Kitchen Design Trends for 2016: Part I

Today I Googled “latest kitchen design trends” in order to compare them to some of my own observations in the market. Coincidentally, I also just received in my inbox the latest U.S.Houzz Kitchen Trends Study. Here’s a quick roundup of what today’s homeowners are going for in kitchen appliances, kitchen technology and kitchen cabinetry:

Colorful Appliances

This actually came up on my search as a “trend”. Homeowners today are on the hunt for one or more technicolored appliances to satisfy their “kitchen eye candy” needs and there are a number of vendors that cater to them.
Colorful Ovens 2016
Viking, Blue Star, Big Chill, Bertazzoni, Smeg, Elmira, and Dacor are a few of the manufacturers offering bold color schemes for refrigeration, cooking and clean up appliances. However, even though the media tell us that bright colored appliances were considered trends in 2014, 2013, and 2012, and earlier, very few of my DC/Metro area clients over the last decade were interested in these options — even though they were intrigued by the bold color concept.

La Cornue Chateau Series Gas Range in Stainless Finish
La Cornue Chateau Series Gas Range in Stainless Steel Finish
I had a few clients that chose La Cornue and Ilve gas ranges in conservative colors, but for the remaining appliances they opted for stainless steel or panel ready options.

La Cornue Majestic Range in Midnight Blue
La Cornue Majestic Range in Midnight Blue

Most popular kitchen appliance colors 2016
Houzz Study: Most popular kitchen appliance colors 2016

And to further confirm my suspicion that this “trend” is hardly one at all, the Houzz study found that 75% of homeowners prefer Stainless Steel finishes over other colors for their kitchen appliances.
The 7 % “other” category could include cherry red or violet colored appliances, but I would bet it leans more toward “panel ready”.


Technology: Communications Center in the Kitchen

The following idea is a “must do” because of our world of constant connectivity. The latter, combined with time spent in the kitchen cooking, eating and socializing, requires a dedicated communications center in the kitchen for all family members.

Docking Drawer
Docking Drawer
For example, take a look at These units offer a solution that can be applied regardless of your kitchen’s present status (existing or to be remodeled). The Docking Drawer will hide the cords, charging units, and devices that often invade every family’s kitchen counter.
Now, look around in your kitchen. Do you need to allocate space to each family member for their various electronic gadgets? This system eliminates the “missing charger” scenario that all of us have encountered at one time or another. If the chargers are dedicated and connected in a drawer, they will likely stay there.

It was interesting that Houzz did not specifically identify this element in their study — yet I have found nearly all of my clients asking for a dedicated connectivity space in their kitchen.

Check out Houzz’s summary of homeowners’ use of the kitchen and hours spent there:
How Homeowners Use Their Kitchens

Wow. Given the number of hours we are awake each day, over 50% of homeowners spend at least a third of their time in the kitchen!

This leads me to the other trend I see consistently with my clients: opening the kitchen up so it becomes what Houzz refers to as the “super kitchen”:

Opening Up the Kitchen

I would guess, and confirming my own observations, that when given the option regarding other rooms, and provided the option is economically and structurally feasible, most homeowner want a completely open kitchen.


Well, I could not add anything more to Jacob Hurwith’s short but fabulous article:
Kitchen Cabinet Trends to Watch in 2016

Everything he says is spot on and agrees with my own observations. Simplicity, clean lines, and neutral color schemes continue to be “hot”.

If you happen to live in a traditional setting, keep in mind that streamlined modern kitchens are presently being installed in Georgetown DC townhouses. It is amazing to see the transformation. Further, Houzz’ study concluded that white remains the most popular kitchen cabinetry color, followed by medium toned wood colors:

Most popular kitchen cabinetry colors 2016
Most popular kitchen cabinetry colors 2016

As for “gray is the new white” (also noted on Google as a trend), it appears that it has made the entry in a color for consideration, but it has not yet eclipsed white as homeowners’ primary color choice.

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs
Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs, Virginia

Sandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality.

Call Sandra today at (703) 801-6402 to schedule a kitchen remodeling consultation. Sandra will help you get the most value out of your kitchen remodeling budget