Elements from nature. Asian design places a strong emphasis on bringing the outdoors inside through plants and natural motifs. Consider adding touches of glass or acrylic that has bamboo, grasses or leaves embedded within it, as in the shoji screen–style panels that front this kitchen window. You could also line cabinet panels with split bamboo stalks or add potted bamboo plants or wheatgrass to infuse the space with a sense of life.
Balance and harmony. The Asian aesthetic places a strong emphasis on harmony, in terms of materials as well as design. Pay attention to balancing visual elements such as color, form and weight. In this kitchen the dark range hood offsets the island, and the lighter ceiling beams echo the cabinetry.
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Old materials used in a new way. Contemporary design is often know to push the boundaries of what we know. Sure, everyone knows concrete sidewalks and glass windows, but what about concrete or glass countertops in kitchens? New and improved products are added to the marketplace every day. From concrete to glass to solid-surface materials like quartz, which tries to achieve the look of natural stone without the maintenance concerns, there are more options for homeowners than ever before.
Craftsman style, which arose in the early 20th century, was a reaction to the mass-produced fussiness of the Victorian era, and its wholesome simplicity still resonates today. And nowhere is its signature warmth more evident than in the kitchen, the heartbeat of a Craftsman home. It’s impossible to separate form from function in a space done in this style, but Craftsman kitchens are anything but utilitarian — they’re as comforting as a fire on a cold day. Read on for the essential elements you’ll need to create the look.
Classic kitchens. What is classic? The answer is as varied as cooks are. Still, white or cream kitchen cabinets, simple architectural details and black accents offer a blank slate that homeowners can personalize with contemporary, traditional and eclectic touches as they see fit.