Small Kitchen Updates That Incorporate the Quiet Luxury Trend 

a small kitchen with white countertops and oak bar stools

In 2023, the quiet luxury trend took the internet by storm, epitomized by celebrities such as Sofia Richie. Richie’s knack for showcasing wealth through minimalist attire has captured widespread attention.

While her wardrobe pieces may be out of reach for the average person due to their high price tags, the essence of her style is accessible to those on a budget. Achieving a similar look is possible with just a few staple items: a classic T-shirt, straight-leg jeans, and a pair of stylish heels.

This approach to fashion underscores that sophistication doesn’t always come from extravagance but can be beautifully expressed through simplicity.

Luckily, the trend expanded into home design, showing how you can elevate your home’s style by simply choosing a particular aesthetic and sticking to it.

If you want to achieve some small kitchen updates this year and the quiet luxury trend appeals to you, here are some minor adjustment ideas that can bring you closer to achieving your goal. 

Small Kitchen Updates

Incorporating the quiet luxury trend into small kitchen updates is an artful way of blending understated elegance with functional kitchen design. This approach focuses on achieving a high-end look and feel without overt extravagance, perfect for those seeking to refresh their kitchen space with subtle yet impactful changes.

Choose Soft Colours 

a kitchen with neutral and soft colours

Soft colors, such as peach, pale yellow, or lavender, are believed to express delicacy, which is what you want to achieve. Whether we talk about walls, cabinets, or cutlery, choosing a soft color palette for your kitchen design will make it look effortlessly luxe.

Some great ideas for palettes include the following:

  • Light blue, sand colors, and violet
  • Soft brown, olive, and pink tones
  • Navy blue and gold
  • Plum and antique white
  • Charcoal and cream

You can get creative and choose whatever colors you like, as long as they make your kitchen feel like the most calming place on earth. This is a straightforward way to transform cheap kitchens, moving away from the ubiquitous white cabinets and sterile feel and including luxury trends.

The quiet luxury trend thrives in simplicity, and this extends to your color choices. A neutral color palette, featuring whites, beiges, or soft greys, can create a serene and spacious feel in a small kitchen.

These tones reflect light, making the space appear larger, and serve as a sophisticated backdrop for any design elements you choose to highlight.

Adding Nature 

kitchen shelving with plants

Quiet luxury gravitates towards elements from nature like wood, greenery, or scenic views, which are inherently simple yet captivating. To infuse your kitchen with this aesthetic, seamlessly incorporate these elements, tailored to their scale and style.

For example, plants, which adapt easily to various spaces, can be elegantly arranged on countertops, on shelves, or atop tables, regardless of their size.

Simultaneously, introducing earthy hues through wooden furnishings and decor can enhance the ambiance.

While keeping your budget in consideration, opting for durable options like teak furniture is advisable, as it not only withstands the test of time but also demands minimal upkeep compared to other wood varieties.

Contrast with Black Tones

a kitchen with black kitchen cabinets and white panelling with vintage accents and artwork

Quiet luxury is all about simplicity, and what’s more fundamental than black and white? Every kitchen design approach includes white tones in furniture, decor, and art, but incorporating black accents is guaranteed to uplift the aesthetic of any home, irrespective of the specific space. 

Here are some ways to achieve this luxury trend:

  1. White and Black: Pairing black with white creates a timeless, chic contrast. Think white marble countertops against black cabinetry or black appliances against white tiled backsplashes. This classic duo exudes elegance and simplicity.
  2. Metallic Accents: Introduce metallic finishes like gold, copper, or brass in fixtures, hardware, or decorative elements. These metals against a black backdrop add warmth and a touch of opulence, creating focal points that draw the eye.
  3. Cabinetry: Paint lower cabinets or a single accent wall of cabinets in black for a striking contrast, especially effective in kitchen designs with lighter walls and countertops.
  4. Backsplash: Choose black tiles for the backsplash, which can range from matte to glossy finishes, or geometric to subway styles, adding depth and interest to the kitchen.
  5. Countertops: Opt for black granite, quartz, or marble countertops. These not only look sleek and stylish but are also durable and easy to maintain.
  6. Appliances: Invest in black stainless steel appliances for a sleek, modern look that’s less prone to smudging than traditional stainless steel.
  7. Hardware: Swap out knobs, pulls, and faucets with black finishes. Matte black hardware against lighter cabinetry creates a chic, contemporary contrast.

Improve Cabinet Organisers 

a pine cupboard full with tablewares

To embrace the quiet luxury trend in your home, the goal is to streamline and minimize clutter, allowing only select items like exquisite tableware and art to remain visible.

This necessitates upgrading your cabinet organizers to efficiently store everyday items, such as cleaning supplies and various household odds and ends. By doing so, you ensure that only decorative elements that enhance the kitchen’s beauty are on display.

For example, the space under the sink could be considerably improved with storage, as this is often an underutilized space. Other ideas include the following:

  • A vintage rolling cart that’s cost-efficient and can fit in every space
  • Magnetic storage racks for the fridge and other similar areas
  • Custom cabinetry inserts for bulky items
  • Hidden platforms for appliances and cutlery

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Integrate Seamless Technology

a coffee machine in a cupboard in the kitchen

Modern luxury trends often incorporate the latest technology, which can be especially beneficial in small kitchen designs. Compact, smart appliances that streamline cooking processes without taking up much space can be both practical and luxurious.

