Designer Shares His Expertise on Atlanta’s Top Kitchen Trends

By Chelsie Butler
May 19, 2014

Sub-Zero/Wolf recently hosted a press lunch at its Atlanta headquarters, where renowned designer Matthew Quinn shared his expertise on national kitchen trends, as well as some regional trends specific to Atlanta and its surrounding areas. Quinn, co-owner of ADAC’s Design Galleria and owner of his new kitchen and bath hardware showroom – the Matthew Quinn Collection – designs spaces for a variety of clients in Georgia and beyond, as well as products for a variety of well-known manufacturers. 

“The layering of talent – architect, interior designer, kitchen designer and even lighting designer – makes for the most successful projects,” said Quinn.

Some of the Atlanta-regional trends he has noticed include: 

  • Houses – at least in the suburbs – are bigger than in other areas of the U.S., and the spaces inside are growing. 
  • Designs styles (at least those projects he has worked on) are about 30 percent traditional, 20 percent modern and 50 percent in the middle (he doesn’t like the word “transitional”).
  • Budgets are smaller; not necessarily based on incomes but instead on apprehension of spending. 
  • People in this region are safer decision-makers; they are taking the time to learn where it is important for them to spend their money. 
  • As long as they can see the ideas translated into show houses, in print and online, they are more apt to take a risk. 
  • People in this region are more concerned about resale, but they are less concerned with what is “trendy” and are more apt to put their own spin on a design. 
  • The Atlanta design community is finally on the map, and they are not out there tooting their own horns to be recognized. 
  • “Unique” and “exclusive” are buzz words when it comes to a design project for people in Atlanta and is also a national interest. 


                The Wolf/Sub-Zero Atlanta showroom, part of which was designed by Quinn

Some of the more general kitchen trends Quinn has seen all over the U.S. include: 

  • People want more windows in their spaces. 
  • Homeowners are spending more money on interesting ceiling designs in the rooms they use most. 
  • Angled cabinets and islands are moving toward square and rectangle shapes, which lays the groundwork for cleaner, simpler designs. 
  • Drawers are becoming more popular than vertical cabinets to free up window space. They are also a good universal design choice because they eliminate having to lift heavy objects to upper shelves. 
  • Metal hoods – brass, copper, zinc, pewter, stainless steel and even painted metal – are strong. 
  • Lighting can make or break a space, and there need to be different levels. Quinn likes to use sconces in kitchens because they aren’t normally used there. 
  • A mix of finishes where the contrast is subtler is in. 
  • White continues to reign – it’s not even a trend, it’s just timeless. 
  • Manufacturers are getting so good at stone replication that this will be popular for the next three years. 
  • The inside of cabinetry is just as important as the exterior; there are spaces for everything – corner pullouts, breakfast garages and pet storage.
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