The Remodeling Corner

Janet Cook

October is National Kitchen and Bath Month, a time to celebrate what is considered the two most important rooms in the home. Houzz, the top online resource for home design and renovation ideas, selected the Best in Design for 2021 by looking at the top 3% most-saved photographs and choosing the winners for the year. In the previous article, I wrote of the most popular design elements for those awarded the Best in Design for outdoor living and the laundry room. Now, on to what is trending as must-haves for the kitchen and bathroom.


There is a move from having predominantly white cabinetry to adding more color for contrast and warmth in the kitchen. The island can be a stained wood, with a matching stain range hood and floating shelves. Some opt to have a darker-colored island for interest. The island, and if large enough a secondary sink, is a single level with seating.

For storage, lower cabinets with open doors to shelves are being replaced by large-size drawers for more efficiency. Rather than have a solid line of upper cabinets, floating shelves are being used to give the room more depth. A walk-in pantry with barn doors helps keep counters clutter-free, and one can easily store bulk items and see one’s inventory.

Key accent pieces that were most popular include a large apron sink, beautiful pendant lights over the island, and covering the wall with tile or the countertop material. The ceilings, too, are getting details, from beams to coffers to beadboard. Overall, people want more than just a clean line, modern design but want more detail to be more transitional in design.


Powder rooms are very stylish and bold, with an experience all their own that are not matching the finishes elsewhere. It’s as if there is more bravery in taking risks in design and adding glam in a small space.

In the master bathroom, some are having to eliminate the tub to make room for a larger, no-threshold shower that includes a rain head shower fixture. Showers are enclosed with a glass wall/door to maximize the visual size of the space. Often, the focal point is a shower wall that is accented with a unique tile pattern and contrast of color. There are layering of textures in the bathroom, such as with shiplap on the walls or a tile rug or tile pattern in the floor, to add visual interest. Double-vanity sinks and medicine cabinets are the norm.

There are many ways to design a kitchen or bathroom. It is wise to collect pictures to show your professional project designer how you want your home to look. A picture says a thousand words!

Happy Home Remodeling!

Janet Cook, certified aging in place specialist, president of Cook Remodeling (celebrating their 42nd year), invites you to check out their website for more ideas and photos.