Once found in the basement of upper crust homes, à la Downton Abbey, kitchens have climbed to the top of the social status ladder. If you are thinking about renovating your kitchen and want to be certain it ranks among the most tony, we've compiled a list of the latest kitchen trends.
Color Schemes -- While white continues to be a favorite color choice for over 70% of new kitchen installations, designers are adding a touch of color -- mostly pale grey or a neutral -- often used as the base color of an island counter.
Counter Tops -- Granite might be losing it spot as "counter top king" to it's more stain-resistant cousin quartzite. Quartzite is all natural, comes in a variety of colors and vein patterns and is even harder than granite. "Waterfall" counters -- where the counter top turns and continues to the floor -- are gaining popularity.
Appliances -- Stainless steel is still the favorite for style, even though it's tough to keep clean. Rumor has it that higher grade stainless is easier to clean. So keep that in mind when making your buying decision. Steam ovens for healthy eating are gaining steam (pun intended.)
Flooring -- Wood of all types is popular. It warms a space and blends nicely into the rest of the house. The favorite alternative to real wood is porcelain tiles that look like wood. Laminate is out.
Cabinets -- Open cabinet uppers will continue to be popular -- as will no upper cabinets. Cabinet doors will be flat with no paneling.
Hardware -- Brass is definitely back. Only instead of the ornate designs of the '90s, the fixtures have clean, simple lines.