These kitchen design ideas aren’t just trendy, they’re also great for small spaces! Whether you love a more traditional look or something fresh and unique, take a leaf out of these local homes with tips from industry experts:
Open-concept kitchens prove that it’s possible to live big and stylish even in small spaces, which is why they’ve been a growing trend in HDBs and condominiums here. A popular style is to separate the dry and wet areas, says Art Director Maena Ong from Mong Design Concept, which removes the buffer zone between your kitchen and main living areas. This integrates the two zones so as to create a more fluid interior, thus visually expanding the size of your entire home.
Plus, an open counter in the dry kitchen doubles as dining space where you can entertain guests and have family meals. You can also keep a closer eye on the children as they do their homework or play in the living room while you prepare dinner.
A big benefit of this style is that it doesn’t compromise on your cooking needs. “Install a sliding glass door that you can close when you cook [in the wet kitchen],” Maena suggests. This means you can still do all that heavy-duty frying, without the fear of oily fumes infiltrating the rest of your home, while the glass brings in light, giving the illusion of more space. Keep colours light and earthy for a clean-cut look.
“If you have a bigger kitchen space, opt for an island with a bar counter and add bar stools for that sassy Manhattan vibe,” says Maena.
The eclectic, retro look is making a comeback, according to interior designers. Bold colours and patterns are hallmarks of this fun-loving style, and easy ways to add colour and personality to your home. “This trending kitchen theme mixes modern and traditional elements in a stylish and unconventional way,” says designer JD Tan from Fuse Concept, making it perfect for homeowners seeking something new and different for their spaces.
Balance is key when it comes to this look, as you don’t want the patterns and colours to overwhelm the senses, which can make a kitchen look smaller. To avoid visual clutter, it’s important to have a focal point. “Having a focal point such as patterned tiles in one targeted area – either at the backsplash or flooring – increases depth perception which helps enhance the size of the kitchen,” JD advises.
For this BTO flat in Tampines, JD cleverly merged different elements that came together cohesively. Decorative Moroccan-inspired tiles for a backsplash and Shaker-style cabinets (which are cabinets with recessed centre panels) are contrasted with warm teak tones. The patterned tiles are visually impactful and create a lively ambience in the kitchen, as well as reflect the homeowners’ quirky tastes and personalities. Peranakan-style tiles are also wildly popular in Singapore homes, as they add local flavour to your interiors, adds JD.
Tip: Recessed panels and drawer handles create depth and shadow, making the kitchen look less flat, says JD.
Black-and-white kitchens are here to stay, and that’s not a bad thing at all. This timeless colour combination is perfect if you love the minimalist, no-fuss look. You’ll also be glad to know that this double-toned palette works well in both big and small kitchens alike, says Raymond Seow, Design Director at Free Space Intent.
Tip: What works best with black and white? A striking splash of colour that can come from unique light fixtures or utensils.
Keep the look contemporary by thinking higher contrasts, adding stainless steel or brass hardware and featuring lots of clean lines in the carpentry. “One way to update black and white kitchens for 2017 is to bring in tonal variations in the form of elegant granite or luxurious black marble countertops,” says Raymond. “Keep the rest of the kitchen stark white for a crisp, clean look.” This bright and airy kitchen in Bukit Batok features marble tile flooring as well, for an extra luxe look. “A sliding glass door was also built to bring in more light,” adds Raymond.
Smooth, non-reflective finishings are growing in popularity amongst homeowners here too. From backsplashes to countertops and cupboard doors, matte laminates are more durable and versatile as compared to other materials, making them ideal choices for kitchens. And they often look more luxe than shiny tops.
“I suppose people are growing a bit tired of the usual glossy surfaces,” says theme designer Ben Teo from Mr Shopper Studio, “and matte laminates from companies like EDL and Jennings offer something new to experiment with.” He adds that technologically advanced matte surfaces usually contain anti-fingerprint qualities and cost less, so they’re great value-for-money too, while keeping your kitchen looking spick-and-span.
Tip: White and wood laminates placed in a colour-blocking style draws the eye with its intriguing layout.
While you can’t go wrong with white or light neutrals, play around with other hues for a more unique look that reflects your taste and style. “More people are opting for navy blue, black and even forest green matte laminates,” notes Ben. Then, complement matte surfaces with metal hardware, such as gold or silver handles, or ask your ID to add intricate details like curved details and groove lines, Ben says,
as these keep the kitchen looking clean yet sophisticated.
Text: Elizabeth Liew