4 Must-Know Basics to a Contemporary Kitchen

Key aspects in modern kitchen designs are simplicity and sophistication.

A streamlined, contemporary style combined with integrated appliances, thoughtful lighting and a mix of levels helps to keep your room clutter free whilst leaving you more space to relax and entertain.

Making your Space Linear

A contemporary trend in kitchen design focuses on clean and linear space. One way to create this is with coordinated, handle-less cabinetry. The in-frame construction involved in these cabinets gives them an edge over some flat fronted designs and makes it extremely durable. In smaller kitchen spaces, the absence of handles helps to make a room feel bigger as it prevents an overload of steel handles. If you aren’t feeling the fully handle-less look, many popular kitchen designers have created traditional cabinets with a modern twist through dressing them with sleek bar handles and topping cool composite worktops. For added contemporary chic, mix and match styles incorporating flat-fronted wall cabinets.

Keep it Neat

By keeping your worktops free of clutter, you can maintain the modern kitchen look. Whilst you might want that statement piece of kitchen technology on show, it’s easy for it to escalate. Hiding kitchen clutter, particularly in open-plan kitchens is essential, so plan in plenty of storage with deep pan drawers, tambour units to keep small appliances, crockery and china out of site. Floor to ceiling handleless cupboards can hide a multitude of sins so if you have space, they’re a good investment. Remember, though, for your kitchen to work efficiently, you’ll want easy access to all these things when you do need them, so we recommend siting pan drawers by ovens, larders close to prep areas and china close to the dishwasher.

Don’t get Worked up, Get the Right Worktop

Choosing the right worktops can complement the rest of your kitchen in the perfect way. The latest composites that are in modern designs are perfect for this as their colour and patterns are clean and consistent. Choice has grown over the past few years to include everything from pure while to zingy orange. Plain white worktops compliment modern cabinetry beautifully but if you want a slightly less clinical feel then manufacturers such as Silestone and Ceasarstone are now producing man-made composites that look like natural materials. Of course, while they can look just like marble or concrete, the real benefit of these surfaces is that they are much easier to look after than natural stones, particularly very porous ones such as marble. They’re also fabulous for creating feature splash-backs – for instance book matching a faux marble – with less of a financial outlay than, say, Carrara.

Attractive Appliances

Choosing the right appliances can complete the overall look of your kitchen. If you have your heart set on a range cooker, then choose one of the more modern steel models from Mercury, Smeg or Rangemaster. Integrate as many appliances as you can and if possible, place items such as washing machines and tumble dryers in utility rooms. Keep sight-lines clear by installing simple below cabinet, in-ceiling or pop-up extractors rather than fancy hanging pendants, keep fridges and freezers behind closed doors and invest in good-looking, hardworking built-in cooking appliances and a sleek glass zoned induction hob. Finish off with a few modern-day luxuries such as a boiling water tap offered by Quooker, pop-up power points and cool lighting.
Tips for the perfect contemporary kitchen design:

  • Pick simple surfaces – Choose glass or composite surfaces and large-format tiles with matching grout.
  • Play with levels – You could introduce a breakfast bar for relaxed eating. Or how about creating several levels on a peninsula with a raised area to hide the washing-up from guests.
  • Go fine – By choosing ultra-thin worktop profiles, your units will look more like pieces of furniture. Or you could wrap a composite work surface in a contrasting shade or material around cabinetry on islands and at the end of runs.
  • Get creative with lighting – Using plinth lights can make units appear as though they are floating. LED lights in the interior of wall cabinets or shelves can light up your favourite kitchen items.

This is an un-sponsored guest post by Harvey Jones. Photography by Alina Ghost at Living Etc House Tours.

Alina is the founder and writer of The Fairytale Pretty Picture blog whilst working full time as an SEO specialist at a growing online-only retailer called Amara. She owns a beautiful white Alsatian and lives in Essex with her husband.

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