Lately, I’ve been seeing a return to maximalism in kitchens – think tiled splashbacks, figured natural stone and decorative lighting. I’m also seeing a variety of contrasting materials and decorative details used together, like fluted glass in black steel frames, coloured paint finishes and then an array of artwork and ceramics. There’s more expression in our kitchen designs than ever before; maybe Instagram has something to do with it?

Now dear reader, I’m assuming that you are across the classic white kitchen with white/grey marble…. so here I’ve tried to share kitchen ideas that are little more interesting, textured and WOW-factor. And don’t worry, I’m not going to use the word ‘trend’ even once!

Natural stone on show in this stunning kitchen designed by Decus. Photo – Felix Forest.

A bold project by Nina Maya Interiors in Darlinghurst, Sydney. Photo – Felix Forest.

The stone selection here is a perfect blend of the warm timber tones and grey flagstone paving. A perfect kitchen like this is no accident! Designed by Studio Esteta. Photo – courtesy of Studio Esteta.

Not only does a stone like this look striking, it’s so much easier to live with. The veining in the stone will hide any accidental spills that may stain the stone. Designed by Decus. Photo – Anson Smart.

When you love marble so much that even the kitchen sink is marble. This kitchen is ticking a lot of boxes right now, from its curved rangehood, stone shelf for display, a serious Fisher and Paykel cooker, wall lights and even a pot-filler. This gorgeous kitchen was designed by Athena Calderone, for her own home. Photo – Sarah Elliott.

A ledge that runs over the benchtop is a great way to extend the bench space, and also an opportunity to style the kitchen so it integrates into the rest of the house. Designed by Richards Stanisich. Photo – Felix Forest.

The open shelves give this kitchen designed by Richards Stanisich a fresh relaxed vibe. Photo – Felix Forest.

(left) Client Back House by Amber Interiors. The perfect balance of keeping everyday items on display and still looking neat and tidy, this incredible kitchen in Venice, California by Amber Interiors. Photo – Tessa Neustadt. (right) Kagan House by Kennedy Nolan. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Athena Calderone designed her kitchen in her New York brownstone for her family, and also as the backdrop for her gorgeous lifestyle blog, Eye-Swoon. (Athena is a chef, author, interior designer and Pinterest superstar!) Photo – Sarah Elliott.

The use of open and closed storage using a combination of materials adds personality and is the antithesis of ‘cookie cutter’ design. Designed by Richards Stanisich. Photo – Felix Forest.

A narrow shelf provides stylish and useful storage for everyday items in a narrow space. Designed by Louise Liljencrantz for Swedish kitchen brand Kvanum. Photo – courtesy of Kvanum.

A beautiful light-filled space with gorgeous soft curved details. Though Esora is a gorgeous new restaurant in Singapore, there is some beautiful kitchen inspiration here. Photo – Jovian Lim.

An impactful use of a 3D wall tile in a kitchen designed by Louise Liljencrantz for Swedish kitchen brand Kvanum. Photo – courtesy of Kvanum.

Wrapping the entire island bench in a single material makes a bold confident statement. Robson Rak are masters at designing gorgeous kitchens. Photo – Shannon McGrath.

The Tableau kitchen designed by Cantilever and DesignOffice. Photo – courtesy of Cantilever.

This minimalist kitchen by Sisalla was made for parties. The fridge and pantry are hidden in the butler’s pantry. The materials selection of warm timbers and travertine stone floors give this a sophisticated yet intimate feel. Photo – courtesy of Sisalla.

An elegant and refined kitchen with a gently curved island bench in a limited materials palette yet rich in detail. Designed by Alwill. Photo – Pru Roscoe.

Designed by Alwill. Photo – Pru Roscoe.

Designed by Louise Liljencrantz, this Stockholm based designer has layered Portuguese limestone with stained oak cabinets for kitchen brand Kvanum. Photo – courtesy of Kvanum.

Minimal in form, yet rich in materiality. Flack Studio know how to design a sophisticated, yet warm kitchen. Armadale Residence Kitchen, designed by Flack Studio. Photo – Brooke Holm.

(left) There is a familiar warmth and textured approach to this kitchen in this gorgeous kitchen by Hecker Guthrie. Photo – Shannon McGrath. (right)Slow Beam is a new boutique accommodation by photographer Lauren Bamford in Hobart. They are nearly ready to open and are already taking bookings. This incredible interior is carefully layered and captures so much atmosphere, I have a feeling that this is going to be booked out in no time! Photo – Lauren Bamford.

Kitchen details in the Darlinghurst Residence. Designed by Richards Stanisich. Photo – Felix Forest.

Combining a black handmade tile gives this kitchen depth and warmth. Designed by Nathalie Deboel in Belguim. Photo – Thomas De Bruyne.

Blue Moon project by Bayley Ward. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Recently awarded a commendation in the Dulux Colour Awards this kitchen by Flack Studio layers beautiful dark materials to create a luxurious atmosphere. Elmore Residence Kitchen, designed by Flack Studio. Photo – Sharyn Cairns.

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