Uncluttered, sleek lines contribute towards the sophisticated look the modern kitchen.
A combination of sleek appliances and glossy cabinets creates a professional-looking kitchen. Handleless units are a great way to create a streamlined feel. Bring your kitchen bang up to date by painting cabinetry in a muted grey. Modern kitchens, with their pared-back looks, can easily merge with an informal dining area. Add drama by installing a fireplace and hanging a striking pendant to create an extension of your living room. Large-scale pendant lights are a design statement in themselves.
Materials are the most important thing to consider when designing and planning a modern kitchen. Stick to glossy, hard surfaces, such as stone, composite, acrylic-based materials, such as Parapan and lacquer finishes. If you are after a contemporary look, opt for handleless units and fully integrated appliances. Composite can be shaped and moulded to create a truly dynamic design. If you’re on a budget, consider laminate instead of lacquer. It is cheaper and easier to clean.
Resin flooring is fast becoming the go-to solution for a design-led yet hardwearing, noise-absorbing surface. We like this Materia Lumina resin flooring for its smooth, seamless and waterproof finish. It's super-practical for kitchens, as it's easy to clean, compatible with underfloor heating and, best of all, it's available in any colour you desire.
Layered lighting schemes in a kitchen have the power to create and transform moods at different times. A cleverly lit kitchen can be bright and efficient during the day, then soft and inviting after dark. In this kitchen, the layered lighting, including ceiling spotlights, pendant lamp and floor-level lights in the cabinetry have been designed to provide different ambiences throughout the day.
Lighting by Sally Storey
John Cullen Lighting
Just one type of tap water? That's so over! The Grohe Blue Chilled and Sparkling Mono system teams a stylish tap with a high-performance water filter, cooler and carbonator. You simply move the lever to enjoy filtered, chilled and sparkling water. The starter kit, including a single-lever mixer, water filter with filter head, cooler and carbonator box, costs £2,000.
Smooth and contemporary, this polished concrete worktop includes a rainbow of different-coloured stone flecks to give the surface added interest. Polished concrete worktops lend an industrial feel to kitchens, and have the added bonus of being easy to maintain. The seamless feel and strong sense of design makes a work surface like this a signature piece in any kitchen.
Polished concrete worktop
Cue & Co
This chic kitchen light shade is, in fact, the Lumiere by Falbec - an innovative recirculating cooker hood. Made of white tempered glass, the Lumiere features LED lighting and E.ion technology to purify the air, and meets the need for both lighting and extraction in a seriously stylish way. You'll know when it's done the job at hand, as the leaf motif on the hood turns from orange to green.
Find the mornings hard to deal with? Be inspired by this stylish coffee bar that promises to lift your mood and wake you up with a bright accent colour as well as good, old-fashioned caffeine. Chunky wooden stools and cheery yellow kitchen accessories make this a soothing yet uplifting spot to greet the working day, or to relax at the weekend with pastries and papers.
Window dressings are an easy and effective way to add colour, texture and style to any kitchen scheme. Make a chic statement with a set of half-height shutters, like these elm shutters by Shutterly Fabulous. Perfect for creating a laidback, café-style dining area in an open-plan layout, prices start at £290sq m, with custom finishes from £320sq m, including design consultation and installation.
As well as protecting walls, splashbacks can make striking features, pulling an entire kitchen scheme together. The copper trend is still going strong and can have real impact used as a key surface. This striking design by Original Style is made of Leaf tiles, which consist of copper foil encased in glass. Each tile measures 60 x 30cm and costs £299.95sq m, and they can be fixed horizontally or vertically.
When it comes to storage, drawers are much more practical than cupboards as they are easily accessible and nothing gets lost at the back. In this Nolte kitchen, cooking ingredients are conveniently grouped together below the island hob and kitchen kit is organised by type. Full-extension drawers are the most accessible designs, and LED lighting and glass sides increase visibility, while internal dividers keep things tidy.
Create a smooth, seamless cooling wall with refrigeration appliances - fridges, freezers, cooling drawers and wine chillers - arranged in a bank tailored to suit your specific needs. But style means nothing without performance and the best models boast ingenious new technology for optimum conditions. For a professional set-up, try Liebherr's A++ fridge freezer, £3,700, with extra-quiet 18-bottle GrandCru wine storage, £1,250 each.