A Review of What’s Happening in the Kitchen

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Last updated on January 14, 2021

Your kitchen is the heart of your home and where you often end up spending a lot of time. Some people dread cooking in their kitchen and dream of more space, modern appliances or new cabinets. Designers Amy BoeshaarGayle Jagoda and Donna Kirsopp discussed the latest trends in kitchen design at this month’s Smart Remodeling Workshop What’s Happening in the Kitchen.

In the workshop, Gayle discussed some of the latest and greatest in appliance offerings. Induction cooking is not a new technology but has made its way back into homes as a high-end cooktop appliance. Induction uses magnetics to rapidly heat pots and pans but the surface itself is not hot. This makes induction heating safe for families with small children and efficient for those short on time. Steam cooking is also popping up in kitchen appliances and while it is limited in cooking due to the temperature range it does provide a healthy cooking method.

induction cooking

Drawer microwaves are a very popular right now in kitchen design. It removes the microwave as a focal point in the kitchen and allows it to be placed in a more convenient spot, such as an island. The drawer aspect makes it convenient for access as you don’t have the door opening out to you to reach around. Simply pull out the drawer, hit the button and microwave away.

A few other interesting options Gayle discussed were fully integrated freezers and fridges, black stainless steel and InstaView. InstaView allows you to view what’s inside without having to open the door and let out that expensive cold air. It offers a little more energy efficiency in your home.

Gayle also showed some of the latest trends in kitchen tile which include installing tile to create different patterns, using color, tile shapes, 3d patterns and the very popular concrete tiles.

Donna walked everyone through some of the trends in layout and the new shapes and options available to kitchen islands. The different shapes help conform to your space’s layout and utilizing it the best way possible. Islands can house additional appliances, storage, seating, sinks and cooktops. They’re also being used to offer a variation to cabinets, this could mean they’re a different color or designed to look like a piece of furniture. Cabinets are created to conceal appliances and are designed as furniture, like this custom wine fridge offering both form and function.

wine dridge

Donna also discussed cabinetry and some of the new options such as high-pressure laminate which is a very durable and cost-effective offering. A few other types of new cabinets she showed were a wood veneer, acrylic doors and weather wood. Gone are the days of wood being the only option.

Amy provided insight into the trends around countertops. She mentioned granite is becoming less popular while quartz has become highly desired. Most people are interested in attaining a marble look without the maintenance of marble. This is why quartz and quartzite have become so popular. Butcher block is also becoming more common as it adds a nice warm contrast to white cabinets.


In addition to countertops Amy also discussed some of the finishing options for light fixtures and hardware. Everything from school house lighting with exposed bulbs to crystal is being used.

All 15 of our guests had excellent questions about some of these trends and how they may be used in their spaces. It was a great night of design discussion and we hope you’ll be able to join us for our next one on August 29 where Megan Bringman will share Trends and Tips for Bathrooms.