The Top 8 Kitchen Design Trends in 2016

The kitchen has evolved from its pragmatic existence to the versatile hub of the home. Whether you’re looking for a complete overhaul or a simple spruce to liven up the space, look to the kitchen trends of 2016 to blend elegant functionality with your unique taste.

1. Muted color palette

Cottage White Kitchen

Muted colors in a cottage white kitchen. Photography by Steve Larkin

Trying to choose between trendy and timeless? Well, fret no more, because timeless kitchen design is now trendy. Muted colors and neutral palettes will reign over cabinets and backsplashes while lighter wood tones will dominate this year. Don’t take our word for it — even Pantone agrees. Rose Quartz and Serenity, Pantone’s 2016 Colors of the Year, among other muted colors, will bring a softer and more tranquil tone to your home.

2. Functionality

Since the kitchen is often the most lively room in the home, it can get a little chaotic. Functional fixes will be popping up in kitchens this year, such as:

  • Clever corner cabinets
  • Freestanding pantries
  • Hidden docking stations to charge electronics
  • Storage-minded kitchen islands
  • Slender pullout cabinets

3. Kitchen-living spaces

Streamlined kitchen design that flows flawlessly into the rest of your home is becoming more ubiquitous. Homeowners will adopt this trend by using more integrated and hidden appliances or converging the kitchen with the primary living space. Learn how to combine the kitchen with the living room.

4. Extended backsplash tiles

Kitchen tile to ceiling

Extend kitchen tiling to the ceiling. Photography via DesignMilk

Instead of having backsplash start at the countertop and end at the bottom of upper cabinets, this year brings the trend of running the tiles all the way to the ceiling. Traditional kitchen designs don’t use the space above the cabinets effectively, often doubling up on cabinets no one can reach or placing a plant above to collect dust. Tile all the way up to fill that dead wall space.

5. Oversized fixtures

Bold lighting fixtures are on trend this year in residential designs. Homes will tall ceilings or large foyers will benefit from this trend, as large pendant lighting will fill the empty spaces and draw the eye upwards.

6. Quartz countertops

While natural stone such as marble, granite and soapstone are still popular, quartz is definitely catching up. Quartz counters are made of engineered stone that is 93% quartz particles. This isn’t a new material by any means, having been sold for more than 30 years, but quartz is gaining popularity due to declining prices and new designs. Quartz countertops are known for their durability, natural appearance and reasonable costs.

7. Hi-tech hotspots

It’s no surprise that kitchens this year will see an increase in designated spots for smart devices. Hidden charging stations or areas to discretely store phones and tablets will be making an appearance and hanging around for a while. Even state-of-the-art appliances such as steam ovens or wine coolers will be more prevalent.

8. Simplicity

Simple kitchen rendering

Keep things simple to create a sense of freedom and organization. Photography via Steve Larkin

Kitchens are starting to move towards raw materials and openness in 2016. Barely there kitchens are on trend, with open shelves and light wood textures. This trend is all about clearing away the clutter and embracing fewer frills.

More Interior Design Tips:

  1. Kitchen Remodeling Must-Knows
  2. Living Room Trends