Current Kitchen Trends

As a builder, remodeler or homeowner, you build and upgrade kitchens for both multi-functionality and convenience while offering a design for healthy, fresh food preparation and consumption. An updated kitchen provides you with a substantial payoff, particularly when it comes time to sell the home, according to Remodeling magazine.

An annual cost vs. value report from Remodeling magazine shows homeowners yield a much higher return on their kitchen projects than their bathroom or other remodeling projects. In fact, homeowners were able to add more than 82 percent of their project expenses for their mid-range, minor kitchen remodel back to the value of their home.

remodel benefits

The kitchen is the heart of your household. It’s where you gather around with family and friends while cooking and savoring delicious food. The kitchen is also the one place you will want to choose the upgrade trends you plan on following carefully. You don’t want your kitchen — or one you just remodeled for a client — to be outdated in a few short years. Therefore, you want to stick with popular kitchen trends of not only today, but those that will have value well into the 21st century.

While our extensive inventory of products here at Cliffside Industries takes the guesswork out of updating your kitchen hardware, for example, you may still be wondering how to transform the heart of your home in a trendy, yet timeless way. Our current kitchen trends guide will help you do just that.

Kitchen Remodeling Statistics

The National Association of Home Builders’ Remodeling Market Index report, which covered the first quarter of 2017, shows homeowners would rather remodel the kitchen over upgrading the bathroom. In fact, kitchen upgrades made up more than 80 percent of all remodeling jobs.

remodeling stats

Remodeling the kitchen is among the most profitable projects you can do in your house. Even a minor kitchen remodel offers a high return on your remodeling investment, with an 81.3 percent money recoup.

Current Kitchen Trends

From kitchen design styles to cabinetry to hardware, let’s take a look at some of the current trends for 10 new kitchen looks and upgrades that will not only bring timeless value to your home, but bring it to life and incorporate personality into it, as well.

New Kitchen Designs and Styles

With its sleek, clean simplicity, homeowners continue to embrace contemporary design. However, they’re also embracing the “transitional” kitchen design, which exploits the best features of traditional and contemporary designs.

Other trends, such as the industrial look and the open layout concept, also persist in winning fans over in the category of new kitchen looks.

Industrial Design

The industrial design style has seen some growth over the past few years, especially internationally, and this trend looks like it will continue. Elements characterizing it include:

  • Exposed pipes
  • Exposed brick
  • Rustic metals
  • Reclaimed wood
  • Concrete
  • Commercial-grade appliances

industrial kitchen design

Its look mixes the functionality of materials like concrete, wood and stone with advanced engineering that produces contemporary solutions and finishes. The industrial design redefines our desire for things that matter: function, form and aesthetics.

Open Layout

The open-concept layout continues to be popular. Just turn on any home-design television show, and you’ll hear the words “open concept” again and again. Comfortable cooking and informal dining are what many individuals desire, which motivates this design trend to support a connected, casual lifestyle.

An open kitchen allows for entertainment and interaction while cooking the evening meal. This Old House reminds us that eat-in-kitchens can help your family prep, serve and clean up food, in line with the popular togetherness theme.

Cabinet Styles

Cabinets can be a costly part of remodeling a kitchen. However, they’re also the most eye-catching component of the kitchen, making the design and selection of your cabinets an essential part of your kitchen remodel job.

Some trendy cabinet styles include:

  • Distressed Cabinets: Glazed and distressed cabinet finishes are popular features in kitchen cabinetry trends. The style has been quite popular since around 2005. When you’re looking at finishes for your cabinet refacing or replacement project, consider modern looks with clean, wood tones or fresh colors of paint.
  • Floor-to-Ceiling Cabinetry: You may often see the cabinetry to the ceiling feature with other kitchen-related trends like oversized windows and open cabinetry. With floor-to-ceiling cabinetry, you can store a whole range of objects from linens and dishes to small appliances.
  • Efficiency Inside: Many years ago, built-in spice racks and Lazy Susans inside your kitchen cabinets would be the norm. These days, you have plenty of storage options, including pull-out drawers, bread boxes, utensil drawers, pull-out trash cans, narrow space drawers and even cookie sheet drawers.
  • Shaker-Style Cabinets: While a popular kitchen cabinetry is traditional, shaker-style cabinets are among the top trends for both homeowners and designers, and it doesn’t seem like they’ll lose their top trend spot for some time.
  • Simple and Light: Create a clean, light look in the kitchen with off-white or white shaker-style doors. White-shaded cabinets are both versatile and enduring when they appear in traditional, cottage and modern kitchens.
  • Flat-Panel Cabinets: To create a contemporary or modern looking kitchen, you can’t go wrong with flat-panel cabinets. Try bisque, high-gloss cabinets with contemporary stainless steel handles to intensify the sleek appeal of your kitchen.

