It seems that the new thing is to obscure and conceal the true functional purpose of all things known to man. We have many household and yard items that look like they are merely a part of the scenery, yet when we need them, push a button here, twist a knob there, clap your hands or say the words and whatever device you beckoned obediently springs onto the scene, out from its cleverly hidden location.
Perhaps designers have found some sort of correlation between those things we see with our eyes and how they influence our sense of stress. In other words, if all the objects and tools we use to work at things–i.e. electronics and home maintenance products remain hidden from view until a time comes when we decide to use them, then maybe we are therefore relieved of a significant degree of stress.
Removing Sources of Passing Guilt
Certainly, in our own homes, every time we pass by a vacuum cleaner, washing machine/dryer, mop, Swiffer duster, refrigerator or lawnmower, regardless of whether or not we even intend to use it, we experience a pang of something–perhaps it’s guilt or just a feeling of not having enough time to “do it all.”
So it would make perfect sense to develop methods of concealing those things in an effort to alleviate symptomatic guilt leading to anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders. No more “Oh no, I’ve got to find some time to do this and that,” as we traverse the spaces within the habitat we call home. With all things work and duty-related, we probably end up experiencing more comfort and relaxation while at home.
Where Did Everything Go?
The technology is here: cabinets that open to refrigeration systems, drawers that open to reveal warming functionality, and when all the cabinets are closed, a person unfamiliar with the exact location of the kitchen appliances in your home would be hard-pressed to just kick into action with whipping up a meal and cleaning up as they went along. Their first observed move would be in running their hands along with the different cabinet and drawer facings, opening each one to reveal its true function.
Yesterday’s Kitchen Design Mandate
It was not all that long ago that the well-designed kitchen had fully gathered and ruffled country curtains on every window, baskets on countertops and mounted on walls, with various contents from fake fruits to fake flowers. Cute little knick-knacks occupied every inch of available space, and there was not to be found a single unadorned section of the space where countertops met a wall. It was as if any unencumbered kitchen space was crying out to become the next location for the newest cute kitchen stuff.
None of these kitchen add-ons were ever functional, and some of the creations decorating the wall may have, at one time, actually been of use, but once they were relegated as decorative, they no longer could be counted among the functional kitchen tools available for culinary use. Collections of all kinds would grace countertops, shelves, and more. Cookbook collections would somehow allude to the proficiency of the woman/cook of the home.
When shelf space would run out, more shelves would be added: wooden ones to singly affix to walls, and glass ones to stack up in the window above the minimalist kitchen sink. Profuse plants would thrive and send out shooters everywhere. Surely the person responsible for dusting all that stuff suffered nightmares about it. Surely, even with the best cleaning and dusting efforts, these kitchens of yore must have been absolute dust pits.
Nobody Has the Time
Somebody, somewhere woke up and realized that today’s families have no one member who is in possession of enough time to commandeer such a minimalist kitchen, and actually, who would want to? Necessity has always been the mother of invention, and thankfully, our busy schedules produced one of the best gifts to home life: the streamlined, minimalist kitchen. No clutter, easy cleanup, hardly any dusting is needed, and everyone’s happy.
For families transitioning over to a kitchen with minimalist design features, getting used to it may present a challenge. While the mandate to “use it and then put it back where it belongs” may at first appear to be more like a drudgery, with a little bit of practice, everyone can eventually catch on. Once everyone begins to realize that their little “put it away” efforts
Minimal Use of Color
While color is always kept to a minimum in the design ambiance of a minimalist kitchen, there are many forms of spot-on success accomplished by employing contrasting colors. In many modern-styled kitchens, the frequent use of black and white is seen, sometimes with a small but distinctive splash of red or yellow in a very small form. White is really big, with white walls, white appliances, white furniture, and all sitting atop a beautiful granite slab floor that is purposefully left barren–rugs are generally out unless as statement rugs and then use of more than one is frowned upon.
When it comes to creating the ambiance of light in the minimalist kitchen, it becomes a very focused pursuit. Gone now are the centrally located, overhead bright light fixtures that sometimes were designed with fans on the down most parts. We now know that light can be effectively used to sculpt a room with amazing results. Minimalist lighting for the kitchen finds suspended lights to light up specific isolated areas of the kitchen, effectively dividing and appropriating different areas within, and thus conveying the sense of more spaciousness.
Who needs it? What we previously thought of as necessary components of every smart kitchen has now been relegated to antiquity. With intermittent knob and pull hardware spattered around the room, the eye can freely float without interruption, and thus interpret serenity. In fact, the minimalist kitchen is all about the erasure of interruption, in order to create an overall sense of calm, seamless existence. This design technique is not only effective for those involved with food preparation and dining but just as much for passers-thru. Uninterrupted movement with a new taste of grace and serenity.