10 Kitchen Trends That Will Be Huge in 2022, According to Design Experts

published Dec 22, 2021
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: Marie Flanigan Interiors

Design experts are always thinking about the future, in attempts to predict (and plan for) what will be big. They’re usually pretty spot-on, but many of the pros we spoke with for this story told us that the future of America’s kitchens actually looks a lot different than what they imagined just a few years ago. Largely influenced by the pandemic and the shifting needs of homeowners who continue to work and cook at home, kitchens have been undergoing major changes within the last two years.

As American families have come to better appreciate and relish their living spaces even more this year, we spoke to home interior experts for their inside scoop on the 10 kitchen design trends already creating plenty of buzz for 2022. Let’s take a look!

1. Colorful cabinetry

Bold, colorful cabinetry has been a popular kitchen trend these last few years: “Many people are adding a more personal touch to their kitchens and moving away from the all-white look. Expect to see wood cabinets in warm, neutral hues or painted cabinets to add a pop of color,” says Laurel Vernazza, home design expert at The Plan Collection.

Arianna Cesa, associate manager of color marketing and development with Benjamin Moore, agrees. “We have seen consumers start to get more adventurous with their kitchen cabinet color choice,” she says, adding that emerald greens, rich navy blues, and smokey charcoals are a trending, bolder approach to kitchen cabinets. If a homeowner would rather ease into the trend, Cesa suggests starting with soft blues. “Calming, subtle, versatile, soft blues can even help to make spaces feel more open and airier,” she says.

Credit: Petra Ford

2. Resourcefulness

Spending so much time at home has definitely created a more individualistic approach to design, especially in the kitchen, according to designers. “Supply chain issues and the increasing costs of all things for the home have forced homeowners to look for alternatives in designs,” says Vernazza, who explains that working with what you have has become a popular renovation strategy. For example, painted or stained cabinets have become an option rather than starting anew or even just creating a highly personalized gallery wall hung with a family’s favorite items. “It’s more cost-effective to refurbish what you have and create a space that’s all about you,” Vernazza says.

3. Black accents and appliances

Accents are the ultimate way to spruce up a kitchen with a touch of personalization. Brass and copper cabinet handles and hardware have been all the rage, but now sophisticated black accents are leading the way in stylish kitchens.

“While natural, subtle colors and warm tones in the kitchen will continue to trend in 2022, black accents will be the exception,” says Vernazza. “This means black appliances — be it black stainless or black slate. To finish the look or to tie it in with another room, some homeowners are going with interior black window frames.” 

4. Multiple islands 

Kitchen islands are typically multipurpose, serving as prep spaces, eating counters, and breakfast bars. For those working from home, islands can also serve as makeshift desks and conference tables. Marie Flanigan, Houston-based interior designer and founder of Marie Flanigan Interiors, believes that next year more and more kitchens will be making room for double islands.  

“Double islands were a big part of kitchen designs this year, and I certainly feel like we’ll see more of them in 2022,” she says. “We’re moving meals into the kitchen itself and double islands give people separate places to both prep and enjoy the meal.” While homeowners require a good amount of space to build a second kitchen island, renters can certainly get a taste of the double island life by incorporating a kitchen island cart with rolling wheels.

Credit: Viv Yapp

5. Patterned floors

Patterns in the kitchen continue to grow. As removable wallpaper and countertop paper gained popularity, fun and gorgeous patterns in the kitchen have become a beloved trend that packs a punch. Up next for patterns: the floor! Vernazza believes it’ll be a big hit in next year’s design and architecture plans. 

“Patterns are in and they are adding pizzazz to hardwood floors,” says Vernazza. “Mixing light and dark woods to create cool designs are a nod to Old World craftsmanship with two-tone inlays, patterns, or just mixing it up.” Vernazza says homeowners have the option to upcycle flea market finds of reclaimed wood, while renters can try peel-and-stick floor tile, which come in a variety of colors and patterns (even a faux-wood option).

Credit: Marie Flanigan Interiors

6. Disappearing upper cabinets

With a desire to have less clutter around the home, experts have noticed a growing movement to get rid of upper kitchen cabinetry altogether. “A mentality of purging and simplifying has people asking for less closed storage,” says Rebecca Gibbs, an interior designer based in Abilene, Texas. Getting rid of upper cabinets “allows room for your eyes to breathe a bit and do something just for the prettiness of it rather than the practicality.” As a result, a lot of newly designed kitchens in 2022 will showcase mainly lower cabinetry.

7. Kitchens that don’t really look like kitchens

“We’re trying to make our kitchens look not necessarily like kitchens anymore,” says Jason Black, owner of Artisan Signature Homes in Louisville, Kentucky. The lack of upper cabinets help with that. And Black says that furniture-style pieces in the kitchen are also taking off. Next year, more people will be anchoring designs by installing islands that could easily stand in as, say, a (very large) bedroom dresser, he says.

Credit: RHG A+D

8. Linear lighting

Modern and gorgeous linear lighting is the new trend for 2022, says Rachael Grochowski, founder and principal architect at RHG A+D in Montclair, New Jersey. “It provides consistent lighting over a long kitchen island,” she says, explaining how this type of lighting is not only breathtaking, but functional, too. “It unifies multiple zones of countertop use.”

9. Banquettes

Built-in banquettes are making a big comeback, according to Grochowski. With all that time at home, “people want more comfortable spaces to lounge for extended conversations or for doing work,” she says. The trend comes with plenty of bonus perks, too. Banquette seating can make a kitchen feel like the heart of the home, while also creating hidden storage solutions tucked beneath the seating.

10. Hidden storage

While those upper cabinets are disappearing and homeowners move toward a minimalistic approach, people do still have Stuff. Of course. So designers say that hiding everything away will become increasingly trendy in 2022. “We have been creating appliance garages, desk areas, as well as coffee stations, which can be hidden behind closed doors when you want to feel like everything is clean,” explains Grochowski. The trend makes total sense, according to the architect. “With spending so much time at home, people really want to feel a sense of calm and peace in their environments.”

What do you make of these kitchen design trends for 2022? Tell us in the comments below.