Posts tagged with "Trends"

  • Meteor Cashmere

    4 kitchen trends to watch in 2018

    The kitchen trends set to take design blogs by storm in 2018

    With the busy festive period behind you, January is the perfect time to turn the home renovation ideas you’ve been considering for months into a reality.

    So if you’re dreaming of a new kitchen in 2018, here are the four trends set to take interior design blogs by storm this year.

    A touch of texture

    This year’s home trends are all about taking elements of both modern and traditional looks to create a whole new style that’s bursting with personality. Textured worktops are a subtle yet effective way to bring a hint of uniqueness to a neutral kitchen, whether you choose the subtle flecked texture of quartz and corian, the speckled style of trendsetting grey terrazzo, or a chic marbled effect.

    Perfect pairings

    Pinterest’s trend forecast predicts we’re all going to be swapping doors in neutral hues for a bright pop of colour this year, and there’s no reason you can’t include the colourful doors trend in the kitchen too. If you want to avoid overwhelming a small kitchen, accent cabinets are a brilliant way to take a subtler approach to this trend. Pair one soothing neutral tone with kitchen cabinets in a brighter or darker accent hue to create a balanced yet bold look.

    Stay golden

    While copper kitchen accessories have long been in the spotlight, this year golden, brassy tones are set to become the most coveted metal finish for kitchens across the country. Update an existing kitchen with brassy gold cabinet handles to give it a fresh new feel, then add matching golden accessories like mixing bowls, tea canisters and fruit bowls to complete the look.

    Ultra violet

    Pantone have announced Ultra Violet as their colour of the year for 2018 – a vibrant shade of purple described by the colour experts as ‘thoughtfully provocative’. Go all-out on the purple trend by opting for a Decoglaze splashback in this daring ‘Velvet’ shade, or take a muted approach by accessorising with purple photo frames, seat cushions and decorative vases.

    Can’t wait to try one of these trends in your kitchen? Book a design appointment to talk to one of our expert kitchen designers about creating your ideal kitchen.

    Category: Trends

  • Sensory - Colour

    Sensory blog: Colour

    Colour is something that so many of us take for granted, but is such a powerful mood setter. It affects so many everyday life decisions and is such an important element when looking at interior design. It has hugely powerful connotations for the kitchen as Karen Haller, our guest blogger explains.

    “We only have to imagine a world without it to realise just how much we use and rely on colour to make everyday decisions and navigate our way in the world around us. From the clothes we choose to wear, to waiting for the green light to cross the road, colour is a helpful guide throughout our life.

    Being able to see colour and interpret what it is communicating to us is one of our most powerful sensory skills.

    I’m seeing the shift from colour being seen and used as just something aesthetically pretty, to it becoming one of the key tools in the design industry - a powerful sensory tool that can influence human responses and behaviour in almost any way and in any environment.

    When it comes to food, there’s a saying “we eat with our eyes”. We are taking in and making many decisions based on the colour of the food alone. Take your morning cup of tea as an example; whether you have it black or milky or any of the tones in between, you know how it is going to taste from the colour.

    We judge if food is ripe or starting to go past its used by date, by its colour. You only have to think of a banana to know when it’s green it’s starchy and when it’s yellow it’s sweet.

    Working alongside the other senses, we already have an idea what a food is likely to taste like, by the colour of it. The other important thing here is context. For example, when we see a red strawberry we already know it’s going to taste sweet. We see red chillies and we know the taste is going to be hot and fiery.

    We are constantly making decisions based purely on colour and it’s just the same for the colours we choose for our home. Colours can reflect our personality, create a sense of positive well-being or that instant wow factor.

    There’s one colour in particular you won’t find in food: blue. We instinctively avoid food that is blue. In nature, it’s seen as being poisonous. Our favourite blue berries are actually purple. You’ll rarely find this colour in restaurants, cafes, kitchens or places that serve food. Blue is also likely to have the effect of acting as an appetite suppressant.

    Using accents of orange on the other hand can aid in stimulating the appetite and it’s a fun, playful hue that encourages socialising.

