What will be the Top 5 Kitchen Product Purchases this Coming Year? Part 2

What will be the Top 5 Kitchen Product Purchases this Coming Year?  Part 2                          

 This is a continuation of the last post where the survey identified the top 5 kitchen products people are planning to buy this year for their kitchens.  As a professional interior designer in Bergen County, NJ, I am sharing my tips to help take away some of the stress and anxiety of making these decisions.

 III. The Refrigerator/Freezer

This is one of the biggest investments in your kitchen and you want to get it right and be happy with your choice.

Did you realize there are 4 main kinds of refrigerator/freezers available?

          French doors on top with freezer at the bottom

          Side by side

          Top freezer, bottom refrigerator

          Top refrigerator (one door opening)/freezer on the bottom

Each of these models gets the job done but which one works best for you and your lifestyle?  Consider your needs now.  How about in the future?  What will you need then?

There are stand-alone refrigerator and freezer units which you can incorporate into your kitchen plan if the space is large enough.  Additionally, you could install refrigerator or freezer drawers just where you need them around the room.

Here are some things I suggest you figure out before you go looking:

      Consider space. In the kitchen plan and in your home, getting the unit into your home/apartment is critical.

     Will it fit through the front door and make its way to the kitchen without a problem or will you need to return it and get something else?

      Can the doors of the unit open fully or does other cabinetry block you from accessing everything inside?  Are the drawers removable for cleaning?

      Do you have any health issues?  Can you bend down?  Does your back hurt?  Are you tall enough to reach up and bring down larger items from the top?

     What is your lifestyle? the size of your family?  Do you cook every meal or do you bring in or go out a lot?

     Do you want other features?  Like water/ice in the door?

     How do you feel about various finishes and how often you will have to maintain and clean them?


III.  Lighting Up the Kitchen

 An electrical and lighting plan is crucial to how your new kitchen will function efficiently.  The decisions you make are included in the very beginning of the construction and once determined are difficult and costly to change.

Proper lighting is important for safety as well as ambience.  Having the right amount and type of lighting will make working in the kitchen a pleasure or a nightmare.

There are lots of questions to be answered and information to know to make the right decisions.

Did you know there are three kinds of light?

       General or overall lighting

       Task lighting

       Accent lighting or decorative

Each plays a big role in layering the right lighting for your space.

Here is some additional information you need to consider:

    Consider the size and ceiling height of the room.   A high ceiling required the kind of lighting that will reach down all the way to the counter surface so you can see what you are doing.

    The finishes you use make a big difference in how light is either absorbed (dark) or reflected (light).  Either way it influences how much light you will need.

    Your height plays a part. How?  Well if you are tall, it may determine the height at which you hang your fixtures.

    Beam spread determines how many lights you need. That all depends on what kind of lighting fixture you select—incandescent, halogen, or LED.

    There are many more considerations to take into account with lighting. It’s not just about the décor.

IV. The Backsplash

 So what do you have to know about this? You may think it is all about style.  But there are points of information you have to know about this too.

     The backsplash is used as a protection for the walls against cooking and water splashes but it is a great way to express your personal style.

     Keep in mind the flooring, cabinets and materials used so you have an even, balanced look. This is not a separate entity.  It ties everything together.

     Remember in the last post I mentioned that you need to know the pros and cons of countertop materials.  That comes into play here too.

     Maintenance is an important issue. So is how the material and the electrical outlets will line up and look in the design.

     Color, texture, and design all contribute to this decision. It is a hardworking area behind the stove and above the sink, two focal points in the kitchen design.

     You could just paint the wall! But most people use tile, glass, marble/stone, granite, mirror, metal and many combinations to get the best results.

     Backsplashes can unify the look or be a standout custom design.


There are so many decisions to make when redesigning your kitchen.  These decisions should not be stressful or anxiety producing if you are working with an experienced, knowledgeable designer.  

I am here if you need advice and planning help. As the song says, “Don’t worry, be happy!”

 I am just a text, an email or a call away!