Key Kitchen & Bath Design Trends Revealed in NKBA Survey

HACKETTSTOWN — Most key existing design trends are expected to continue in 2010, although several style shifts are likely to be evident, as kitchen and bath consumers continue to react to market conditions and evolving lifestyles.

That’s the major finding of a nationwide survey of designers conducted recently by the National Kitchen & Bath Association.

Among the key trends for 2010, the Hackettstown, NJ-based NKBA said, are the following:


  • Traditional will continue as the most popular kitchen design style in 2010, with contemporary following closely behind, while the Shaker style is seeing a strong resurgence. Shades of whites and off-whites will be the most common kitchen colors in 2010, while brown, beige and bone hues will also be popular.
  • Cherry will remain the most popular wood for kitchen cabinetry, followed closely by maple, while alder increases in use. As for cabinet finishes, medium natural, dark natural, glazed, and white painted will all be common. Other colors of painted cabinetry and light natural finishes are in decline, as are distressed finishes.
  • Ceramic and porcelain tile, as well as natural stone tile, remain popular kitchen flooring options, but hardwood will dominate the kitchen landscape more than ever in 2010. For countertops, granite continues to be the most popular option, but quartz will nearly catch up in popularity. For backsplashes, ceramic or porcelain tile and glass will serve as the primary materials.
  • Standard kitchen faucets will become less standard in 2010 in favor of more convenient models. Pull-out faucets continue to increase their market dominance, while pot filler faucets will also become more prevalent. Kitchen faucets will most often be finished in brushed nickel, followed by stainless steel, satin nickel, and – surprisingly – polished chrome.
  • French door and freezer-bottom are the two most popular styles in refrigeration, and side-by-side refrigerators remain a popular option. Undercounter refrigerator drawers are being used extensively in the latest kitchen designs, as are undercounter wine refrigerators.
  • The tried-and-true range continues to serve as the workhorse for cooking, although the combination of a cooktop and wall oven is beginning to overtake it. Gas will maintain its position as the most popular type of cooktop over electric, although induction cooking continues to gain in popularity due to its energy efficiency.
  • Standard dishwashers, with the traditional door that pulls from the top down, will once again be the most common type in 2010. However, an increasing number of dishwasher drawers will be installed in kitchens this year for their convenience and ability to wash small loads of dishes in each drawer, thereby saving water and electricity.


  • Traditional will be the most popular design style in bathrooms in 2010, as contemporary designs will be a distant second, followed by the Shaker style as an even more distant third. Beiges and bones will be the most common colors used in bathrooms, followed by whites and off-whites, and then by browns, indicating a somewhat subdued color palette this year.
  • Ceramic and porcelain tile will be the dominant flooring materials in bathrooms this year, while natural stone will continue to prove popular as well. Though increasingly popular in kitchens, hardwood flooring won’t become common in bathrooms in 2010. For vanity tops, granite will remain king, with quartz and marble also proving popular options.
  • Perhaps more than ever, the most common color for fixtures will be white. Bisque and off-white will be the only other fixture colors at all common in new or remodeled bathrooms. For sinks, simple undermount models will be most popular, followed by integrated sink tops, drop-in sinks, vessel sinks and pedestal sinks.
  • Faucet finishes in the bathroom are similar to those used in current kitchen designs, with brushed nickel continuing to lead the way in 2010. Polished chrome and satin nickel will also be incorporated into many bathrooms, just as they had been throughout 2009. These faucet finishes will be followed by bronze and stainless steel.

Price, Energy Savings Seen as Among Top Consumer Priorities

Las Vegas — Price, energy-efficiency, organization and comfort are the top priorities for both remodeling consumers and home buyers, according to a new survey conducted by the consumer magazine Better Homes and Gardens
In a speech at last month’s International Builders Show here, Eliot Nusbaum, BH&G Executive Editor Home Design, presented the results of research into what consumers are seeking in their next home, as well as priorities guiding current and future home improvement projects.   
“Not surprisingly, we continue to see a ‘cents-and-sensibility’ approach when it comes to buying or improving a home, with practicality and price being top priorities,” Nusbaum said. “Today’s homeowner is also looking for a home that fits the entire family – from a multi-tasking home office, to expanding storage space needs, to a living room that can adapt to advancements in technology.”
Among the findings of the BH&G survey – regarding new home buyers – were the following:

  • Continuing the “downsizing” trend, more consumers expect their next home to be “somewhat” or “much smaller.”
  • A greener home and home offices will be priorities.
  • A well-organized home is key, with 66% of respondents listing “no-space-wasted” design and 62% listing ample storage space as critical attributes. 
  • Also on the ‘wish list’ is: a separate laundry room (85%); an outdoor grilling & living area (68%); a kitchen with eating area (67%), and an extra bedroom with bath (65%).
  • Nearly two-thirds (62%) consider a comfortable family gathering space to be top priority in their next home.
  • Of lesser interest is a kitchen, family and everyday eating area combined in one space, with greater interest in a family room partially separated from the kitchen.

Among home improvers, BH&G highlighted these:

  • With only 16% feeling “now is the right time to spend” on home improvements vs. 38% saying “now is not the right time to spend,” 52% are focusing their efforts on needed repairs and maintenance.
  • Smaller projects are the most popular, such as painting (54%), replacing/adding flooring or carpeting (38%), redecorating a room (35%) and landscaping (30%).
  • Energy efficiency is also a focus of future home projects.