Colour? Layout? Splashbacks? The Block’s Freedom Kitchens shares the latest developments and trends in kitchen design!
Image: Josh and Jenna’s kitchen from The Block All Stars series. This elegant and sophisticated kitchen, by Freedom Kitchens, won The Block All Stars kitchen challenge and was labelled ‘world class’ by judges.
What are the latest design trends for the size, layout and location of the kitchen?
The multi-purpose open plan kitchen is the most popular kitchen layout, with a seamless flow to the outdoors becoming more important as casual entertaining at home prevails.
Handle-free units in open-plan kitchens are more popular than ever – integrating well with adjacent rooms. Open shelves with horizontal clean lines are on trend, however, there is also stronger emphasis on warmth and ambience in kitchens often achieved by adding LED strip lighting and large overhead pendants.
Additionally, technology and ease of access to the internet has led to a more flexible workforce; demanding that modern kitchens also become a flexible space. Benchtops are doubling as planning and cooking areas whilst storage drawers and shelving caters for computers, iPods and iPads.
What are the latest trends for colour? i.e. paint, cabinetry, splashbacks, bench tops
Australian’s have long had a love affair with white or neutral kitchens, but those with a bold sense of style are finally having a little fun with colour. Bringing an injection of colour livens up the space, for instance, pairing colours like violet with white creates quite a statement.
Monochrome is another hot trend – black, charcoal and white produce a fresh, contemporary look that is in line with current interior design and home furnishing trends.
What are the latest trends for materials and finishes? i.e. for cabinetry, bench tops, splashbacks
Mixing matching materials and like timber grain, gloss, matt, stone, glass etcetera is also right on trend and gives a kitchen depth and drama. The warmth of timber is making a return to kitchens with a contemporary twist, featuring as timber kitchen-bench frames and as display and storage niches.
For Benchtops, solid surface benchtops such as Freedom Kitchen’s Portofiino range is durable and easy to clean whilst smooth cabinet doors only require a simple wipe down.
Butler’s pantries and large walk-in pantries: Are they popular? What are the benefits?
The kitchen is certainly evolving as a showpiece of the home and home entertaining is in vogue. Subsequently, we’ve seen a rise in popularity of the butler’s pantry in larger kitchen spaces. The butler’s pantry provides excellent walk-in space for storing all your cooking needs, from jars and second fridges to small benchtop appliances. Not only do they help keep daily kitchen clutter to a minimum, they provide the perfect space to clear dirty dinner party plates and glasses out of site of guests when entertaining.
What should people consider when designing a new kitchen?
Consumers today demand more than just good looks in their kitchen; it’s got to work efficiently to make life easier. Design concepts such as deeper, wider drawers save space and allow for easy access to hard to reach pots and pans, whilst the metal runners and silent soft close system deliver added strength and durability.
Pull out baskets and shelves are a brilliant way to increase usable space and keep pantries organised. Creating dedicated storage areas for spices and cleaning products help reduce clutter in the cupboards.
Do you have any tips/advice on how to create the perfect kitchen?
Even the most fashion conscious client still requires functionality in their finished kitchen project. There’s no point having the best looking, fashionable kitchen if it isn’t practical. So, seek professional advice. Expert designers will pull the right products together the first time, eliminating mistakes and saving time and money without sacrificing style. Many companies, like Freedom Kitchens, offer in-home consultations with professional designers who will work with you to design the perfect kitchen.
By Susan Hasler, National Sales Director Freedom Kitchens