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  • Writer's pictureMontgomery Roth

A Fresh Take on Residential Kitchen Design: Trends that Enhance the Functionality and Aesthetics.

Kitchens. It is a designated homework spot for the kids after school, a happy hour hangout for you and your friends, and everything in-between. As the roles of the residential kitchen change with time, so should their designs. Keeping up with the evolving activities, designers have been pulling out all the stops to accomplish that “perfect” kitchen design. From busting down walls to achieve open concepts to incorporating more eat-in kitchen space, there is no stopping the design ideas. Going a step further in 2022, interior designers are implementing new trends that can turn any kitchen into a masterpiece. Here are some tips and tricks to take your kitchen from drab to fab!

Walls are optional:

To have walls or not to have walls has been a question on many people’s minds in 2022 as the COVID pandemic persists. As people continue to work from home, kitchen walls have become more of a necessity in residential design to minimize distractions by creating separate spaces. But on the other hand, people do not want to lose the ease of the open concept when it comes to entertaining guests or watching kids in the next room while cooking. The question remains, how are you supposed to know which direction to go in your next renovation? It's easy- choose what fits best for your family and lifestyle. Both options have pros and cons that will come into play when making your decision. An open concept kitchen design tends to be brighter with more natural light, offers larger kitchen island opportunities, and best of all, allows for the people working in the kitchen to stay involved in the rest of the action going on in the surrounding rooms. Enclosed floor plans keep the various noises and scents from traveling around the home, they contain the mess of all the dishes, and the kitchen has more wall space to install extra shelving and cabinetry that increases the storage capacity. With both types of floor plans trending, do what works best for you!

Double up on space:

Kitchen islands have been a staple in kitchen design since the 1950s. In most kitchen designs, an island is incorporated in one way or another. But why does it have to stop with just one island? In 2022 designers are breaking away from the norms of kitchen design and implementing a double island concept to create more of the functionality and space we have grown to love. Double islands add more storage for kitchen utensils, allow for a separate serving area, and it creates extra sitting space for guests to hang out while activities happen in the kitchen. If you have a large kitchen and are looking for a simple solution to functionality and storage, a double island is the right way to go!

Say goodbye to basic upper cabinetry:

The enclosed kitchen cabinetry aesthetic has been the go-to storage method in homes due to the ease and functionality they offer. People like the option of closing their cabinets to hide the clutter instead of having the chaos shown off for guests to see. A wildly popular 2022 kitchen design trend is teaching us that the chaos of kitchen clutter can be tamed to allow for a new trend to shine! This new design trend is known as the open shelving concept. Instead of installing full cabinets in your whole kitchen, you can use natural wood boards or long slabs of different materials to create open-floating shelves to store all your items. This design trend allows people to showcase their favorite dishes and create contextual interest in the space. Incorporating aesthetically pleasing storage containers and neatly stacked dishes on open shelving also adds to the character of the room. Not only will open shelving add contextual interest, but it will also make the room feel open and spacious. With this trend, you decide how much you want to do. Either do all open cabinetry, or you can choose to just incorporate it in a section to put your best pieces. Say goodbye to hiding your dishes and utensils and say hello to organizing them in an aesthetically pleasing way that allows them to play as décor to the room! It’s time to install those floating shelves!

All the way up:

Although open shelving is a trending design feature, enclosed cabinetry has not been left in the dust. Some people can't get on board with the open shelving, or some only incorporate it in half of their kitchen design. So now the question is, how do we get the traditional cabinetry to have an updated vibe? It's simple, get rid of those dated soffits and install cabinets that go all the way up! Taking your cabinetry up to the ceiling gives you the space you need to install the larger updated shakers. Not only will this technique update your kitchen design, but it will also add much-needed storage and give your kitchen the effect of taller ceilings.

