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Are stainless-steel appliances just a fad?

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The question

I am trying to decide whether or not to go with stainless-steel kitchen appliances. On one hand, they are so common that I've come to equate modern kitchens with stainless-steel appliances. On the other hand, I've heard that the surface is hard to keep clean. I also wonder if it's just a decorating fad – like avocado green appliances in the 1970s. What do you think?

The answer

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Avocado green was such a bad trend – it was right up there with black toilets and sinks. Just as that green made all food look sickly, the black bathroom fixtures showed all water stains.

These days, I am happy, when it comes to kitchen appliances, just to find them at all. So often you play hide and seek with dishwashers and fridges that are covered with panel doors. My feeling is: Let the appliances be what they are and don't hide them.

Appliances should just sit in the kitchen and look peaceful. As for the finish, I prefer stainless steel over white. Different companies offer different shades of white, some of which can look grey or yellow beside white cabinetry. If the stainless steel has a brushed finish, finger marks tend to disappear; if they don't, there are some fabulous cleaners on the market. If only we could get rid of the big company logos, too.

Follow architect and interior designer Dee Dee Taylor Eustace on Twitter: @ddtaylordd. Have a design dilemma? E-mail style@globeandmail.com.

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