traditional and modern kitchen image

Interior & Fitted Kitchen Design Trends

From year to year, north to south and city to country, kitchen trends differ immensely.  We get asked on a regular occurrence what is in fashion and what is the next big thing. I used to answer with what I had seen in the trade magazines and at trade shows but I now struggle to answer as over the past 5 to 10 years manufacturing techniques have improved to give much more variation and choice to the consumer.  I now point out the kitchens which have been chosen recently, in which area and in what type of property.

Traditional Style Kitchens

Over the past year we have experienced an upturn in traditional in-frame kitchens.  Whether a fresh painted or timber finish the in-frame kitchen always feels more like furniture than just kitchen units.  We provide a wide range of in-frame styles with many colour options and timber finishes.  Many kitchen styles can be produced in both an in-frame kitchen and lay-on format so if you’re not keen on the in-frame design then you can still have the door style without the frame.

If you’re looking for something a little more individual then we can design you a door and frame to suit your taste yet empathise with your property.

Contemporary Style Kitchens

Usually contemporary style covers a more modern cutting edge door but this is very much in the eye of the beholder.  Some people may think its high gloss, handless or flat doors but it can cover the slightest of differences such as a door profile, trim or even colour.  Recently we have supplied many horizontal grain high gloss kitchens in a mix of finishes, our most recent contemporary kitchen was installed in Hutton, Brentwood.  A horizontal grain, high gloss, wenge slab door accompanied by a white quartz worktop and selective lighting gave a very modern and fresh feel to a new extension.

In both traditional and contemporary finishes we are seeing a trend towards two tone kitchens.  You will see from our portfolio of projects that customers are favouring a mix of timber and painted doors in either a gloss or satin finish.  It is becoming very popular to mix not just colours but finishes, styles and textures to achieve an individual feel.

Lastra White Gloss with Aluminium Futura Fitting Sytem

Interior Design: Choosing Your Dream Fitted Kitchen, Bedroom or Study

How do you choose a fitted kitchen or interior when there is so much on offer?  It is always hard for the kitchen specialist to point you in the right direction, as we all have our favourites, but a good starting point is a process of elimination. Start off with eliminating what you really don’t like and then take into consideration the natural light of your room and the style and age of your house.

Some finishes can make an already dark room feel very claustrophobic and unwelcoming so try not to settle on dark timber doors such as walnut, stained oak or mahogany.  These rooms can benefit from light colours and light timber doors such as maple, birch and light oak.

The style of the house is important when choosing a kitchen.  You need to decide if you are going to be empathetic towards the house design or have a contrast in style, however, you need to be very careful not to make an expensive mistake.

Lighting is very important in your kitchen and can be achieved in many ways.  There is obviously natural light which most people are unable to change but it is more common these days for customers to open up kitchen and eating areas to allow more light and give a larger family/social space.  This is not always possible and therefore Ceiling lighting becomes the next option.  LED down lights are very popular as you have an option of colour tones and they last a lot longer than the traditional bulbs. In nearly all installations we are adding some form of additional lights to the kitchen furniture.  To name just a few we regularly install lights to cornice, pelmet, plinth, underside of worktop, in cabinets, in drawers and many more.

Another pertinent aspect of interior design is the quality and type of materials you require.  It’s important to decide what quality of materials you desire and then see if your budget allows.  If you wanted for instance a shaker door with stone worktops, good appliances, good sink and taps then you need to decide how far your budget will allow you to go.  A lower budget may get you an MDF door, stone effect laminate worktops, builders merchant grade stainless steel sink and tap pack and mid range appliances such as Neff or Bosche. However a higher budget for the same room could get you a painted timber shaker door, quartz, granite, marble or corian worktops, a Franke or Blanco stainless steel or ceramic sinks and taps and higher grade appliances such as Miele or Siemens.  Both budgets fill the room with a similar design however one gives you a higher quality product which will not only stand the test of time but also look and feel much better.

Shopping for kitchens is very much a learning curve as most people only do this once every 10 plus years.  You will find many materials on the market due to innovations in manufacturing which can be used in many different ways to achieve an individual look such as glass, timber, metal and plastics.  The options for in-unit storage is a minefield; there are hundreds of metal wire pull out units, carousels, magic corner units, hidden drawers etc. You will find a massive array of handles or handle options from J pull doors and handless options to thousands of handles in many finishes including chrome, satin, stainless steel, wooden, and glass to name but a few.

Choosing a kitchen is one problem people have but another is who to trust to install it.  My advice on this is to see if the retailer could arrange for you to visit and view existing customers.  You get a good feel for the company, their business practices, service and you also get to see the quality of the craftsmanship.  You may even be able to see similar design aspects such as islands, peninsulas, pantries, dressers etc.

When researching which product to choose for you new project it is advisable to research the manufacturer as well as the retailer. We provide furniture from various manufacturers as well as our own true bespoke options. One of our popular ranges comes from a manufacturer called Mereway. The English Revival range gives you a semi bespoke kitchen, in-frame, on soft-close hinges, with timber drawer boxes, on a ridged carcase and it comes in natural oak or many colour options.  Mereway have a comprehensive review of their furniture  with many images available on their website, www.englishrevival.co.uk.  However if you wanted to see the product first hand then please visit our showroom in South Woodham Ferrers.