Written by Lisa Simek
French door wall ovens indistinguishable from one’s cabinetry, Wi-Fi-synched refrigerators that order take-out, and brushed slate finishing resembling natural stone are just some of the latest trends of the appliance world. Whether remodeling a kitchen or taking on the feat of new construction, these devices are the finishing touches that can make or break the decorative ambiance of a space. Since finding the right appliances that harmonize with both one’s lifestyle and décor may be an overwhelming task, we’ve enlisted the guidance of appliance expert Butch Dieckman, owner of Anchor Appliance, to help identify the top trends, innovative features, and the tried and true elements that are here to stay—all factors to keep in mind when making your next major appliance purchase.
Appliances in Disguise
Although there is nothing new about custom paneling on appliances, this year’s biggest “naturescape” home decor trend will produce a surge in an often-considered-outdated customization. Designers and homeowners are trading in the cold, sterile qualities of bright whites, grays, chromes, and steels for more neutral, earthy tones and subtle textures. Modern custom paneling offers the luxury of integrating natural materials into the façade of one’s appliances—adding a rustic, yet polished and controlled vibe to your space.
Color Me Pretty
Although stainless steel appliances and granite countertops aren’t going anywhere, Dieckman does acknowledge that this standard is no longer the status symbol it once was. Customers want depth, warmth, and subtlety. Brands now cater to this style preference, including Miele with its Truffle Brown appliances, GE with its smudge-proof Slate line, and Samsung by means of its Matte Black stainless steel collection. With other high-end companies such as Viking and Wolf offering a wide variety of color options for their products as well, this trend will surely be around for quite some time.
Regardless of room size, furnishing is often a game of inches. Dieckman suggests choosing counter-depth appliances—especially refrigerators—for the ability to sit flush with adjacent cabinetry. Not only will this create a streamlined look, but it will surprisingly add significantly more open space.
Smart Home Devices
There will always be appliance models with up-to-the-minute energy efficiencies and state-of-the-art sound barrier qualities, but the real technological advancements are in the apps. Look for refrigerators that have HD touch screens, interior cameras, and Wi-Fi connectivity, so that they can play music and videos, search recipes, and show you what’s in your fridge remotely. For example, Samsung has a smart fridge that knows it’s low on food and can order a pizza for delivery, an app that can check the status of your laundry load from anywhere in the world, and an oven that not only can be temperature and time controlled from your phone, but can tell you the calories and weight of what’s baking—and you need not leave your beach chair for the update.
Rise of the Range Hood
One of the biggest 2017 design trends is the disappearance of upper cabinets, leaving walls bare and exposed. This debuts the range hood front and center. As “star” of the kitchen, buyers now have the chance to create a real show-stopping moment with a single appliance. Today’s ranges offer a multitude of shape, color and material customization options to truly create a unique focal point in the heart of one’s home.
Oldies but Goodies
Despite the upgrades and the advancements, there are a few appliances that Dieckman says customers will always gravitate towards in their original state. These items include cooktop ranges with knobs instead of LCD screens and regular burners instead of built in griddle tops, as well as classic outdoor built-in grills and side burners that each have their own fuel source (side burners connected to the grill’s fuel source have 4x less output). Pizza ovens and kegerators may seem trendybut, they have been popular outdoor living accoutrements for decades—demonstrating that no matter what appliances are made for, it’s what they are utilized for that transcends time: enjoying our time with loved ones and friend
Nothing gets in his way
When a devastating fire ravaged the showroom one hot Saturday evening during peak season last July, many thought there was no coming back for Anchor Appliance owner Adrian “Butch” Dieckman. With over $1 million worth of damaged merchandise and patrons eagerly awaiting their deliveries, the owner of this 50-year-old business reacted the only way he knew how: The next 48 hours were an all-or-nothing dash of reaching suppliers on a Sunday, rush shipping new products, and pulling every string he had to ensure that come Monday morning his loyal customers had a knock on their door and a full delivery truck parked out front. A true testament to his reliability and determination, just two days after the fire, on that Monday morning, Anchor Appliance made 22 deliveries and 40 service calls, as if unscathed, much to the appreciation of clientele. These are the values that Deickman embodies and why Anchor Appliance is a local institution, anchored to the community of Long Beach Island.