By Kelsey Mulvey
Expect to see colorful cabinetry, more tile, and upscale details.
The kitchen has always been an integral room in our homes. This couldn’t be more true now: After spending the majority of the past two years at home—and making breakfast, lunch, and dinner there, as well—we gained a new appreciation for our culinary hubs. Since theses spaces are the heart of our homes, they should dress the part, too. To help give your space a much-deserved—and perhaps much-needed—makeover, we asked several designers and home experts about the kitchen trends they think will make it big in 2022. As the saying goes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so it’s important to decorate your kitchen with your personal taste in mind. However, understanding the latest trends in the world of design can offer ample insight into how best to refresh your space. Luckily, these designer-approved fads run the gamut from rich cabinets to well-appointed accessories, which means you’re bound to find a current idea that speaks to your aesthetic and budget.
Goodbye, all-white kitchens. According to Christopher Peacock, owner and CEO of his eponymous cabinet company in San Francisco, 2022 will usher in a brand-new palette. “Whether it is custom cabinetry or designing a complete living space, neutral tones paired with strong colors, like deep greens, rich reds, and blues, will continue to be a go-to color scheme for most,” he shares. Not ready to repaint all your cabinets? Peacock has the perfect compromise. “Many of our clients still opt for neutral cabinetry colors in general, however take a color risk for their island cabinetry or in their butler’s pantry,” he advises. “It allows homeowners to keep most of their space very calm and relaxed, while simultaneously introducing a strong color element for a bit of interest.”
If you’re not craving a pop of color, you can always make a statement with some texture. “I’m personally loving the use of wood tones (like light oak) in kitchens, as well as less hardware,” shares Susana Simonpietri, owner and creative director at Chango Co. She notes flat panel doors are being integrated more often (they speak to a more traditional sensibility) new stones, like travertine and quartzite, are on the up. These sophisticated upgrades are typically straightforward, says Simonpietri—adding a new texture isn’t as big of an undertaking as it may seem. “Replacing countertops is relatively easy and not very costly in a small space,” she shares. “In my own kitchen, I recently painted my cabinets a very faint creamy gray and added a beautiful travertine topper.”
If you want to bring your kitchen straight into 2022, you might want to consider updating one of your most prized appliances: your oven range. “Right now, induction ranges are a hot topic,” shares Emily Henderson, a designer and stylist. “I’m actually getting one put in my new house, but I’ve been seeing them in more and more home reveals, which is so great. I’m so happy to see the design industry heading in this direction.” As an electric alternative to the typical gas ranges, induction cooking is considered a safer option that causes less air pollution. Admittedly, upgrading your oven range is expensive—especially if you have your sights on an induction style. However, if you’re working with a generous budget, this switch can be well worth the investment.
Never underestimate the power of strategically-placed tile. For years, tile has served a strictly utilitarian purpose; an easy-to-clean layer that can protect your walls from spills and splashes. However, Henderson believes 2022 is the year this medium will be front and center. An unexpected place to give the tile treatment? Your window jam. “In searching for inspiration for my own kitchen, I’ve noticed that window jam tiling is in and I don’t think it’s a fluke,” she explains. “It’s so pretty, simple, and easy to clean—all requirements for me in how I design.” With so many shapes, colors, and styles to choose from, dwellers can certainly give this up-and-coming design fad some personalized flair. That said, it’s important to prioritize quality above all else. “Make sure you are getting the best product for your unique home,” Henderson says. “Don’t rush it!”
Backsplashes, cabinet colors, and countertop materials might transform your kitchen in a snap, but it’s those smaller finishing touches that can make your space feel even more special. For designer Breegan Jane, that means paying close attention to where you plug in your food processor or slow cooker. “I think clients will pay more attention to the details in the [kitchens] they redesign,” she explains. “Elements that function as impactful accents—like designer wall plates from Legrand—take on more of a role, instead of playing the background.” To integrate the look, and create a kitchen that’s warm and welcoming, Jane encourages you to keep these finishing details neutral. And, should you want to add a pop of color later, do so with vibrant dish towels or dinnerware.