Hardware Styles

Popular kitchen hardware is your home’s jewelry, which can add interest and create a pulled-together look. It can impact not only the look and feel of the cabinets, but also the whole kitchen. The shape of and finish on the knobs, handles and pulls add to the appeal of the entire kitchen design.

One cabinet can take on a contemporary look and feel by adding brushed nickel pulls, or a classic look and feel by adding vintage knobs. Customize your kitchen even more with a more personalized look by adding oil-rubbed, bronze-coated hardware or artistic glass knobs. Whether you’re going for a vintage, contemporary, modern or traditional, let your cabinet hardware show off your style.

hardware styles

The style of your kitchen should give you an idea of the finish you choose for your cabinet hardware. While oil-rubbed bronze, chrome and stainless steel have staying power, other trendy options are:

  • Brass Cabinet Hardware: Brass hardware is a simple, inexpensive way to update the appearance of your kitchen. Style Bluepoint says brass is back, especially when treated as an accessory in your home.
  • Bronze Cabinet Hardware: This is a durable, lightweight and attractive choice. It provides you with a wide-range of design possibilities for your kitchen and makes a suitable alternative to stainless steel and zinc. Whether bronze is a good option for your project or not will depend on various factors. You have several bronze cabinet options to choose from at Cliffside Industries, including items from our manufacturer partners and our own products.

Mixed Metals and Finishes

Homeowners are beginning to mix metals and finishes into their kitchen designs. Potential mixed metal and finish choices you can incorporate in your kitchen look include:

  • Wrought iron
  • Brass
  • Copper
  • Stainless steel
  • Nickel

Within these metals, you also have various finishes of brushed, antiqued, polished and satin options. Set the style and temperature of your kitchen with any combination of these. Select up to three different metals to get the tone you’re looking for to create a gorgeous hardware blend in your kitchen space.

Colors

Along with finishes and metals, several color options throughout the kitchen are widespread, including:

  • White: According to 67 percent of National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) members, white leads the way for cabinet color choice.
  • Gray or Greige: The popularity of sophisticated, sleek gray colors continue to grow, both inside and outside the home. This is especially the case with “greige” — a mix of beige and grey. It may be a little tricky with gray, however. It can appear frozen in cloudy, cold climates unless you’re using it on warmer materials, such as wood cabinets, or are pairing it with hotter colors, like yellows and reds. In hot, sunny climates, gray can also look pleasantly cool. Therefore, while a safe bet is a white kitchen, gray is enough of a neutral color to maintain its staying power if you’re using it well.
  • Blue: In 2017, home sale website Zillow found soft gray-blue to light blue kitchens increased home sale prices by $1,809.
  • Golden Accents: Brass, copper and rose gold copper finishes look beautiful on hardware, appliances and gadgets. Warm finishes like these pair well with other colors on cabinets and make your kitchen look homey. Copper-colored accessories and handles are appearing, too, as people search for alternatives to black and stainless-steel fixtures to accompany their cabinets.
  • Earthy Tones: Earthy tones are a primary trend in color, with homeowners choosing neutral, simple colored designs for their kitchen that will last for a long time.
  • Customized Colors: Cookie-cutter kitchen designs are out for homeowners these days. Homeowners are now looking for something that builds personality and character, is unique and offers a bold statement. An effective way to notice these traits is through color. When it comes to cabinetry, homeowners are looking more toward customized colors they can fit in perfectly with their kitchen space. A huge favorite is neutral colors with yellow, grey or soft green tones.

kitchen color

Don’t count out a darker color pallet — however, shades like emerald green, black and navy are alluring to many people.

Appliances

Several things to consider when looking for appliances for your kitchen include the color, as well as whether they are “smart” or space-saving.

Colors of Appliances

For several years now, a classic choice in appliances has been stainless steel, and we expect this trend to continue. You can incorporate this neutral appliance color easily into any style of kitchen for an elegant, attractive finish.

