Kitchens in 2014 are all about lights, cabinets and wine, according to the National Association of the Remodeling Industry.
To find new trends in kitchen design, association staff reviewed 127 entries to the 2014 Contractor of the Year Awards program, along with design work posted on home design site HOUZZ. Here are the trends they say to follow in 2014:
• Built-in cabinets that look like furniture, with decorative details like crown molding and feet.
• Mixing and layering of woods and finishes. Combining white or ivory glazes with natural woods like cherry warms up a traditional kitchen, says Jennifer Runner, a designer at Normandy Remodeling in Hinsdale. Remodelers seeking a contemporary look may combine glass and metals with either ebony-painted woods or natural woods with a light color, like honey maple.
• Light cabinets with darker countertops.
• Bright-colored cabinets in orange, blue, green or brown. Richly colored cabinets can draw attention to the island, or ground the room through lower cabinets while the other cabinets are painted a lighter color, says Runner.
• Cabinets with glass doors either for displaying accessories or simply to "break up the monotony of wood," Runner says.
• Fewer upper cabinets to avoid obstructing the view of other rooms.
• A chandelier that contrasts with and softens modern appliances and countertops.
• Decorative task lighting -- lighting that serves as both decoration and as a practical purpose -- especially when lights can stretch to more than one spot on adjustable arms.
• Under-cabinet lighting for ambience.
• Pendant lights above kitchen islands to "bring style into the mix."
• Black, brass or iron-colored fixtures.
• A large light fixture to center the room.
• Cabinets specially built for wine bottle storage
• A "butler area" where guests can enjoy drinks and converse with the cook without distracting him or her from work. This might be an island or a countertop and cabinet with glasses and utensils away from the fridge, sink and cooking area where guests can enjoy pre-dinner cocktails, Runner says.
• Coolers, from under the counter to refrigerator size, with features such as UV-blocking glass and dual-zone designs that allow storing red and white wine in different temperatures. But Runner cautions from buying one as an accessory for a few new bottles. "It's a big investment," she says. "The nice ones can be very expensive. So, if you just have one bottle of wine in it, you probably shouldn't have bought it in the first place."