While contemporary design is making its way into an ever growing number of homes, there are still a lot of homeowners who are staying rooted to a more traditional style and might not yet be ready to make a full commitment to bold, sleek lines in their living space.
There are subtle ways, however, in which you can start experimenting with a different look and slowly bring in new design influences without having to make a complete and dramatic switch. Blending styles through what has become known as transitional design is growing in popularity because it affords playing with a wider net of design options, which can make your home more interesting while preserving the balance among its various elements. Adding some touches of contemporary design to your kitchen is not just a matter of aesthetics; it can also increase functionality.
We asked two of our designers for some quick tips to achieve a transitional look.
Carlos Bustinza: More so today than at any other time in kitchen design, people want to give their warm, traditional “comfort” kitchens a fresher look. Sometimes this is a necessity in the case of remodels or new homes where the kitchen is integrated and open to other areas of the house. It then becomes important to make our kitchen designs or accents as clean and simple as possible. Using “neutral” elements like stainless steel, glass and basic colored countertops are a few ways to bring a more modern, airy and revitalized look into the kitchen while still maintaining an overall traditional style.
Shawna Dillon: Generally speaking, the more classic (timeless) the contemporary cabinetry is, the more easily it will complement a traditional interior or mindset. Also, using a contemporary cabinet style and designing it into a more traditional layout can allow people to enjoy all the efficiency and clean lines that contemporary design can offer, while making them architecturally comfortable in the room. Keep in mind that sleek cabinetry can look great juxtaposed against a traditional island or piece of furniture. Incorporating elements in such a way can help bridge the gap between the two styles. No one has to ever sacrifice one style for another, there can be a very happy marriage between both.
Beware, however, of just bringing in new accents for the sake of it. A transitional style is not achieved by simply mixing contemporary elements into a traditional design. If not executed thoughtfully, this can result in a clash, rather than harmony. What is the trick then?
Shawna Dillon: Anytime you add an element to a room without considering the space as a whole, you will likely go wrong. Every detail must be considered and have a purpose. If it doesn’t, you and your home are better off without. Harmony exists only when all elements are connected.
Remember that you can create a new look by adding elements as much as by subtracting a few. Sometimes, less is more when you are trying to achieve a perfect harmony among different styles.
Have you experimented with transitional style? How did you make it work?