Andrew Story of Moores says tapping into kitchen trends can influence buyers’ decisions, and explores current trends from scandi retro to ‘slow living.’
When potential buyers step into a show home, they want to see their dream kitchen. Kitchen trends are moving much faster now than ever before, however, buyers are now more discerning, and competition is fierce, so differentiation at every level and price point of the housebuilding market is key.
There are some big kitchen trends to watch throughout 2019 that will withstand the ebb and flow of the next few years, and tapping into these trends will create kitchens that can really add value. Many of these trends are inspired by wider living contexts in the UK such as nomadic living, micro spaces, open plan living and intergenerational homes. While they may seem broad and, in some cases, even unusual, it is these trends that are ultimately influencing the way in which we live – how we sleep, eat and socialise.
The Scandi kitchen today offers a ‘modern retro look’ that takes inspiration from the pioneers of early Scandinavian furniture design, with an emphasis on elegant minimalism and functionality. Think stylish woodgrain finishes combined with matt colours and a clutter free, open plan design with plenty of storage space. As this design will appeal to the younger market, look out for manufacturers who offer this styling at the entry or mid-level range.
The kitchen has become much more than a food preparation area, it now often serves as the hub of a home. There is an increase in open plan living, which means that the space now has to be adapted for a multi-purpose room, such as a dining and home media area. This means clever storage solutions which help to maximise space and create a smooth work flow are more important than ever before.
Many designers might suggest including a kitchen island to effectively partition areas of the room, while adding an on-trend feature with the added benefit of increasing preparation space. Designing an open plan kitchen and living area is also an effective method to future proof a home, providing plenty of space for movement and access.
There is an increasing trend of kitchens inspired by the ‘slow living’ movement, which encompasses an appreciation of sustainable, local, organic and wholesome elements. Consumers want to know where the products in their house have come from, their provenance and their eco credentials. When specifying a manufacturer, pay attention to their build processes, such as whether the materials are locally sourced, and if the factory has won any sustainability awards. In terms of design, slow living kitchens feature colours that are light and unfussy, designed to evoke a feeling of calm in the home. The overall look is one inspired by mindfulness and a desire to take time and enjoyment over cooking, socialising, relaxing and working.
There is now more thought as to how overall aesthetics integrate within a home in general. Kitchen design has been somewhat simplified, with a real emphasis on functionality to ensure it stays in keeping and is cohesive with other areas of the home. Neutral colour palettes have grown in prominence to allow homeowners the flexibility to stamp their own personality into the space with interior accessories, flooring and paint colour schemes. There is also now a greater choice of kitchen accessories and styling options than ever before – for example, a huge range of work surfaces, door types and detailing for the homeowner to choose between.
European trends are influencing UK kitchen design from colour palette choices through to overall room styles, such as industrial chic or minimalist. However, the trend for ‘Made in Britain’ is still prevalent. When you specify a British manufacturer, you can enjoy the beauty and designer looks of European styles with added British touches that will create a kitchen that is stylish, eco-aware and durable all at the same time. Kitchens manufactured in Britain are designed in keeping with European trends but made relevant to British homes – think corner cupboards, clever use of smaller spaces, rustic pantries and lots of storage!
Andrew Story is the head of product development at Moores