Today’s Kitchens

Beautiful luxury estate home kitchen with white cabinets.

Top design choices keep heart of home stylish

o lots of families, the room that embodies ‘home’ is the kitchen. Some of their fondest memories are made in this room. Discovering new foods and flavors, cooking with loved ones, inhaling the scent of fresh-baked goods, enjoying fine spirits with friends—the possibilities of joyful memories that a kitchen can add to your life are endless. So it’s important that one of the rooms you live the most life in is one you enjoy. We asked industry experts about top trends in kitchen remodel projects today. 

Sam Comer

Flooring and Tilework

What better way to start a home remodeling project than from the ground up? Chris Stephens of Cella Flooring & Design shared his thoughts about current trends in kitchen flooring and backsplash tile.

One huge trend that Stephens emphasized was the move away from tile for flooring in kitchens. A lot of homeowners are opting for hardwood instead.

“I think the biggest reasoning for that is the popularity for more open concept design,” says Stephens. “Whatever’s in the common area tends to flow into the kitchen.”

Stephens also added that luxury vinyl plank and tile has improved in quality and decreased in price. Rather than paying for floors made out of actual hardwood or real tile, you can purchase vinyl options that look like the real thing for a fraction of the cost. 

Tile backsplashes are more than just a trend. It’s a timeless feature that isn’t going anywhere. Attribute it to Joanna Gaines and her modern farmhouse motif, but homeowners have fallen in love with handcrafted subway tiles. Traditional subway tiles are 3×6 in. but these more unique options often run wider and taller.

If subway tiles aren’t your thing, natural stone is an option that will never go away. Elaborate statement designs for features above a range or sink haven’t faded from popularity either. 

Jennifer Justice Interiors / Alex Sattler Photography


Cabinets can make or break a kitchen’s design. Dick Coffey of Dixie Kitchen Distributors said that one of the biggest trends they’ve seen are homeowners choosing to paint their cabinets rather than stain them.

“Eighty percent of the kitchens we sell have painted cabinets now,” says Coffey. Homeowners are opting for a craftsman style: very clean lines, recessed panels, and “all different colors of paint.” Coffey says the popular color choices for the last couple of years have all been greys. White cabinets also continue to be popular.

Another big trend is replacing cabinets with deep drawers. “Every single kitchen we do has the deep drawers, and even medium-priced drawers have the soft-close feature,” he said. “We also see some customers choosing to do without overhead cabinets, or glass doors on wall cabinets. Some, especially those with Craftsman-style houses, opt for floating shelves on the walls rather than cabinets.” Under-counter lighting and lights inside cabinets with glass doors are popular as well.

Coffey emphasizes that Dixie Kitchen can give a custom look to any kitchen, cutting cabinets in any price range to size, adding feet to them or legs to islands. “People bring us pictures of kitchens out of magazines, and generally those are very expensive kitchens. We can give them that look at a price they can afford,” he said. 

Bruce McCamish


Oscar Fowler at Rocky Tops Marble & Granite agrees that today’s trends in countertops align with trends in cabinets and tilework. Homeowners are looking for minimalistic options. Neutral balanced colors and simple patterns reign supreme. “For those customers being budget friendly, granite with white, gray and hints of brown are working well,” says Fowler, “Quartz with whites and grays are working for those who know what they want and are willing to spend a little more.”

Waterfall edges are popular with some homeowners. It is a seamless countertop edge that extends the countertop material down the side of cabinetry to the floor. It adds a modern, luxurious touch to a kitchen’s design.

Make sure that no matter what countertops you choose, they’re fabricated and installed by professionals who can continue to service your countertops after installation is complete, he advised.

Jennifer Justice Interiors / Alex Sattler Photography


The last pieces to the puzzle of a kitchen remodel project are often the appliances. Mark Patterson of Patterson’s Home Appliances has seen several large trends increase in popularity over the last couple of years.

Smart appliances have only grown more and more popular over the last couple of years. Now you can tell your oven to start preheating as you’re leaving work for the day. Refrigerators can send you a photo of what’s inside them while you’re out grocery shopping.

Patterson also is beginning to see colorful appliances hit the market. “They’re starting to catch on as an accent piece.” Also big are custom range hoods in colors, hammered metal or featuring gold accents.

Induction cooktops are big; Patterson says they are quicker, safer and more effiicient than gas. He’s also seeing interest in pro ranges pick up. Pro ranges are wider than traditional 30-inch ranges and have the industrial feel of Wolf or Thermador ranges. 

A huge trend that’s worth the investment is built-in appliances. While it’s a higher-end option for your kitchen remodel, the appliances themselves hold their value a lot longer. Patterson recommends American-made products in general, simply because they tend to be longer-lasting.

Bruce McCamish

Project Coordination

As you might imagine, with all of the above elements to consider, kitchen remodels are complicated projects that involve a lot of coordination.

Ron Bills with Providence Builders of Tennessee has seen his fair share of home remodel projects, and he was able to share some important factors to keep in mind. You want to take into consideration why you’re remodeling. Is it to create your dream kitchen on your dream property? Or to increase the value of your home before putting it on the market? The answer to those questions could heavily influence the design decisions you make.

Bills says that one of the biggest reasons he sees for homeowners launching a kitchen remodel project is the desire for a modern, open-concept kitchen in an older home. According to Bills, one of the best decisions in these situations is “to truly gut the kitchen and start over.” This allows you to create a space that works long-term.

Hiring a contractor to make sure all of the elements work together is key. From the design process to plugging in the last appliance, every part of a kitchen remodel is about doing things in the right order for a high-quality kitchen you can enjoy for years to come.

Your Dream Kitchen

Making choices about backsplash designs and built-in appliances can be big and scary, but with guidance from professionals, a kitchen remodel project can truly transform the heart of your home and increase your home’s value for generations to come.

Cella Flooring & Design is a premier flooring source for the Knoxville area. They provide high-quality design and installation services, including hardwood, carpet, stone and tile flooring. For more information, please visit their website at

Dixie Kitchen Distributors has been a pillar in the Knoxville community since 1966. They offer cabinet options and packages to fit any budget. For more information, please visit

Rocky Tops Marble & Granite provides superb customer service and over 400 different natural stone selections in over 100 different colors. No matter what you’re looking for in a countertop, they can help you find it. For more information, please visit

Patterson’s Home Appliances has served the Knoxville area since 1965. They’re proud to only sell and install appliances manufactured in the USA and will work with you to find the option that best fits your needs, budget, and lifestyle. For more information, please visit

Providence Builders of Tennessee takes pride in the process of building. Their top goal is always to work closely with their clients from concept to finished dream home. For more information, please visit

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