    A popular colour for modern kitchens is white. Whilst it gives a sense of cleanliness and order, it can feel also feel a bit cold and sterile at times.

    Ultimately, no matter what environment you’re in you’ll be amazed at the number of decisions and choices you’re making on a daily basis based on colour alone. This demonstrates just how important it is to take time choosing the best colour scheme and design for your kitchen.

    Karen Haller is a leading international authority in the field of applied colour psychology. She has spent over 20 years studying, researching and working with colour and is a global specialist and teacher in colour psychology.

    Tags: Kitchen, Trends

  • Lightiitright

    Light it Right

    Tips for choosing the right lighting for your kitchen

    Having strong enough light in the kitchen is fundamental, but there is so much more to it than overhead bulbs. Light can also be used to create a mood and atmosphere, and the right kind of lighting can completely transform a space and highlight key areas. We’ve put together some key tips to help you find the right kind of lighting for your kitchen.

    1. Light up the right space

    When you are planning your kitchen, the first thing to consider is where you need light. You can illuminate the whole room with rows of pendant lighting, but if you don’t highlight your task areas, you’ll be preparing dinner in the dark. Magnet have a fantastic range of under cabinet lighting which are great for areas where you cook and clean as they cast minimal shadow and light up the surfaces you use every day.

    2. Different lights, different purposes

    There are a myriad of different solutions to consider when you are illuminating your kitchen. Directional spotlights are great to highlight task areas, whereas a dimmer light with a warm glow is best for the dining area, where you can adjust the mood depending on the time of day. You can also use lighting to pick out a key design feature. For example, Magnet’s illuminated shelf light creates a dramatic feature for your units and lights up any cutlery or accessories on your shelves.

    3. Match your lighting to your mood

    Forget the colour of the walls; lighting can be the fastest way to achieve the right kind of ambiance in your room. Are you looking for something low, relaxed and calm, or something fresh, awakening and inspiring? Think about what you want from your lights and then dive straight in.

    4. If in doubt, just ask

    With the vast array of lighting solutions on offer, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. Magnet have a range of experts on-hand to help and advise. They know that dark materials can reduce brightness, that lighter colours and materials do the opposite, and that glossy surfaces can lead to unwanted reflections from spotlights, so no matter what kitchen you’ve chosen, they’ll have the perfect solution for you and will help tailor your lighting to your kitchen.

    Tags: Designs, Kitchen, Trends

  • Vienna Graphite

    Interview with Dr Jack Lewis

    Magnet interviews leading neuroscientist Dr Jack Lewis

    Why do different sensory stimulants affect people in different ways?

    Everyone’s brain has experienced different things, so as people progress though their life from childhood to adulthood the brain wires itself together according to their experiences. Things that are experienced frequently have a bigger influence than those that are experienced infrequently. Everyone’s batch of emotional sensory experiences are different and it is these that have the most power in forming the way our brain wires up, and therefore responds to things in the outside world. This is why everyone responds differently, because the type of music that evokes memories of my childhood will be very different from the type of music that evokes memories of your childhood.

    It is the same with smells, textures and all of our senses: we have unique experiences of the world and of our sensory experiences.

    By the time we reach adulthood we have experienced different things a different number of times and these memories evoke different sensory experiences from person to person.

    Why does the home evoke such a strong sensory experience?

    The home is the place where so many of our memories are experienced. It is the place where we feel safe and secure, where we drop our guard. In the living room for example, you’ve got lots of strong visual and acoustic stimuli coming out of your TV. Your radio or sound system is a device that allows you to select and thereby develop a taste for different types of programmes and music.

    A lot of our senses are stimulated in the home, it is the place where we kick off our shoes and walk around barefoot, awakening our touch senses. The kitchen is a key room where everything is simultaneously stimulated – especially smell and taste.

    How can you introduce sensory stimulants into the home to improve your wellbeing?

