Handles vs Handle-less
Designing a new kitchen is an exciting time for homeowners, with considerations from the initial functionality and layout of the living space to the style and finishing touches. Handles are one of those finishing touches that can really cement a look, adding personality and function to the kitchen. However, handle-less kitchen design continues to grow in popularity the UK market - a trend heavily influenced by European markets. Here, we explore each style so that you can offer your customers the right option for them. Read the full article in What's New: The Autumn Edit 2018.
Handles are one of the most versatile finishing touches for a kitchen, providing functionality for everyday access to storage areas, as well as highlighting design features.
Whatever the kitchen style, careful handle choice can really inject personality to a design. The new GRAF 2 range is a great example of handles that bring a raw finish and quirky texture to furniture – perfect for adding an edge to the aesthetic. In contrast, the U Pull range, which is available in three sleek finishes, brings a sophisticated elegance for a more contemporary finish.
Any kitchen needs to be built to stand the test of time, and this can sometimes be tricky with cabinets and storage areas that are used frequently throughout the day. Handles offer durability, as well as quick and easy access to cabinet contents. All the new handles in the Häfele range are designed to both look great and withstand wear.
Living area distinction
Handles are a great way to define a space, providing a physical indication of different living areas or highlighting specific design elements – ideal for the increasingly popular open / broken plan living trends. The new Lamont range offers a complete suite of handles and knobs which can be used throughout the living space, accentuating areas of function whilst bringing fluidity to the overall design.
Update decor easily
The kitchen should be designed to suit the lifestyle of the homeowner today and in the future, but just as needs evolve during the lifetime of a kitchen, so do trends. Handles offer a cost-effective and easy way for homeowners to update their kitchen as preferences and trends change.
Handle-less kitchens have been dominating design for luxury kitchens in Europe for some time, and the trend is now growing in prominence within British kitchen design. With a clean, seamless aesthetic, it’s easy to see why this style is winning over designers and homeowners alike. So, could this style be for your customer?
Sleek, streamlined, uncluttered style
Uninterrupted, clean lines are rapidly becoming the hallmark of contemporary kitchen design, with appliances, utensils, crockery and food increasingly being kept behind closed doors. After all, if homeowners are investing in surfaces such as splashbacks and worktops that are design features in themselves, why hide them? The handle-less trend builds on this, creating a completely streamlined style.
Smoother transition between living areas
Modern kitchen design demands fluidity between living spaces with kitchens increasingly being used for socialising, working or entertaining in, in addition to preparing and cooking food. Handle-less design helps create a smooth transition between zones for multifunctional use. Solutions such as the Line Profile handle enhance this fluidity whilst providing easy-to-access functionality for everyday use.
As households increasingly continue to accommodate multigenerational living, it is imperative to consider design that will be safe for all ages. The new Cubic Inset handles provide a flush finish without any visual disruption or protruding fittings.
The View from EuroCucina
The hidden kitchen trend is not new to the European market, but it is one that has evolved in creativity. At Eurocucina, some of the most notable kitchens only featured subtle indications (eg recessed handles) of their intended purpose.
Framed furniture featured heavily throughout the 2018 exhibition, with hidden handles and contrasting materials integrated seamlessly for a handle-less aesthetic, providing a sleek and contemporary design finish.
Where handles were featured, colour was prominent – matte black and brass were popular choices, well established as go-to finishes.