2012 Design Trends: Our Experts Chime In

2012 Design Trends: Our Experts Chime In

Posted in Design on December 17, 2011

With only a couple of weeks left in 2011, we thought we might get our in house designers to provide some thoughts on kitchen design trends you can expect to see in 2012.

Candace Hunt, Calgary

  • Kitchens showcasing integrated appliances, either hidden inside drawers or behind paneled matching cabinet fronts. Why? Our lives are complicated - we want our homes to convey calm, not clutter... we want to simply live our lives, not complicate them.
  • High contrast selections and high gloss finishes used thoughtfully on gables and open shelving will be used to bring a dynamic statement to the home. Why? People designing their dream space today no longer fit the square box mentality.
  • Chrome finishes. Yes, polished chrome. Why? Design has a way of recirculating. You'll see this surfacing trend on our new hardware display and in more and more homes in 2012.
  • Resin panels incorporating texture with fabric, mesh, bamboo, etc. These will appear as door fronts, shelving, and back splashes. Why? They're easy to maintain while adding visual interest to the living space.

Jane Ly, Calgary

  • We'll see more lighter and brighter kitchens, with natural to medium finishes showing off the focal point of the home.
  • The shaker profile for doors is still going to be strong for its simplicity and finely crafted style.
  • Highly functional kitchens with additional work surfaces, accessories, and ample storage stand as the blueprint for 2012.
  • Tech stations and floating shelves will be big trends as they add function and beauty.
  • People are increasingly environmentally conscious and desire not only a green lifestyle, but an eco-friendly approach to the materials used to build their dream space like our AquaFinish products, Echo Wood, and Bamboo.

Jim Blakely, Edmonton

  • We're going to see a lot more modern design themes in cabinetry with clean, simple lines and bold hardware.
  • We will also see more upper cabinets going to the ceiling with either large crown mouldings, flat risers, or stacked cabinetry.
  • The trend of dark coloured stains on maple cabinetry will continue into 2012.
  • Built-in appliances and integrated appliances will continue to be designed into the modern kitchen.
  • Eco-friendly products, such as our AquaFinish products, Echo Wood, and Bamboo, will be the future of the modern kitchen.

Joe Colonna, Calgary

  • Contrary to popular belief, I think we'll see a lot of dark colours remain popular in kitchen cabinetry.
  • We're also going to see more grey cabinetry, which can be used with both more traditional style doors as well as contemporary high gloss finishes.
  • The trend of creating a "furniture" look in the kitchen will continue. Making islands look more like a piece of furniture with furniture-style toe kick, posts, etc. will be increasingly popular.
  • Accessories are all the rage today, and that is going to continue to be true. Today's customer wants cabinets with great functionality and sleek modern design.
  • We're going to see more stacked cabinets. Not only do these increase storage space, but the top cabinet doors are perfect for a glass door or parapan panel to create a little "WOW" factor.

Sameer Kanji - Calgary

  • Accessories! We see this more and more every year; built in accessories that maximize storage and functionality.
  • Shiny new hardware! Handles and knobs are an easy way to add that finishing touch to a kitchen and can even jazz up your kitchen for the season, revive your cabinets, and match those new appliances!
  • Changing of the guard! Younger generations are raving for materials and styles that can be mixed as desired. It is no longer 'faux pas' to have two different wood species or materials in the same room.
  • Get ready for more two tone combinations to set the island or stacked cabinets or even upper cabinets apart from the rest of the kitchen.
  • Symmetry and clean-lined simplicity will continue to be the formula for dream kitchens. I think we're going to see more slab or bold square framed doors to achieve the 'European' look.
  • Entertaining! The kitchen is always the gathering point and key entertainment area for any home party. This means more sleek island designs with more seating room so guests can sit back and enjoy. This also means cabinets become a feature with glass doors and shelving to display collectibles and wine.
  • Environmental consciousness! Green or recycled materials are becoming more popular. More eco-friendly materials such as our Echo Wood and bamboo, and water based finishes like our AquaFinish are being used to improve the atmosphere at home.
  • Cold hard metals! Aluminum frame doors are an exceptional option for accenting or face-lifting a kitchen, and I think we'll see a lot more metal doors in 2012.
  • Simply white! White or cream cabinets are going to be more popular because it gives the home owner freedom to choose accent pieces and various colours of paint without having to worry about the colour of their cabinets. White or cream cabinets also keep the overall look of the kitchen bright and fresh.

Vijay Singh, Edmonton

  • Traditional style kitchens with ornate profiles and details will remain popular in kitchen design.
  • We're also going to see a lot of shaker profile doors, which are characterized by their simplicity.
  • Kitchens are always a warm gathering place for family and friends, which is why we'll see center kitchen islands continue to be common. They are functional and really pull the space together.
  • Despite the interest in beech, walnut, and exotic materials, I think maple will remain the material of choice.


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