These days when it comes to cabinetry, it’s all about being adventurous — mashing together colour, texture, materials and sheen, and ditching some outmoded traditional design concepts.“People are really getting braver with their choices, which is really great because I think we are all getting a little bit bored with the norm and want to do something different,” says Julie Punter, show home manager at Homes by Avi.Paule Wedel, a designer at Legacy Kitchens, would agree.“Kitchens really go in trends. For the past 10 years we’ve had white kitchens coming out of our ears,” says Wedel.That’s why both Punter and Wedel really turn on the outside-of-the-box thinking when it comes to show home design.“Show homes are there to grab people’s attention,” says Wedel.And that is just what he did with a stand-out kitchen in the Astoria Homes’ show home in Watermark, a 5,000- square-foot, mid-century design.Black walnut, rose gold and white Caesarstone mash together to create a stunning New York loft-style kitchen with black as the feature colour.The looks says 1960s retro, and mirrors the Frank Lloyd Wright flat, low-slung roof profile of the home’s exterior.“We were really inspired by that. We thought about doing a slab door, but Calgary is still pretty conservative, so we custom created a double shaker-style door, but it is the introduction of black that makes it so unusual,” says Wedel, who notes that it is a cabinetry colour that is becoming more and more on trend with homeowners.“Black on black kitchens can be mind-bogglingly stunning. I have about three projects on the go right now that are incorporating black into the cabinetry,” he says.Black walnut, because of its “wild” grain, is also popping up on the radar more often.“People either have a love or hate relationship with it,” says Wedel, noting it is a wood that is very close in context to mahogany, which was used extensively in the 1960s.Black walnut steps it up a notch because its grain offers so much movement, a design element that works well with the veining in quartz countertops.Colour blocking or mixing up blocks of colours also ratchets up the cabinetry wow factor.In the McCormick show home in King’s Heights, Homes by Avi’s Punter used a custom shade of cerulean blue in the island and on the lower perimeter cabinetry, juxtaposing it with a bank of floor-to-ceiling shelving in natural wood tones.She also opened up the range wall by ditching the upper cabinets and adding some floating open shelving, a design element that is really catching on for its open esthetic.It is a look that has the potential to stand the test of time, because it creates the illusion of greater space, while carving out room for the expansion of glazing, and bigger windows translate to lots of natural light — who doesn’t love that?“But it is really personal preference,” says Punter. “A kitchen is something that lives with the home, so you want it to have longevity.”One way to do that is to start with practicalities.“Function is definitely the key ingredient to consider,” says Wedel.He suggests defining the appliances first: will they be integrated or standard, and where will they be placed?“It really all springboards from there,” he says.“Many people are influenced by Houzz or design magazines, so they want this integrated wall of appliances, but budget is a big consideration,” he says, noting that integrated appliances come with a substantial price tag.And what about storage? How big are the items you need to store? Do you have a little or a lot?“I rely on drawers, so I don’t really worry about whether or not there are uppers. With four or five banks of drawers, I can make any kitchen function,” says Wedel.Last but not least, hardware can make or break the look, so spend some time picking the perfect detail. Rose gold is always beautiful, but these days anything goes, so like with colour and texture; mix it up and have some fun.“It’s really the jewelry,” says Wedel.