Kitchen and Kitchen Worktop Trends for the New Year 2022

At least once a year, I try and write an article about the trends that we are seeing and expecting to see in the world of kitchens and worktops. With everything that is going on in our country in the news, the pandemic and the consequences of that and Brexit, I wonder how important it is to be talking about what colours people are putting in their kitchens. However, we know that many people use the week from Christmas to New Year to make some home improvement plans. If that’s you, we hope that these two blogs will spark off some fresh ideas, especially on kitchen worktop trends.


This is Part one of two. To jump to Part II, click here.

Design Trends in Kitchens: 1 Zoning

A lot of the design trends we are seeing in kitchens have been driven by the changes in working patterns due to the pandemic. Open plan is still big, but we have seen a move towards more zoning of the living area.

Cosmic White Granite Worktops, Redhill Surrey

Small built-in desk areas – shown here, Cosmic White from our installation in Redhill, where a small desk area is in keeping with the rest of the kitchen but a separate zone in its own right.

  • Built in pantries/ walk in larders

We see a trend in high-end designer kitchens for beautiful built-in pantry units.


Image from Tom Howley Kitchens


Image from Humphrey Munson

We have actually seen a tendency to tuck away more and more behind those pantry doors – even prep sinks and toasters. (With toasters, you need to watch for the heat build up underneath the lowest shelf – granite may be a good choice there too!)

  • Bar areas

I don’t know whether it was the working from home, having to home-school or the fact that a lot of pubs and bars were closed, but we have seen a huge growth in home bars. These can be stand-alone, or incorporated into open-plan kitchen designs. Your own personal bar is a big plus for your entertaining space!

Sensa Indian Black Bar Oxted Limspfield 133754

A recent bar in Oxted, Surrey – Sensa Indian Black Granite

  • Humongous islands.

I don’t know what it is with islands at the moment but they seem to be getting bigger and bigger. This is one of the most obvious kitchen worktop trends from our point of view.

Remember though that the materials are not necessarily getting bigger and bigger and what our fitters can carry into your home is definitely not getting bigger! I am not going into this in a big way here as we have written several articles about the pitfalls of massive islands. Suffice to say that you need to really think carefully about the size of the island in proportion to the actual space of the room, and how it will impede the flow of movement in the kitchen working triangle.

Culliford Misty Carrara polished 30mm Horsham 154647-gigapixel-low_res-scale-4_00x a

Our largest ever kitchen island – a monster at 3.65m by 2.73m in Culliford’s Misty Carrara Quartz

Culliford Misty Carrara polished 30mm Horsham 154616-gigapixel-low_res-scale-4_00x a
Culliford Misty Carrara polished 30mm Horsham 154531-gigapixel-low_res-scale-4_00x a
Culliford Misty Carrara polished 30mm Horsham 154616-gigapixel-low_res-scale-4_00x a
  • Twin islands

It is also now not unusual to have two separate islands but again, think about the flow of traffic in the room.

  • L-shaped islands.

L-shaped islands can be quite tricky to plan well, but can also be a great way of enhancing an awkward shaped kitchen. One has to be extra careful when planning where the join/s will have to go on these and how much overhang up to any waterfall ends.

  • The floating shelf.

A lot of our customers are opting for a single shelf or pair of shelves instead of filling the walls with wall units. It can really help with the feeling of openness and be a useful space for creating the curated look with an eclectic mix of herbs, objets d’art and even antique artwork. The easiest way of doing this is to use a shelf out of the same material as the cabinetry or from wood. We do get asked to make them from stone but this can be quite difficult in terms how it is supported and fixed to the wall.  Having these areas of design and space can help with our feelings of well-being and self-care. I personally would be worried about dusting it but I have never been very good at the self-care!

