Utility rooms deserve the same attention that the other spaces in your home get.


Q: I’m thinking about redoing my whole kitchen to add value to my home. What features should I be looking for?

A: If I had to sum up what people look for in a contemporary kitchen, I’d say it’s being more than a kitchen. Every last inch should be packed with helpful features, aesthetic splashes and a sense of security.

The contemporary kitchen reflects how we all want to live. It’s more than a room for preparing food; it’s the starting point for all room concepts of the future.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the hot new features for kitchens in 2020.

Light Pepper

The new trend in color, Light Pepper is soft grey-beige tone that complements current gray and black tones, stone decor and wood finishes. It’s a move away from cool white towards warmer colors — a trend already underway in motor vehicles, where warm interior colors often match the exteriors. Light Pepper will light up your kitchen with a warm glow.

Aluminum elements

If you want to create a new design experience with just a few details, aluminum satisfies the demand for both sustainability and high-quality materials. Just a handful of aluminum elements can make a clean, sleek statement. It’s used for attractive cabinet doors and door frames, spin columns and shelves, storage boxes and even tablet holders. A black aluminum-framed glass cabinet door, especially with mullions for lighting inside, is one of the top kitchen trends of 2020.

Smart glass marble

Opposites attract. Whether you use a satin finish or gloss, expressive smart glass Marble Romano sets the scene when placed in front of deep black velvet lacquer on a wood structure such as shelving, an island or cabinetry. The interplay of glass Marble Romano and lacquered wood is especially captivating and an absolutely timeless aesthetic. Staging it with contrasting elements will transform your kitchen into a sensual experience, rather than just a place to cook.

Freestyle wall

Mobility, freedom, individuality: these are the keywords of our design era and guide new kitchen concepts. The trend of breaking down the classic fitted kitchen into modular, mobile units defined by their functions is increasingly popular in living rooms and kitchens alike. Walls and shelves that can be moved around as needed to maximize function are becoming the new normal in today’s kitchens.

Cooking island

A high-quality cooking island can cut an impressive, sculpturesque figure in your kitchen. With a base unit height of 33.3 inches and a thin worktop, the island will have an optimal working height, ergonomic for you and usable by younger, ever-growing family members. With some textures on a wood base, the island will take on an eye-pleasing three-dimensional look.

Natalie Ivashkina is the founder and owner of Eco German Kitchens, a member of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties (MBAKS). If you have a home improvement, remodeling or residential homebuilding question you’d like answered by one of MBAKS’s more than 2,700 members, write to homework@mbaks.com.

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