4 Design Trends with Staying Power

No one knows better than designers how fast home trends come and go—especially in the kitchen and bath. That’s why we’re saying bye-bye to Old World curlicues and ceramic-tile countertops that chip. Now that 2019 has arrived, it’s the perfect time to look once more at those kitchen and bath trends—and products—with staying power.

What do we mean by staying power? It’s when home design and products combine classic good looks with qualities that make life easier for the homeowner. Sometimes they even increase a home’s resale value.

Here’s our list of four such kitchen and bath product trends—ranging from the warmth of wood and precious-metal finishes to organizers and more that make life easier and more stylish.

1) The Beauty of Wood in the Kitchen

From dark tones to lighter bleached finishes, nothing warms up an open floor plan more than wood, according to Patricia Gaylor, interior designer and principal of Patricia Gaylor Interiors.

While wood flooring sets the tone for a warmer look and a softer feel underfoot in the kitchen, the mood is continued with other wood products in a mixture of textures and finishes—such as natural wood cabinets and rough-hewn ceiling beams. As for warming up a space with wood, you can’t go wrong with most species—from alder to zebrawood—for interior design styles that range from modern to traditional. Here’s some inspiration:

Lightly stained distressed-wood flooring grounds a classic kitchen with white-painted Shaker-style cabinets. Doors and drawer fronts wear our Sutton hardware in Brushed Gold, a finish that echoes the undersides of the pendants overhead.
We love Tuscan style, a warm, enduring look showcased in this gray-painted Tuscan Island from Jeffrey Alexander. The Hard Maple Edge Grain Butcher Block Top adds timeless beauty and functionality.

2) Gold and Brass Finishes for Enduring Elegance

Dazzling shades of gold, brass, and bronze continue to be the hottest finishes in today’s kitchens and baths, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA). And there’s no sign of them going away, says designer Christopher Grubb of Beverly Hills-based Arch-Interiors Design Group. He notes a preponderance of gold finishes in everything from bath fittings and decorative hardware to lighting fixtures.

“While these finishes tend to peak and temper in popularity like actual gold in the financial markets, they do endure over the long term,” he says.

Stephanie Lowe Mersky, Hardware Resources Decorative Products Manager, says that brighter, show-stopping gold accents are back—and sticking around for the foreseeable future. “We designed our softly brushed, rich, warm-yellow gold tones to be the ideal finishes for making a bold design statement,” she says. “We’re proud that they simultaneously lend character and a touch of luxury to any room they’re used.”

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Two of Jeffrey Alexander’s hardware collections in a Brushed Gold finish: Sutton and Tiffany (above)

We’d like to point out that Hardware Resources has the precious-metal market covered with its Brushed Gold and Satin Bronze finishes used on decorative hardware collections from Jeffrey Alexander. These gold-tone finishes bring vibrant sparkle to the forefront without overwhelming the space they’re in.

3) Customized Kitchen and Bath Storage Features Make Life Easier

Designer Patricia Gaylor also emphasizes the importance of personalization when it comes to creating kitchens and baths that meet a family’s unique lifestyle needs. And she’s not just talking about choosing floors, cabinetry finishes, and countertop surfaces. She’s talking about storage.

“Customizing the storage components inside cabinets and drawers is huge right now, and will continue in 2019 and beyond,” the designer told us. “Once homeowners experience the benefits of personalized storage, they don’t want to go back to one-size-fits-all components.”

That’s exactly why we’ve developed some extraordinary cabinet organizers that make any end-user’s daily life easier to handle—whether it’s 2018, 2019, or well into the future.

No Wiggle Vanity-Height Cabinet Pullout including optional drop-in Grooming Organizer with stainless-steel canisters and dividers
Part of our new Storage with Style Collection, this Hanging Pan Organizer keeps cookware (including lids!) discreetly tucked behind the cabinet door until needed. Clean lines and plated on-trend finishes help this pulloutas well as three coordinating organizers—feel right at home inside upscale kitchen cabinetry.
ml-1ch in use
Our Soft-close Mixer/Appliance Lift frees up counter space by hiding a heavy stand mixer in a base cabinet until a home baker wants it to be lifted to a back-friendly work height.
Hardware Resources’ Drawer Organizer Insert Cutlery Tray doubles as a bathroom organizer for grooming gear.

We could go on and on, but maybe it’s easier to just say, “Check out the overview of Cabinet & Drawer Organizers at HardwareResources.com!

4) Eco-friendly Layered Lighting for Kitchens and Baths

We’re combining two trends into one here in order to emphasize the value of LED lighting. Let’s start by defining an eco-friendly (a.k.a. green) bathroom and kitchen. To most kitchen and bath designers it means creating spaces that conserve water, save energy, and use resource-efficient materials such as bamboo flooring, recycled concrete, and reclaimed wood.

As for lighting, gone are the days of using a single ceiling-mount fixture to illuminate the entire room. Today, on-trend designers layer ambient, accent, and task lighting to maximize functionality while creating a dynamic space.

Energy-efficient LED strip lights fuse the two trends into one: They’re eco-friendly because they generate more light and less heat at a lower cost than using standard incandescent bulbs. And their role in layered lighting is to target illumination where a homeowner really needs it (e.g. work surfaces) and/or highlighting special kitchen features.

Our favorite lighting product? It’s Task Lighting’s Lighted Power Strip that goes beneath kitchen cabinets or shelves. We love it because it combines our top-selling APT Series Angle Power Strip with Sempria LEDs to create an all-in-one fixture that incorporates both power and illumination. When installed underneath cabinets, power and light are right where the homeowner needs them when prepping a meal. (An added benefit: These strips don’t mar beautiful backsplash designs and materials with outlets and switches.)

Looking to add the effect of light but don’t need the added receptacle? Our SG9 Series Strip Lights offer our highest light output in a clean, attractive housing—perfect for countertop task lighting that also illuminates the backsplash when installed under upper cabinets. The versatile A Series Mini Angled Strip Light can be installed in the interior of glass-front cabinets for beautiful illumination, or beneath the toe kick to provide pathway lighting for safety’s sake when the room is otherwise dark.

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When installed in the toe kick, strip lights illuminate a path from one side of the kitchen to the other. They also add drama below the island overhang. Accent lights spotlight dishes displayed on the kitchen’s open shelving.

Now it’s time to turn off the lights until next month…

PS: We want to hear from you! Let us know which 2018 trends you’re going to recommend to your clients in the year to come.

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