    Well, a lot of the sensory stimulants that improve wellbeing tend to be related to the natural world but our homes tend to insulate us from this world. So to improve your well-being it’s a good idea to do things like introducing aromas into the home, such as fresh flowers in a vase. Some people do it and some don’t, however the smell of nature can be key in improving your mood. Often the best thing you can do is get out of the house altogether and go for a walk around the park or the countryside whenever possible. If you are trying to recreate these natural experiences in the home then flowers are a good option as well as pieces of art or music.

    The one thing about visual art is that quite often you only really notice it for the first few weeks after you have put it up, so you should trick your senses by moving these pieces around or by having a different set of images that you rotate around your home. Doing this is in effect like curating your own art show in order to keep your brain on its toes because you are giving it novel experiences on a more regular basis. Don’t just hang up a painting and leave it there for decades – mix it up to encourage and stimulate your senses.

    Why is the kitchen the perfect place to awaken your senses?

    All of the senses are stimulated simultaneously in the kitchen. You have the sight of food, the smells, the aromas coming in through your nostrils, and the taste when you eat something. Eating food is very much about the tactile experience of feeling the textures in your mouth, this is a huge part of what we almost colloquially call the sense of taste. Strictly speaking taste is just the senses that come in through the tongue, and there’s only 5 or maybe 6, some would argue, possible experiences that come in just though the tongue, so the sense of smell and touch inside the mouth is vastly underrated. I did an experiment the other day on my TV series where we blindfolded people, robbing them of their sense of vision as well as their sense of smell, and then gave them a raw onion to eat (also asking them to use a glove so they couldn’t feel the onion). They thought it was an apple, until we took the peg off their nose. Even when we only robbed them of their sense of vision they still couldn’t tell what it was, which shows the power that vision has in dominating our experience of taste. When you are hungry, you eat, you feel pleasure. Hunger was invented, biologically speaking to encourage us to seek out food to nourish us and give us energy to survive. Eating when we are hungry invariably gives us a sense of pleasure and as the kitchen is the place where we experience this time and time again, we have positive associations with this – hence the parties in the kitchen!

    What’s the one thing everyone should have in their kitchen to stimulate their senses?

    That’s an interesting one, I think a brilliant idea is spices. Spices and herbs. Although it’s not everyone’s cup of tea to have a spice rack, you don’t always have to use it in your cooking. Leaving the lid off one of the jars from time to time is a great way of evoking your senses through scent, and often these aromas can jolt memories of your childhood.

    Usually when our memories are jolted, they come from periods of life called the reminiscent bump which occurs between the age of 15-30. The sense of smell is linked to this because it’s plugged directly into the limbic system, the emotional memory part of the brain, rather than being re-routed through other brain areas first, as with the other senses. This means that it’s very powerful in evoking memories of childhood before the age of 10, and there’s no other sense that can stimulate it in quite the same way.

    Many would also suggest freshly ground coffee, to actually grind your own beans, so coffee lovers might wish to do that to evoke their sense of smell. There’s something about actually turning the handle of an old fashioned coffee mill, where you can feel the beans crunching and the aromas are always much more powerful when it’s freshly ground, so there you go - two for the price of one!

    Tags: Kitchen, Trends, Uncategorized

  • The Heart of the Home

    The Heart of the Home

    Why the kitchen is so important

    You’ve probably heard the kitchen referred to as ‘the heart of the home’, and you may have wondered why. Have you ever noticed that family and friends tend to congregate in the kitchen?

    Think throughout time, from eating cereal in the kitchen during childhood, to friends sharing stories over a meal in student accommodation and then back to feeding the children in the mornings. The kitchen is often a hub of activity and there are a number of reasons why it is such a vital part of the home.

    Perhaps the most obvious reason is that this is where we prepare the meals we need for nourishment, but this relates back to memories being made, chatting whilst cooking and enjoying food together, all of which naturally encourages conversation.

    Food brings people together and therefore so does the kitchen. Not just for family meals, the kitchen plays a key part in social occasions like parties, Christmas feasts or dinner parties.

    Even if you live alone, the kitchen can be a place for adventure, cooking up meals from scratch and experimenting with food to create new dishes or just comforting, old favourites.

