With the emergence over the last decade of so many style options when it comes to kitchen design, the trend now is to take advantage of that variety to create something highly personal. With the kitchen such a high profile space in the modern home, owners understand the importance of a design that is not only functional but also reflects who they are and meets their individual needs. The kitchen might need to act not merely as a cooking space but also as an office nook, homework station for the kids, or the main dining area. The latter is why many homeowners now opt for the inclusion of an island bench/dining table combination, for example.
With open plan living, today’s kitchen lends itself to maximizing integrated and concealed appliances to ensure a clean, clutter-free look. For the same reason, neutral finishes in cabinetry and benchtops keep the overall appearance modern, simple and fresh. Minimalism is also enhanced with the use of long, straight benchtops, flat cabinetry doors (no handles or bevelled finger pulls) and gloss, two-pack finishes. To free the main kitchen from clutter and mess, the inclusion of a butler’s pantry or ‘scullery’ is also very popular, providing such benefits as additional storage, a walk-in pantry, bench space for appliances and an extra sink.
As to trends in details, stone is still the work surface of choice for many – either reconstituted stone, Corian, granite or marble, especially Calacutta and Calcutta.Waterfall ends to these provide sophistication and a neat visual appeal. The select use of wood as a contrast against sleeker, starker surfaces, has seen a re-emergence;and natural-look materials are gaining popularity as people seek to create warm atmospheres in their kitchens – for example, with the use of ceramic tiles that look like wood, laminates that mimic natural stone or woodgrain cabinetry.
Splashes of a bold hue in cabinetry, tiles or splashbacks are on trend, as are honey tones and retro green. Having said that, white or off-white is still in demand as the perfect neutral backdrop for the inclusion of ‘pops’ of colour through key displayed appliances. Splashbacks are a way to make a statement, not only through colour but also material as the options are endless – from glass to tiles, pressed metal to bespoke patterns, or mirror to clear glass.
Finally, with the huge surge in popularity of cooking shows and a greater interest in both healthy eating and experimental cooking from a wide range of cultures, home owners are looking to incorporate the latest gadgets and appliances with gourmet cooking features into their renovated kitchens – for both form and function!
Industrial-look cookers are in demand, as are including two ovens, one perhaps a steamer oven or even a plate-warmer. Stainless steel is still prevalent in appliances; and to add not only interest but for a more chef-friendly space, the use of LED lighting has expanded to underneath overhead cupboards and inside shelves and pantries. For ease of use, soft-closing drawers, extra-generous work spaces, plenty of storage (preferably zoned) and lift-up doors for overhead cupboards are sought after.
Whatever the latest trends, however, ultimately it’s a case of designing a kitchen to suit the individual needs and tastes of the client so that this all-important space in the home can be both functional and beautiful. Come and see the highly experienced and knowledgable team at Ultimate Kitchens & Bathrooms in Hawthorn East, Melbourne to talk about creating your dream space.