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• by Rebecca Long Pyper •

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Kitchen trends 2015

Find out what homeowners near and far are putting in their kitchens today


Kitchens evolve. They’ve transitioned through fire-burning stoves and checkerboard floors and avocado stoves to become sleek and efficient rooms today where an ice-filled glass of water is seconds away.


Because they’re the workhorses of the house, kitchens really ought to be designed with homeowners and their families in mind. But selecting stylish finishes can turn kitchens into rooms we want to be in, not just cook in.


Here’s a look at a few trends in kitchens today, some specific to Pocatello and others catching on elsewhere in the country.


Craftsman style: Nathan Arnold of Millennial Inc. Cabinetry and Millwork said the most popular style of kitchen cabinets in Pocatello is the Craftsman style — picture flat-front drawers and cabinet doors with a flat panel in the back and a frame on the front. Sometimes called shaker-style cabinets, these have become the style of choice for new kitchens in the area, especially when finished in white, gray or blue.


“It’s a clean look, and it’s a versatile style where it can either go more with rustic décor or modern décor,” Arnold said. And because these cabinets are so streamlined, cleaning them is easier because there are fewer details to wash and dust around.


No upper cabinets: Though this look is a darling of shelter magazines, Arnold said he has designed kitchens without upper cabinets in the Magic Valley area and in Sun Valley but not a single one locally. “Pocatello is such a traditional area that I’m not seeing it anytime soon here,” he said, noting that it is a good option for an uncluttered and more sleek look.


The no-uppers look works best in homes that have ample kitchens — ones with enough storage space in base cabinetry or in bigger homes with walk-in or butler’s pantries. One variation on this style is to have a few open shelves instead of no uppers at all, providing some needed storage for daily dishes.


Flooring: Tile shops in town are still selling porcelain tile, but more buyers are opting for wood-look tile. And it seems that more Pocatellans are leaning towards wood in general because “we’re seeing a lot more of a gravitating away from porcelain and ceramic to hardwood,” said Shane Ward of Rug Rat Flooring America. “Really the only disadvantage (to hardwood) is if you have too much water that gets on your wood and stays.”


Other options increasing in popularity locally include sheet vinyl that performs better, is less expensive and is easier to maintain than its predecessor linoleum; look for it in wood and stone patterns. Also up and coming is luxury vinyl tile, a modular product that comes in squares or planks and is great for DIYers. “What people have really enjoyed about it is water does not negatively affect it,” Ward said.


Cement tile: A favorite for kitchens elsewhere is cement or encaustic tile. Whether for floors or backsplashes, this patterned tile is full of color and can add personality to a space — much of the design is inspired by traditional Mexican, Moroccan and Caribbean motifs. Tiles can be ordered online at sites like and


Story and background photo by Rebecca Long Pyper.