In modern kitchen design people are moving away from a kitchen in the traditional sense of the word toward a more established, multifunctional kitchen space in which people cook but also dine, socialise, work and relax. This is especially so for open plan kitchen and living room spaces, and over time a distinction between the two different areas has become harder to define. This fusion of space is intentional. And the way we are designing kitchen spaces is evolving to further bridge the gap and achieve one blended, sophisticated yet casual space. In other words, ‘relaxed chic.’
How can you achieve relaxed chic for kitchens?
There are a number of different ways in which you can achieve relaxed chic for kitchens, whether for an open plan or enclosed kitchen space. In 2015 we expect we will increasingly be incorporating of one or more of the following kitchen styles and innovations to help achieve this:
Linear kitchen designs
The phrase ‘Tidy space, Tidy mind’ is a well-known saying. And it’s true that a cleaner, clearer space is certainly more physically (and mentally) comfortable to reside in. Of course it also looks better! In accordance with this, linear kitchens, although not new to kitchen design, will feature heavily in 2015 kitchen planning, whether for a modern or traditional kitchen look. In its most basic of terms linear kitchen design translates to simplistic clean lines and sharp contours, both of which are highly characteristic of the Germanic kitchen appearance. It is the linear arrangement of units that sets a clean, unfussy and sleek tone for the kitchen, generating an instant air of sophistication. But we now expect linear kitchen units will form the basis for additional layers that will soften the look. This might be inset worktops within kitchen islands or else island worktops that intersect and overlap at varying heights.
Similarly floating worktop formations of curved geometric shapes both relax the space and make additional room for seating. A move towards open shelves, and floating cabinetry rather than floor to ceiling units is becoming more apparent and creates a more casual feel. Adorning with personal artefacts and commodities such as cookware, books and glassware will have the same effect, relaxing and personalising the space.
Hidden kitchen appliances
In conjunction with linear kitchen designs, kitchen appliances and gadgets are also contributing to relaxed chic for kitchens. Appliances themselves are becoming more linear and less visible in the kitchen, adding to a tidy space and clean look. Whilst appliances are incredibly useful we don’t always want to see them and have them clutter our kitchens. Manufacturers are therefore coming up with increasingly ingenious ways of sleekly incorporating and ‘hiding’ them so they don’t distract from the stylish look of the kitchen. For example, at the mere touch of a button, disappearing cabinets or pop up extractors recessed into a worktop will fully retract when not in use. Like induction hobs they ensure an entirely flush finish with the worktop.
Similarly for the gas hob enthusiast, these can now be recessed deeper into worktops. They retain the required ring burners but effect a more subtle appearance that doesn’t interrupt a kitchen’s clean lines. The fascia and functionality of appliances themselves are also evolving towards simplistic fronts and simplistic controls. We can expect new appliance models with low profile exteriors. These are devoid of visible handles or controls, which later appear only when switched on for use.
Such innovations contribute to a relaxed chic kitchen setting by maintaining a clean kitchen look, generating more free and usable space, and of course they are stress-free and easy to use!
Relaxed chic kitchen worktop trends for 2015
Island kitchen appliances such as hobs, sinks and taps can also be entirely hidden from view when not in use through incorporation of a sliding worktop. This will roll back or extend out to reveal them only when needed. Otherwise this cooking space will provide a stylish yet casual structure for a breakfast bar and eating area. The overall feel this brings is once again luxurious yet relaxed.
Another worktop trend set to continue into 2015 is that of slimline kitchen worktops. Strong and durable, and available as thin as 8 mm, skinny worktops such as Constentino’s Dekton produce a clean and unfussy kitchen appearance. As already stated these can be interspersed with thicker models. Furthermore bevelled edges can soften the look and contribute to the desirable relaxed chic for kitchens.
Lighting plays an important role within the kitchen and it is essential to balance a combination of task lighting, decorative lighting and mood lighting. Recessed lighting and above-cabinet lighting are popular options and ideal for highlighting clean cabinetry lines. In combination with such options we expect to see a lot of ‘statement lighting’ in 2015. Bronze and copper metallic lighting can bring balance, whilst beautiful sculptured lighting, oversized features and decorative pendant lights bring character and personality to a room. They also soften a kitchen look, which is ideal for achieving relaxed chic for kitchens. For open plan spaces it is common to separate your lighting options into different zones, ensuring you can achieve the right lighting for different needs at different times. This is important for comfort and enjoyment, once again contributing to a relaxed but chic kitchen setting.
Relaxed chic for kitchens … for maximum comfort and enjoyment
Within modern busy lives, ‘downtime’ is important and the home as a sanctuary is a key concept. People need their homes to welcome them, as much as to welcome any guest! As the kitchen, open plan or otherwise, is the most frequently used room of the home it needs to be functional and meet personal requirement. But equally we want it to be an environment that is both tasteful and comfortable. This is why we fully expect a high demand for the relaxed chic style for kitchens in 2015.
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