Quarella Blanco Paloma Lingfield Surrey 050820 134026 b

Close up of shelf in Quarella Blanco Paloma Quartz

Design Trends in Kitchens: 2 Sustainability

  • We haven’t seen huge numbers of customers requesting sustainable materials but there are hints here and there that people are starting to look to purchase from brands with a responsible supply chain and where the provenance of the stone is transparent. This is where some of the bigger worktop-manufacturing brands can’t be beaten. Cosentino who manufacture Silestone and Dekton are one such brand that takes its socio-economic responsibility and sustainability incredibly seriously. Companies like Silestone, Caesarstone and Compac are working hard to increase the levels of recycled and recyclable materials in their products whilst also reducing their carbon footprint and giving back to their local communities. Please view their own websites for more details.
  • We are seeing more customers who are wishing to upgrade their kitchens rather than totally replace. This is not necessarily an easy option; it may be best to enlist the help of a kitchen makeover company that specialises in this kind of work. Please see our articles on replacing worktops and why we don’t cut customers’ own materials.
  • Some customers are just upgrading by respraying doors or choosing doors that can be resprayed in the future if fashions change.
  • There is also a increasing market for buying second hand kitchens. See our article on ebay worktops.
  • Recycled and upcycled furniture have become more and more popular. Working from home has led to people having a go at repurposing furniture. These unique pieces can add a warmth and homeliness to a kitchen which isn’t always achieved by an off the shelf cabinet.
  • A mix of second hand or antique pieces can give a modern kitchen a more curated look.

Design Trends in Kitchens: 3 Integrated dining, seating and banquettes

Personally, I love a banquette. For me I think it is partly because I am not blessed with height and often find breakfast bar style seating quite uncomfortable and often not facing the best view. With a banquette or integrating lower level dining area , the seating can be facing the garden , coming off the back or side of the island. I will definitely be going down this root when I come to do my own kitchen.

Design Trends in Kitchens: 4 Kitchen cabinets and accessories

  • Darker doors. Although we still see a lot of variations of grey, there has definitely been a trend to using some darker and stronger colour doors . We have been talking for some while about the trend for midnight blue units particularly on islands but we are also seeing now some beautiful forest greens and emeralds as well as stunning teal units.

White quartz on navy units; a classic look from Benjamin Allen Homes

  • Some kitchen manufacturers are worth looking at if you like strong colours. For bright, cheerful shades, check out Pluck Kitchens – one of their projects shown here, in Dulwich Village.
pastel mint retro kitchen

Totally modern kitchen – and yet such pastel echoes of 50s design!

  • Pastels – Designers have been talking for some while about pastels making a come-back. We haven’t seen a lot of evidence of that here in the “Conservative” south- east but kitchen makeovers have found their pastel blue door quite popular and we have seen some blush and coral pink doors from customers in the showroom here. Fran from Novella Designs says that she has a beautiful pink door and thinks that may well be popular going forward.
  • Brass fittings. Brass is a great warm colour metal without being too bright or overly goldy. There is definitely a move to more warmth in colour to metals in the home and brass adds a timeless yet practical contrast and can work equally well with the darker blue and green doors as well as the pinks and greys.
kitchen worktop trends perrin-and-rowe-brass-bridge-mixer-granite-kitchen-worktops

Perrin and Rowe Brass Bridge Mixer Tap


One of the first two-tone kitchens we photographed – Steel Grey Granite in Cuckfield, West Sussex

  • Two-tone. The two-tone look has been popular for some while now in traditional Shaker-style kitchens, as well as in the more contemporary German-style kitchens. People tend to opt for a stronger colour on the island or as a contrast on one bank of tall units. This gives people the option to put their own personal stamp on the kitchen and maybe be a little more daring with a stronger colour than if they were going to do the same thing all the way around.
  • Shaker or flat doors? Both remain extremely popular, with classic Shaker designs being constantly reinvented. We have seen new shaped Shaker doors combined with contrasting wooden accents, as well as slab doors in different finishes from textured woods to ultra silky-smooth matts.
kitchen worktop trends Brayer design modern shaker

Just one take on the Shaker look – the Wimbledon Modern Shaker from Brayer Design has inset brushed metal handles and a thinner worktop – definitely one of the most visible kitchen worktop trends

Naomi affordable granite worktops team surrey quartz worktops sales manager

So that’s it for this week. We will pick up the second half of our kitchen trends roundup next week. Have a great time seeing the New Year in!


Naomi King

We are Affordable Granite, the leading granite and quartz worktop supplier in Surrey, Sussex and across the South East. Our main business is granite and quartz, but we also install kitchen and bathroom worktops in quartzite, marble and (occasionally) Dekton. We want to be the best in the business for customer service and advice to anyone who is doing up their kitchen. Call us for a quotation on 01293 863992 or by email on sales@affordablegranite.co.uk.

© Images from Affordable Granite or from kitchen companies website, wherever credited and linked. If There are any objections to our usage, please drop us a line and we will immediately remove any offending image.

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