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Ask a Designer: Appliance Trends


Q. What are the latest appliance trends?

Christine Moritz: The biggest appliance that's kind of gone out of a little bit is the trash compactor. That's the only one that I've really seen that has kind of faded away just because we've had new inventions with the pullout trash bins and things that you can keep hidden within the cabinets. So I think that that kind of took the place of the trash compactor. Otherwise, though, I think wine coolers, I mean, those are a big trend. People do like the dual refrigeration for wine coolers. Warming drawers are great. Our lives are constantly busier and moving around, so that's something that really works in today's lifestyle. But I really do like the pullout microwave drawers. I think early on, I mean, it was always the micro hood was over top of the cook top. So there was a home for it. Then with all the inventions with new hood designs with stainless steel hoods, all the different new looks that kind of created that big focal point for your cook top, the microwave kind of lost its home there. So we started putting them in wall cabinets to keep them at eye level which works well, but they've become bigger, just kind of stuck out in places. So putting them in base cabinets or drawers is a new trend. Fully integrated appliances are really a neat new trend in terms of putting panels on dishwashers, refrigerators to kind of have them blend seamlessly into the design, make them look more furniture-like. That's a big trend to kind of have more furniture for your kitchen.

Eileen Suhajda: We have people who are doing a huge commercial range with a custom hood, a microwave maybe on the side center, and then a set of oven cabinets. They usually have more than one oven. Sometimes they have the gas range and they'll have electric ovens because they like the baking in electric better. So we can have the dual fuel combination. We have cooking areas where there are actually deep fryers set into the counters, griddle pans, grills. So there could be several areas set up. This cabinet has a built in coffee espresso machine so that people can make their own espresso and cappuccino. For people who probably go to Starbucks everyday and want that fresh ground or fresh brewed espresso type of drinks. Then they can get it right in their home. Now we have residential lines, but it has the commercial look and it has the commercial features, but it's actually reengineered for a residential application.