Kitchens Opening Up for Comfort and Breathing Room in 2014
In recent years, trends in kitchen design have become increasingly open. Dining areas have been incorporated into the kitchen, and families have begun to spend more and more time together in the kitchen. Dark colors for flooring and walls that were popular at the end of the last century have fallen out of popularity in favor of white and light-colored kitchen areas. In 2014, lighting trends continue to transform kitchen spaces into bright, breezy rooms while bold elements in hardware and accent color are beginning to tone down the stark white kitchens of the past few years.
Fewer granite countertops are being installed in today’s modern kitchens. These heavy, difficult-to-maintain surfaces are being replaced with durable synthetic countertops or more sustainable and predictable natural surfaces. Counters aren’t the only things getting a facelift in kitchens this year. Dark flooring options are being replaced with lighter, easier-to-clean options.
It’s time to look up. This year’s kitchens continue the trend of featuring art and attractive lighting to make the room more inviting. Large backsplashes draw the eye up toward the ceiling. Cabinetry is more open. Sconce lighting adds warmth and beauty while providing brightly lit areas for food preparation.
Substance and Color
White and light colors remain prominent in this year’s kitchens. Hardware options have begun to evolve toward warmer options. Brass and iron have begun to replace nickel and chrome for drawer pulls and cabinet handles. Bold, dark accents are beginning to replace bright spot color in white kitchens. While white remains the primary color of choice in the kitchen, dark wood has become popular for tables, chopping blocks and other areas throughout the room. Rich, natural materials warm up spaces that had become cold and industrial. Use of bamboo in stools and wall treatments indicate a move toward sustainable kitchen design.
Modern conveniences and kids spending more time in the kitchen are influencing today’s restructuring of the traditional appliance triangle. Kids seeking after school snacks shouldn’t be underfoot while mom is preparing the evening meal. Designers are beginning to structure kitchens with areas for kids to use away from the primary food preparation area. A handy beverage drawer located near a secondary sink and microwave allow youngsters to grab refreshments without inhibiting meal preparation.
With kitchens once again becoming the heart of the home, homeowners have begun to focus on making these rooms more attractive and comfortable while at the same time seeking to add functionality and control traffic flow. As the kitchen becomes a hub of activity, designers have begun to focus on ways to make it more comfortable for the entire family. In 2014, a family might spend the entire evening in the kitchen. Kids can complete their homework at the bar while indulging in after-school snacks. At the same time, Dad or Mom can prepare the evening meal. Following dinner together, kids can clean up while their parents sip wine and share details about their day. In short, 2014 appears to be the year when the kitchen brings families together in new and intimate ways.