When you’re designing your home, there are so many different style directions it could go, that it may be really difficult to choose. The trick is to picture yourself in the room like you would an outfit. Is it a good fit? What parts of it do you like? What parts don’t you like? To help you along, we’ve gathered the most popular kitchen design styles and their qualities, so you can ‘try them on' as you read along.
The term ‘modern’ refers to a specific style that saw a peak around 1950 but was around for decades prior. It’s become very popular again and some of its features have made their way into other styles, like an open floor plan and sleek lines. A modern-style kitchen is minimalistic and can have a mix of natural and manmade elements.
In a mid-century modern kitchen, mix flat-front walnut cabinets with a bold marble waterfall island. Or, a poured concrete countertop and simple cantilever island with upholstered Eames-style barstools, and globe pendant lights above is a perfectly modern kitchen scene.
There are some overlapping features in a contemporary kitchen and a modern kitchen. Clean lines, minimalistic design, and attention to quality are all present in both designs. In a contemporary kitchen, however, you’ll find the use of materials focus on contrast, especially in color and texture. A smooth-as-glass marble countertop will be paired with a split concrete backsplash. Or, black flat-front cabinets will be topped with bright white marble countertops with deep black veining. The aim is to be bold and artistic.
Contemporary design can come off as cold, so be sure to mix in a little fun to lighten the mood. A sculptural multi-color glass-blown chandelier over the island will do the trick. For the flooring, add just a touch of warmth with wood-look luxury vinyl tile in a light gray ash tone.
Most are very familiar with traditional kitchens. They’ve been around for a while and have gone in and out of style plenty of times. To give your traditional kitchen a longer shelf life, brighten up all those ornate details with a lighter color palette.
Traditional kitchens a couple of decades ago would usually feature dark wood stains throughout. Choose lighter stains or go for natural wood. This will better show off the interesting grain patterns in wood-turned accents and keep your space airy, rather than feeling crowded with detail.
Raised and mullion cabinets, an arch over the range, corbels, crown molding, turned wooden legs on the island, and granite or quartz countertops are all typical of this style kitchen. Finish the look with a subtle chandelier focal light fixture, or a row of pendant lights.
The transitional style is a great balance between traditional and contemporary, borrowing the coziness of traditional style and the clean lines of contemporary style. Rather than raised cabinet doors, choose shaker style. Instead of darker wood, choose ash or painted white. On the floor, luxury vinyl tile is a perfect choice for the transitional kitchen.
The key style note in a transitional kitchen is bright but not cold. A very pale powder blue on the lower cabinets, topped with a marble slab, and finished with brushed nickel hardware is stylish and inviting. This backsplash may be a continuation of the marble or use white subway tile. For accent lighting, a series of brushed nickel pendants over the lighting and the sink will finish the look.
The farmhouse-style kitchen features a mix of worn wood, off-white or cream paint, pendant lights, a few open shelves, and a deep porcelain apron sink. Consider using a vintage piece of furniture outfitted to become your kitchen island, topped with a hefty butcher block. On the floor, hardwood carries this style best. Use a medium-tone stain or go for the natural tone to show off the grain and only seal the planks.
The cabinetry in a farmhouse kitchen shouldn’t be ornate, because there’s already a lot of personality in this space. Choose shaker-style cabinet fronts and a select few cabinets with mullion doors. The farmhouse kitchen is also a great style to play with color. Choose a muted earthy green for your lowers and cream for your uppers.
This style is great for showing off collections. For example, create an accent wall by hanging your grandmother’s china that wouldn’t otherwise get any use. Or, line an open shelf with hand-thrown coffee mugs and saucers.
6. Old World
The old-world style can be considered the original farmhouse. It celebrates the beauty of worn textures and utilitarianism, with stone, weathered wood, hammered copper, and brick. Architecturally, reclaimed timber beams on a vaulted ceiling would work very well in an old-world kitchen. On the floors, consider using brick or travertine stone tile. Butcher block countertops throughout or just on the island are a great match.
Choose a hammered copper apron sink and coordinating large range hood. Also, over the sink, have a pot filler installed against a warm stone backsplash. An old-world-style kitchen is the perfect setting for a brick fireplace that’s outfitted with a reclaimed dark wood mantle. As for paint colors, the warmer the better.
Designing the Kitchen That Fits Just Right
Choosing a style for your kitchen should reflect what feels like a good fit for you, not just what’s trending. Also, within each style is a whole spectrum of how saturated in that style you’d like your kitchen to be. When you’re ready to really dive into designing your kitchen’s style, reach out to a professional that can help guide the process.
Chris Gorman Homes is a custom home builder that serves the Cincinnati area with transparency and care. We understand the importance of a family home and strive to deliver not the one we think you should have but the one that fits you and your family just right. Contact us to schedule a consultation today.