Cabinetmakers aren't psychic and (usually) don't have access to any crystal balls.
Regardless of your psychic ability or lack thereof, it's important as craftsmen to know what the future holds when it comes to kitchen and cabinet trends.
Why? Because it helps us stay ahead of competition. Lets us know what customers want. And keeps us hip (Is saying the word 'hip' still hip?).
And with a new year right around the corner, it's time to start thinking about 2022's cabinet trends.
Luckily, we don't need any black magic to figure it out. We have really smart designers, experts, and Pinterest that pay close attention to what's going on in the homeowner's mind.
So what exactly are the new trends, you ask? We got you. We did a deep dive on the top 5 hottest cabinet trends you will see everywhere in 2022. Let's go.
1. Stained wood
The last few years has been all about paint.
But in 2022, a rising trend in cabinetry is the natural look.
Homeowners are starting to incorporate more natural elements into their homes. Which means it's stained cabinets time to shine.
Not just any stained cabinets, though. Specifically, dark oak and walnut are having a moment right now.
1. Dark oak
Ah, oak cabinets. Don't they just take you back?
Luckily, we're not talking about those golden honey oak cabinets everyone initially thinks of. Those are a thing of the past (thank God).
No, we're talking about a dark oak. White Oak stained with a dark hue provides a neutral backdrop for a variety of color palettes, while still adding warmth and texture.
I mean, just see for yourself.
2022 is all about drama. Everyone wants their kitchen to make a statement. And this chocolate custom stain on white oak does just that.
It's a gorgeous deep, rich hue that's bold, but not overpowering in the slightest.
Word of caution though, try to avoid anything with a gray or taupe undertone, or anything that looks overly rustic.
The gray, weathered trend blew up a few years ago, and even though we are talking about trends here, we think that trend is on the way out and will soon look dated.
Walnut is warm and full of character. It makes contemporary spaces feel modern, looks good with metallic finishes and makes whites look crisp.
With its fine, linear grain, walnut adds a touch of luxury to any room.
It has a naturally deep color that works with neutral and distinctive color palettes, but it also takes stain well, making it easy to pull even darker hues.
As we've mentioned before, homeowners are all about using natural materials in their space for 2022.
With sustainability and earth tones taking over, kitchens are going dark and walnut is a hot ticket item we will be seeing more of.
2. Pops of color
Guess who's back, back again. Color's back, tell your friends.
After years of white cabinets, color is finally making a comeback. But not just any color. We are constantly seeing painted greens and blues.
Get ready. Green is about to be seen everywhere. Several major paint brands picked shades of green as the color of the year for 2022.
It might seem a little out there at first, but green can actually be a great neutral. After all, it is Mother Nature's favorite color.
It brings the beauty of the outdoors in - refreshing and organic. And after the last two years stuck inside, it's no wonder people are asking for more natural and organic designs in their space.
Plus, if you want to talk about color psychology, green is known for being a relaxing color that embodies renewal, rejuvenation and energy.
Deep, emerald greens are moody and dynamic. Whereas muted olive or sage greens are retro and unique.
But that's the great thing about green: it's extremely versatile. You can go subtle or bold. Warm or cool. It pairs well with wood tones, and even looks good with metallic finishes.
Green is the leader for 2022, but shades of blue are still in demand for cabinets.
Navy blue is, of course, the most popular shade.
It's dramatic, bold, yet still neutral and versatile. Many formal cabinet styles take on a classy, elegant look with a navy finish. And it especially looks good when paired with a white countertop. The bold contrast will give your navy cabinets a richer look and make your whites even more crisp.
It pairs well with white walls and floors, natural wood, shades of gray, and even stainless steel.
And if you want a more subtle look, a navy finish looks amazing as an accent on an island. As you can see below, the dense color serves as a base within the space and creates a focal point in a mostly white kitchen.*
But here's the thing: navy is nothing new. It'll continue to be a trend in the new year, but we're ready to switch things up and introduce some new shades.
That's why we're excited to say: In 2022, you'll see a lot of gray-blues, pastel blues, and even rich blues used in cabinetry throughout the home.
Like this gray-blue built in. It's a go-to hue when you want gray cabinets with a hint of color. It's muted and subtle, but still draws interest.
