Should You Choose a Traditional or Modern Design for Your Kitchen?

If you’re trying to figure out a re-design for your kitchen, there are, broadly speaking, two approaches to choose from: traditional or modern. Alternatively, you might want to combine both, in what’s often called “transitional” or “blended” design. Whichever you choose, the broad design direction will ultimately determine which tiny details will be best - so it’s smart to be intentional from the beginning.

Traditional kitchen design generally features intricate patterns and many natural materials such as wood or stone that evoke a warm often rustic appeal. Modern kitchen design, on the other hand, is typically sleek and minimalist, often with metal or other polished materials that feel cutting-edge if not downright futuristic.

If you want to know which kitchen design approach will be best for your home, here are some key points to consider and questions to ask yourself:

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Traditional Kitchen Design Considerations

Traditional kitchens are meant to feel classic, so here in the U.S., this design style often incorporates fundamental elements that used to be popular in this country years ago. This is why many traditional kitchens in the U.S. have a country-inspired feel.

In a traditional kitchen, it’s common to see the look of natural wood or stone in cabinets, countertops, backsplashes, furniture, and accessories. These elements often have a timeless look, so that it would be unsurprising to find them this decade or 50 years ago.


Modern Kitchen Design Considerations

Modern kitchens are designed to look contemporary if not ahead of their time. They often incorporate the latest trends from both fashion and technology.

If you choose a modern kitchen design, you should know that in 10 years, you will probably require a major upgrade, because what’s trending now will by then feel stale and outdated. However, if you choose this kitchen design approach, you are probably the type of person who’s continually seeking to refresh your look and update your tech anyway.

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Questions to Ask When Designing Your New Kitchen

Here are four questions to ask to help you determine which design approach will be best for you:


1. What is my personal style?

In many ways, interior design works best when it is an extension of your personal lifestyle preferences. If you’re the type of person who loves to buy the latest technological devices or follow this season’s fashion magazines, you probably will feel right at home in a modern kitchen. If your clothes and belongings have a vintage feel, you probably want a traditional kitchen. If you fall somewhere in between, you’ll probably love a transitional kitchen design approach.


2. How do I want to use my kitchen?

Do you plan to do a lot of entertaining in your kitchen? If so, you may want a kitchen that is impressive and remarkable for its unusual modern features. Will you kitchen be used for multi-generational family meals? If so, everyone might feel more comfortable with a timeless traditional design.


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3. What design style do I want for my home overall?

If your home already has a very traditional layout and structure, it will feel out of place to suddenly introduce a super modern kitchen. Simultaneously, if you live in the center of an urban / industrial area, a rustic kitchen will look incongruous. If the kitchen will be the first room that you’re re-designing as part of an overall shift to a new design approach, you probably want a transitional kitchen that you’ll only have to tweak to keep consistent with the overall re-design as it emerges.


4. How long am I planning to stay in this home?

If you’re re-designing your kitchen as part of the process of selling your home, it’s probably a good idea to add modern elements as many prospective home buyers want their new home to feel like an upgrade. However, if you’re already living in your forever home and plan to stay for another 20 years if not more!), a timeless design will probably give you more long-term value.


Want to explore possibilities for new kitchen cabinets for your kitchen re-design? Here at RTA Wood Cabinets we offer a Free kitchen design! Speak to a member of our Kitchen Designer team at: 800-788-7575.