Pernilla Johansson, Design Director of Electrolux Asia Pacific offers her perspective on the latest kitchen trends.
June 9th, 2010
During the four-day exhibition in Milan over 300,000 visitors view hundreds of cutting edge kitchens.
At this year’s Eurocucina I identified six important kitchen trends, which are likely to shape kitchen design in the coming years.
Kitchen and living room overlap growing even stronger
The open kitchen trend, in which the kitchen is integrated within the living space – will continue.
as technology and other smart solutions transform the kitchen to a very clean and inspirational living environment, this trend will grow even stronger.
Today’s appliances are very silent and are also designed to fit in a living room environment. Cabinets, for example, that close softly and open with a motor are more or less standard.
Clean surfaces inviting you to touch them
The materials used in kitchens were more textured than in previous years. They speak to our senses in new ways: you can’t resist the temptation to touch them. The wood, in oak or walnut, is rich and textured in a refined way.
Glass is very common, and the high gloss surfaces are in many cases replaced by a rich matte, non-shiny texture with the finishing on the rear side, giving a nice depth to the surface.
Though you still see all-steel kitchens, stainless steel is now more commonly used for details. Kitchen manufacturer Dada and fashion brand Armani have created a new treatment for metal tabletop surfaces. The edges are very thin, highlighting the craftsmanship and adding lightness and elegance to the material.
Let there be light – smart light
With the trend toward more open kitchens and cleaner surfaces (i.e. more hiding), there is a growing need to improve storage of everything needed in a kitchen.
Improved lighting is therefore a clear trend and LED lighting is seen everywhere both for practical and ambient purposes.
Hide and sink
Though modern appliances can be beautiful elements in a living space, refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, and even the hood are commonly hidden in cabinets.
Tomorrow’s challenge is finding smart ways to hide the hob and kitchen sink. At this years fair I saw a few interesting examples.
Copat displayed two rather clever low-tech solutions. One with thin Corian lids covering the sink. The lids had metal inserts on the back to allow a safe resting place for hot pots and pans.
Another used a smooth stainless steel sliding cover to cover the sink when the kitchen was not in use.
MK showed a high tech solution, using a motorized lid covering the hob and sink area, which effectively transformed the kitchen to interior space living room. However, the most extreme transformation that I saw was with Florida, which transformed a simple 4-door wall cabinet into a fully working kitchen by the press of a button.
Your future kitchen will be honest
This years’ Eurocucina also put a strong emphasis on sustainability. Recycled materials, materials that can be recycled without losing their properties and materials that can retain value for a long time were all prominent at this year’s show.
You can have any colour you like, as long as it’s grey
What is a trend analysis without a conclusion regarding future colours? Though Eurocucina 2010 saw some coloured kitchens in pink, yellow, red and green, bright colours are still very niche.
In keeping with home trends, kitchens will continue to use a more natural palette ranging from white to black and blond to ebony. My guess is that the next big kitchen colour will be silver or dark grey.
In any case, who really wants a living room that is also a kitchen in pink?
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