Spring 2021 Lookbook



You can see it all around you, the earth brimming with new life. It’s spring, the season that stirs something hopeful in all of us; the desire to turn a new page – to stretch, to grow, to renew. And maybe this spring more than any other, we’re ready to turn off survival mode and take on new possibilities.

“There’s a little bit of earth in everything...” – JESSICA MCCONNELL


As we open the windows and let the spring air in, we’re filled with the desire to revitalize and reimagine our surroundings. We talked to Jessica McConnell, Director, Whirlpool Color, Finish & Material Design about trends in color to keep in mind as we breathe new life into our spaces. She shared that earth tones are very much at the forefront of design right now:

”What we’re seeing is a lot of earthiness of every color so everything is kind of toned down. It looks like there’s a little piece of earth in everything. You see a lot of earthy pastels, a lot of beiges, warm tones and softer shapes because there’s a cozy thing going on.”

KitchenAid Designer Jessica McConnell in black floral top seated by inspiration board.
Pots and pans hanging in kitchen under open shelving stocked with a variety of jars, bowls and glasses.
Assortment of color, cabinet, countertop and backsplash images in earth tones.
Collection of chef’s knives, bowls, mugs and wooden spoons.
“...there’s a cozy thing going on.”


McConnell first saw earth tones cropping up in design a couple of years back when she was in Italy. The desire to connect with nature and the “desire to connect together as a human race... a yearning for community...” – as McConnell puts it – has really been gaining momentum over the past few years and has impacted every single trend out there. She believes that the renaissance of warm, natural colors is, in part, a backlash to technology “...it’s a way of combating tech fatigue...” she says, which has really been compounded by quarantine and people spending so much time alone, in front of screens. As we dream of unplugging and reconnecting, there’s a movement away from shiny blacks and cold metallics and a movement towards warm metals, desaturated colors, matte finishes and more natural forms.

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The way you incorporate trends can evolve and grow over time. The beauty of earth tones is that there are a lot of neutrals in the palette so they can work with lots of different colors seamlessly. Here are some tips from Jessica McConnell on how to start telling a new story with earth tones.

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Throw pillows and blankets are an easy way to change things up.

Put some things away. Make room for a few new things that reflect the moment.

Think about layering. Add a new rug on top of your old one to freshen things up.

Sunny room with kitchen table on blue rug; assortment of plants in corner by window.

Bring in a little nature with a few plants.

Two vases and a bowl in matching earth tones and three cloth napkins in natural shades and fibers.

Add a few new dish towels in natural fibers, look for utensils or a utensil holder in earthier colors.

Paint a wall. This is a small investment with a lot of design “ROI.”

A field of flowers.
“The desire to connect with nature has really been gaining momentum over the past few years...”

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Many of us have been longing for months to push outside, to dig in the dirt and plant something new. But where to begin? Do you start with seeds or plants, raised or in ground beds? Discover how to let inspiration be your guide.

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Adding a little bit of the earth inside is a great way to make your home feel more alive. Including plants in your kitchen decor is not only a fun way to add color and texture, but having herbs, specifically, at your fingertips makes cooking more spontaneous and creative. Start small with a hanging herb garden or go big with floor plants that make a bold statement. Here are some of our favorite ways to decorate with plants in the kitchen.

Wooden container sitting on windowsill holding an assortment of fresh herbs.
Fig leaves green background.


Kitchens can be a great canvas for creating a little “plant art” and window sills can be a perfect spot to start but you’ll want to consider how much, and what kind of light you have before you get growing.

• South-facing windows get the most sunlight and are ideal for growing sun-loving herbs like basil and lavender, and plants like succulents.

• West-facing windows get about eight hours of sunlight a day and are another good option for sun-loving plants and herbs.

• East-facing windows get some gentle sun in the morning so less fussy plants like mint, ivies, violets, spider and air plants can do nicely under these conditions.

• North-facing windows produce the least amount of light so you’ll want to look for plants that don’t require direct sunlight like snake plants, maidenhair ferns and pothos, to name a few.

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“...a little bit of earth inside is a great way to celebrate nature...”