You may want to consider a new member of the stainless family: brushed black stainless steel. Slate appliances are also on the uptick, as homeowners like the matte finishes that resist fingerprints and are easy to keep clean.

Smart Appliances

Smart and connected appliances continue to trend at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held annually in Las Vegas. Examples include:

  • Smart Washers and Dryers: Enjoy greater efficiency with smart washers that utilize an eco-option program to optimize heating cycles. Smart dryers also include an eco-sensor feature that allows them to conserve energy — you can adjust the temperature based on the level of moisture in the drum to minimize drying time. Smart washers and dryers also offer other features like separate settings to clean comforters and jeans.
  • Smart Fridges and Ovens: For years, smart ovens, fridges and ranges have been on the market, but they’re only now moving toward adding connectivity in major appliances to help busy individuals. For instance, along with Wi-Fi, manufacturers are now incorporating full-color LCD touchscreens to major appliances. The goal is that someday, your refrigerator will be your kitchen’s hub. It could, for example, analyze the groceries you have inside it to choose a recipe in line with your preferences and send it to your oven to preheat. Also, videos may play on these screens to help you learn unfamiliar cooking methods.

Space-Saving Appliances

In line with the tiny home trend, some homeowners are opting for space-saving appliances, such as:

  • Induction Cooktops: To run a smart kitchen, it’s essential to have kitchen appliances that can cook a whole range of meals. An induction cooktop can make way more than a simple grilled cheese sandwich. Cook meals at a specific temperature to perfection every time when you pair this smart cooker with a Bluetooth thermometer.
  • Compact Fridges: Small is the new big these days, especially for retirees and millennials. Micro-kitchens are on the upswing with smaller appliances, including incorporating two-burner stoves and smaller refrigerators. Some people are even opting for multiple “counter-height” refrigerators instead of one large fridge.

Under-the-Counter Microwaves: For years, hanging your microwave over your oven or range to save space has been the basic kitchen protocol. However, these days, homeowners are beginning to turn to universal design fundamentals to give their family easy access to everyday necessities. Instead of installing your microwave over your oven, why not move it to under-the-counter drawers and nooks instead?

induction cooktop

Technology and Accessories

In the contemporary household, technology is evolving rapidly, and the kitchen is no different. In modern times, more focus is on smart appliances, as we mentioned, and their features and accessories. For instance, now you’ll find kitchen accessories with features like:

  • Color-changing lights
  • Bluetooth functionality with integrated speakers
  • Phone charging capabilities
  • Touch-activated and touch-free activated faucets

With smart appliances, you’re giving your traditional kitchen a more modern, subtle twist. Take smart coffee machines, for example. Rather than having to get out of your warm bed to make the coffee, you can use an app to control the coffee machine right from your bed to have it ready, hot and waiting for you when you get up.

Healthy Eating Tools

Today, many individuals are focusing more on healthy eating. In fact, Forbes reports that millennials are some of the healthiest eaters. So, homeowners are starting to want tools and gadgets in their kitchens to help them eat healthily.

healthy eating

Tools we’re seeing added to the kitchen include:

  • Hand-held spiralizers
  • Silicone steamers
  • Herb keepers
  • Immersion blenders
  • Flavor-infused water bottles

Other items, like special storage containers, can help lower the amount of food you waste with their built-in dating systems.

High-Tech Cabinetry

Modern cabinetry should at least have a charging station to charge your smartphone and other mobile devices. If you watch cooking videos while working or follow recipes with your tablet or smartphone, you might want to install a device holder or docking station in your cabinetry. To get really high-tech with your cabinetry, opt for built-in wireless devices like televisions, a tablet or music speakers.

Flooring

If you’re looking to replace your kitchen floor, consider hardwood. Hardwood can spike the resale value of your home since many buyers are looking for this type of flooring while shopping for a new home. And, a hardwood floor will increase your kitchen’s value, as well.

Now, this doesn’t mean you have to install hardwood floors to sell your home — high-quality hardwood doesn’t come cheap. You can always investigate less expensive options for flooring, like porcelain tile and vinyl with a wood look.

