Benjamin John Ouellette, NKBA 2016’s Top 30 under 30.


Before homeowners make decisions to remodel their kitchens, we need to make sure that it will stay current at least for the next decade or two. In this article, designer Benjamin John Ouellette from Toronto, Canada, provides his expertise on all the trends that will rule in 2019!


From layouts to hardware, from storage to appliances, the 2019 kitchen looks promising!




Say goodbye to shaker cabinets!

In 2019 the cabinets will look modern and minimalistic.  Slab doors with texture will be the primary door style instead of a 5-piece shaker frame. They will go from floor to ceiling, maximizing storage for today’s smaller spaces, and will integrate refrigeration to streamline the overall look.  As we redesign our lives to include more efficiency and less clutter, visible storage solutions are becoming more realistic.  We will see less upper cabinets and more open shelving and glass cabinetry to store cups, and other breakables.  Base cabinets will continue to become more functional and intuitive, with ergonomics as the driving force.

Less upper cabinets and more open shelving

Color Trends

For too long our kitchens have lacked character and personal style, while we were captive to the ‘resale’ mentality.  Today’s kitchens, however, are more personal than ever, with blues, greens and even purples making their debut as cabinet finishes. A simple and stark foundation for an exciting palate of cabinet color options!

Blue is the new neutral

Navy and black are the new neutrals, and the mixture of these rich dark finishes with a medium or light-stained wood, bring drama and depth back to the most used room in the home.

Dark rich greens, a hunter-emerald hybrid, is the biggest color trend in cabinets for 2019.   Green brings a lively ambitious and elegant component to any space and seeing as the kitchen is the most energetic place to be, it’s a perfect fit.  Coordinating the green color with brass and other colored metals is a huge trend today, paying homage to a traditional look – while maintaining modern form.

Green cabinets? Yes, please!


Kitchen Materials and Décor

With the absence of white-painted cabinets, we’ll see a big swing back to wood; this time around with light natural stains on rift-cut white oak, bleached walnut, and even maple.  We will see the industrial trend thrive with matte and patinated raw materials like iron, copper, and brass.  Stainless steel will still be a luxury status symbol, but formulated differently by moving to the interior: stainless steel drawer boxes, interiors of fridges etc.  Brushed brass and matte black will continue to dominate the metal finish category this year, but we will see more polished and gnarled varieties.

Monolith by Liebherr

We will see the industrial trend thrive

Monolith by Liebherr

Liebherr Monolith Stainless Steel Interior

More than ever the idea of ‘elemental’ design is important as we will bring the outside in, using earthy elements like concrete, wood, natural stone, and even greenery.  Nothing brings life into a space like real foliage!  Planted herbs and hydroponic vertical gardens are becoming more popular in the kitchen as they reduce waste and make meal prep easier.


Size may matter, but not in 2019.  Smaller knobs and minimalist c-channel or subtle-edge hardware are making a comeback in the kitchen, allowing the cabinetry to stand out and shine. Touch operation is also becoming more common, eliminating the handle altogether.

Modern Refrigerator

Smaller hardware is one of the hottest trends for 2019.

When cabinet hardware is used, brushed nickel is officially dead, don’t do it!  Black is the new normal, but if you’re looking for the top 2019 trends, look for warm and bold finishes that add an element of glamour to your space.  Brushed and polished brass has come back with a vengeance, and we will see this show up in our light fixtures, handles, faucets, cabinet accents, and sinks.

Polished copper on dark painted finishes will also be a trend, giving us all the contrast and glamour we ever needed.  Hardware is the easiest thing to change in your kitchen, so take a risk and try something beautiful and different.


In 2019, we are going back to the basics for counters.  High contrasting marbles like Sydney or Nero Marquina are more popular than ever – if you’re going to do marble, do marble right!  Terrazzo is also making a comeback in flooring and counters; it can implement copper and gold accents beyond just the hardware or plumbing fixtures.

Monolith by Liebherr

High contrasting marbles like Sydney or Nero Marquina are more popular than ever

Large Spanish and Moroccan patterned tiles for the backsplash and floor are here to stay.  In 2019, we are just getting started with incorporating pattern into the kitchen, and these tiles allow us to express our personal love of color and decoration.

As we delve into colored cabinets, we are embracing concrete as a neutral element whether as countertops, floors or even range hoods.  Also in 2019, we will continue to see a lot more slab backsplashes.  Using quartz or stone slabs for backsplash minimizes grout and maintenance, and simplifies the overall look.

Low-maintenance ultra-compact surfaces are also becoming the new normal.  Free of resins or fillers they are essentially indestructible, winning over the hearts of busy families.  With this revolutionary product we are seeing the characteristics of marble, concrete, and granite, but with a product, we can set-and-forget.


In terms of appliances, 2019 will be the year for column refrigerators paneled with custom cabinets, with hidden handles integrated into the cabinet configuration.  Technology is advancing with smart features like Wi-Fi connectivity and touch control.

Wi-Fi connectivity in the new Monolith Columns by Liebherr


In 2019, we’ve had it with cold impersonal kitchens.   We will redecorate the concept of a kitchen space with life, color, pattern, texture, and light.  More than ever our kitchens should be as fashionable as we are, and reflect our distinctive personal style.