2022 Design and Color Trends

The kitchen has long since been referred to as the heart of the home. That couldn’t be more true today. Since early 2020, we have spent more time in our homes than ever, and likely much of that in our kitchens. A place that may have been dedicated to primarily cooking & eating became a place of work, school, family game night, and more.

When spending so much time in one place, you really start to notice what you love about that space, and maybe what could be improved. Perhaps you realized you needed a larger pantry, multiple seating areas, workspaces, or a charging station. Perhaps you realized that your decor and materials are dated and it’s time for a fresh perspective.

2022 could be your year to embrace updated design and improved functionality, making the heart of your home a place you welcome spending so much time in. Let’s explore the 2022 trends we see for kitchen design, color palettes, countertop styles and materials.

Design Trends

Whether you are browsing Pinterest, Home Decor magazines, or wandering the aisles at your local home decor store, it is easy to spot the current trends. One of the best ways to determine the right design for your home is to start an inspiration board. You can use an app like Pinterest or go the old school route of cutting up magazines and starting a bulletin board. You’ll quickly see the styles you are drawn to.

Some of the top trends we see for 2022 are vintage looks, mixed materials, and pops of color. Also of key importance is not just the look but the functionality of your space.

Mixing Old and New materials

Updated Kitchen With Farmhouse Table

We are seeing vintage making a comeback this year. With the supply chain constraints of 2021 and the rising costs of construction materials, this trend makes sense. From shopping at a local antique dealer, to finding ways to repurpose your own older materials, mixing old with new is hotter than ever. This trend gives the opportunity to add a family heirloom or personal touch creating a warm, lived-in feel to your design.

Some ways you can incorporate vintage items into your design are:

  • Refinishing an old family table to be used as an island
  • Adding a Farmhouse table to your design
  • Utilizing an antique dresser as a buffet or china cabinet
  • Adding antique or period style lighting or accents to pull your design together

Go Bold With Materials

The days of matchy-matchy are over. From mixing patterns to woods to colors, we are seeing some bold trends in 2022. Some of the ways we see this:

Cabinetry – from mixing up different wood materials to bold painted cabinets, the sky’s the limit when it comes to cabinetry options. We are seeing darker tones in 2022, from walnut to black painted cabinets. If you aren’t ready for an overly drastic change from the white kitchen trends of late, you can choose to go bold with an island or butler’s pantry as a way to dip your toe into this trend. Another option is mixing up the color palette on your upper and lower cabinets.

Tile – mixing different tiles or materials in your kitchen to call attention to an area can really make a statement. Perhaps you’ve opted for a traditional subway tile backsplash in your kitchen. You can mix that up by adding a bold pattern in your butler’s pantry or behind the cooktop to add some pizzazz to your design.

Countertop – using a complimentary but different countertop material or color for an island or built in banquette/eating area. We’ve seen material or color mixing in cabinets over the last few years with a statement island, an emerging trend is countertop material mixing. This trend may not just have design implications, but functionality as well. Butcher block may be best for chopping vegetables, stainless steel for food prep, granite or quartz for everyday living. There’s no wrong or right answer here – butcher block on the island and quartz everywhere else, sure! Stainless steel in your food prep area and granite everywhere else – why not?

Pops of Color

The gray and white kitchens of the last few years may be coming to an end. Perhaps spending all that time at home made us realize we need some color in our lives! When it comes to color, we are seeing the following trends for 2022:

Cheery Yellows – nothing says warm and inviting like the color yellow. The Very Well Mind describes yellow as being attention grabbing, energetic, warm and cheerful. From yellow paint to accents, utilizing this color can definitely bring some cheerfulness to the space.

Bursts of Bold Color – utilizing a bold color for cabinets, a statement island, a wall, or tile backsplash. These are all ways to bring in your favorite colors making the room more vibrant, yet not overwhelm the kitchen design.

Green – stands for balance, nature, spring, and rebirth. We can see why the calming, soothing color green may be on trend this year. Green is being named the color of the year by many of the top paint brands. From Benjamin Moore’s October Mist to Sherwin Williams Evergreen Fog, we will see subtle warm greens taking center stage this year.

Darker Colors – we are seeing a revival of dark colors, yet still warm. Contrary to what we typically think, there are warm blues, greens, and even grays.

Function Meets Design

We all want to love the design of a room we spend so much time in, but looks aren’t the only thing that matters in the kitchen. Thinking about how you use the space, from bringing home groceries to storing pots & pans, how much prep room you need when you cook will help you create the most functional space. 

Multipurpose Rooms

The heart of the home goes much beyond cooking and eating. Whether it is because we were all spending more time at home, the transition to more flexible work schedules, or just wanting to make our space work for us, we are seeing the need for the kitchen to function as much more. Primarily we need to have a well appointed kitchen to make meals, store our necessities, and have a place to enjoy a meal. In 2022 we expect to see inventive ways to make this room function for a variety of needs from working at home, schoolwork, long chats or family game night, our renewed love for cooking & baking, and of course serving meals.

