Appliances in rich colors and quartz countertops couldn't be hotter
Navy refrigerators. Open shelving. The farmhouse aesthetic. Today's kitchen trends are so appealing, it's hard to pick just a few for your renovation or mini makeover. (Don't do all of them!)
Check out the trends below -- among the most popular of the current crop -- and decide which ones appeal the most to you.
The mighty granite countertop has been in stiff competition with quartz lately, and it looks like the latter may be winning. It's easy to see why: Quartz, which is man-made from natural stone and resin, is maintenance free, so sealing it isn't necessary as with granite. It's also nonporous, so if you spill the traditionally worst offenders -- oil, coffee or red wine -- on it, you'll see it won't stain like an all-natural stone such as granite.
Add in quartz's many color varieties and patterns, and you've got a scorecard where the plusses add up.
Look-at-me hues like yellow and navy are all over kitchen design these days, from backsplashes to appliances.
"Adding interest through color is a natural way to express your personality and creativity," says Suzanne DeRusha, content marketing and design manager at Elkay, a manufacturer of sinks, faucets and kitchen cabinets.
But don't overdo the color surge: If you're installing bright yellow cabinets, for example, use lots of neutrals, like white or gray, in the rest of the room, so that those canary cabinets can take center stage.
Eliminating some cabinets
Less storage -- and less clutter -- is actually a modern alternative to wall-to-wall cabinetry which, says DeRusha, "gives no relief to the eye from an artistic perspective."
Instead of wall-to-wall, create a design statement by incorporating open shelving and backsplashes. This "less is more" treatment gives a nod to the growing popularity of contemporary design where a sleek look makes an up-to-date statement.
Adding a farmhouse element
You don't have to go full-on farmhouse with an apron sink or bead board to incorporate the look into your kitchen decor. "Farmhouse is a trend that's inviting and comfortable and would fit into a variety of style categories, from traditional to transitional, without becoming overwhelmingly 'country,' " says DeRusha.
There are simple and subtle ways to include that casual feel in a design, like with open shelving, brackets and patterned wall tile or planks, or a rustic hood.
Trends that are better left off your list include:
Don't Do: Pastels
"Pastel colors have popped up this year and, in my opinion, they will move quickly through the trend cycle and potentially leave the homeowner with regret," says DeRusha. So if you were thinking of purchasing a refrigerator that's the color of pink lemonade, think crimson instead!
Don't Do: Monotonous metals
Matchy-matchy equals boring. When all the metals in the kitchen -- from the faucets to the cabinet pulls -- have the exact same sheen, texture and color, everything will blend together.
Instead, "use one metal on two or three items," says DeRusha, "then shift the other items into tones or sheens that are either similar or contrast completely like a polished metal instead of brushed."