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Get the look: the modern shaker style kitchen

Here’s how to have the best of both – a new kitchen look full of old-fashioned character
   Luke Arthur Wells  |  written on: 08-11-2018 13:45pm


While I’ve talked before about how to give a shaker style kitchen a bit more of the wow factor before, it operates on the assumption that this style is a much more traditional design. However, in recent years, more and more manufacturers are giving shaker kitchens a twist, taking elements from modern kitchen designs and applying them to this look to create an interesting hybrid.

When it comes to handles, the style most associated with the shaker style is probably the cup handle. Slightly decorative and with a traditional edge, they fit the style perfectly, but to update the look, this is the first thing to relook.

modern,traditional,shaker,handleless,contemporary,grey,white
Inspiration by Second Nature


Does it even need handles at all? This painted Ellerton kitchen features an integrated handle at the top of each drawer and cupboard, and the overall effect is one of streamlining. In a smaller space such as this, the density of door handles could really overwhelm the clean lines of the design.

While retaining the classic shaker frontage, the simplified look helps more modern features feel at home – take the LED under cabinet lighting in this second Ellerton kitchen, which would look out of place in a more traditionally classic scheme.

modern,traditional,shaker,handleless,contemporary,charcoal grey,trim,islands,wooden flooring,light
Inspiration by Second Nature


Handleless kitchens are not for everyone, I know that, but even just considering colour in handle choice could help streamline the look to create a more modern feel. These over-the-top pull bars are less dominating in any case than a cup handle, but they’re even more recessive in black against Graphite cabinetry. Less of a reliance on contrast in choosing colours in this scheme really adds to a more modern feel.

modern,traditional,shaker,handleless,contemporary,Graphite,wooden,rustic,bar stools,stone wall,extension,glass wall,moroccan,floor tiles,plants,outdoor,industrial
Inspiration by Second Nature


The intersection of the materials you choose is where the real magic lies in creating a more modern version of a shaker kitchen. Imagine a solid wood shaker kitchen, and you’ll problem envisage something very traditional, however, it could as easily be this modern Lichfield kitchen.

modern,traditional,shaker,handleless,contemporary,wooden,scandinavian,scandi,white,wood,dining,open-plan,Rye Oak,Porcelain
Inspiration by Second Nature


The grain of the Rye Oak definitely has a more refined, modern aesthetic and the handleless design no doubt helps, but it’s the combination with other materials which really elevates it, helping to deliver a space that really does bridge the traditional and modern kitchen spaces, and I’d say, taking the best from both worlds.

Also read:
Expert's corner: how to create an all-white kitchen

NEXT! Want more modern shaker style looks? Check out the moodboard below. 





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Luke Arthur Wells


Luke is an interior designer, stylist and blogger at www.lukearthurwells.com. He’s a believer in understated interiors that don’t have to shout to be heard, and he’s currently practicing what he preaches renovating a Victorian terrace in Essex, where he lives with his partner and two pampered pups. When it comes to his design style, he loves new and interesting building materials, a carefully chosen white paint and he also has a weakness for coffee table books and a fresh bunch of eucalyptus.

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