Your Guide To A 2020 Kitchen

As I spent yet another day trying to understand what “a new trend toward maximal Scandinavian” was supposed to mean, a thought struck me…What if I looked at all the design advice out there on a topic and then looked at what was most popular among the entire set of articles. In other words, what are the trends of the trend articles?

So here we are. I’ve looked at 28 of the most shared, linked to, and searched for articles about kitchen trends in 2020. With the help of my excellent team, we’ve deconstructed each article’s suggestions, translated those suggestions into plain English, and looked at how those recommendations matched up with actual search trends for kitchen decor topics. (You can read more about our evaluation process at the very bottom of the article.)

The result? A list of the best kitchen decor in 2020 — simple, straightforward, and insightful. If your job depends on design excellence, then read on…

The Clear Winners

Of the 28 articles we looked at, the three choices below were the most popular. This means the were mentioned, in total, more times than any other decor tip. There are as close to sure bets as the design world gets, so if you want to keep your kitchen design on the trendy straight and narrow…look no further.

8 of 28 articles mentioned black accents in kitchen decor, making it the most featured suggestion for 2020. The suggestions ranged from paint accents to fixtures but the idea was clear…create contrast by using black somewhere in your kitchen.

7 of 28 articles mentioned brass while even more mentioned brass and brass variants (like rose gold). The message is very clear on this point, brass is in! Look at the search data below and you can see how this is definitely true for real people too!

This tip requires some interpretation on your designers part, because it’s not so obvious. First, navy blue was far and away the most popular shade of blue recommended (6 of 28 articles). But many other blues were also recommended, from the light blue pictured above to green/blue of sea foam and other classic colors. Looks like the devil is in the details on this one!

3 Made The Cut

The three selections below were the next most listed items for in the lists we reviewed.

Open Shelving turns out open shelving was a huge trend in 2018 and, surprise, it stuck around through 2020. 25% of articles mentioned this trend and no wonder, open shelving has been a staple of mid century modern design for many years.

Marble had a strong showing, making an appearance in 25% of all articles surveyed. I imaged the fact that it looks so cool many have created so undue influence, as actual searches for marble has been steady (if slightly declining) for years.

Two Tone Cabinetry another trend that featured in 23% of articles was two-tone decor (like the blue island featured above). Contrast and maximal design were also mentioned in many articles, so two-tone paint is really a way to achieve both these looks.

Contrarian Design

These last three choices were all mentioned in the kitchen trend articles, but not with enough frequency to make the top 6. Because I’m a designer at heart, I say forget the numbers and here are my three recommendations.

Terrazzo the 1970s standard is making a comeback…or so they say. There has been a slight increase in searches through design hot spots (like New York City) over the past 2 years, so maybe this is a real trend. Truth be told, I think everyone who mentioned terrazo just wanted to show the picture above…which is so chic.

Banquette Seating Another cool feature — albeit one that would require some legwork — is banquette seating, which is basically having a bench for seating in your kitchen. Searches for this tripled in the beginning of 2019 (when many 2020 trend articles were released) and have since returned to average levels. This seating does look great but actually installing it in your home feels like a tall order.

Smart AppliancesI will say I was shocked to see that only 2 of the articles surveyed even mentioned smart appliances. It isn’t exactly a design feature but a trend nonetheless. This is something smart designers definitely want to pay attention to, as queries for “smart fridge” have doubled during 2020, so there is obviously a lot of interest in the technology.

Wrapping Up 2020 Kitchens In 3 Points

After reading the most shared content on kitchen trends, a few things became obvious.

First, some authors are definitely leading the charge by producing excellent insights and guides. I was impressed with the depth and research of Emily Henderson’s guide, which I consider the best of the group (by quite a distance).

Second, many suggestions simply look great visually. In other words, there is an incentive to show ideas that aren’t very practical but look great. No harm in this, but something all readers should consider before feeling bummed about not capturing the exact look or trend in their own home.

Third, searches via Google tell us a ton about what people are actually interested in. If you work in a business where better design means more sales (looking at you home stagers), then understanding real trends about interest is a smart way to stay on top of what’s actually interesting to those looking to redecorate or purchase a home.

A Better Approach To Understanding Design Trends
As I mentioned above, I’ve worked in the design community online for a quite a few years. During this time, I’ve often been surprised at how contradictory and unclear design advice is.

If you are a homeowner looking to stay on point or trying to increase the value of your house before selling, knowing what the hot looks are can mean more fulfillment and more money.

TheMostChic talks about all things design, but we are currently looking into writing more about the “data” behind design and furniture trends.

If you interested in learning more or have suggestions for relevant topics email me at