Watch Our Auctions Live

Covid Traffic Light Guidance  READ HERE

Watch Our Auctions Live

Covid Traffic Light Guidance  READ HERE

15 October 2020

Better By Design

From integration to automation, we discuss the latest trends in kitchen appliances with four of Auckland’s top kitchen designers.


share

From integration to automation, we discuss the latest trends in kitchen appliances with four of Auckland’s top kitchen designers.

Innovation never stops, and that’s especially true in the kitchen, where advances in design and technology collide to help make our mealtime preparation and entertainment so much more efficient and enjoyable. Following on from our round-up of the latest kitchen trends in the last issue of The Quarterly, we’ve gone back to the same four kitchen designers, asking them what they are seeing coming through in the way of appliances, and the innovative ways they’re being used in kitchen designs.

Kitchens by Natalie Du Bois of Du Bois Design

Kitchens by Natalie Du Bois of Du Bois Design

Starting with the biggest and often most expensive appliance, the fridge, designer Natalie Du Bois from Du Bois Design says she has been integrating fridges behind cabinetry in most of the kitchens she’s designed lately – unless they’ve been specifically purchased to show off, like a big Sub Zero, or one of those retro-looking fridges. She also says that she’s not keen on specifying fridges that require large gaps around them for air venting, as this area tends to get grimy quite quickly – that’s why an integrated fridge or a stainless-steel fridge that can be flush-fitted is her pick.

Both Petra Brebner from Mastercraft Kitchens and Kyla Hunt from Carlielle Kitchens agree with Natalie regarding the clean, cohesive look of integrating a fridge and/or freezer, with Kyla adding that she, too, likes the idea of making a feature out of a fridge when it merits this treatment – for example, a glass-fronted bar fridge, which is often visible from the living space. 

We New Zealanders definitely love our wine, says Natalie, adding that she includes a wine fridge in nine out of 10 kitchens she designs these days – from complete wine cellars to full-height wine fridges located next to the main fridge-freezer or small under-bench wine fridges in a dedicated bar area.

Kitchens by Natalie Du Bois of Du Bois Design

Kitchens by Natalie Du Bois of Du Bois Design

Jane Fergusson of Kitchens By Design joins in the conversation, saying that advances in technology will change the way we use our fridges in the not-too-distant future, with companies now launching models that can tell you not only what you have inside your fridge, but also what is out of date, so you know when to throw it out and when to re-stock. Clever stuff. She also says that there are now domestic versions of some commercial appliances available, such as blast chillers, sous vide and vacuum drawers that make the home chef cooking experience possible.

Kitchen design by Jane Fergusson, Kitchens by Design

Kitchen design by Jane Fergusson, Kitchens by Design

Kyla agrees that technology in appliances is developing and improving every year – intelligent appliances that are interactive and connected allow people to have more customisation in their home, she says.

An appliance that all the designers agree has improved greatly is the downdraft or on-bench extractor. In the past, these weren’t particularly effective at controlling moisture and cooking odours, leaving an overhead extractor as the best option. However, most high-end brands have improved their downdraft technology, says Natalie, opening up options from a design point of view, meaning it’s no longer necessary to have a large, cumbersome rangehood overshadowing the benchtop.

Jane agrees, saying on-bench extractors are now a popular and a viable option if you have restricted or unsuitable space for an overhead model, for example, a cooking hob located on an island or in front of a window. The disadvantage, however, is that these systems need a reasonable amount of bench depth (if located behind the cooktop), and the extractor unit itself takes up space under the cooktop.

Kitchen Design by Kyla Potter, Carlielle Kitchens

Kitchen Design by Kyla Potter, Carlielle Kitchens

For those with limited under-bench space, overhead extractors can be made more palatable or disguised all together by cladding them in a feature product so they stand out, or blending them into the rest of the kitchen using the same material as the cabinetry, says Kyla. Either way, like fridges, integrating the overhead extractor is now far more popular than having a stainless-steel unit on display, she says.

Another big advance in appliances is the variety of finishes now available, adds Kyla. Black, stainless steel and white are now commonplace throughout most brands, with many coming in a multitude of colours, giving designers the ability to blend appliances in with the kitchen cabinetry, without the need for integration.

Looking at smaller appliances, fewer people are using kettles, thanks to the popularity of a new breed of gadget – the integrated boiling and filtered water tap. Natalie says it’s rare for her not to specify some version of this very useful appliance these days. Jane agrees, adding they can be used to serve the kitchen in other ways, like filling pots, and some units having additional gas canisters that can dispense carbonated (fizzy) water. Kyla echoes Natalie and Jane, saying she often installs them in the scullery, butler’s pantry, or in a dedicated working zone.

Kitchen Design by Petra Brebner, Mastercraft Kitchens New Lynn

Kitchen Design by Petra Brebner, Mastercraft Kitchens New Lynn

The latest versions of these taps include the kitchen mixer – combining the normal hot-cold function of a kitchen faucet with the addition of boiling, filtered and sparkling drinking water. A real space saver, but they don’t come cheap.

Small appliances – toasters, kettles, blenders, coffee machines, etc – are still hugely popular, and all require bench space, says Jane. Therefore, a designated area, such as an appliance garage is an important inclusion in many of her designs. A simple roller door or fold-back doors ensure easy access and ensure appliances can quickly be hidden away.

And that about wraps up this round-table discussion. Thanks to our four kitchen designers:
Petra Brebner – Mastercraft Kitchens New Lynn
Natalie Du Bois – Du Bois Design
Jane Fergusson – Kitchens By Design
Kyla Potter – Carlielle Kitchens

share

Return to blog

More recent posts

30 June 2022

Property market update - June


Each day we are greeted with a new headline about the fate of the New Zealand property market. Emotive as they are, regularly, these headlines are followed by a question mark.

More
16 June 2022

Late Bloomer


“So there I was, locked down and unable to work. What to do with one’s time? There’s only so much walking you can do,” says Karin Montgomery.

More
9 June 2022

Positive signs emerging for buyers, says top economist


A real estate market without the exuberance of buyer FOMO has begun to emerge across New Zealand as higher mortgage rates and inflation take their toll on household budgets.

More
2 June 2022

Sense of Drama


Part of a complete renovation that involved re-planning the spacial layout of a 1920 transitional villa, these two bathrooms now sit centre stage in a home fit for this century.

More
19 May 2022

Navigate your way to a successful mortgage application


The home lending landscape has become far more complex in recent times. And navigating a path through this constantly changing environment can be both exhausting and challenging.

More
12 May 2022

Thinking of selling your investment property?


Here are some top tips from our Property Management CEO, Aaron.

More
5 May 2022

In-Room Auctions are back!


Ask anyone who has participated or just been in an auction room and you’ll know that nothing compares to the auction day buzz! So as the Covid traffic light system allows, we are back at in-…

More
21 April 2022

On the road again


Sean Beldon is a master at capturing the subtle moods of New Zealand’s landscape. A native of South Africa, his arrival in Aotearoa in 2007 inspired him to pick up his paintbrush after a hia…

More
7 April 2022

Density done well


Demand for more compact homes on smaller sites is on the increase, particularly given Auckland’s rapid population growth and skyrocketing land values. With forethought and the adoption of so…

More

Contact Us

Are you interested in knowing more about one of these articles? Please fill out the form below to get in contact with us.