    Finally, some would say that the kitchen is a room that sets the tone for the whole home. Not many rooms have such a distinct functionality as the kitchen, and we’re generally prepared to invest a lot on such a vital space. Not only do kitchens bring value to the home, but we want them to reflect our personality and taste. Be sure to create the perfect heart for your home and try out a range of designs with Magnet’s QDP tool.

    Tags: Designs, Kitchen, Trends

  • Old Meets New

    Old Meets New

    Can you mix modern and traditional?

    Mixing classic and contemporary can be a little chaotic, but if it’s done correctly, the two styles can live in perfect harmony. Opposites do attract, after all.

    We can call the overall effect of marrying the two styles, ‘transitional’, and the kitchen is the perfect room to implement this style.

    Some might feel that modern style is too sleek and impersonal, whilst traditional trends can feel dated to others. Within both there are clearly some opposing elements but also some very complementary opportunities.

    Shaker style is a timeless kitchen design, with a rich history. Essentially, this includes cabinet doors with panels set back, and minimal adornment. Magnet’s Shaker Cream owes its effortless style to the 18th Century Shaker community, but the unit’s soft, sleek curves give the room a modern update.

    Using a matte finish throughout the kitchen is a fairly modern trend, combine the matte grey finish of Leighton Grey with the traditional shaker style for a kitchen that is both unique and up to date. Infusing the textures, finishes and common characteristics of the two styles will give you the best of both worlds to combine classic and contemporary.

    Another modern look is crisp, white units. The clean, industrial colour can give a sleek feel. The lustrous finish of Magnet’s Leighton Gloss White mixes well with the classic Shaker simplicity of the units and is contrasted with a stunning Corian sage worktop.

    It can be surprisingly easy to twin classic and contemporary styles in your home, so if you’re unsure which look you prefer, or if you’re looking for a timeless kitchen that will always be in style, consider a transitional design.

    Tags: Designs, Trends, Kitchen

  • Luna Cream

    Autumn Winter Trend Alert: Velvet

    This season’s biggest trend

    As the days have grown colder, it’s been increasingly impossible to ignore the trend that has taken over the autumn/winter seasons, velvet.

    Originally known for its high production costs, velvet has often been associated with nobility and still has connotations as a luxurious fabric. With these prestigious credentials and distinct, soft feel it is no surprise that velvet has ruled the catwalks this year.

    As we often see, the trend has made its way into our homes, through opulent upholstery and ornate accessories. This unique textile lends itself particularly well to upholstered dining chairs. It might be easiest to imagine vintage or antique styles, but velvet is truly brought into the modern day when featured on contemporary, unusual shapes. For example, when the soft velvet cushion of a dining chair sits on metallic steel legs, the ancient textile is given an instant update for the modern home.

    If you’re looking to incorporate the trend into your kitchen and dining room, why not make it a focal point by toning down on other colours and textures. The rich nature of the fabric often means that colours are bold and eye-catching, so let the velvet do the talking when it comes to interiors. Pair the textile with stunningly simple units and worktops such as those featured in the Luna Cream kitchen. The different finishes of the high gloss units and the silken fabric create a lovely contrast that gives a feel of up to date style in your kitchen.

    There are a number of ways to build this season’s biggest trend into both your wardrobe and your home, take a look at our new Pinterest board for some style inspiration.

    Tags: Trends, Designs, Kitchen

  • Fusion Champagne

    The Perfect Plan

    How to measure your kitchen

    At Magnet we appreciate the time it takes to plan your dream kitchen, and the detail that goes into. From the planning to the final product, you want your kitchen to be perfect.

    We aim to make the process as seamless as possible and thanks to Magnet, the process has never been easier.

    To get it right from the very beginning, you’ll need your kitchen measurements to hand, and it’s easier than you might think. We have outlined the steps for you in a short masterclass from Magnet.

    1. Sketch

    To begin with, simply sketch out the shape of your kitchen. The more true to life the sketch is, the easier it is to envisage your new design, try to include all of the structural features and projections. To give you a helping hand, you can download and print grid paper from the Magnet website, perfect for the planning process.

