The beauty in nature

One of Cliffside's crystal knobs
M13-32-SS, lead crystal with a silver satin stem

Natural materials, such as brass, crystal, stainless steel, bronze, iron, pewter, stone and marble are very popular. These are being integrated in all areas of the home, especially kitchens and baths. In fact, they are often mixed and matched throughout so that it remains interesting to the eye.

There are many brass and stainless steel materials in the kitchen and we are seeing a lot of crystal in master suites. Natural brass, stainless steel and crystal are the most popular and tend to be the main materials that are used.

T565-30-BNA, a contemporary knob made from stainless steel

Stainless steel

Stainless steel is found throughout the housing industry: on dishwashers, refrigerators, sinks, ovens, microwaves, coffee makers, blenders, towel bars, and even plumbing and electrical fixtures. Crystal has really made a comeback, as well, and it has become a focal point of the master bath.

Neutral finishes

Many designers find that it’s best to stay neutral when it comes to finish. Color palettes today lean toward neutral elements to create a timeless appeal and a high-end environment. We’re seeing an increased desire for silver and gray finishes and natural earth tones.

BH3NA-OA; the old antique finish is a rich brown color
BH3NA-OA; the old antique finish is a rich brown color

Soothing, cool colors and rich materials are in demand often highlighted by mixtures of color and texture, such as stainless steel appliances with gray hardware, or darker cabinets mixed with dark chocolate brown hardware. The gray and natural materials and the very clean, simple classic lines are more enduring.

Overall, it is definitely more of a natural look, with grays, tans, and browns, and with hardware accessories giving an accented flair to the design.

Cabinet jewelry

For the finishing touches of kitchen and master bath remodels, designers should strive to find the ideal hardware finish. Full suites of products, particularly in cabinet hardware, are offered, which should give designers confidence that those finishes and styles are going to be compatible and consistent.

IBCL-PN shows the polished nickel finish
IBCL-PN shows the polished nickel finish

Nickel is a very popular finish throughout the home-building and design industries, both brushed and polished; oil-rubbed bronze is a popular look, as are bright or brushed chrome finishes. We see similar trends in hardware; the most popular finish is satin silver followed by oil-rubbed bronze, but antique finishes are still very popular. Typically, these finishes are chosen from the same color family, and blend with the appliances and cabinetry.

There are now hand-forged hardware pieces, as well as ones adorned with real crystal. The appearance of these items supports the fact that consumers want unique details that will set their space apart from others. It all comes down to details.

Cliffside offers several different marble options, including this S-3-BEIGE.
Cliffside offers several different marble options, including this S-3-BEIGE.

Hardware is also a key component to giving any space a completed look. There are a variety of hardware options available to enhance a  kitchen and master bath remodel. Hardware is extremely important. The hardware is meant to look like jewelry on the cabinetry, not match it. It’s key that the hardware be beautiful; and everything else has to follow suit. People also prefer natural materials, such as solid brass and stainless steel, and natural looks, like marble, crystal, and stone, whenever possible.

Overall, consumers and dealers are looking for their kitchen and master bath designs to mimic the look and feel of the spa retreat, and these traditional or contemporary spaces are taking on a cleaner, uncluttered, more elegant look.

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