Natural style in the kitchen

Ricarda Nieswandt


Grain, raw materials, wood and minimalism - the 2017 trends for home and kitchen accessories

We all know that the kitchen is the most important room in the house. You could object of course, and argue that the bedroom is the highest ranking room in the home (because we all have to sleep) or perhaps it is the living room, the symbol of social interaction. However, for me, what goes on in the kitchen  cooking, eating together, sitting around a large table, plus the indisputable fact that food is life - makes this room the true heart of the home.

The items that live in the kitchen, together with the furniture, are just as important. In addition to furniture items, hob, oven, refrigerator and sink, a kitchen also needs cutlery, cups, glasses and kitchen utensils in general, which turn a simple room into something extraordinary or make a simple table very welcoming.

Cutlery and dishes, napkins and tablecloths, storage jars and cups are items that follow real trends. There are very few doubts about this year’s trend - natural style. After all, Nature plays a fundamental role because we need to bear in mind which naturally available resources must be preserved and protected. I believe that a life style close to Nature, in which we try to make natural materials and structures part of us and combine them together, is a lovely trend that, personally, I love to follow.

A few weeks ago I was at the International Interiors Show in Cologne. Every year, in January, the most current trends in furniture and accessories are displayed in this trade show and every other year there is section for new elements that are specifically for kitchens. Once again the Living Kitchen was one of the stars at the trade show, with lots of innovative ideas that herald so much inspiration.

During my visit I tried to discover the trends of the new year. Which are the trendiest colours and materials? In which kitchen accessories and appliances can they already be found? How can the most diverse materials be combined with one another? Where and how can these accessories be used in a rational manner?

Trending plants  

Plants started gaining considerable importance in interior decorating a number of years ago. I am not thinking of classic herbs right now (which have always been popular in kitchens) - I am referring to succulent plants, living room plants or cacti. It now seems impossible to think of a modern kitchen without plants, such as a large cactus in a wicker pot, which creates a cute contrasting pattern in the most stylish kitchens, or succulent plants that reside on work tops or shelves. People who do not like plants in the kitchen resort to classic herbs - basil, rosemary and thyme are attractive if grown in the right pot, as well as being crucial ingredients in many tasty recipes.



For many years the prevailing kitchen styles have featured shiny, white (sometimes even black!) materials and low-maintenance kitchen utensils. Recently, however, a more natural style has started playing a greater role, with wood in particular experiencing a true rebirth. This does apply just to the furniture, but especially to kitchen accessories. Even whisks are now made with wood, whereas cutting boards, jar tops, salad servers and bowls are now available in lots of different kinds of wood and styles, with ash and oak being the most popular types of wood. 

The raw trend

Raw is synonymous with natural materials for the kitchen. Concrete and ceramic, for example, can sometimes appear refined whereas at other times they appear raw. Concrete in particular is especially popular for this purpose. In addition to bowls and jars, trendy kitchens now have concrete lamps or even entire worktops or tables made of concrete. Worktops are often covered for protection, but I have seen some deliberately left “natural” and that have developed a kind of top "glaze" as a result. If it is not possible to use concrete, its optical effect can be obtained artificially. Walls, for example, can be painted with a cement-effect coat, giving the kitchen an unpolished appearance. 


Kale, the curly leaf cabbage 

As is now custom, at the beginning of every year Pantone announces the colour of the new year, which for 2017 is Greenery, a very pale green that brings to mind the tones of lawns and basil plants. It may not be very well established yet, but there already are many kitchen accessories and utensils available in the Greenery shade. For me Kale represents the colour of spring. If it is in the day area it is the colour of cushions, covers or lamps. It is the ideal nuance for kitchen accessories such as dishes and salad bowls, or as a dark green tone for pitchers and glasses. It is a truly enchanting colour that brings the tones of Nature to mind and that is perfectly suited for kitchen settings.


From the leaves of plants to the veining of wood and the shapes of glass: many different materials have a grain. Raw grains fit in very well with the current trend focused on all things natural. In the case of fabrics in particular, this effect can be found in typical kitchen items such as oven gloves, cushions for chairs or unprocessed table runners.

All these trends combine very nicely with each other and fit in perfectly in kitchens with a sober, minimalistic style. It is very much in these settings that natural materials, wood and colours create a welcoming atmosphere that is becoming more and more important in our homes. Hygge, a concept that expresses a new life style, is the perfect match for the most recent trends in home and kitchen accessories. The reason is that the central point of the hygge style is “us”, the atmosphere, the harmony and being together. And what better place is there than the kitchen in our homes to experience all this? 



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