A renovation is a big investment and making the right choices can often be paralyzing. How do you know your selections will stand the test of time while at the same time meeting today’s rapidly changing trends? I recently attended Interzum in Cologne, Germany, one of the world’s leading trade fairs for interior design, where I saw some of the latest up-and-coming trends. Here are some of my takeaways.
Materials - Painted cabinets, especially white, grey, and even blue, continue to hold top spot in North American designs. However, European trends often predict the future of design. What I saw at Interzum were cutting-edge designs featuring new and interesting materials. One of the themes of the show was ‘disruptive materials,’ and there were many manufacturers pushing the design envelope.
Engineered materials, those that mimic the look of real wood, are moving to the forefront of design. Luxury vinyl flooring is super hot right now - I am seeing it in a large number of the renovations I am involved with and am seeing the same trend toward engineered materials in cabinetry and countertops.
Technology - ‘Smart homes’ are the trend of the future. Every kitchen should have a charging station for wireless devices. In the future, your charging station will be built right into your countertop, so that all you will have to do is lay your device on top of the charging area, without requiring any wires.
Appliances are also becoming ‘smart.’ Just like a smart TV, your fridge will connect to the Internet so you can access recipes and even shop for groceries online. It will also know what is stored inside and when it will expire.
And imagine this: voice-controlled cabinets! Just say, “Alexa, open garbage” and a garbage can slides out so that you can dispose of waste without ever touching your cabinets. It’s still in the prototype stage, but I saw it in action at Interzum.
Lighting - LED lighting has opened up a whole new world of design. Because they are low energy and don’t heat up, LED lights are being used everywhere! They can be both practical - built into closets and inside drawers so that you can better see what’s inside - as well as decorative. We are accustomed to incorporating lighting above our counters and inside our open cabinets and glass door cabinets. But incorporating LEDs to light the floor and ceiling will add a whole new dimension to your space.
Storage - Finally, storage accessories are becoming more innovative. As many people are wanting to live big in small spaces, manufacturers are becoming more creative with their storage solutions. No more disorganized drawers or crawling on your hands and knees to see what’s inside your cabinets. Today’s cabinets feature all types of pullouts and organizers. Top kitchen storage accessories include drawer organizers, corner cabinet accessories, and pullout waste containers.
And if you want to really let your imagination run wild, how about a bookcase that turns into a bed or a couch that turns into a desk? These things actually exist today and are coming soon to your home.
Looking into the future is always exciting and the good news is, the future is not that far away! Many of these new and innovative trends are already making their way into North American homes and I, for one, am looking forward to embracing them.
When looking for cabinets, you will be faced with the dilemma of whether to buy custom or stock (pre-made) cabinets.
Here’s what you should consider:
1. Unique cabinets for a unique space. When it comes to personalizing your space, nothing beats custom cabinets for getting exactly what you want. From the ‘look’ of the cabinets to the sizes and the storage accessories, the possibilities are endless.
2. Built to last. With custom cabinetry, you receive the highest quality of materials and craftsmanship that will ensure your cabinets stand the test of time.
3. Personalized service. A custom cabinetry supplier will typically measure your space and have designers on staff to help you design your space, whereas a supplier of pre-made cabinets will offer limited services.
4. Price. The trade-off is that custom cabinetry usually comes at a higher price. You will need to evaluate whether the service, quality, and customization are worth the extra cost. However, you may be surprised - custom manufacturers often offer a lower-priced option that is within your budget!
5. Timing. A supplier of stock cabinets will usually have the cabinets available to take home right away. Custom cabinets take a little longer, but it may be worth the extra time to get exactly what you want.
Casa Flores is a locally-owned, family-run company located in Calgary. They have been in business since 2006, when Humberto Flores, an experienced cabinetmaker, joined forces with his wife, Jolanda Slagmolen-Flores, AKBD, a successful Kitchen Designer. Together, they knew they could offer high-quality products uniquely tailored to their clients’ individual needs. They have built a strong team of designers and cabinetmakers, and a reputation for customer service and quality. For more information, visit casaflores.ca.
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