Designer: Nar Bustamante, Nar Fine Carpentry. Photo: Fred Donham.

The traditional kitchen has lost some of its luster in recent years as, according to the 2017 Kitchen & Bath Design Trends Report, contemporary-styled kitchens have overtaken traditional to become the second-most popular North American kitchen design.

According to respondents, in addition to contemporary kitchens surpassing traditional kitchens, two-toned colored kitchens and kitchens equipped with more technology are also two trends currently on the rise.

Based on the survey, the NKBA created a list of the top 10 overall kitchen trends it expects to see for 2017.

  1. Clean lines, built-ins and simple door styles dominate kitchen designs. Contemporary- styled kitchens overtake Traditional to be the second most popular design after Transitional. Emerging: Industrial and Mid Century Modern. Mountain Modern and Coastal are variations on Contemporary. ​
  2. White and gray painted cabinets dominate kitchen color schemes and show no signs of slowing down, especially gray. Blue painted and high gloss cabinets are emerging. For overall color schemes, blue as well as black are emerging.

    White and Gray Painted Cabinets

  3. Two-toned kitchens are gaining in popularity. Also mixing it up: materials and metals, across surfaces and as accents.

    2-toned Kitchen

  4. While wood cabinets dominate kitchen designs, metal –currently a small segment of the cabinet market — appears to be emerging. Metal cabinets are most frequently specified by younger and male designers.

    Metal Cabinets

  5. Furniture-look pieces, rollouts and pullouts and under cabinet lighting (LED) are among the most popular kitchen cabinet features. Use of crown molding is declining.

    Under Cabinet Lighting

  6. Rustic and reclaimed woods were frequently mentioned. Reclaimed wood can cut on cost and if designed correctly will look great mixed with a modern kitchen.

    Reclaimed Wood

  7. Quartz is the most popular kitchen countertop material, and trending up. Granite, the second most popular countertop material, is trending down.

    Quartz Countertop

  8. Induction cooktops and convection ovens are trending higher, and microwave drawers are outpacing freestanding or built-in microwaves. Steam ovens still represent a small segment of the market, but are also trending higher.
  9. Use of technology in the kitchen is increasing. About one third of NKBA professionals included wiring and pathways for future tech integration. Also trending upwards: more Internet connected appliances and docking stations.
  10. Interior barn and pocket doors in kitchens are trending up.


The report and subsequent trends were generated with information from 562 responses to the 2017 Kitchen & Bath Design Trends survey that was sent out to National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) members in August 2016.

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