As featured on Capecod.com
Kitchen design trends tend to change year to year (which is why we call them “trends”), but the excitement of giving the most popular room in your home a makeover can be very satisfying, but also challenging, if you’re not sure what you want.
Kate Cunningham, Kitchen and Bath Designer at Mid-Cape Home Centers, can give you the guidance you need. A kitchen designer for the last 23 years, Cunningham’s experience and eye for detail will be essential when you need a fresh look at your kitchen. She knows what styles and details are hot right now, as well as what’s classic, and what’s timeless.
“The trends right now are really in color,” Cunningham said. “Gray is really enticing right now – from gray paint and dark gray stains to the lightest touch of gray n a white paint. Gray is what people are coming in looking for.” And they’re not only looking for the cut-and-dry gray you’d imagine. Here in the ocean communities, she said, clients want beach tones of gray – driftwood colors which have brown tones and grays combined, and gray-blues and gray-greens.
“We see hints of nautical colors around the Cape area – navy-blue colors are prominent, as well. Simple door styles – albeit classic shaker, or shaker with a cove or bead piece,” she said. “To me, it seems as though ease of cleaning and simple lines are top choices. There are always going to be a lot of white painted cabinets, and right now is no exception. White is everywhere. All shades of white.”
Cunningham said more of the sleek, contemporary styles are coming out. Bright pops of red, or high-gloss, slab-style cabinets are finally making a bit of a charge into the design world on the East Coast. “What California has had as a standard go-to for years, we are starting to see gradually make an appearance out here.”
Clients often decide that it’s time to change out their worn, aged countertops for new ones but, with so many material options, which should you choose? “Quartz materials are huge!” Cunningham said. “There are so many different products out there for countertops and people are realizing that quartz is the way to go for ease of cleaning and upkeep.
“Don’t get me wrong – natural stone is still a massive contender. It is usually less expensive and you cannot compete when you’re looking at the stunning art pieces that they pull from some of these quarries. But with the quartz manufacturers continuing to work on the different colors, mix-in materials and motion created through their slabs of man-made product, it is becoming quite a competitor in the countertop area.” Quartz, she added, is a beautiful, durable, no-fuss option, which looks every bit as amazing as it looks on your favorite design show.
The mixing and matching of cabinet colors in the kitchen island is a way that designers are using wood tones or color to warm up a space – or give that kitchen the splash of color or style that breaks up what would otherwise be all wood tone or all white paint. According to Cunningham, It helps tie in the other rooms and it can help blend the other materials going into the space – tile, flooring, lighting and even appliance finishes.
Farmhouse sinks (or apron sinks), she said, are increasingly popular. “Everywhere, lately, it’s a farmhouse sink,” said Cunningham. “People love them! They are huge, they are classy, and they are different than the stainless-steel sink that they used to have.”
When designing a kitchen, Cunningham tries to adhere to the “form follows function” rule. “I think that making sure that the client is informed is hugely important. I find it important to be sure that the kitchen will work efficiently and look beautiful – not just look beautiful. It’s important that you have the information to make an informed decision. We’ll go through it together and see what we can come up with that works for you and your budget.”
Now that you have some great information about your indoor kitchen, and with the growth in outdoor entertaining, you may wonder what you can do to optimize your outdoor space. From little fire pits to massive built-in fireplaces, it is a natural progression to expand that space, as well, to utilize the late summer sun and stay outdoors as long as possible, Cunningham said.
“There are all different outdoor spaces, and all different sizes and shapes,” she said. “I’ve worked with landscapers, masons and carpenters together to figure out what we each need to do to make sure it comes together for the homeowner. When using cabinets, they need to be able to withstand the elements.” For example, on Mid-Cape’s outdoor kitchen displays and decking, we use the Atlantis brand, which is specifically made to be used outdoors. The cabinet layout is directly in relation with where the plumbing or electrical can go, how large the grill is and what other appliances and fuel are being used.
When considering a countertop, there are some things you cannot use as sun and weather, such as Dekton, can pit or bleach some products,” she added. “There are some outdoor-rated, man-made products which will be durable and beautiful but, in my experience, all-natural from-the-earth granite is the easy go-to. Sinks and faucets need to be durable as they are exposed to the elements as well.”
The unique design elements and custom options at Mid-Cape Home Centers will allow you to fully personalize your dream kitchen project easily. Kate Cunningham and the entire Mid-Cape team are dedicated to providing superior service to you for all of your home design needs.