Break-up with granite:

Let's talk kitchen countertops. Natural stone is at the top of everyone's wish list when selecting countertops for kitchen designs. In the past, granite has been the top pick for natural stone in kitchen designs because of its durability, easy maintenance, and gives the space a luxurious feel without breaking the bank. While granite is a great option to implement in kitchen designs, it’s not the only option that offers quality results. Quartz is becoming a trendy material in home renovations and new builds due to its competitive durability and the aesthetic it brings to the space. Not only is quartz more attractive to the eye, but it's also a harder quality stone compared to granite. Due to the hardness of the quartz, your countertops will have fewer chips and cracks over time. On top of quartz being more durable, it is also easier to keep clean. Because the surface of quartz is less porous than other natural stones, it is easier to wipe down to ensure you are cleaning every crevice. While the cost of quarts is a little higher, nothing will compare to the functionality and timeless look the quartz countertops add to the kitchen design.

Splash some color:

Let your creativity flow when it comes to paint choices in your next kitchen renovation. In the past, many people have played it safe when choosing the color palette for their kitchen design. Kitchen design ideas tended to stray away from incorporating vibrant colors or bold tones and opt for more subtle options. In 2022 people are breaking out of their comfort zones and adding splashes of color throughout their kitchen space. A great way to add color without overpowering the room is by painting the lower cabinets a bold tone while leaving the upper cabinets neutral. Not only will adding some color make your kitchen pop, but it also adds detail to the space that will draw in guests’ attention. Another great opportunity to add a pop of color to a kitchen is if you have a kitchen island. Bleeding the vibrant color option from the lower cabinets over to the island will add warmth and character to your kitchen design and give the space a refined look. Ditch the classic coloring of kitchens and bring on the more vibrant tones!

Go natural:

While pops of color in kitchen designs are on the rise, another trend that is making its way back is the woodgrain aesthetic. A popular way this mid-century-inspired trend is being incorporated is in the cabinetry design. People are ditching the basic painted cabinets and installing woodgrain cabinetry to add some flair to their designs. Depending on the style of kitchen you’re trying to achieve, you can apply different types of wood. If you would like a modern kitchen, apply rich colored cabinets with a glossy finish. If it is a rustic aesthetic, choose lighter cabinetry with natural wood finish. The special thing about this trend is that no matter your style type, you can implement this trend in some type of way. So, whether you want a rustic, mid-century, or even modern kitchen design, try out this trend and see how it transforms your space!

Out with the stainless steel:

Silver stainless steel finishes are getting kicked to the curb in 2022 residential kitchen design. In a typical kitchen, people have implemented stainless steel finishes because of the durability and polished aesthetic they add to a room. However, people are ditching the stainless steel and going for more of a lux feel by incorporating either brass or gold finishes. Incorporating brass and gold finishes and fixtures through your kitchen remodel is a quick way to upgrade any space. You can change cabinet knobs, faucets, and now even appliances to brass or gold to give your kitchen the high-end feel you’re after. Now that brass and gold are becoming a more popular choice in residential design, you can find options that are not much more in price than the standard stainless-steel options. No matter the aesthetic of your kitchen design, you can choose finishes across the board that all tie together.

Bring the large storage down:

Let's make lifting heavy plates, bowels, or other cookware to the upper cabinets a thing of the past! Considering how regularly those dishes get used, it becomes a lot of up and down lifting throughout the day. A 2022 trend that has become a must-have in new kitchen design is large deep drawers that hold all kinds of dishes and cookware. This drawer design neatly organizes the dishware while allowing for convenient access. These larger drawers can come with dividers or rods that hold your plates in place and keep them neatly stacked while the drawers get opened and closed. A good rule of thumb when implementing this style of cabinetry drawer in kitchen designs is to remember to keep everyday dishes at a "thigh" height range and less commonly used dishes at a "shin" height range. Now is the time to make the switch to deep drawers and add a great function to your kitchen space.

The details above:

When designing a space, the aesthetic of the ceiling is typically an afterthought, and kitchen designs are no different. In 2022, residential interior designers are changing the game and incorporating contextual interest into their ceiling designs. From wooden beams, shiplap, or even painted murals, the ceiling area is a great place to add original touches that improve the aesthetic and character of the home. Whether the ceiling height is standard or tall, there is always a way to make your ceiling stand out. So, don't forget about those ceilings and give your kitchen the ultimate refined look!

As the residential kitchen evolves to become a space for more than just cooking, so should the design. Whether you're looking for an extensive renovation or simple upgrades, these 2022 kitchen design trends will elevate your space and bring functionality and ease to its many roles. Take your kitchen design to the next level and create a space that appeals to you!


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