CONTRIBUTOR – North Shore News

Whether it is just the family you are entertaining, everyone gravitates towards the kitchen. It’s the social hub of the home and designers are taking notice. When it comes to appliances, countertops and cabinetry there is more variety and selection in kitchens than any other room in the house. And since this is the room we live in, it should be designed to highlight the identity of its owners. Whether it is traditional, modern, sleek or bright and colourful the kitchen is more than just a room for eating.

While sleek is still chic, people are also experimenting with merging the new contemporary kitchens with older styles. This means simpler foundations, including cabinets, appliances and furniture, are being accessorized with stylish add-ons.
Sleek hardware, backsplashes, lighting and window treatments will update older pieces keeping the room fresh. “We call this look classic modem” said Paula Phillips, a colour consultant and interior decorator with Coordinated Kitchen & Bath, who owns the business with her husband Michael Phillips, a certified kitchen and bathroom designer. “This look is a little bit rustic with modern textures and fabrics. It’s all about form and function and buying furniture that will last.”

Over the last couple years, homeowners have been experimenting with two contrasting looks in the kitchen. Either glass backsplashes against white pearlized cabinets, which often gives a more airy, floaty look, or using rich, dark wood like cherry, and adding an element of metal to give it a more modem feel.

“What I see looking forward to fall is a lot of colour. Blues, reds and even some yellows in kitchens,” said Phillips. “This is the Andy Warhol look. White high-shine cabinets with lots of reflective surfaces and red or blue in the countertops. The look is very 50s.”

As for appliances, there are basically two trends – either the sleek, perfectly integrated variety or stainless steel. The modern look appliances are typically concealed or blended in to look like a piece of furniture.

And no matter what style you choose, most top-notch kitchens are fully loaded with the best electronic gadgets. Everything from flat-screen TVs to computers have made their way into this multipurpose room.

Over the past, five years 1 have noticed an equalization on the North Shore”, said Phillips. “When the housing market went up there became little difference between the renovations. You used to find laminated countertops in North Vancouver, and solid surfaces in West Vancouver, but not anymore. If you are planning a quality renovation for your kitchen, you should expect to spend around S60-$70,000. But if you are planning on going downtown for a name brand kitchen, you can expect to pay double”, said Phillips.

No matter what you choose, pick what you love and what you can live in, not a trend, because as the heart of the home, you’ll be spending a lot of time in this room.

For more information about Coordinated Kitchen & Bath visit or phone 604-985-9128, or go to their location at 123 East 1st Street, North Vancouver.