Countertops

Everyone wants countertops that feel durable, smooth and of high-quality. If the construction of your countertops is dated laminate, consider upgrading them. Some millennials are even leaning toward butcher block surfaces. Other than this, trends for countertops include:

  • Granite: Homeowners expect their countertops to be solid and durable, like granite. According to a 2016 survey, 40 percent of homeowners chose granite for their countertops.
  • Quartz Surfaces: Upgrades to quartz surfaces continue to have staying power. About 40 percent of homeowners chose quartz for their kitchen countertop, according to the same 2016 survey. Quartz was once seen as a luxury surface for the kitchen, likely because the average household couldn’t afford it. But, today’s manufacturers are developing more composite surfaces that open the potential for countertops to be made of natural stone. Upgrading to natural stone from laminate can increase the beauty and grandeur of your kitchen greatly, but at a reasonable price.

Clutter-Free: Another emerging trend in interior design is clutter-free countertops. When the countertop is clutter-free, it opens up kitchen space and allows you to calmly prepare and cook your food on a clean, clear surface. Cabinetry options are arising to allow for this layout, carrying a variety of shelves and compartments to store anything from oils and seasoning to tea bags and towels. When your countertops are free of miscellaneous objects, it creates the illusion of a bigger kitchen.

quartz countertops

Kitchen Shelves

A couple of trending shelving options include:

  • Open Shelving: Homeowners like open shelving because it increases storage and creates space while providing a more relaxed, modern look. Open wall shelves invite your guests to help themselves to things they need and feel at home. Your guests don’t have to ask you where you store things, and they don’t have to rummage through your drawers and cabinets in search of specific items — everything is in clear view.
  • Shelves and Drying Racks: Consider mix and match modular shelving. You can position floating shelves any way you want, making them the perfect choice for odd slivers of wall space and tiny kitchens. Combine various finishes and sizes for an eclectic effect, such as stainless steel and wood.

Lighting

Recessed and pendulum lighting continues to be popular, with under-cabinet lighting and LED lighting in high demand. According to the 2016 survey by Houzz, among those upgrading lighting, 71 percent, 70 percent and 58 percent chose under-cabinet lighting, recessed lights and pendant lighting, respectively.

kitchen lighting

  • Under-Cabinet Lighting: A quick fix that will improve the lighting in your kitchen is adding under-cabinet lighting. It will light up your counter space and is fairly inexpensive. Enhance the mood by using LED backlighting.
  • LED Lighting: More homeowners are making the switch to LED lighting from traditional incandescent light bulbs. LED lighting provides great light for activities, and you can get it in an assortment of colors. Most LED bulbs last up to 50,000 hours.

LED lighting is also a popular choice for under-cabinet lighting. You can obtain under-cabinet LED lighting in various forms including bars, strips and pucks. LED lighting, when installed under wall cabinets, adds light to your kitchen’s working area and improves the ambiance in general.

Backsplashes

If it’s been over a decade since you’ve replaced your backsplash, chances are it’s outdated. Current trends include:

  • Ceiling-high backsplashes
  • Large subway tiles
  • Metallic backlashes
  • Mirrored finishes and patterns
  • Acid-washed and weathered looks

Creative blends of tile and glass or flashy glass mosaic leave a great impression on guests or prospective home buyers. Other choices of designer backsplashes are travertine, marble and other high-quality stones.

Changing up your backsplash from everyone else’s will help set your home apart from the rest. Instead of choosing a metal-finished tile backsplash, go for metal sheets of copper, stainless steel, zinc or aluminum instead.

Look to Cliffside Industries When Updating Your Kitchen

When it comes to your kitchen, changing up the cabinet hardware may be all it takes to create a whole new look. You’ll find a complete range of diverse finishes and styles of kitchen cabinet hardware at Cliffside Industries. Choose from elegant, brushed stainless steel to vintage-flavored antiqued copper and classic solid brass. Whatever cabinet hardware you want for your kitchen, Cliffside Industries can help.

cliffside cabinet hardware

And, if you’re selling your home, you should always look for ways to improve the value of your home — whether it’s a buyer’s or seller’s market. Remember, your kitchen can sell your home. If you stage your kitchen space optimally and update its finishes, you increase your chances of not only selling your home — but getting more for it, too.

Browse our online catalog to check out our various customizable hardware suites and find the perfect kitchen cabinetry hardware for your needs. Choose from multiple colors, materials, metals and finishes to transform your kitchen. Shop our catalog today!

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