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Six Trends in Kitchen Design 2021

Updated: Aug 9, 2021

Trends come and go- but some are here to stay (white cabinets of course!) Our designers have rounded up some of their favorite trends in kitchen design from this year.

Color contrast in the island

There's no denying that white kitchen cabinets will forever be a classic look. While they aren't going anywhere any time soon our designers have been excited to see a trend towards experimenting with color and contrast in the island.

Dove Studio's designer, Jenny Lyons, added warmth and contrast to this white kitchen by incorporating a warm walnut island and base perimeter. Walnut, navy, and grey tend to be top choices for accent cabinets.

Dove Studio's designer, Stephanie Elder, utilized cool earthy grey tones in this kitchen island. The result is a fresh natural look that complements the white cabinets.

Light & natural wood tones

Natural light wood tones and unstained cabinets have made a huge splash in kitchen and bath design. This fresh and classic trend has cut ties with the dated traditional look by ditching dark rich stains and extra detailing in the cabinet door - like raised panels and beaded frames.

To achieve a cool and contemporary look our designers utilize a simple slab or shaker door style. From there, the stain and finish you choose will direct the style you want to go towards. Many designers are opting for light organic cabinets to create a fresh classic look.

Dove Studio's designer, Stephanie Elder, has a huge demand for natural-looking cabinet doors among her clients. One of her favorite samples right now is the Straw finish on the Quarter Sawn Oak door by Shiloh.

Natural wood and earthy toned cabinets are surprisingly versatile, play around with different lighting, bar stools, and hardware to go from traditional to mid-century modern, to contemporary. To achieve an industrial look, our designers often incorporate metallic elements like range hoods, hardware, and fixtures. For the modern look, consider a slab door with a high gloss finish.

Dark Cabinets

Dark cabinets are sophisticated and unique- and are sure to stand out in your kitchen design. Our designers have utilized dark cabinets in kitchens as accent walls, islands, adjacent bars, and throughout the whole space.

To achieve this modern look, designer Jenny Lyons of Dove Studios utilized dark slab cabinets throughout the kitchen. A lack of hardware and the clean sleek lines creates that streamlined modern look. The dark cabinetry, countertops and backsplash are balanced out by natural sunlight and light accent pieces on the island.

The transitional kitchen pictured above features a wall of cabinetry painted in a dark iron ore color that complements the walnut island beautifully. Natural sunlight and white countertops brighten up the kitchen space.

Double Islands

Having two kitchen islands is a luxury and not something you can easily add post-renovation, but they are so wonderful if you're able to!

Aside from the extra seating and countertop space, the second island can provide an abundance of under-counter storage space. Many of our clients will use this space for an under-counter fridge unit or an ice maker. With so much extra time being spent in the kitchen you will enjoy having the extra space to entertain and gather away from meal preparation areas.

Outdoor Kitchens

Custom outdoor kitchens have surged in popularity over the past few years. With all the extra time spent relaxing and entertaining in your backyard or patio, why not invest in that space?

Outdoor cabinetry lines, like NatureKast, offer a large selection of weather-proof styles and finishes. You can work with a designer to incorporate all your outdoor cooking needs into one beautiful design.

In the kitchen pictured above, our designers incorporated a Galley sink, a gas grill, a side burner, an egg grill, an ice maker, and an under-counter beverage fridge into this outdoor kitchen.

They are also super customizable in regard to style and functionality. Sub-Zero and Wolf offer a wonderful line of luxury outdoor appliances. Wolf outdoor grills vary from 30" to 54" inches and can be built-in to your cabinet base. Side burners and warming drawers are a favorite among savvy cooking clients. You can also include under-counter refrigeration units and an ice machine for those cool summer drinks.

Maximizing Efficiency

If you're like most people, you probably spent a large portion of the past year in your kitchen critiquing how your space could be better utilized. Our designers have worked with many clients over the past few months who are looking to renovate their kitchen into a fully functional multi-purpose space.

Electrical outlets are a must-have around the kitchen but can become an eye-sore when not hidden from plain view. We suggest incorporating hidden outlets in your island countertop that pop up with the push of a button. These are perfect for any countertop appliances and for when you're working at the bar and need a plug for laptop cords or chargers.

You can also hide outlets inside your cabinet drawers. Many clients end up turning a whole cabinet drawer into a technology/ charging station.


Follow Dove Studio on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest for more project pictures and inspiration!

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