Think of slim, smart refrigerators, built-in coffee machines, or under-cabinet screens that display recipes or entertainment.

Enhance with Art and Decor

a kitchen with vintage artwork and gold hardware

Art and decor are the finishing touches that can infuse your kitchen with personality and luxury. Select pieces that resonate with the quiet luxury aesthetic, simple yet sophisticated.

A single, striking piece of art can serve as a conversation starter, while elegant vases or minimalist sculptures can add intrigue without overwhelming the space. Here are some more ideas;

  1. Statement Art Pieces: Choose a large, eye-catching piece of art to serve as a focal point in your kitchen. This could be a sophisticated abstract painting, a black-and-white photograph, or a colorful modern art piece that complements the color scheme of your kitchen.
  2. Sculptural Elements: Incorporate sculptural items such as vases, bowls, or even artistic fruit stands. Opt for pieces made from luxurious materials like marble, crystal, or polished metals to add a touch of elegance.
  3. Elegant Lighting Fixtures: Swap out basic lighting for something more ornate or modern. Consider a designer pendant light over the island, a chic chandelier, or sleek LED under-cabinet lighting to add both function and form.
  4. Decorative Mirrors: Hang a decorative mirror to add depth and light to your kitchen. A beautifully framed mirror can act as a piece of art and make the space feel larger and more open.
  5. Luxury Textiles: Upgrade your kitchen textiles to high-quality fabrics. Think linen tea towels, plush floor mats, or even an upholstered bench cushion in a premium fabric. These small changes can add a layer of luxury to everyday items.
  6. Fine China or Glassware Display: If you have a collection of fine china, crystal glassware, or unique pottery, arrange it on open shelves or in glass-front cabinets as a decorative element that’s also functional.

Seek Vintage Pieces 

a kitchen with vintage bar stools and rug

Compared with minimalism and other similar designs, the quiet luxury trend is defined by vintage pieces found at yard sales, auctions, thrift stores, and family members.

You can incorporate retro elements into your kitchen design by exploring the following options:

  1. Vintage Furniture: Hunt for antique tables, chairs, or bar stools that can serve as a focal point. These pieces often feature craftsmanship and materials that are hard to find in modern furniture, adding an authentic vintage feel.
  2. Retro Appliances: Look for vintage-style modern appliances or refurbished vintage appliances. Brands often offer retro designs in their ranges, refrigerators, and more, combining classic aesthetics with contemporary functionality.
  3. Salvaged Hardware: Replace modern cabinet knobs and drawer pulls with salvaged hardware. Flea markets and antique shops are treasure troves for unique, vintage hardware that can add subtle historic details to your kitchen.
  4. Antique Lighting Fixtures: Install pendant lights, chandeliers, or wall sconces that hark back to past eras. Vintage lighting not only illuminates but also serves as artful decor.
  5. Classic Cookware and Utensils: Display vintage cookware, like cast iron skillets or enamelware, and utensils on open shelves or hanging racks. These pieces add a functional yet decorative element that speaks to culinary history.
  6. Vintage Wall Art and Signs: Adorn your walls with vintage signs, old advertisements, or classic culinary prints. These can create a nostalgic backdrop that complements the overall aesthetic.
  7. Retro Tiles: For backsplashes or floors, consider using patterned tiles that reflect past eras, such as Art Deco designs, checkerboard patterns, or colorful subway tiles, to infuse a sense of history.
  8. Heirloom Textiles: Use vintage tablecloths, tea towels, or aprons as accents. These textiles can introduce patterns and colors typical of specific decades, adding layers of texture and warmth.

Choose Luxurious Flooring

a kitchen with stone flooring

Flooring can dramatically change the look and feel of your kitchen. High-end materials like hardwood or natural stone can introduce an element of luxury.

For a more budget-friendly option, consider luxury vinyl tile or laminate flooring that mimics these natural materials’ appearance, providing durability and ease of maintenance.

A quiet luxury kitchen design harmoniously combines minimalist and vintage elements, achieving a clean yet ornately adorned aesthetic. Traditionally associated with fashion, where individuals wear items that can be perceived as luxury, this concept is now making its way into interior design, including kitchen spaces.

In the kitchen, quiet luxury manifests as a space bathed in gentle hues, adorned with natural features, and showcasing vintage items elegantly presented for visitors’ admiration.

How do you modernize a small kitchen?

If possible, consider opening up the kitchen to adjacent spaces. Removing non-structural walls or opting for a more open layout can make the kitchen feel larger and more integrated with the rest of the home.

If you don’t have the room to expand, refresh your cabinetry by replacing old doors with modern styles, or simply repaint existing ones in contemporary hues like white, gray, or other soft neutrals. Sleek, handleless cabinets with a high-gloss finish can also give a modern, streamlined look.

How can I beautify my small kitchen?

Choose light or neutral color palettes to make the space appear larger and brighter. Accents in bold colors can add depth and interest.

Replace upper cabinets with open shelves to create an airy feel. Display beautiful dishware, glass jars filled with ingredients, or decorative items to add personality.

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a very small commission if you click through and make a purchase. These links help to pay the editorial costs of writing a blog. For more information, please read my full affiliate disclosure here

I also use Artificial Intelligence Image generators to create some of my images. These are to show you examples of my ideas and inspiration when I cannot produce the real images myself.

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