1. A PLETHORA OF TEXTURES: Mixing and matching textures and surfaces across the kitchen was the most notable trend from this year’s fair. Kitchen countertops were crafted from any mix of engineered stone, glass, stainless steel, wood, and porcelain. Designers also used wallpaper and textured paint effects to create visual and tactile contrasts.
2. VARIED VERTICAL SPACING: Surfaces and shelving made appearances at surprising heights, and depths. Some shelves floated a foot above ground while many cabinets shot from floor to ceiling. On-trend kitchen islands featured overlapping countertops at slightly different heights, also counterbalancing one another at different angles.
3. COMPARTMENTALISED, OPEN SHELVING: Tall, compartmentalised, open shelves at various heights were the fad. Building this storage method into cabinets worked well, while some opted for free-standing or even floating shelves to break up big spaces.
4. NEUTRAL BASE COLOURS: Neutral colours commandeered many of this year’s kitchens, with colour accents in styling to create mood and a sense of fun. White was the predominant colour, followed by the classics: grey, black and dark wood tones.
5. FEATURE WALLS: The familiar ‘feature wall’ trend appeared regularly: 3 walls stroked with lashings of neutrals, allowing the fourth wall to break out in a bold, complimentary colour. Many kitchens included a mini feature wall between the hob and cabinetry, using black chalkboard, tiles or natural and engineered stone cladding. Some even extended the countertop material up to the cabinet. Exceptions to this trend were found in high gloss kitchens where neons and brights dominated cabinets, leaving little room for more colour in a feature area.
6. VARYING SURFACE THICKNESSES: There are two trends that appeared : ‘thick’ surfaces now measure between 40mm and 60mm compared to the 120mm thickness of prior trends; and standard kitchen countertops have become thinner and more sleek-looking. In terms of surface outlines, scalloped edges were popular with some designers, however others strikingly used thin, medium and thick surfaces in their mix of overlapping countertops of diverse materials, sticking to rectangular shapes.
7. BEVELLING: Subtle, simple bevelling was the order of the day allowing surfaces to retain a more squared off look, while ornate, traditional Italian kitchens adopting more voluptuous, classical edges.
8. LOW-HANGING LIGHTING: Island-aligned, low-hanging feature lights were everywhere. Functionality and design were important with some kitchens even featuring low-hanging lights over the hob area, as well as the prep areas.
9. SECRET APPLIANCES: Stoves, hobs and specialist wine refrigerators were often the only appliances to be seen in many Eurocucina kitchens this year. Other appliances were cleverly hidden behind sliding doors and soft-close drawers, and uniquely in the case of the Caesarstone stand, under a remote-operated, sliding countertop!
10. CLAD CABINETS: Move over, passé paint! If you’re not quite ready to embrace the au naturel look of wood, then textured cabinet-cladding provides an exciting alternative to smooth paint finishes, adding to the plethora of textures in the kitchen.