5 kitchen trends to avoid for a unique and timeless design

Not every trend will be right for you - here are the kitchen trends to avoid for a classic cooking space

Magnet French Clay traditional kitchen with dark wood worktop.
(Image credit: Future)

Not every new design moment should be followed - the latest colour palettes and metal finishes might be chic but they won't always work for your home. So knowing which kitchen trends to avoid will allow you to refine your taste and curate a cooking space that is stylish, but true to you. 

We'll admit it - at Ideal Home, we're the first ones to get obsessed with new kitchen trends. Whether it's striking shelving or punchy palettes, there's always a new look to lust after. While there's nothing wrong with wanting your home to be stylish, it's also important to consider the practicality of the look you love and whether you'll still be head over heels for it in ten years.

Kitchens are expensive to remodel, so most of us will opt to change them once a decade or two - that's a long time to put up with questionable colour choices or lacklustre layouts. 

To help you toe the line between functional and fashionable, we've quizzed kitchen experts across the biz to find out which trends to bin, and which ones will win in your space. 

Kitchens are one of the most used rooms in a home, so it's important to get the balance of style and substance right. Adding too many new kitchen ideas will date your decor quickly. Ironically, not including any trend-led features at all will create an uninspiring interior that's stuck in a time warp, making it harder to sell if relocating is on the horizon.

So, our design experts have come up with a list of trends to stay away from when designing your kitchen.

1. Clear glass cabinets

Green Shaker kitchen with fluted glass cabinet

(Image credit: Herringbone)

Glass cabinets have always been a popular option for kitchens, as they offer valuable kitchen storage while recreating the airy feel of open shelving - without the worry of dust. However, we've noticed that clear glass options will bare your crockery crimes (whether that's mismatched designs or crusty cutlery) to guests in an instant. 

'Reeded and textured glass units are a great alternative to clear glass units and are a simple swap to make,' says William Durrant, owner of Herringbone kitchens. 'Not only do they hide the potential mess inside the cupboards, but they also make your cabinets, dressers, or bars stand out.' No budget for new doors? Try using window film like Amazon's Lifetree Window Film to update glass cabinets instead. 

2. Plain palettes

Magnet French Clay traditional kitchen with dark wood worktop.

(Image credit: Magnet)

Thanks to its fresh tone and classic appeal, white kitchens have been a timeless choice for the past decade. However, it can sometimes leave a room feeling cold, clinical, and lacking in individuality.

'While white is and will always remain a relevant choice for kitchens, we are seeing more people experimenting with colour, even if it means introducing colour through elevated or statement neutrals,' reports Jen Nash, head of design at Magnet

If you want to continue your love affair with this tone, work in warmer tones with contrasting cabinetry or with large surfaces, like worktops and floors for an updated look.

'Limestone and French Clay are two new shades that we've launched this year. They have that fresh, neutral feel and provide a versatile backdrop,' adds Jen. So, if you’re looking for a muted makeover next year, why not give these hues a go?

3. Brass accessories

Open plan kitchen with navy island and gunmetal cup handles

(Image credit: Future)

Glitzy and glamorous, brass fixtures have been a huge hit over the past few years. Their gold-like tone adds premium appeal to any space, making it simple to elevate an interior without breaking the bank.

'The trend for brass has been a favourite for many years now, and one we adore,' says William. 'However, for 2024, gunmetal or darker metal finishes for hardware are flourishing.'

Part of the appeal of deep-hued metallics is that they're easy to transition to different aesthetics. Swapping out brass handles with darker versions is a quick swap that will take your decor from outdated to on-point in no time.

4. Statement illumination

Kitchen with navy Shaker cupboards and sconce light on wall

(Image credit: Future)

Sadly, the popularity of pendant lights over islands and dining areas is coming to an end. We know, we can't believe it either! Because kitchens are used for so much more than cooking, lighting trends have veered towards options that can adapt to different activities for a versatile ambience.

This lacklustre look is easy to fix, though. Simply add kitchen lighting to other points in the design for that layered effect. Integrated under-cabinet illumination makes it easier to see what's cooking and adds a cosy glow for after-dinner drinks. 

Meanwhile, sconces combine style and usefulness by adding a layer of lower light that's great for relaxation and reading. They also look so pretty when dimmed once the kitchen is finally closed for the evening. Try Pooky, Dunelm and John Lewis for stylish options. 

5. Breakfast bars and islands without comfortable seating

Large open plan kitchen with island and light oak stools

(Image credit: Future)

Kitchen islands and breakfast bars can always be found near the top of any kitchen layout ideas list - and with good reason. They provide extra workspace, storage, and add an eye-catching focal point to a layout. However, sometimes, in an effort to squeeze these in, seating is not properly considered.

Ruth Lavender, a design expert from Benchmarx Kitchens and Joinery, explains, 'Breakfast bars and islands can work well, but if there isn't efficient seating space around them, or nowhere for legs to comfortably dangle, then you may need to reconsider your design.'

'I'd recommend adding a ledge that runs across the top of the bar or island to provide sufficient leg room and a place to tuck stools when not in use.'


What are the kitchen trends for 2024?

Cosy, natural decors and expressive, playful interiors are just some of the top kitchen trends for 2024. Another look set to hit the style charts is the fashion for all-black everything - from dark cabinetry and counters to moody floors and fixtures.

'There are two evolving directions emerging for interiors in 2024; people are either looking for a softer feel or schemes that reflect their personality,' says Jen. 'Either way, consumers are consciously choosing to create feel-good spaces.'

'We'll also see an exciting fusion of nature, technology and personalisation to create spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also sustainable and functional,' adds Jen. 'As the kitchen continues to evolve as the ultimate hub for modern living, these trends are sure to inspire and redefine the heart of the home.'

What kitchen trends are going out of style?

Brass fixtures, white tones, and pendant lighting are just some of the kitchen trends that are going out of style. Ultimately, though, the choice is yours. Our experts say that your space should mirror your personal taste and give you joy - and that's what's most important.

So, what kitchen trends are you going to avoid for next year?

Alisha Solanki

Alisha Solanki is a freelance writer obsessed with all things interiors. Having graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Creative Writing from Coventry University in 2016, she started her career in the editorial team at Howdens, where she fell in love with writing about interiors. Having recently bought her first new-build home, Alisha is currently furnishing it with a mix of modern and Indian-inspired pieces that reflect her rich heritage.