Kitchen featuring fusion backsplash

Homeowners think long and hard about their kitchen design. There are several excellent reasons for this measured contemplation. First, this is where the daily meals are prepared and often consumed, and this translates to a buzzing hive of (often messy) activity. This room is as close to a “factory” floor as any other room in the house. It must be highly functional, hygienic, and easy to clean while avoiding the appearance of the mayhem made famous by the food fights in the movie “Animal House.” 
As if that was not enough pressure on the long-suffering kitchen, the recent pandemic transformed this space into the social hub for both the family and those well-meaning visitors who feel the need to hang around the chef while dinner is being prepared.
Finally, the kitchen is one of the most expensive rooms in the house to redesign, and it can take 9 months to a year to complete. All these factors have led to several considerations in the look, feel, and function of the kitchen. 
Is your kitchen ready for the demands that are being placed on it? Check out these home improvement ideas from Acme Brick, and don’t forget to keep stirring the sauce.

The Lucky 7 Trends for Kitchen Design

Sociability Rule

The kitchen has always been popular for parties and catching up with kids and spouses, but COVID ratcheted up this trend a few notches. As a result, this space has become a multifunctional mecca, according to the Good Housekeeping website. Need a place to cook? Sure. How about working on the family budget or homework in a nice little nook over by the window? Check. Chatting it up with guests? Mais oui! This trend has led to a proliferation of double-island kitchens and “performance” light fixtures to help the cooks show off their stuff! More than any other room in the house, the kitchen must be multifunctional. “Traditional kitchens are evolving and expanding. There will be larger—and even double—kitchen islands integrated to accommodate larger entertaining and gathering spaces in the kitchen,” noted designer Hilary Matt.

Kitchen Colors Are Changing

Bright white kitchens are so 2010. Blue and green have become the go-to colors for the contemporary kitchen, according to Better Homes & Gardens. “There’s a definite trend towards more impactful surface choices, and we’re seeing demand soar for nature-inspired shades,’ reports Oliver Webb, director of stone specialist Cullifords. "From Indian marbles to Brazilian granites and even onyx, there’s a huge array of exotic green stones to be explored.”

Glazed Tile and Thin Brick Backsplash Are Hot

Several design magazines and websites point to the demise of the subway tile backsplash, and products like Fusion thinBRIK taking its place. According to Craig Dudley of Acme Brick, “Fusion is a glazed, thin brick, and it is offered in various colors by applying a ceramic glazed facing to a previously fired clay thin brick body.  This is a great product for backsplashes, feature walls, accent walls, and fireplace surrounds. Maintenance is also easy. This product can be easily washed, and it will be just as stunning as the day it was installed. Plus, as with all thin brick, it is not as heavy as standard brick, making installation easier, quicker, and less expensive.”

Upper Cabinets Are Leaving the Kitchen

According to the Good Housekeeping website, Ellen Hatton, principal at BarnesVance Architects said, “We’ve been minimizing upper cabinets or having none. We’re doing a lot of designs where the tall or upper cabinets are confined to one wall or one portion of the kitchen, so we can keep the rest clean, and light filled.”

Biophilic Porcelain Tile Is Keeping It Safe in the Kitchen

Modern kitchen featuring porcelain tile

Porcelain tile, available from Acme Brick, is manufactured with a wide range of biophilic (natural images) graphics and finishes, including stone and wood looks, in a range of neutral, natural colors. Porcelain tile is hygienic, nonporous, and does not support microbial growth. Being nonporous, it is easily cleaned with safe and simple cleaners, not requiring the use of harsh disinfectants or other chemicals.

Butcher Block Islands Add Form and Function 

"A butcher-block island is not only stylish but incredibly functional and durable,” according to designer Alice Arteberry. “We love using walnut as the primary material for a butcher-block island, as it really warms the space. For added functionality, use a butcher-block island that has a mini fridge for extra storage space and plenty of cabinets where you can keep larger appliances hidden." 

Sink Skirts Are Back

Okay. Here’s a weird one. Your great grandmother had one and now you can too. H&G reports, “Once considered outdated and frumpy, the sink skirt is back in fashion creating opportunity for texture and pattern, softening kitchen schemes and adding a touch of nostalgia. The idea is based around replacing the base cabinet doors underneath the sink with pleated curtains, often suspended on a decorative rod. Here is an opportunity for an element that can be updated often – on - trend gingham, tactile untreated linen, or pale pink stripes amongst bold colors.”

Formulate a Plan and Cook Up a Design

Since every family has different tastes, there is no right or wrong way to design a functional, stylish kitchen. However, there is a great tool to help you come up with some ideas and then share them with a designer or remodeling contractor. 
The social platform Pinterest is a free online resource with millions of ideas that anyone contemplating a kitchen upgrade can use. Click here to find out all about this great clearinghouse of kitchen ideas. 
If you can’t stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen. However, if you relish the challenge, get some great ideas from Acme. Just click here.