Storage Space

There never seems to be enough storage space in our kitchens. Over the last couple of years many of us acquired new kitchen appliances from bread makers to air fryers, instant pots, or espresso machines. No one likes a cluttered counter, so having appliance garages, coffee stations, or other unique ways to house these small appliances is key.

Pantries have been desired in kitchens for years. Many homeowners would consider a pantry a “must have.” Now there are more ways than ever to get that extra space. From walk-in pantries where you can not only store food staples but also kitchen appliances and servingware to pantry cupboards where you intentionally design your shelving for maximum benefit in minimal space. To make the most out of the space you have, first take stock of what you’d like to store in the pantry and the design from there. Depending on your space, you could even house your microwave, toaster, coffee station and other typical countertop items in your pantry for a minimalist kitchen look.

Dedicated Spaces

While the kitchen is definitely a multipurpose room, it’s also nice to have a place for everything and have everything in its place. When thinking about your kitchen design – whether you are embarking on a remodel, building a new home, or just daydreaming, it’s important to take stock of how you use your kitchen today, what you love, and what features you would like in your ideal kitchen.

If you are a coffee lover, perhaps having a dedicated coffee station in a butlers pantry or larder is perfect for you.

Love to cook, but also desire a clean countertop? A hidden pantry where you can house your bread maker, mixer, and all of your cooking essentials may be the right fit for you.

If you are someone who loves to entertain or just has a house full of people who like different beverages, a dedicated beverage fridge can help keep your refrigerator dedicated to food, and make grabbing a favorite beverage a snap.

Working from home? A charging station or tower is the perfect way to keep your gadgets charged without unsightly cords draped all over. These can be integrated into your kitchen design, or you can purchase tabletop versions to clean up the cord chaos.

Seating Areas

Kitchen Banquette With A View
Built in banquettes are making a comeback. You get the added functional bonus of under seat storage for games, toys, or even rarely used kitchen items. The real benefit of a banquette though is the comfortable seating arrangement for long conversations, working at home, or doing schoolwork.

Double Islands

Double Island Kitchen

Kitchen islands are typically multipurpose, serving as prep spaces, eating counters, sometimes housing the cooktop or sink. For busy families, they often serve as desks or afterschool snack areas. If you are working from home, your island may be your workspace.

With this much versatility it’s no wonder that we expect to see double islands in 2022. We started seeing this design trend last year, and expect it to continue. This trend does require extra space of course, but in return gives much functionality to your kitchen design.

Renovate or Stay with the Footprint You Have

We are seeing the comeback of “cottage” kitchens. Just because your space is small, doesn’t mean you can’t have a smart, functional design. Many of the other design elements we’ve reviewed lend themselves to cottage kitchen style. Painted cabinets, open shelving, mixing vintage and new materials, making use of all available space. Taking those design trends and working with the existing footprint you have makes this a trend that doesn’t have to break the budget. Embrace the space you are in, restore a historic home, or renovate by reconfiguring your space to make it more functional for you.

Countertop Trends

While quartz and granite may still be the most widely used materials in countertops, we are seeing some interesting up and coming trends this year. In a survey of 2,380 respondents from July 2021, 64% of people chose either quartz or granite for their countertop needs. Wood/Butcher Block, Marble and Quartzite were next on the list.

Natural Materials

Perhaps it is because of the supply chain crisis, perhaps it is our awareness of being more eco-conscious. Whatever the reason, we are seeing an uptick in the use of natural materials. Marble, granite, unpainted wood cabinets, and open wood shelves are becoming a firm fixture in design trends.

Natural Stone is 100% organic material quarried from the earth. Granite is the most common natural stone for countertop use, followed by Marble and Quartzite. Natural stone is unique and no two slabs will be the same, giving individuality to your design.

Marble Countertops

This elegant, natural made beauty is making a strong comeback. Specifically we are seeing strongly veined marble signifying a high-end luxury look. This sustainable stone is durable, immune to trends, and a great investment for kitchen and bath countertops, as well as flooring or accents.

Classic marble countertops like Carrera and Calacatta marble will always be classic and widely popular. We are also seeing bolder, richer colors of marble being on trend this year. When paired with a light wood tone or other shades of the deeper colors for your cabinets, you create a nice tonal effect that speaks of luxury and timelessness. 

White Carrera Marble

Porcelain Countertops

Porcelain may be new to the homeowner scene, but it’s been a long favorite for restaurants and other commercial spaces. You get the look of marble or natural stone, without the maintenance. Porcelain is stain resistant, easy to clean, and comes in a variety of patterns and finishes.

