Header - Emotional Support Kitchen

We’re calling it: The ‘Emotional Support’ Kitchen is 2023’s Biggest Design Trend

There’s no denying that since the pandemic, how we use our homes and how they make us feel has really come into sharp focus.

And this focus is sharpest when it comes to designing a kitchen. It is, after all, the heart of the home, where many of spend the most time. And while it has to be functional, and of course we want it to be beautiful, it’s got to make us feel good too.

So, how to create a kitchen design, through color choices, layout, materials and lighting, that appeals to our emotions, positively?

We think this Lay On Classic & Urbo kitchen designed by Sam Hart, Senior Design Consultant, at Roundhouse London captures the spirit of the ’emotional support’ kitchen. Below, we explain why this is more than just a kitchen trend but a permanent shift, while Sam explains her design choices.



Choosing a dark kitchen color might seem counter-intuitive but it is cocooning and atmospheric, perfect for kitchens you mainly use in the evening, and especially for dinner parties, though we would advise that you need to ensure kitchen lighting is well planned for it not to feel gloomy. Think warm bulbs and shades.

‘This kitchen is painted in Farrow & Ball(opens in new tab) ‘Studio Green’. When applied to a surface, the rich pigments respond extraordinarily to all types of light. The deep green hue appears almost black when the room is dimly lit,’ says Sam.

‘The purpose of using a color like this on the walls and cabinetry is to create a cocooning feeling. In the evening time, the rich hue creates the perfect atmospheric backdrop for hosting drinks. While during the day, the rooms large paned windows allow enough light in to avoid the space from feeling claustrophobic and the greenery from just outside is echoed within.’



Antiqued and warm metallics aren’t just glamorous looking; they also add a touch of welcoming warmth to a kitchen. This is a must if you are choosing a dark or cool color for your kitchen units, walls or flooring.

‘The signature antique brass metal wrap island is real brass sheet material which is folded and welded to the shape of a door. The patination is created by a light acidic formula being hand applied to create an individual hand-crafted finish. Once this effect has been created on the surface it is sealed with a clear lacquer,’ says Sam.

‘The patina created using this method gives the warm brass a beautiful texture, character and the feeling of aging over time; elements that are essential for creating a comfortable home.’



Kitchen countertop ideas are a dominant feature, so they have to be alluringly beautiful. And there’s no doubt that the textures, patinas and colors within natural materials make us feel more enriched than anything man made ever could.

‘Using natural stone is a great way to create opulence in the kitchen. The nuances in the stone make each slab unique. The veining in each slab showcases a myriad of colors that can be introduced in other design elements to pull together the scheme.

‘In this case the pink and golden tones in the Leathered Taj Mahal Quartzite are complemented by the warm brass and intense green. The leathered effect enhances the tactile, organic qualities of the stone.

‘The shark nose edge detail makes the impressive slab look neat and elegant. This delicate detail helps to balance the industrial quality of the brass on the island to create a structure that looks like a beautiful piece of furniture in the room,’ says Sam.



Curves make a space feel more welcoming, plus they are practical because they free up the space that hard corners take up. Curves also soften a space visually, which is a must in a room that’s dominated by hard and often shiny surfaces that are the opposite of comforting.

‘Hard functional lines are unavoidable in a kitchen space, however there are ways you can incorporate rounded edges to soften the look and feel of the room. This building was originally a ship master’s house, dating to the 1700s, which is why the back wall is curved. Sam has designed a rounded bar at the end of the island to mirror the shape of the bay windows,’ says Sam.

‘Not only does this create an interesting feature, but it’s practical – no bumping into pointed edges as one moves around the room!’



Natural materials, such as wood, always makes a room feel warmer. They cry out to be touched, and again soften those hard, shiny materials so prevalent in kitchen design.

‘The beautiful warm wood parquet flooring in this kitchen helps the space to feel more like a room. Gone are the days of clinical tiled flooring in kitchens! The kitchen is often the central hub of the home, with many spending most of their time here – it’s important that they are comfortable spaces that feel like a continuation from the rest of the house,’ says Sam.

‘Not only does the addition of wood create warmth, but the pattern creates interest and contrast against the other textures in the room such as the brass and veining in the natural stone. It’s a beautiful way of adding interest.’



Kitchen layout ideas have flexed fundamentally.

