Mentor Kati Curtis, Principal of Nirmada, shows how to modernize a kitchen with the latest trends. The Kitchen is by far the most important room in the house when it comes to remodelling, selling and buying. Interest in this highly specialized and technical area of the home gobbles up a huge portion of HGTV and DIY Web sites, and is a specialty among designers like me! Kitchen design is complicated, and we recommend you always use a professional when designing your Kitchen.
The National Association of Home Builders reports that Kitchen improvements also carry one of the largest rates of return when houses are sold; 78% of the remodeling costs are usually refunded, so builders, consumers, buyers and sellers carefully watch the trends in kitchen and bath design.
What are some trends in Kitchen design we’re seeing, and how can you incorporate these into your new Kitchen?
1- More (and smarter) appliances: More kitchens are being fitted with two ovens, two work islands, two dishwashers or dishwasher drawers and two refrigerators – and not just in Kosher Kitchens! We’re also seeing double laundry rooms, which hopefully mean more European-style washer/dryer combos which take up less space. Make sure if you need to double up, you use Energy Star rated appliances. We love the compact washers and dryers from Miele.
2- More kitchens: Some of our client’s homes boast double, triple or quadruple kitchens. We see this now in Kosher homes, but it’s becoming more mainstream. Thankfully, Manhattan building codes prevent us from doing this in New York City!
3- Smarter storage: For ergonomic reasons, we’re seeing less upper cabinets (too hard to reach) and more drawers rather that base cabinets (easier to access). Because of this, pantry size will increase, and the use of more ergonomic storage with practical accessories, such as plate racks, accessory drawers, pivoting pantry units, and corner drawers. We love that this is a functional trend, and it’s easy to retrofit your current layout with drawers instead of clunky doors. Blum is our go-to for hardware that makes this happen!
4- The cyber cafe: The computer has become an integral part of our homes, particularly in the Kitchen environment. In a recent Kitchen renovation we completed in Boston, we installed twice as many outlets as required by code, including data ports and a mounting station for viewing recipes and checking email while in the Kitchen. Installing a simple cabinet mount for your ipad, accomplishes this safely and easily.
5- Hardware: One of the most economical redos for either the kitchen or bath is to replace outdated hardware with new. The most-popular hardware finishes on the horizon are nickel and oil-rubbed bronze. SA Baxter has some gorgeous designs in both finishes.
6- Cabinetry: No buyer has ever asked for less storage, and the Kitchen is one place people always need more. Especially in New York City, we commonly include floor-to-ceiling cabinetry and more drawers than doors.
As always, we only use FSC certified woods, no-VOC finishes, and formaldehyde-free substrates for a beautiful and functional Kitchen that’s also safe and healthy!
Nirmada, author of this feature, is a Interior Design firm in New York City. Kati would love to talk to you about designing a space expressly for you.
You can also find a full list of all our global mentors [ who are top professional interior designers ] on our Mentors Page.