Pulte’s Guide to Contemporary Kitchen Design

Modern living calls for modern living spaces. Let’s face it, it isn’t enough to just leave your work at home at the end of the day anymore. As our lives become busier and busier, it’s becoming increasingly important that the design and layout of your home are optimized to help you and your family take on whatever life throws at you. 


As the role the house plays in our lives shifts, the kitchen is fast overtaking the living room as the center of the American home. 


Whether they’re looking to buy new or renovate, a savvy homeowner will want to pay close attention to modern kitchen design if they want to get the most value out of their investment.  From energy efficiency to smart-home options and whether or not to go with an open-concept floor plan, there are a lot of kitchen design ideas to consider when developing your vision for your home.  Let’s take a look at a few of the predominant movements in contemporary kitchen design.


Latest Trends in Kitchen Design

We’ll start things off by exploring some of the most cutting-edge modern kitchen designs trending across the blogosphere for a bit of kitchen inspiration. 


Hidden Hood

First thing’s first, you might consider an upgrader under the hood. Or an upgrade to the stainless steel hood that might currently be hanging over your oven. One huge facet of contemporary kitchen design is the quest to find ever-inventive ways to either hide the oven hood (discreetly tucking it into some cabinetry, for example) or cleverly using alternative materials like tile, wood, or brick to give the impression that your hood is a feature of the architecture itself. In contemporary kitchen design, less is more.


Supreme Simplicity

This brings us to the next kitchen design idea: keep it clean and tidy.  Many of today’s top designers aim for a clean, minimalist look. This means opting for features that eliminate unnecessary external features such as visible hardware or drawer pulls, and replacing them with either push-open drawers or recessed handles. If you’re looking for the next step towards ultimate minimalist simplicity, consider getting rid of the appliances, too! Well, not exactly. Many modern kitchens are being built with appliances in drawers for an incredibly clean, seamless look. 


Energy Efficiency

A more practical consideration for kitchen inspiration is energy efficiency. A major ethos in modern kitchen design, energy efficiency can manifest in ways that are incredibly beautiful as well as beneficial to the function and value of your home.  


One easy way you can tighten up your energy consumption is to install new, energy-efficient windows that filter in fresh air while letting harmful materials like volatile organic compounds (VOC) out. Advances in window technology are making it increasingly possible to have the ability to keep your home well-insulated while allowing it to take in fresh air without the need for energy-consuming filtration systems. 


When choosing building materials for your kitchen’s fixtures, consider natural, sustainably sourced or reclaimed materials. In addition to contributing to the character of your kitchen, these pieces tend to be well-made by quality craftsmen with the intent that they’ll weather years of wear and tear (and love!).  


Add Smart Technology to Your Kitchen

While we’re on the subject of energy efficiency, let’s talk a bit about smart home technology and how it plays into contemporary kitchen design. 


Smart home technology allows for total connectivity between your home’s devices and systems. At the touch of a button, or even with just a word, you can take control of your home appliances such as heating, lighting, and home security. No need to worry if you left the oven on, just check your phone! Need to bring the chili down to a low simmer without missing a second of the game? Not a problem, there’s an app for that. 


Smart home technology also allows you to automate many of your home’s functions, including heating and cooling, for optimum efficiency. 


Design Your Kitchen for Working at Home

More of us are working from home than ever, and modern kitchen design has started to reflect this shift. When your work and home spaces start to merge, organization is key. A cluttered space can be a subtle but significant source of stress, making it difficult to keep your mind on your work. 


Dual Kitchen Islands

A dual kitchen island provides ample storage as well as plenty of workspace for the whole family. Dinner can easily be prepared while the kids wrap up their science projects and your partner clears out their inbox for the day, with elbow room to spare, and you’ll have all the storage you need to put it all away when dinner is served. 



We ask a lot of our kitchens, so much so that sometimes one kitchen isn’t enough. To address this concern, sculleries, or “second kitchens” are becoming more and more common. This space is perfect for all of those use-it-maybe-once-a-month appliances or the commemorative dishware that only see the light of day when your parents are in town. This way you can keep a clean, streamlined kitchen clear of anything that doesn’t see daily use.


Contemporary kitchen design involves a reconsidering of the place the kitchen holds in the modern home. If you’re looking to make the most of your space, try these kitchen design ideas to take your kitchen to the next level and possibly bolster the value of your home.


Contributed to Your Home blog 

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Published 8.23.2021

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