This year, our team of editors took on the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show with a mission -- to seek out the latest trends and how they apply to you.
It’s obvious that the marketplace is looking to make options in the kitchen and bath efficient, brighter, and more comfortable. Whether it’s adding an uplifting burst of color or bringing back a bit of hotel luxury, these days it’s all about making the most of the place you call home.
Shown here: Aimes Bath Collection from Toto
With the days of house flipping passed, we are now looking to invest in our homes for our own enjoyment -- not just to make a quick profit. Manufacturers have taken notice and put an emphasis on quality and longevity in their products and appliances.
In the kitchen, convenience and performance are key. Appliances are not only energy efficient, but also restaurant quality -- perfect for the home gourmet.
Taking a cue from high-end hotels and spas, bathroom fixtures and accessories are designed to transform a simple bath into a luxurious retreat. With features such as programmable digital showers, massaging tubs, and high-designed faucets, the bathroom is quickly becoming one of the most fashionable rooms of the house.
Bringing elements from the outdoors in is not a new concept, but its prominence in the bath is worthy of praise. Decorative embellishments on sinks -- etched into fixtures or individually hand painted -- give an exquisite touch to an everyday item. Incorporating wood accents on vanities and even toilet seats take this natural element from rustic to refined when paired with sleek bathroom design.
Shown here: Heritage Wood Vanity from Artisan Group
This year saw a shift from cooler to warmer finishes on sinks and other hardware. Chrome and nickel still have a place in kitchen and bath design, but they are complemented by the warmer tones of brass, bronze, and copper. We love to see a kitchen with more than one finish. This look works in both modern and traditional settings and can be executed in many ways.
In this kitchen, a copper apron-front sink is paired with a nickel faucet and cabinet hardware and stainless steel appliances.
With the baby boomer generation nearing retirement, many are opting to install appliances and fixtures that meet their changing needs. And the market is responding with state-of-the-art options (think easy-to-use levers, LED lighting, higher toilets, and good-looking grab bars). These help this generation lead a more independent lifestyle -- also known as Aging in Place -- in lieu of opting for assisted or alternate living arrangements. In turn, these products will provide an easier, more comfortable lifestyle while maintaining a beautiful home.
And don’t think this trend is just for aging adults. The products also work well in any home embracing the concept of Universal Design.
Shown here: Allora Faucet from Delta
Beige and black have fallen out of designers’ favorites, losing ground to bold orange. The updated shade is decidedly crisper than the brown-tinged orange of the 1970s. Picture the fresh hue of a ripe orange, not the murky tones of Archie Bunker’s recliner. The current shade brings a lively, eye-pleasing touch to kitchens and baths.
Plenty of options abound for the homeowner. Some of our favorite ways to incorporate this peppy shade? Try a bold backsplash or colorful cabinetry in the kitchen and flashy walls or even a statement tub in the bath.