The 2013 member survey by the National Kitchen & Bath Association identified a menu of some of today’s top style choices in kitchens. Here is insider information on seven of them:
1. WHITE PAINTED CABINETS
The choice of cabinets is arguably the most important decision when redoing a kitchen. The selection sets the look. In the National Kitchen & Bath Association survey, 67 percent of respondents said that white was their first choice for cabinetry, a jump of 20 percentage points in the past two years.
2. QUARTZ COUNTERS
Consumers are demanding products that are easy to care for, including quartz counter surfaces such as Caesarstone and Silestone. These durable products are made of about 90 percent natural quartz mixed with pigments, polymers and resins. They require no special maintenance and cost about $40 to $100 a square foot installed. Silestone produces 70 colors in polished or matte finish and contains an antimicrobial agent.
3. MANY SHADES OF GRAY
Gray seems to be the color of the moment. Although white and off-white are still the top colors, grays are showing up on cabinets, counters and walls. Gray is another neutral that can be paired with many accent colors and looks chic and modern, whether a driftwood gray wood finish or glossy gray coating.
4. LED LIGHTING
More and more remodeled kitchens now have LED lighting, especially below cabinets. LED bulbs are more efficient and generate little heat.
5. ELECTRONIC FAUCETS
“When people renovate their kitchen, it’s not just functionality and beauty,” said Houzz’s Liza Hausman. “They are thinking about how to include the latest technology.” One of these new toys is the tricked-out faucet. Both touch-activated faucets and hands-free faucets are beginning to appear in kitchen remodeling contracts. Moen has three MotionSense styles priced at $399 to $690.
6. SATIN NICKEL FINISHES
The survey found that polished nickel and polished chrome were less requested than last year, and the duller finish was growing in popularity. Some designers feel that this finish best complements stainless steel appliances; others say the gray metal color sets off gray cabinets, counters and walls.
7. GLASS BACKSPLASHES
With neutral colors ruling in cabinets and counters, glass tile is one way to add color and personality. “Reds, greens and blues, vibrant colors are trending right now, as is iridescent glass,” said DeeDee Gundberg, an Ann Sacks Tile product development manager. Instead of using the ubiquitous white subway tile backsplash, she suggests substituting new large-format glass tile in a similar shape. “Light blue glass tiles are still very traditional with white cabinets but look very fresh,” Gundberg said.