As the year began, kitchen and bath trend forecasters made their pronouncements about what changes we should expect to see in 2015. Now that we are halfway through the year and heading into the fall design and remodeling season, are those trends indeed trending?
There were some hits and some misses. If one were to choose one word that describes what the majority of homeowners want, it would be “pragmatic.” Style matters, but function rules.
Tastes vary, of course. A quick online overview of recent projects reveals a wide range of preferences for styles and colors. Mainly, though, the following trend predictions have grown in popularity this year:
Builders and remodelers both report an increased demand in open layouts and combined living spaces, with the kitchen, dining and living areas all flowing together.
This was to be the year that homeowners turned from granite to quartz, and by industry accounts that appears to be the case. An article in the August issue of Consumer Reports ranks quartz as tops for durability and notes that suppliers now provide a greater range of design options, making it even more attractive.
For its versatility as well as its energy-saving practicality, LED has become the lighting solution of choice. It serves many functions, such as task lighting, accent lighting and ambient lighting, and is now available in a wide range of fixtures and styles.
While most homeowners are not ready to embrace the Internet of Things, the use of smart technology, especially to control lighting and energy use, has grown in popularity. With a smart phone or tablet, homeowners can turn lights on or off, adjust lighting and temperature comfort levels, and program a thermostat to optimize energy use, at home or remotely.
Some projected trends did not gather momentum as expected. They have their supporters but did not gain traction with the majority of homeowners or designers.
Although forecasters were divided on this one, many predicted that stand-alone soaking tubs would replace spa showers as consumer’s top choice for how they wanted to unwind.
However, the latest Houzz Bathroom Trends Survey reveals two-thirds of homeowners undertaking renovation or remodeling projects planned to expand their showers, and many planned to eliminate the tub from the master bathroom. On the other hand, more than a third said they planned to install a tub for two.
Designers had high hopes that homeowners would branch out a bit from contemporary design to a warmer, more eclectic look blending modern and traditional elements.
At present, the vast majority of homeowners seem to be sticking with contemporary, perhaps because of its clean lines and ease of maintenance. An article in USA Today reports that higher-end manufacturers have recently introduced contemporary-style appliances to meet consumer demand.
Darker colors in the kitchen
As an adjunct to modern traditional, forecasters proclaimed that deeper hues, like burgundy, dark blues and black, would define the look of the kitchen in 2015.
More popular with homeowners are white and light grays, which are trending as expected. The National Kitchen and Bath Association says 81 percent of its designers used white color schemes in the kitchen last year.
Functionality, convenience, ease of maintenance and conservation are the themes that run through homeowners’ top choices. They are less concerned about making a statement and more concerned about having a home that is comfortable and supportive.
That helps explain another rapidly moving trend, designing or modifying the home for aging in place. The majority of homeowners are not looking to turn their home into a showplace. For them, the home is a living space, a place to be with friends and family and a refuge from their busy, demanding public lives.
About the Author
Michael J. Berens is a freelance researcher and writer with more than 30 years of experience in association communication and management. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was provide by Multibriefs.