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The Hottest Trends in Kitchens NOW!


Considering a kitchen remodel for your home? Before you go any further, check out the hottest trends for kitchens now. From the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) 2011 trend survey and from local trends, here are some things to consider.

Cabinetry Shake Up.  Traditional shaker style doors are a big trend around Chicagoland and nationwide. Shaker doors represent a middle ground between sleek modern kitchens and the ornate excess of faux-Tuscan. They are a perfect backdrop for the soft transitional look that is also very popular and current.

King Maple.  Cherry and maple are still the hot leaders in wood species, with maple overtaking cherry by a slight lead in recent months, due most likely to the popularity of clean white kitchens, with maple used for the painted substrate. Dark ebony and espresso finishes on cherry are also a growing trend. Locally we are seeing dark woods used as accents rather than throughout the whole space. A white kitchen with dark espresso island is a very popular request.

Hardware Makes a Statement.  In years past, cabinetry hardware at best was a complement to the style of the kitchen be it Tuscan, French Country or Arts and Crafts. At its worst it was an underwhelming afterthought. Well, hardware has arrived!  Statement making, simple architectural nickel & chrome pulls are gaining in popularity and add a stylish element of glamour to the trendy transitional look.

Countertops Stay the Course.  Granite and quartz continue to be the most requested countertop materials. Butcher block has seen a rise in sales, and marble made a big jump nationwide, especially white marbles such as Calcutta & Carrera. New sealant technology, though not perfect, makes owning this product in the kitchen slightly more practical. In our area, most homeowners are still asking for hardworking materials that do not require a lot of care or special handling.

Appliances Meet the Need.  As floor plans become more open to surrounding rooms, appliances are becoming increasingly concealed. French door refrigerators and double wall ovens are hot, while cook top units are overtaking ranges in popularity. Induction technology uses magnetic fields to create heat and is on the rise. This technology gives you the control and intensity of a gas cooktop and the easy care of a glass surface.

Extra, Extra!  Some extras that are trending in popularity are the continued interest in roll out drawers, wine storage for both function and decorative possibility. Having a spot for both trash and recyclables in the kitchen is also a hot topic – trash and recycling pullouts, garbage disposals and trash compactors are all on the rise.

The Softer Side of Tile.  Tile shows its softer side this year with simple mosaic-type designs in ceramic and glass that branch out into other areas of the kitchen beyond the backsplash for seamless looks that create flow. Simple, color blocked areas of tile create textural interest to the overall space.

Light It Up.  Lighting options continue to evolve. Consumers are interested in energy-efficient technology such as LED, but at least for the Midwest, cost and function still have a ways to go before catching up to incandescent technologies. Expect the regulation of incandescent lighting to shake things up in the near future.

Overall, the trends appear to reflect the times with many people choosing a kitchen with a warm yet modern look that fits into their lifestyle of healthy living, family togetherness and simple entertaining.

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