    2. Doodle

    Next, on your sketch you will make a note of where the room features are located, including doors, windows, soil pipes and electrics. Be sure to clearly mark out the various zones within the kitchen, including cooking, dining and any additional storage.

    3. Get measuring

    Once you’re happy with your sketches, it’s time to add the all-important measurements on there. An expert tip is to break each wall up into clearly labelled sections to measure separately. For a more accurate measurement, make sure that your tape measure is parallel to the floor when taking your measurements.

    4. Visit the experts

    Once you have your measurements and kitchen plan, book yourself a design appointment at your local Magnet showroom where the designers can bring your sketch to life and make your dream kitchen a reality. Become even more involved in the design process with our online planning tools, where you can create detailed 3D visuals and receive a guide price for your kitchen creation.

    Tags: Trends, Kitchen, Designs

  • Leighton Grey

    Cosy Up with Autumnal Home Trends

    What to look out for this season

    We’ve posted recently discussing this season’s key trend, velvet, but there is more on the horizon for autumn/winter.

    With the transition of the seasons, comes new colours, textures and styles.

    A colour to keep an eye out for this autumn is green, set to be sweeping through interiors this season. This primary colour comes in a wide range of shades and is perfect for creating scenes of serenity in the home. For the most on-trend shade, look to emerald tones. This deep, vibrant shade of green is perfect for statement accessories to create an opulent focal point in any home.

    Magnet’s Hudson Cream kitchen is on trend when paired with a large green splashback and feature wall, giving the kitchen an overall feel of traditional charm.

    Another trend that is truly reflective of the season is a homely, woodland feel. This includes a natural colour palette, made up of oranges, berries, browns and again, greens. With the weather getting colder, this is the perfect trend for bringing a feeling of comfort to your home. This trend is more about accessories, and there are some great products to give your kitchen and dining room the woodland feel this autumn, such as playful woodland animal motifs.

    Heritage feel interiors are also a key autumn winter trend, brought on by the soft fabrics and check patterns that are so popular throughout the colder seasons. Heritage designs are inspired by tradition and British craftsmanship and feature rich, warm colours. The kitchen is a great place to incorporate a traditional interiors trend, with rich, dark woods and shaker style units. Magnet’s Leighton Grey features classic shaker style units, giving an overall traditional British heritage feel.

    You can see how the trends might cross paths this season, for example the colour green will feature in the pallets of both woodland and heritage trees, so don’t be afraid to dabble in all three.

    Tags: Designs, Trends, Kitchen

  • City Cashmere

    Moody Hues

    How to use darker colours in the home

    The darker shades of the colour wheel make for a stylishly daring colour pallet. Deep greens, blues, greys and blacks in particular can be as classy as they are dramatic.

    Colours form the basis of your design and when you choose the right combination, they can bring everything into focus and create an entire mood throughout the room.

    Darker colours and moody hues lend themselves particularly well to kitchen designs. Don’t be afraid of these shades, they may traditionally be colours you shy away from, but when used correctly they have great impact. Magnet’s City Cashmere uses a dark wall colour to highlight the design of the glossy units, with added luxury from a Ceramic Anthracite worktop. The overall feel is gorgeously simple and doesn’t feel too dark with the lifting colour of the units.

    On the other hand, the Newbury Grey kitchen features unique moody, matt grey units, set amongst pale flooring and light coloured quartz worktops. The lighter grey marble effect splashback is the perfect complement to the mid-grey cabinets. The overall effect creates a sophisticated feel that will be a talking point within your home. The use of the darker colours in rooms can often be a way to define the function of the space, for example the functional worktop surface of the Newbury Grey kitchen stands out brilliantly against the dark units.

    Using darker hues can feel quite daring, but just one wall of colour can sometimes be all you need. Magnet’s Era kitchen demonstrates this, creating a clean, simple yet still effective look. The crisp white slab looks strikingly modern against the feature grey wall.

    If your style is modern and dramatic, this trend could work well for you. Don’t be afraid to embrace the moody hues and remember to balance the colours with some tactile lighter elements.

    Tags: Trends, Kitchen, Designs

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