Neal's Home Remodeling and Design Blog

6 Traditional Design Elements for Kitchens

Posted by Connie Hampton, CKD on Tue, Sep 19, 2017

Updated 9/19/2017 | Original Post: 10/21/2014

Traditional-style kitchens are sophisticated and classic. Traditional design incorporates architectural features from the European Old World countries, Mexico and colonial America. Elegant craftsmanship, embellishments and refined details are important. If you love the look of a traditional home, here are six traditional design elements for kitchens to consider in planning a kitchen remodeling project.

44147_50.jpgCabinetry in this Western Hills kitchen uses color and trim to give a furniture-like feel to the built-in.

1. Furniture-Style Cabinets

Cabinets are the most prominent element in a kitchen and define the style. Furniture-style cabinets are used in Traditional-style kitchens. Cabinets may have mortise and tenon or mitered door panels, glass door inserts, applied moldings, carved trims and corbels or wood appliqué embellishments. Stain and paint finishes are rich in both color and texture.

Cabinet doors can be used to integrate dishwashers and refrigerators into the room. Cabinetry can also be used to frame a vent hood over a cooktop or range.

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This traditional, white West Chester kitchen features quartz countertops.

2. Stone or Quartz Countertops

Natural stone or more recently quartz countertops are used in Traditional-style kitchens. Popular stone countertops include granite, marble and soapstone. The edging of the stone adds an important element to the room. Ogee, bevel and bullnose edging add elegance while waterfall or straight edging creates a clean look.

The counter shape is also important to consider. Countertops can be curved or tiered on an island or peninsula.

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The wet bar in this Hyde Park kitchen project displays distinctive copper-toned hardware.

3. Distinctive Look Hardware

Cabinet hardware gives a Traditional-style kitchen a distinctive look. There is no rule of thumb. Hardware can be uniform throughout or matched to cabinetry for example, using glass knobs to accentuate a cabinet door with a glass insert. Hardware finishes can also be mixed or matched to accent tile.

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Open, cage-style pendant lights add character to this traditional Loveland kitchen.

4. Stylish Light Fixtures

Kitchen lighting is both practical and aesthetic and can set the mood. There are many light fixtures that will add to the style of a traditional kitchen. The shape and type of shade used on a fixture are important details as is placement. Lighting should be planned strategically to illuminate work areas, provide general lighting and add ambiance.

If you plan to use a hanging fixture, consider the advantages and disadvantages of uplights and downlights. While a downlight fixture can provide direct illumination of an area it can also create glare. An uplight fixture provides more diffuse illumination but may not be bright enough for task areas.

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This Villa Hills kitchen includes trim details around the cabinets and hood.

5. Elegant Molding and Trim

Molding, trim and appliqués are essential details in a Traditional-style kitchen. Molding includes ceiling, cabinet, window and door and floor trim used in the room. Molding strips can be combined to create an elegant look. Corbels and appliqués can be used to accentuate cabinets and a range area.

42082_22.jpgA tile design change on the backspash of the range turns that zone into a focal point in this Bridgetown kitchen.

6. Tile That Accents Cabinets and Appliances

Tile in a kitchen can be practical but it can also be a personal design statement. Tile is a focal point in a Traditional-style kitchen and accents cabinets and appliances. It is helpful to work with a kitchen design professional in planning a tile design.

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Topics: Design Trends and Ideas, Kitchens

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