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10 outdated kitchen design trends you need to retire


We’ve included more kitchen design ideas you can explore for your brand new kitchen makeover.

Modern kitchen
© Iuliia Nazarenko | 123rf

Today’s modern kitchens follow a streamlined look focusing on simplicity and minimalism. You have your appliances, cabinets and sink, but you can complement these with bright light fixtures and a centrepiece island that truly makes a statement.

However, design trends come and go – kitchen design trends are no exceptions. Here are 10 outdated or unorthodox kitchen design trends you’ll need to cross off your dining room/kitchen makeover list, plus some tips on how to create a trendy modern design look you’d want to admire.

 1. White kitchen

Outdated kitchen trends - A white kitchen
© Katarzyna Białasiewicz | 123rf

It’s the simplest colour scheme for your kitchen. All-white everything works, but you could be bolder and add natural elements like wooden hardware or go over the top with pops of colours. The kitchen should be simple in decor, but you can try working with colours to complement the overall space.

Or choose different materials instead. Find out which countertop material suits you the best.

Read what this couple has to say when it comes to designing a home together

 2. Matching metal finishes

Outdated kitchen trends - Matching metal finishes
© Marija Yurlagina | 123rf

Your cabinet hardware, lighting and taps do not need to be the exact same metal finishing. It’s a safe route for sure, but you can be experimental. For example, explore polished nickel for your sink faucet and brass cabinet knobs to help your kitchen space stand out.

 3. Cabinet designs that don’t match

Outdated kitchen trends - Cabinet designs that don't match
©Victor Zastolskiy | 123rf

That said, don’t mix and match different cabinet door designs or kitchen cabinets of varying heights. Mismatched cabinets are a design passé and a busy look that confuses the mind. It also doesn’t give the kitchen a unifying look and feel.

Get inspired with these kitchen cabinet ideas.

 4. Oversized kitchen hardware

Outdated kitchen trends - Oversized kitchen hardware
© maroti | 123rf

It’s true that you can update your kitchen’s look by simply adding new appliances or hardware, but you shouldn’t disrupt the existing design unless it’s a full makeover. Oversized cabinet handles might not work for your cupboards and a giant toaster might look out of place on your island. 

 5. Quirky kitchen art / graphic signage

Outdated kitchen trends - Quirky kitchen art or graphic signage
© Petro Kuprynenko | 123rf

The kitchen isn’t a space for mind-boggling art that confuses visitors or motivational posters (even if it is related to cooking). These are the sort of decorations meant for a study space. If you insist on art, a photograph or canvas art piece is much better suited for the kitchen.

6. Oddly-patterned tile backsplashes

Outdated kitchen trends - Oddly patterned tile backsplashes
© Анна Хасьянова | 123rf

Backsplashes with Moroccan cement patterns or colour-blocked designs make the kitchen look too busy and its novelty might wear out sooner than you think. For backsplashes, a simple colour with textures are more pleasing to the eye – add utensils or flowers that can be easily moved for a new look.

 7. Open shelving concept

Outdated kitchen trends - Open shelving concept
© didecs | 123rf

These look picture perfect on Pinterest, but open shelving for your kitchen items are dust magnets, and it’s a chore to keep everything looking neat. It could also be dangerous if you have curious kids or pets in the house. Better to keep them safely stored in gorgeous kitchen cabinets.

8. Statement lighting

Outdated kitchen trends - Statement lighting
© fotoluminate | 123rf

Don’t overpower your kitchen with gigantic lighting fixtures. Not only do they overwhelm the kitchen space, but it’s also a hindrance for taller people. Go for smaller, simpler pendant lights that keep the focus away from the ceiling and your focus on the stove.

9. Pot racks

Outdated kitchen trends - Pot racks
© citalliance | 123rf

Pot racks look good when you see them hanging orderly in IKEA, but as the months go by, your old pots and pans will get oily and dirty – you don’t want to be displaying them for the world to see. Plus, they only attract dust. It’s best if you keep them stored away.

10. Extra-maintenance design

Outdated kitchen trends - Extra maintenance designs
© Anna Oleksenko | 123rf

The kitchen is where you get down and dirty serving up exquisite dishes for the family, so why use contemporary designs that only serve to add more cleaning time to your kitchen? Save precious hours and avoid countertop tiles or ornate kitchen cabinets – these only add grout lines. Instead, choose a simpler, single large metal or marble backsplash, and avoid furnishings with spaces for dirt and mould to grow.

If you’re cramped for kitchen space, read up on these 5 things an interior designer will never do in a small kitchen.

Looking to only spruce up your kitchen look without breaking the bank? Here are 5 simple ways to upgrade your kitchen without renovation.

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