‘Open plan kitchens had their moment, however in recent times homeowners have had a change of heart,’ says Sam. ‘The desire for a kitchen separate from the living space is becoming more and more popular. Those who are a keen cooks wish to try new recipes in peace, and parents that work from home want a quiet space away from the communal family area to catch up on emails.

‘The perk of having a separate kitchen space is that the room becomes a retreat of sorts – a place to read a book and have a glass of wine, or read the paper with your morning coffee. Using lavish materials such as patinated brass and natural stone help create a luxurious, serene feel further helping to make the room feel like a sanctuary.’

We can only agree – we think open plan has, to a degree, had its day, though we love the flexibility of broken plan rooms, which offer the best of both worlds, and which can, in many cases be retro-installed.



Think about how a beautifully designed room makes you feel: Happy? Inspired? Moved? This is an example of ’emotional design’, in other words, design that is created to evoke a response. This needn’t be complicated when applied to your own home: just consider what colors, textures and shapes you find pleasing and include them in your rooms, though know that some elements that humans love are universal. For example: darker, warmer colors make us feel cossetted and safe; natural textures are more pleasing to us than man-made; and soft curves are more alluring than hard lines.




Header - Holiday Decor

8 Ways To Bring This Season’s Trends Into Your Holiday Decor

The holiday season is a time many people cherish—the welcoming of the cold, brisk air and spicy lattes. With the changing of the seasons often comes boxing up your summer decor and figuring out how you will decorate your home for the holidays that bring up the tail end of the year.

You might be one of those people that stick with the same theme and bring out your family’s precious and memorable decor items every year. But if you are wanting to spice things up or adopt a new design trend for this year’s theme, we’ll lay out the best decor trends for this holiday season.


1. Traditional and Nostalgic Christmas

Your family might have a whole attic full of traditional Christmas decor items that carry years’ worth of memories. Luckily for you, these items are timeless and therefore always make the trend list. Colors like red, green, buffalo plaid and burlap give your guests a warm and inviting feeling. If you’ve never done a traditional style Christmas before, here are some other items to consider for decoration:

      • Santas
      • Vintage ornaments
      • Garland
      • Poinsettias


2. Bright Colors

Perhaps the opposite of the traditional Christmas is opting for bright colors as a holiday trend for 2022. 2022 has been a rough year for a lot of the world, leaving many to rip up their rule book when it comes to decorating for the holidays. Choosing bright colors is a great way to make Christmas fun and exciting and not to mention, brighter colors are a great mood booster.


3. Natural Neutrals

Christmas time has an element to nature to it and evokes a sense of overall coziness. A holiday decor trend of 2022 that helps embody that feeling inside your home is choosing natural and neutral color schemes. Use natural colors like tans, sage greens, white and to give it pop, hints of gold. Add decorative elements from nature like pinecones, acorns, and leaves.


4. Gonks

You probably wondering, “what is a gonk?” Think garden gnome but cuter. Gonks are unique decor accessories and are set to trend for Christmas 2022. They come in all shapes and sizes and are typically depicted with a tall pointy hat and long white beard. Gonks are a great way to sprinkle some character into your holiday decorations this year.


5. Add Metallics for Flair

Whatever holiday decor trend you choose as your theme this year, there is always room for improvement. A great way to do that is to sprinkle a little bling into the background. Gold is a popular choice and is great because it reflects Christmas lights and candlelight making your home feel magical.


6. Pastels

Soft pastel colors were a trend for 2022 and look to carry that into the 2022 holiday season. This is because warm peaches and pink colors blend smoothly with the greens of the Christmas tree and other holiday decorations. Couple that with pearl accents, hints of white and blush flowers and you will have a vintage and glamorous home for your loved ones to visit.


7. Candlelight and Lanterns

Trending for the holiday season of 2022 is getting back to our roots of lighting a room—candles, and lanterns. Candles are a great way to add some pop to your dinner table. Use longer tapered candles on an accented base to provide a feeling of elegance. Lanterns are a great addition to your main gathering rooms to give your guest a feeling of warmth and coziness.


8. Festive Door Displays

Holiday decorating isn’t just for the interior of your home. Step it up this season with the Christmas 2022 trend of decorating your main doorway. Wreaths, lighted garlands, plants, candles and more are a great way to make your guests feel welcomed and up the curb appeal of your home.


By: Ashlyn Brooks