Move Over Stainless?

In the past month I've been asked by 3 different people, unbeknownst to each other, what I thought about stainless steel appliances.

Wolf's latest E Series wall ovens have a "glassy" Black facade - not a spec of stainless steel on the outside.  This kitchen has a great mix of materials.

Stainless steel, believe it or not, has been with us for 26 years. Really. Almost as long as some of my readers have been alive. Greenwood, Mississippi, 1987. Fred Carl, Jr. taps into America's burning desire to be a professional chef and ships his first stainless range for the home, (please cue The Ride of the Valkyries) the

And so began America's quarter of a century long love affair with stainless steel.

a Sub-Zero side by side refrigerator clad in white (rear wall on the left). The all white cabinetry and appliances look clean and sleek.

26 years on and that love is as comfortable as an old shoe.

"Carbon" black Sub-Zero refrigerator freezer. A nice matte finish takes away the retro feel sometimes given off by shiny black. 

But lately that shoe isn't quite so cozy. After all, Americans are nothing if not a bunch of followers who eventually stop following the herd and decide for themselves what they'll put in their kitchens and on their feet. Besides, who doesn't thrill at the thought of a new pair of shoes?

"White is the new stainless", a Whirlpool press release proclaims.

"Black is the new stainless", a Wolf press release proclaims.

"Slate is versatile" says GE (to match your iPad's screen).

Appliance makers are smart to get some new finishes ready. I think much still depends on our economy. If I were doing a kitchen today just for a fast re-sale, it would probably involve some stainless. A kitchen for someone whose staying put? Get your coat, we're going shoe shopping! And there are a lot of tired old shoes out there...

Tell me what you think. If you were to do your kitchen over right now, what finish would you choose for your new range, refrigerator and dishwasher? And check out more kitchen ideas on my pinterest board.

thanks for reading,
Linda Pakravan

if your kitchen needs new shoes, email me!

links for this post:
first, third and fourth pics from Sub-Zero Wolf
Viking Logo
last picture from the WSJ


  1. So I really like the matte black finish on that sub zero fridge. Its great with all that wood paneling etc. I also like how the glassy black works with the wood and tiles in the top pic.

  2. Anonymous21.2.13

    patty here. The glossy black doesn't do anything for me...but I do think the matte black is very nice looking. I do not favor white for appliances, but maybe that is because I always have the wrong (huge, janitor closet-style) fluorescent lighting in my last few kitchens. I could like the white if the lighting was right.

  3. Anonymous21.2.13

    (i like the matte black subzero fridge-- not the matte slate color on dishwasher on bottom photo) -patty

  4. Carla25.2.13

    Hi Linda,
    I love your Blogs. These are all gorgeous kitchens and I would say they have chosen the appliances very well. I just re-did my kitchen and went with the stainless which turned out very nice. Here in Alaska the favorite does tend to be stainless. Im sure some of the million dollar plus homes get more creative. We could use some of your taste up here!

  5. Being a worrier, I'd worry that the glass finishes would be easily cracked by random blunt-object-wielding youngsters (or oldsters!). I do like white or black though. So why do I have a stainless steel fridge? A follower....


Please do. I love to know what you think!