You don’t need to open the latest edition of Architectural Digest or Elle Decor to see your dream kitchen. It’s possible to design your own kitchen fit for a magazine in your very own home. If contemporary kitchens speak to your heart, here is some inspiration to bring that same glossy paged allure to your kitchen design.
It’s rare to find intricate details or raised paneling on the cabinets in a contemporary kitchen. Since this theme is all about clean lines and sleek features, the style of choice tends to be slab or euro-style cabinets like our Urban White Cabinets.
Contemporary cabinets also tend to have very minimalist hardware or none at all. A simple stainless steel bar pull is a popular choice, but some homeowners choose to forego cabinet pulls and knobs completely for an even sleeker appearance.
When it comes to the finish, neutral colors like white, grey or black work best. We’ll talk more about color palettes next, but with a minimalist goal, contemporary kitchens rarely feature colored cabinets.
Neutral Color Palettes
Most contemporary dream kitchens lack color overall or choose to incorporate only one accent hue. White, black or grey is usually the dominant color with touches of natural elements, such as natural stone countertops or wood-look tile flooring.
When a homeowner does elect to incorporate a pop of color, it is usually a bold jewel tone or bright neon shade. This choice can add an artistic element that amplifies the kitchen’s theme and helps to achieve that magazine-quality finish. Some also feel that a contemporary kitchen can feel cold, and the small addition of color warms up the room and makes the space seem more welcoming.
Stainless steel is the finish of choice in most contemporary kitchens. When you design your own kitchen, opt for appliances, hardware, kitchen sinks, and light fixtures in this modern finish. Silver complements the cool color palette of a contemporary kitchen and also plays off natural elements that are commonly incorporated, such as stone countertops.
Despite the love of metallic elements in a contemporary kitchen, some homeowners will elect to conceal appliances with custom cabinets to make their design truly seamless. When this is done, the kitchen cabinets and appliances almost seem to disappear. Other homeowners may choose to take a more transparent cabinetry approach and incorporate open shelving or glass cabinet doors in their contemporary design. Both looks are modern and fresh, so this decision just comes down to personal preference. If you do hide appliances, the possibility to incorporate stainless steel is still abundant.
If you really want to achieve that magazine-quality kitchen, you need good lighting. Contemporary kitchens are always well lit and emphasize the bright and clean characteristics of modern kitchen design. Remember that lighting comes in three stages: ambient, task, and accent.
When choosing lighting, also stay consistent with the theme of clean lines, so that your fixtures align with the sharp style of your kitchen’s overall design. Looks for square corners and straight lines when choosing accent lighting like pendants to keep your contemporary design cohesive — and brightly lit.
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