Let’s Talk Kitchens

A well-designed kitchen is essential not only for preparing the family meals, but also to act as a gathering point for everyone to come together and enjoy one another’s company. The kitchen is where everyone naturally congregates whether for coffee in the morning or cocktails in the evening, so it makes sense that the smallest details are worked out in advance. Practicality aside, kitchens actually offer a lot of scope for personality and originality, so let’s break it down and see where some of the possibilities lie.

Be bold with colour

While you may be familiar with whitewashed kitchens of old, modern kitchens are now favouring bold colours and vibrant tones. Although all white kitchens are still in demand (and if it works, why not!), many homeowners are making fantastic use of pops of colour and clashes to draw the eye. Green, blue and even violet are high on the popularity charts but don’t be afraid to experiment to find what works for you.

Make pastels a feature

If you are afraid to venture into unchartered territory and wish to remain in the pastel spectrum, then, by all means, do so. Pastel paint and tiles can lighten up the kitchen and present you with a happy and lighthearted finish thanks to gentle hints of yellows, greens, pinks and blues. And as more appliances are becoming contemporary in style, it makes it easy to source pastel appliances that fit right in with the theme.

Accent with gold

Fashionable trends always make a comeback, and a gold finish in the kitchen is one option that seems to return over and over again. Pairing gold with natural and earthy tones such as brown and stone will ensure you err on the side of caution without necessarily condoning the 70s-statement kitchen. Rose gold is once again coming to the forefront and is being seen on appliances as well as in finishes on cupboards and other cabinetry.

Add an island

An island, or breakfast bar, is a versatile addition to any kitchen. Not only does it add valuable preparation space, but it also offers casual dining and entertaining options directly in the kitchen. Open concept homes are sought after, and the addition of an island carries this look easily from room to another. Islands provide a multipurpose solution to small and large rooms and remove the need for over the counter cupboards.

Keep your cabinets open

Not all cabinets have to have a door on them. In fact, opting to adopt open shelving makes a very definitive decorative statement in its own right. You can exhibit your best dinnerware, platters or much-loved appliances in the cupboards overhead or on the island below. Open shelving means that everything is accessible in an instant, with extra visual space to actually widen the size of the room.

Make use of hidden storage and appliances

While displaying the best of the best, you don’t want the “rest” left out for all your guests to see. Hidden storage means that you can use a wide range of intelligent systems to keep those well-loved baking pans and saucepans out of sight. And while fridges and freezers are a must in any kitchen, hidden appliances are also an option. Hidden storage also makes use of those small areas that often seem wasted and makes maximum use of the room you have available.

Have fun with lighting

When you think of lighting, it is easy to focus on overhead lights; but, the fact of the matter is that there are plenty of other options, particularly when you consider concealed lighting under cupboards and counters. Task lighting such as pendants are on trend and LED lights are being substituted for older style fluorescent and halogen light bulbs. Technology now plays a big part in lighting, with sensor activated lights and lighting control panels.

Upgrade your kitchen with technology

Smart kitchens or at the very least, smart appliances, are rapidly becoming the way of the future. Whatever you choose to invest in is indeed a personal choice, but at some stage, your kitchen is going to be connected to the Wi-Fi or interconnected through various devices. Lighting and music control panels are becoming the norm, and phone charging systems are a forethought rather than an afterthought.

Experiment with your metals

Mixed metals looks great in any type of kitchen, so don’t be afraid to experiment a little. The focus is on strong metallic finishes, statement taps, decorative handles and interesting looking trims. If you want to showcase your best pots and pans, feel free. If you want to add a patina finish to your metallic surfaces, again it is a viable option. Metal in any form can custom tailor a look that is unique to your home and enable you to steer clear of dull and dreary designs.

Be open to non-traditional worktops

While stone and wood worktops are on the rise, including grey or black kitchen surfaces, marble, quartz or terrazzo style worktops are still a mainstream choice. Whichever way you go, durability and practicality should always play a part in the decision making. Kitchen worktops are one of the most utilised areas in the home and need to be able to withstand all that is thrown its way.

Pop in a pantry

Pantries are back and are suitable for small and large kitchens. You can add a sizeable walk-in pantry or opt for a freestanding pantry when space is limited. No one wants to be greeted by cluttered chaos when they enter their kitchen; therefore, a pantry of any shape and size can reduce the mess and provide extra capacity for storage. It makes perfect sense and curtails the need for additional overhead cupboards and cabinets.

Try some tiles

Grey, dark blue, and khaki are currently in demand, and can be integrated easily enough through the addition of carefully placed backsplash tiles. If you want to draw attention for all the right reasons or enhance the mood, then coloured grout in place of the standard white will also get you noticed. You can even take it one step further and use a portion of your wall to create a design statement worthy of the finest galleries with bright patterned tiles.

Dress it up with black

Bursts of black in the heart of the home is a stylish choice, and works well in fittings, fixtures, and painted cabinets. Whether you are accenting in black for two-tone carpentry, going monochromatic, or using it as a feature with dramatic black appliances, opting for touches of black is a sleek and sexy design choice. Black is very chic and undeniably sophisticated, and works well in contemporary homes.