2024 Kitchen Trends: Earth Tones, Beverage Centers, and More

2024 Kitchen Trends: Earth Tones, Beverage Centers, and More

  • Source: Better Homes & Gardens
  • 02/14/24

Designers predict these six trends will influence kitchen designs for years to come.

Thinking about updating your kitchen? Consider these 2024 kitchen trends, including adding color and maximizing functionality.

Visually, expect kitchens to warm up with earthy color palettes and plenty of wood tones, as well as integrated appliances and other European-style elements. Meanwhile, kitchen cabinets, layouts, and appliances will look to offer features that better support your lifestyle.

1. Beverage Centers

According to the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) kitchen trends report for 2024, dedicated beverage centers will be refreshing kitchens in a big way. More than half of survey respondents are looking to better accommodate beverages, from coffee to wine, beer, juice boxes, or fresh smoothies, with a dedicated area featuring specialized storage and appliances.

According to Jeanne Chung, principal designer at Cozy·Stylish·Chic, the beverage center may include appliances like an espresso machine, ice machine, and under-counter beverage fridge or fridge drawer. You'll find these drink-focused features accessible at the outskirts of the kitchen layout. “The beverage/breakfast center is usually positioned away from the main prep area and in closer proximity to the breakfast table or seating area,” says Chung. “Clients have asked to have a drawer or bin of grab-and-go snacks nearby, too.”

2. Features for Healthy Living 

Wellness is a theme that’s been prominent in home design since 2020, evident in the surge of spa-like baths and outdoor living areas. Now, the NKBA 2024 trends report notes that more designers and homeowners will be thinking about how the kitchen can act as a place for healthy living. Considering nutrition and healthy eating, kitchen designs will include more flexible refrigeration like columns, drawers, and convertible settings. Technology will also play a big role, including refrigerators with food inventory technology—some that can even make menu and shopping recommendations—as well as emergency power sources to prevent spoilage. Options for frying and steam cooking are expected for cooking appliances.

3. Integrated Cabinetry Lighting

“In line with the health and wellness movement, there’s a larger emphasis on making the kitchen as functional as possible to improve daily life,” says Nar Bustamante of Nar Design Group. Cabinetry with integrated lighting is one example to look for next year. Cabinetry will have layers of integrated lighting “throughout the interior and exterior of cabinets, improving visibility for tasks with the option for a moodier ambience.”

According to Bustamante, lighting will be found behind cabinet doors and inside drawers, under upper cabinets and part toe kicks, and even behind cabinetry. “These different applications combining mood lighting with task lighting offer function and flexibility of use," says Bustamante. "Mood lighting is no longer utilitarian, it’s expression."

 

4. Earthy Colors

“Trends are moving away from the neutral monotone palette and stark contrasts, seen in ultra-modern interiors, which can feel harsh or sharp,” says Bustamante. “There’s a craving for color and a general softer feel for interiors.” This is a progression of the biophilic design trends we’ve seen in the past few years, which have the goal of connecting a home with nature.

Bustamante is starting to see “desert-scape earth-toned colors” in the kitchen. “A variety of terracotta tones and soft sage greens seem to be the preferred color choice,” says Bustamante, noting, for example, that cabinetry manufacturer Nobilia has these hues in their offering for 2024.  Bustamante recommends incorporating curves and fluting to enhance soft, earthy palettes.

5. European-Style Influences

According to Nureed Saeed of Nu Interiors, European-style kitchen design will have a big impact in 2024, especially influencing cabinetry and storage. “Integrated appliances that disappear into the cabinetry, appliance garages that provide maximum access to coffee stations and other small appliances, but that can be easily tucked away, are all directionally where kitchen design is trending,” says Saeed.

Key characteristics include clean lines, enhanced functionality, and a furniture-like appearance. “Beyond aesthetics, the functionality of European kitchen design is reaching clients in smaller homes and spaces,” says Saeed, noting the drive for more sustainable living is leading to downsizing and, therefore, more thoughtful designs. “The idea is to maximize form and function in small spaces,” says Saeed. 

6. Wood Rather Than White 

All-white kitchens have slowly been phasing out, and according to the NKBA, we can look to wood to add warmth and texture to the kitchen in 2024. In fact, NKBA designers predict wood as the second most popular color for kitchens in the next three years, beating out white and closely following green, the top color.

Designers will be adding wood and wood-look materials through cabinetry, flooring, and architectural accents like wooden beams. “White oak and walnut have been at the top of the list in terms of trending wood species, and we’re also starting to use alder, as it stains nicely, has a nice grain pattern, and it does well in both modern and traditional settings,” says Chung. “It has a neutral tone and doesn't feel as heavy and dated like some of the other wood species out there.”

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