Clean lines and functionality

Contemporary kitchens tend to be described as modern, minimalist and geometric. The characteristics include horizontal lines, asymmetry and a lack of molding and other ornamentation. Materials often are man-made rather than natural: stainless steel, laminate, frosted glass inserts, concrete, linoleum, chrome and lacquer.

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Contemporary Kitchens may have:

  • Frameless cabinets with over-sized hardware

  • Cabinet material: stainless steel; white or bold-colored laminate; or subtly grained woods such as birch, ash or maple

  • Cabinet door style: slab or horizontal lift-up

  • Frosted glass inserts

  • Stainless steel and other metallic accents

  • Curved cabinets and counters

 

The list of details a contemporary kitchen can accommodate is endless; funky touches are welcome, and you're practically unlimited in color choices. But the one thing that can wreck a contemporary look is clutter, whether visual (too many colors or textures) or physical (countertops covered in knickknacks). Stick to the 60-30-10 rule for colors: Sixty percent of the kitchen should be one dominant color, 30 percent a secondary color and 10 percent an accent color. Store gadgets in drawers or in sleek containers; relegate cooking ingredients to the pantry.

 

Elegant, clean and simple... the style continues into your choice of hardware. The pulls or handles you choose should reflect the contemporary look and feel of your kitchen.

 

Although many designers associate the clean looks of opaque white or light gray cabinetry with "contemporary", darker stained wood can leave your audience breathless as well.

 

It’s common to see man-made materials such as paint, plastic, stainless steel, laminate, glass, and concrete incorporated into the design.