The gray-blue tone adds depth and completes the space. If it were white or even a light gray, it wouldn't stand out as much.
Light blues and almost pastel shades are gaining traction, too. They're soothing, cool, and light. Plus, they add a sense of serenity and tranquility to any space.
But sometimes committing to a light blue for the entire kitchen can be kind of scary. That's why we like the above example. Only using the blue shade on the base cabinets doesn't overwhelm the space and adds a nice pop of color.
Now, for the real star of the show: vibrant blues.
This is a bold move.
But here's why it works: similar to navy, vibrant blue shades pair well with white finishes. There's almost a luxurious intensity that gives the space a fresh vibe.
A cobalt or royal blue paint color, shown on the cabinetry above, is show-stopping and eye-catching. It pairs well with white or gray finishes and pale woods.
Minimalism has been trending for the last few years, but now more than ever, people are really leaning towards simple, streamlined kitchens.
Minimalism is all about functionality and rejecting unnecessary details. And maximum functionality is the key trend in 2022.
1. No handles
Handleless cabinets are one of the biggest trends for 2022.
It gives a simple, streamlined look with a focus on cabinet details.
It also incorporates smart kitchen tools with touch-to-open systems.
And if you're not into push-open cabinets, you can still participate in this trend with recessed handles on top of cabinets or push latches. They provide a similar look.
Minimalist and modern, less visible hardware reduces visual clutter and allows other elements to shine more.
2. Frameless cabinets
Frameless cabinets are every minimalists dream. And one of the more popular cabinet trends right now.
They're sleek, two dimensional, and uncluttered when compared to raised panel and face frame.
With the edges of doors and drawers butted flush together, they provide an elegant look that makes a kitchen feel tranquil and less busy.
And when slab doors are chosen, the seamless, streamlined look is complete.
3. Shakers and slabs
Okay, so shaker and slab cabinet doors are not new trends, but they aren't going anywhere in 2022. As long as the minimalist trend is in, these door styles will remain supreme.
Slab cabinet doors
Slab doors are incredibly modern and sleek. They have flat and frameless fronts, usually with a glossy or wood finish. No frills, embellishments, or ornaments whatsoever.
They look great with simple hardware or like we said above, no hardware at all. With very little detailing, slabs put the focus back on the craftsmanship of the cabinets.
Shaker cabinet doors
Shaker doors, on the other hand, have a flat center panel and square edges with very minimal details and profiling.
Both door styles are incredibly clean, understated, and simple - the perfect addition to any minimal kitchen design.
4. Two toned cabinets
Two-toned cabinets are when the upper cabinets are a different color than the base cabinets. It allows you to play around with different palettes and combine materials.
We wrote about two-toned kitchens back in 2020 and it's still a strong trend for 2022. But there's a twist to it. Rather than being all about color, it's now all about mixing materials, finishes, and textures.
It's a great way to add a unique element to a kitchen, while still keeping to a neutral color palette.
As you can see, in the photo above, they went with a stained White Oak for the base cabinets and white paint for the uppers. The result is a very natural, organic looking space.
If you're not totally on board, a great way to ease into this trend is to experiment with the island as the accent.
5. Mesh front cabinet doors
Open shelving is taking a backseat. Right now, it's all about mesh front cabinet doors.
The wire mesh inserts offer a unique, custom look that doesn't block what's inside the cabinet, but also provides a secure barrier to protect the cabinet contents.
It's visually appealing and very versatile. It comes in many design patterns and different materials, including aluminum, brass, bronze, copper, and stainless steel.
They also look great with several different kitchen styles: industrial, farmhouse, mid-century modern, and even coastal style kitchens.
The motto for 2022: simple, natural, and functional
Cabinet trends are always changing, but when it comes to 2022, almost two years after a global pandemic, one phrase rings true: Keep it simple.
Homeowners are looking for cozy, comfortable spaces, simplicity and minimalism, and functionality. Now more than ever, the kitchen is the heart and social hub of the home. Your cabinetry should reflect that.
As a contractor, it's helpful to know the upcoming trends and guide your clients to sound decisions about their remodel or new build projects. We hope these trends inspire you, as we head into 2022, to keep it simple, add pops of color, and try something new.