Trends in Stainless Steel Appliances

The kitchen in the Fairview plan by Terrata Homes has white cabinets and stainless steel appliances.

Stainless steel can work with any color scheme, including white cabinets, like in this new kitchen in the Fairview plan by Terrata Homes.

Quick — think “stainless steel refrigerator.” What do you see? A side-by-side refrigerator with a satiny metallic shine?

Until recently, that finish was the No. 1 choice in kitchen design. But times — and trends — are changing.

Whether you’re designing a brand-new kitchen for your custom home or remodeling your existing one, you want to create a look you can love for years to come. Given the wonderful open-plan interiors that are popular today, kitchen color and style are even more important. But don’t think that decision is limited to the cabinets and countertops. The appliances that anchor your day-to-day life can be as colorful as you like and so, they can be not just functional, but beautiful too.

Stainless steel has always been an attractive and popular option; it complements almost every color, is durable and fabulously resistant to staining and scratching. Even its biggest drawback — how hard it is to keep looking clean, especially from smudges and fingerprints — has been solved by the creation of fingerprint-resistant finishes. And color? Stainless steel is available in white, black and practically everything in between.

Light and Airy

Light and airy? Or dark and warm? Whichever feel you want your kitchen to have, there is a color to help you create it.

Stainless steel appliances are now available with a matte, or brushed, finish that makes them nearly smudge proof and they go beautifully in a modern kitchen. If your choice is darker wooden cabinets, a black matte finish beautifully continues the aura of soothing warmth. Want to go high contrast? Paint the cabinets white, get a black matte stainless steel refrigerator and stove and coordinate your accents: light pendants, dish towels, cabinet pulls in matching bold colors will elicit “oohs” and “aahs” when guests enter for the first time.

If you want a more neutral shade that’s attractive and versatile, then slate with a matte finish is your go-to. The finish is a match for almost every home style, be it country or modern, and its beige undertones work with a variety of cabinetry color options. Be your cabinets red, green, black; the earthy tone of the slate will add to the warm and inviting feel.

If you choose a matte finish, you’ll get a bonus: it’s magnetic. Traditional stainless steel isn’t magnetic, but the matte finish will allow you to have an art gallery in the kitchen if you have kids or a place to gaze longingly at the postcards you stuck on the fridge from your best friends who are traveling for a month through Europe.

Hundreds of Colors

If you think black or slate are your only color options, think again. Want a purple stove with orange knobs and a green handle? It’s possible. There’s one manufacturer where you can choose among 12 color families, each with at least 10 different shades to choose from. Whatever mood you want to create — vibrant, subtle, bold, sexy, cheerful — you can find a color that’s perfect. The limit? Your imagination.

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