Quartzite Countertops

Birmingham Kitchen Transformation Fantasy Brown Quartzite
Fantasy Brown Quartzite Kitchen

Quartzite is a natural stone, composed almost entirely of natural quartz. When quartz-rich sandstone has been exposed to high pressures and temperatures, the quartz grains fuse together to form a dense, hard rock. Typically, quartzite is usually white to gray in color with some variations from differing mineral content in the rock.

Quartzite has a similar look to many marble stones, with the natural beauty, veining and pattern in the stone. Because quartzite is a natural stone, no two slabs will be the same. With durability that is closer to that of granite this stone can stand up to heat, resist stains and scratches, and withstand normal wear and tear. It is a versatile stone for kitchen countertops.

Full Height Backsplashes

Rather than utilizing another material such as a coordinating tile for your backsplash, an upcoming trend is extending your countertop material up the wall. Full Height Backsplashes give a clean, modern look to your design. You can bookmatch your veining and turn up the wall, making this trend not only functional but beautiful. This also removes all the grout lines that would typically come along with tile, making clean up a snap for a busy kitchen backsplash.

Cabinet Trends

Over the years we have seen changes in cabinet style trends from Shaker, Traditional, Modern, Recessed or Raised Panel Cabinets and much more. In many cases, this is more about design preferences and what fits with your individual style or overall home decor.  A few of the hot trends we are seeing for 2022 are flat cabinets and open shelves mixed with cabinets.

Flat Cabinets

With minimalism on the rise, and the desire for a clean, sleek look, we are seeing invisible hinge doorways trending. Think hardware-less upper cabinets, secret wine rooms, and hidden doorways leading to walk in pantries.

Technology advances such as push open and close doors or recessed handles have allowed us to move away from more traditional cabinetry hardware. This trend is all about simplicity and focusing on the cabinet rather than the hardware.

Shelves vs. Cabinets

Along the same lines of simplifying, we are seeing a growing trend of getting rid of upper cabinetry all together. Having open shelves allows us to focus on design, showcasing personal or decor items on the shelves, rather than focusing solely on functionality. This works if you have ample lower cabinets for storage, allowing you to focus on the decorative aspect of the upper shelves.

This could be multiple shelves or one single floating shelf, or a combination of the two, depending on functionality or if you are choosing to display artwork rather than use the shelves for storage.

Accent Trends

Statement Hoods

Statement Hood in Kitchen

For years, we’ve celebrated Statement Hoods, and this trend won’t be going anywhere in 2022. Metallics such as Gold, Dark Metallic, Zinc or Copper hoods are a popular way to incorporate metals into any kitchen design.

Wood hoods are still very popular. Many cabinet companies offer a hood cover if you wish to match your cabinet style and/or color. For making a statement though, we see a contrasting color hood, for example pairing white cabinets with a black or dark wood hood. We are seeing a major trend of blue in kitchen design, so one color combination that comes to mind would be white cabinets with a blue island and blue hood.

You can even have your quartz or granite countertop material on display above your range. Your stone fabricator could create a sheath out of your countertop material to be placed on plywood wrapped around your hood.

Lighting Trends

Linear Lighting over Kitchen Island

Linear lighting is a modern trend for 2022, providing consistent lighting over a long kitchen island. Not only does it look great, it is extremely functional.

Layered Lighting is an art that we will see emerging. When laying out your lighting scheme for the kitchen you want to think about task areas. What type of light do you need over the island versus an eating area or the general countertop area. You want to have the right lighting for the task without the kitchen ceiling looking like a landing strip. Choosing fixtures that compliment one another and mixing them up to work with your functionality can have a beautiful design.

You can mix things up with recessed lighting, pendant lighting, and even statement pendants to add a design touch to the space too. You can group multiple pendants in one area to add drama.

Mixed Metals

Mixing different metals is a newer trend in both design and fashion. Now it is totally accepted and even on trend. Mixing gorgeous brass and copper finishes with brighter, cooler metals like stainless steel and nickel offers the best of both worlds. You can pull this off by using antiqued bronze pulls, stainless steel sink, and copper pendant lighting for example.

Polished-nickel faucets are a long kitchen standby, it is easy to clean, and looks great. But these last few seasons we are seeing copper and even gold make a comeback. With the vintage trend in 2022, it’s no wonder we are seeing a revival of copper in the kitchen.

If you aren’t ready to go all out with a copper sink or sparkling backsplash, you can ease into this trend by changing your cabinet pulls or adding pendant lights in copper or gold. Don’t worry, nickel and polished chrome will never totally leave the kitchen design trend, so if that is your style, go for it!

The kitchen is the heart of the home, it is a room we spend a lot of time in. For that reason, it has to be functional for you, and designed in a style that you will love for years to come. The average midrange kitchen remodel is $75,000, so you want to be sure the design you decide on today is one you’ll love for years to come. Whether that means embracing vintage, going bold with colors or accents, adding seating areas or a coffee station, start your inspiration board now!