Kitchen Trends or Kitchen Nightmares? Remodeling For 2016

Today’s kitchen trends for 2016 styling trends favor “less is more”.  The kitchen is the room with all the action and sometimes, it just needs a fresh look. Designing a new kitchen involves more than just selecting cabinets and countertops. If you haven’t taken a close look at new kitchens or done a recent kitchen remodel, you are in for some great innovations.
Open shelving, cook tops, wall ovens, and under-counter options such as specialized drawers for wine, refrigeration and microwaving.  Pull-out faucets and brushed nickel finishes for faucets, hardware and lighting. French doors and bottom freezer refrigerators. Energy efficient dishwashers, ovens,  under-counter vegetable crispers and dedicated drawers to for cost savings and lifestyles. Lowes kitchen design specialists can help you find the latest kitchen cabinets, cabinet hardware, accessories and more.

It’s not just the place to prepare and cook food. It’s also used for entertaining guests, storing gadgets and having family meals. Because they can be such a large investment, most homeowners doing a kitchen remodel hope to end up with a kitchen that looks fresh as long as possible. What’s hot and trendy today may be out of style in a year and make your kitchen look outdated.   When thinking of kitchen trends and remodels, homeowners need to answer one important question: Who is the remodel for?

Is this something you are doing for yourself so you can enjoy it? Or are you planning to update to be able to sell your house? The answers to these two questions can help design choices for the kitchen layout and beyond.  Kitchen trends change often. Is the remodel for you to enjoy? What are you looking for to make it a dream kitchen? If the remodel is for resale purposes, decisions will need to be made that ensure you’re getting the highest return on your investment and which also appeal to potential buyers.  When it comes to resale, play it safe. White or cream painted kitchens and light maple kitchen cabinets, for example, have appeal to the masses in the resale market.

Kitchen trends which turn into kitchen nightmares are all too common. Replacing formica counter-tops and a harvest gold fridge for granite and  stainless steel  sounds easy, but its not.  The end result of an average kitchen renovation should last 10-12 years, so the last thing you want is for it to feel dated before it’s even paid for.  Even basic upgrades can cost $2,000 to $4,000. High end kitchen make overs can be well over $30,000. Updates can be as simple as new cabinet knobs, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures and paint. Add a professional range and appliances, lighting and flooring and you can see how it can quickly become a major investment. Beware of too-trendy colors and shapes. Trendy chandeliers might make a statement, but they typically don’t provide appropriate lighting for the kitchen. Similarly, don’t fall prey to over-customization. What works for you today may not work for the next owner of your ho­­me, or even your family as it grows and evolves.  You can make personal design decisions but remember that most kitchen remodels happen not because the kitchens are worn out, but because they don’t look current.

By 2015, new homes will be slightly smaller, greener and more casual.  Now, you may not be buying a new home, but take advantage of the latest styles and trends if considering a kitchen remodel. Open floor plans will satisfy a desire for gathering and connecting, and rooms will transition easily for use – from foyer to kitchen to  dining and living areas.

Here are a few of the latest trends for 2016:

  • Flat-panel, Shaker-style door treatments.
  • Backsplashes of glossy ceramic, porcelain or glass tile in subtle or bold color combinations
  • Flooring materials such as ceramic, stone and hardwood.  Colors such as gray, charcoal and espresso.
  • New kitchens favoring a streamlined look, featuring large windows with  fewer wall cabinets

A professional-grade range. With options such as a flat griddle or a cooktop, these are the top kitchen trends for 2015 according to a Houzz survey; 32% of respondents selected them as their dream appliance.

Granite and quartz countertops. Most kitchen remodels include changing countertops. Granite still tops the list, but quartz is a rising star following by marble and tile.  Read more on kitchen countertops at

Floors. Hardwood floors led the list of choices, but tiles made a strong showing, coming in second.

Stainless steel. A majority of respondents favor stainless-steel appliances. Some homeowners are combining appliance finishes or integrating stainless steel into cabinetry. Only 12% of remodels choose white or color appliances.

