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New trends stand out in NKBA survey

Top trends in the kitchen and bath industry include contemporary and transitional styling, better lighting and added technology, according to a recent survey compiled by the National Kitchen and Bath Association at the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in January.

Storage and lighting remain at the top of the list.

Contemporary — defined as featuring flat panel doors — eclipsed traditional as the second most popular North American kitchen design for its ease of cleaning.

“It also takes some of the visual clutter out of the space, allowing one to add in patterns in other surfaces such as back splashes and countertops. The range of finishes on the panel doors trending are everything from a high polished finish to a super matte finish,” NKBA manager of certification and design Elle H-Millard says.

Kitchen buyers want their cabinets painted white or gray, according to the survey. Blue and black paints are also gaining popularity.

A third of the respondents noted the importance of incorporating sufficient wiring for current and future technologies, such as Internet-connected appliances and electronic docking stations.

Barn and pocket doors are becoming more popular.

“Lighting is a must in cabinetry and has been seen in glass wall cabinets for years. However the trend is really lending itself to lighting in all cabinetry, inside and out,” H-Millard says. “Lighting is being incorporated into toe kicks, drawers, shelving and even countertops.

“Storage and charging stations in drawers should be an automatic consideration in cabinetry. In addition, cabinetmakers may want to consider providing hidden locations for smart-home objects such as the Amazon Echo or Google Home.”

Other top trends include quartz countertops, induction cooktops, convection ovens and microwave ovens hidden in drawers. Metal cabinetry is trending higher, while the “furniture look” — turned legs and corbels, for example — remains popular.

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This article originally appeared in the March 2017 issue.

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