browns which work well with transitional and traditional décor. Textured finishes remain trendy especially metallic accents in contemporary kitchens and rustic finishes in traditional kitchens. For trends in interior paint colors see Paint Color Trends for Interiors.
According to the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), wooden cabinetry in a furniture style is still the first choice for home owners. Upscale traditional looks use doors of maple and cherry hardwoods with onlays and moldings to create a luxury appearance. However, contemporary cabinetry is gaining in style acceptance with lighter woods, including environmentally-friendly bamboo, ash, beech and birch, as well as lighter finishes, cleaner lines and simple brushed steel hardware.
The most fashionable countertops use natural stone including granite, marble and limestone. However, the trend in natural materials is toward slate which offers a unique elegance and sophistication. Slate has the strength and durability of granite and marble without the constant need for maintenance and care. In custom kitchens, stainless steel countertops have become a popular option.
Kitchen appliances are becoming more sophisticated and high-tech as well as attractive. Appliances which have commercial features or a commercial look, especially in stainless steel, lead the market. Regarding stainless steel, “It’s still a large part of the market,” states Michael Wasson, Chief Technical Officer of Asko Appliance Inc.. Once restricted to higher-end appliances, stainless steel is now available as an option on lower-priced appliances as well.
Eco-conscious consumers are opting for bamboo flooring in their kitchens. A more renewable resource than hardwood, bamboo allows the beauty of the outdoors to be brought inside. However consumers are increasingly selecting hardwood for the kitchen as improvements in construction have increased the number of available colors, cuts, finishes and styles. Saltillo tile, glass tile and concrete flooring are also becoming increasingly popular.