25. October 2016
For decades, one kitchen design element has been constant: a black or white cooktop. Whether it’s induction, gas, or electric, black glass-ceramic cooktops are standard in many American kitchens.
Let’s change that right now.
SCHOTT held the annual CERAN® Design Awards a few weeks ago in Germany, and young, talented designers crafted bold new glass-ceramic cooktops. What emerged from the contest were cooktops in new colors featuring creative designs; overall, these designers created unique cooktops that are making us rethink that plain, classic look.
Sixty-eight cooktops were entered in the contest. Let’s look at the winning designs.
“Onlines” designed by Hanh Phan
Simplicity reigns supreme in Hanh Phan’s winning “Onlines” design. Set on a CLEARTRANS glass-ceramic cooktop with the CLEAR flamingo base color are three sets of bold white lines. Each grouping of lines has an irregular but parallel pattern that’s visually appealing on the bright metallic rose-gold. This color contrast creates a vibrant look while remaining understated. Notice the differing lengths of each line segment and the asymmetrical groupings throughout the design. Ultimately, this cooktop succeeds by transforming simple shapes into a bright and imaginative design.
“Flashing Dots” designed by Victoria Schwarz
The minimalist look of “Flashing Dots” reminds us of the works of famed artist Georges Seurat. Branches of dots start and stop in patterns that are abrupt but natural. Select bold dots provide a backbone to each branch, yet these formations seem to trail off and almost disappear into the background. A simple cross of dots in the center gives the cooktop clear definition. Finally, the duality of colors in “Flashing Dots” means it works in both darker and brighter kitchen designs.
“Cooking is Communication” designed by Mariano Gemmo
Randomness defines “Cooking is Communication.” Hundreds of tiny white dots produce a visually interesting design in this cooktop while larger dots punctuate the cooking zones to provide clarity in the randomness. The design itself also creates a level of depth that’s not found in most cooktops. “Cooking is Communication” is reminiscent of a night sky, and it elicits a sense of awe while still being familiar.
“Capacité” designed by Olivia Nigl
Olivia says an induction coil inspired her “Capacité” design, and we can see it too. But the many shapes in this design — cones, circles, squares, arrows, and lines – create a scene that looks other-worldly. Though it takes the idea from an induction coil, the cooktop is anchored by simple shapes, which together build a complex design. Also, light shading in certain elements produces a new texture that adds another dimension to the design.
“Quadro Phil” designed by Lena Kilian
In the randomness of “Quadro Phil” comes order. This smart design uses dark rectangles to clearly indicate where the heating coils lie under the cooktop. This spatial reasoning is at the forefront of the design but is subtle enough that it still flows with the rest of the geometric shapes in the cooktop’s design. Therefore, the randomness of these interlocking rectangles is reconciled with the four boldest shapes that detail just where to set a pot.
Re-inventing the cooktop again
Accepting the norm is easy. For many of us, a black or white glass-ceramic cooktop is a simple design choice – it won’t clash with stainless steel appliances or traditional wood cabinets. And we often demand function over form in a cooktop.
But with a special touch and thoughtful eye, designers prove that the cooktop can go from just functional to beautiful, too. Colorful cooktop creations can complement a kitchen’s overall aesthetic and bridge the gap between utility and beauty.
If this year’s CERAN Design Awards teaches us any lesson, it’s that mixing simple design shapes and principles with a splash of color can create incredible cooktops. New color palettes and textured designs in these cooktops can create something truly memorable and eye-catching.