As the average American spends at least 2 hours per day in their kitchen, it’s important that your kitchen suits your style. Working in a kitchen that’s badly designed or doesn’t feel comfortable means 14 hours a week spent in someplace you’d rather not be. Kitchen design trends are moving toward accommodating that time to be fun, convenient, and intuitive.
As technology moves from our screens to our kitchens, there are more touch-activated smart appliances on the market than ever before. This can help with clean up, make preparation simpler, and ensure you get perfect cook and bake times.
If you’re looking to update your kitchen or if you’re shopping around for a new home, be on the lookout for these 8 modern kitchen design trends.
1. White, Yes, White
While white kitchens might seem counter-intuitive to a well-used kitchen, white has become the top choice for National Kitchen and Bath Association members. White kitchens or kitchens with white accents are in every major design magazine.
As stainless steel and glass become the most popular components of new appliances, white kitchens counteract that coldness with a welcoming brightness. Designers are layering white on white, meaning white backsplashes with white cabinets and white countertops.
Appliance companies are even starting to take notice by adding white options to their smart appliance lines.
White can be easier to clean than stainless steel, which easily smudges. White also goes with any decor and style. Add splashes of white to accent your colors or go all white to make your key appliances or the stools around your breakfast nook pop.
If you want to see some ways you could accent your cabinets with white, learn more here!
2. Gray Is Cool
Cool, neutral grays are now starting to compete with white for kitchen space. Gray is one of the fastest-growing color themes in modern kitchens.
Your ability to pull off a gray decor can depend largely on your climate and how much sun your home gets. In colder areas that have more cloud cover, gray can seem cold without something to balance it out. Add natural materials and lightly stained woods to thaw out your grays.
Grays can pair well with warmer colors like red and yellow for a bright and balanced look.
If you’re in a warmer climate, gray can help cool things down and bring balance to the heat or the humidity. You could even mix white and gray in warmer areas for a cool and modern look. With accents of light colored wood and stainless steel, you’ll bring in all of the best elements for a comfortable and modern kitchen.
3. Go Smaller
It’s not just the economic gap for millennials that’s caused a trend in smaller appliances. Technology has also helped to create smaller appliances that are just as powerful as their much bigger predecessors.
For homeowners looking to build an extension or make a separate living space for a retired parent or apartment rental, micro-kitchens are taking off. They can feature high-quality two-burner stovetops and combination microwave and convection oven units.
Include an 18-inch dishwasher and a smaller fridge and you could have everything you need packed into an efficient space. When it’s time to replace an old appliance, think about going smaller.
4. Quartz, Not Granite
Countertop materials are shifting. While granite has a great look and feel, it can burn and chip in ways that quartz can’t.
When quartz is mixed with resin, it can end up looking a whole lot like granite but with an added toughness granite can’t match. Quartz countertops are easy to clean and will look new for years to come.
And there’s no need to seal it to prevent staining like you would with granite. The quartz and resin mix will automatically keep stains out.
5. Trade Bulbs For LEDs
Because of their small size and their long life, LED strips are being installed everywhere in modern kitchens. They can be found just above the floorboards, helping light the way to a late night snack or hidden in molding to bounce light off the ceilings.
Cleverly concealed LEDs can be installed in just about any hue. Installing them under overhead cabinets can keep counters lit while never damaging or burning cabinets or walls. They’ll also last five times longer than compact fluorescents.
6. A New Fridge Concept
Where once the refrigerator was a giant behemoth you had to build around, new refrigerator design and technology offers more flexibility.
New fridges are installed alongside cabinets or recessed into walls to allow for maximum space usage. There are also options to install refrigerated drawers into kitchen islands to aid with food prep and keep produce separate from other goods.
Modern refrigerator technology is more efficient and smaller than ever. Fridges can be installed in waist-high cabinets to keep from bending and lifting heavy meats and root veggies.
7. A Touch-Activated Faucets
Hands-free or simple touch faucets have moved from a kitchen niche to a standard in modern kitchen design trends. They help to keep kitchens cleaner and more sanitary when dealing with meats and fish.
You’ll be able to have more control over your water usage, which could save on your gas and water bills. Touch is better than hands-free if you want to have the most control over your faucets. Hands-free units don’t always turn off as planned.
8. Stay In The Middle
The most contemporary appliance and kitchen designs lean on the side of the contemporary. While the design can be sleeker and cleaner, it can also look a little bit cold.
Try to find a nice middle ground where you can retain some of the warmth of home while maintaining a clean design.
Kitchen Design Trends Are Both Hip And Practical
If a design trend makes your kitchen harder to cook in or clean up, then it’s not a very good trend. The best kitchen design trends are meant to look great and make your work easier.
If you’re looking to refresh your home’s look for 2018, check out our guide on how to refresh a fixer-upper.