Kitchens with color, functionality, and a bit of drama are popping up around the Monterey Peninsula, as kitchen trends adjust to a new era of style. Color is returning to kitchens after a decade characterized by neutrals, marble and stainless steel. Organic colors like blues and greens are appearing on cabinets, especially those located on lower cabinets or islands. Opaque stains impart a light, creamy color while letting natural wood grain shine through. “Timeless white finishes will always take place, but a little touch of whimsy with colors is a nice option,” observes Charissa Shaoul of Visions Design Center and Rissa’s Heartfelt Kitchens. “Last year we did a gorgeous all-yellow contemporary kitchen. We called the design ‘faux Vitamin D.’” On the other side of the spectrum, Jillian Clark currently has four all-black kitchens in the works. Black appliances, sinks and cabinets are rising in popularity, often balanced with a lighter red oak or white oak flooring, says Clark, the owner of Kitchen Studio of Monterey Peninsula, Inc. “Simple elegance is a pretty good summary,” says Clark, who compares these kitchens to the classic little black dress. “Clients are always after simple elegance.” Stainless steel is largely being replaced with options that fit more cohesively with organic designs, Mark Nettesheim, founder of Classic Kitchens & Designs, explains. Warmer metals like bronze are a trendy finish, or new products like silverTouch deliver a matte version of shiny stainless steel for “mono14 The Best of Monterey Bay ® Haven 2023-2024 Make It Pop Color and cohesion—and disappearing acts—put the finishing touches on a custom kitchen. By Caitlin Fillmore Charissa Shaoul Holdren Lietzke AIA, Mark Nettesheim, CKD Classic Kitchens & Designs, Inc. kitchens_23.indd 1 8/3/23 2:40 PM