Country Living (UK) - - Kitchen Special -

Con­tem­po­rary kitchens work ex­cep­tion­ally well as open-plan liv­ing spa­ces where the style of dec­o­ra­tion can be suc­cess­fully car­ried through­out the room and into din­ing and liv­ing ar­eas. Modern fur­ni­ture and con­tem­po­rary light­ing, espe­cially in­dus­trial de­signs, make an im­me­di­ate state­ment.

1 Un­usual ma­te­ri­als are key to this style. Re­claimed wood can be used to clad walls and cab­i­net fronts, or there’s the op­tion to ex­per­i­ment with sur­faces more com­monly used out­doors, such as cor­ru­gated iron, as a strik­ing back­drop on a wall. It is of­ten the con­trast of crisp modern pieces, stain­less-steel ap­pli­ances or smart fur­ni­ture against rougher, more or­ganic, el­e­ments that height­ens this ef­fect. For floors, con­sider putting down re­claimed stone, brick or cast con­crete, all of which have lots of tex­ture and vari­a­tion for added in­ter­est.

2 Lim­it­ing the pal­ette of colours of­fers a more con­tem­po­rary, pared-back feel. Work with mainly neu­tral shades or use some bold splashes on an oth­er­wise pale back­ground – per­haps a strongly coloured free­stand­ing fridge, sig­na­ture light­ing or a strik­ing rug. A monochrome pal­ette will al­ways feel crisp and cur­rent.

3 Strong lin­ear shapes hold the eye – think of the sil­hou­ettes of metal chairs, cage light­ing or fil­a­ment bulbs. Fab­rics in graphic geo­met­rics or sim­ple stripes can also strike a modern note. Dark colours add drama, whether on floors or cab­i­netry. Try deep teal, char­coal or petrol blue on units – it can make them seem to re­cede and be­come less dom­i­nant in a room.

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