Islands. They’re popular but not a must.  Incorporating an island could be the wrong choice, either because the room is too small or the configuration simply doesn’t work.

White cabinets. While white appliances  may not be at the top of everyone’s list, white cabinets are. It’s never really been out of style and it’s easily associated with clean and fresh.  White cabinets were the choice of almost 60% of kitchens in 2013.

Remember the basics in kitchen design. While kitchen trends come and go, some things will always need to be considered. Design specialists refer to the sink, stove and refrigerator as the kitchen triangle, the area of greatest activity which requires careful planning and lots of access. Of the three, the sink will see the most action and should have easy access to the stove and refrigerator, as well as your countertop workstations.  Regardless of kitchen size or layout (L-shaped kitchen, galley, U-shaped or Island style), the sum of all the legs in a work triangle should not be less than ten feet and greater than twenty-five feet. If the sum of the legs in the work triangle is too small, people will be tripping over each other and if too large, food preparation could be a very tiring task.

Almost every kitchen design has wasted space, but this can be minimized with adequate planning and forethought. If the kitchen is small, consider installing extra upper cabinets for extra storage space. Place lighting along the molding to draw the eyes up. Also remember to always install cabinets over the refrigerator. Not to fully utilize the space above the refrigerator is a waste of storage space for large or seasonal kitchen items.

Don’t forget kitchen lighting. The kitchen is one room where you can’t afford to have poor lighting. It’s not only a matter of design and atmosphere, but also a safety matter when it comes to handling sharp kitchenware. Kitchens need three types of lighting: general lighting for overall illumination, task lighting, and accent lighting.  This doesn’t have to be wasteful either.  Energy Star compliant compact fluorescent bulbs use about 25 percent of the power of a regular incandescent light bulb. Also, install under-cabinet lighting as a way to ensure that the counters have sufficient lighting for common kitchen tasks.

Lowes Budget Friendly Kitchen Makeover For Under $1200.

[vsw id=”4NdbE8lo6xA” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”344″ ]

Although it’s not necessarily a mistake, choosing the latest kitchen designs and high-end equipment may not be the best choice. The most stylish color of the season and trendy designs sometimes have a short life. Again, think about the classic white cabinet. It never goes out of style.  And most appliance manufacturers will tell you that white or arctic white is the new stainless, but stainless is still the king. It fits in with both contemporary and traditional decor, and it has widespread appeal.

How many times have you noticed that people tend to congregate in the kitchen? No matter how comfortable you make the rest of the house, guests and family head for the bright lights and tasty aromas of the hardest working spot in your home. If you have children, they probably work on their school projects in the kitchen and tell you about their day while sitting at the kitchen counter or inspecting the contents of the fridge.  Kitchen trends to update its look, feel and function is one of the challenges of a good design.  While you’re still planning your kitchen wish list, make an assessment of what you really need and rate how each item will have to be for you to be happy. Also, when you undertake a kitchen redesign, a good rule of thumb is that the cost of the design shouldn’t exceed 20 percent of the value of your home.

Value, Trends and Mistakes.  Consumers are cost-conscious, and always looking for quality along with value.  Classic design elements in the kitchen are always in demand, as consumers  want solutions that will last them for many years. There will always be kitchen trends,  so it’s easy to get swept along, only to be disappointed by your trendy design choices a few years later. There is always demand for the classic, trend-proof design, particularly when it comes to improvements such as the cabinets and flooring.

If you are planning on selling your home, you can typically recover about 70 percent of your investment. In a challenging real estate market, a new, shiny kitchen may mean the difference between selling and not selling your home quickly. Other factors, like your local economy, can impact the potential resale value of your home, so use some caution when considering a kitchen renovation for the purpose of a quick sale. And remember, don’t get carried away. Always try to keep in mind you’re doing the design for yourself,  because at first, you are the one using the kitchen. At some point, somebody else could be in the house. Avoid the kitchen nightmare and don’t do something simply because it’s the latest kitchen trend and in two years you’ll look at your kitchen and say ‘How did that happen?”

By Victoria Stone