A popular and super low maintenance way to add a little green into your kitchen decor is with Air Plants. These plants are epiphytes which mean they grow without soil in bright light. The only real care they require is a little misting about once a week to keep them hydrated. These plants thrive in warmer conditions so the kitchen could be the ideal spot to keep them happy. If your plant flowers, you know it’s getting what it needs. Once the flowers start to turn brown just snip them off and they should bloom again. These plants work well in terrariums and you often see them in hanging glass globes which can look great in a window that doesn’t get a lot of direct sunlight.

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DIY indoor garden project with air plant.


A great way to add interest to a kitchen is with a wall feature and installing a vertical herb garden in your kitchen combines style and function. We’ve seen Makers create beautiful hanging herb gardens with wall pocket planters or by mounting matching pots on wooden frames. If space limitations are a concern consider planting herbs in matching mason jars or in a hanging window planter. To keep things streamlined and clean choose pots in styles and colors that complement your existing kitchen decor.

As a general rule, more tropical looking plants or plants with big, glossy leaves like Rubber Trees, Monstera Deliciosa or Snake Plants look great in contemporary or mid-century spaces while more romantic plants like lacey ferns and flowering plants including African Violets lend themselves to a country or rustic vibe. But as is true of all rules, they’re meant to be broken.

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Man tending to fresh herbs in vertical indoor garden.
Indoor plants and herbs in pots and shelves in front of wall of windows.
Collection of herbs; basil, dill and parsely.
“But as is true of all rules,they’re meant to be broken...”

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“Eating something wild brings us backto a primitive time...” – LORIA STERN
Loria Stern walking through a field of flowers.

Welcome to Loria’s world

Discover how this California native draws on the inspiration of the natural beauty surrounding her to create works of art that are also delectable.

Watch Full Video

STORIES Portrait of a Maker: Loria Stern

Loria Stern is an LA based chef and baker who creates food inspired by nature and made with all natural ingredients. Edible flowers grace her cookies and secret garden focaccias with wit, whimsy and a little something wild. Discover how Stern has created over 100,000 “art pieces” with her KitchenAid® Stand Mixer and the “imperfectly perfect” beauty of flowers.

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A single calendula flower.

Calendula - These bright orange and yellow flowers are often compared to saffron and have a taste ranging from tangy to peppery. Toss a few in a salad for a pop of color and a little extra zest.

Two english lavender flowers.

English Lavender - Every part of this plant is edible and the flowers impart a slightly earthy, minty flavor. Sprinkle a few of the buds over ice cream or in a glass of champagne.

A single pansy flower.

Pansies - These vibrant flowers have been described as “grassy” or even minty. Crystallizing or candying blossoms like these is a classic way to elevate a cake or finish a pastry.

A pineapple sage plant.

Pineapple Sage - The leaves of this plant smell strongly of pineapple and the base of the brilliant red flowers contain a sweet nectar. Make a tea with them or use them to infuse pineapple juice before turning it into a sorbet.

A single nasturtium flower.

Nasturtiums - Often compared to the taste of watercress, these beautiful orange blossoms have a slightly peppery taste with a mustard-like scent. Include them in a vinaigrette or as a garnish for a dip.

A single bachelor button.

Bachelor Buttons - Mild in flavor, these intensely colored flowers bring a hint of sweet spice to dishes and are perfect for creating colorful, edible confetti.

Create a beautiful Secret Garden Focaccia to celebrate spring with this recipe from Loria Stern. GET LORIA'S SECRET GARDEN FOCACCIA RECIPE
A woman arranging delicate flowers.
A book filled with pressed flowers.
Freshly baked cookies with pressed flowers baked in.

Flower tip from Loria Stern

Give yourself the freedom to experiment. Edible flowers can react in different ways when heated and different ingredients may bring out surprising flavor notes. For instance, Stern likes the way Borage turns grey when it’s baked. You’ll find distinctive colors and flavors to suit your tastes too when you start exploring.

Here are a few important things to keep in mind before you start creating with edible flowers.

• Look for flowers that have been organically grown, without pesticides or other sprays.

• Do your research, it’s vitally important to understand which flowers, and which parts of the flowers are edible. Even though the petals or blossoms may be edible, the stems and leaves may not be.

• Don’t pick flowers from the roadside, look for culinary-grade flowers from a reputable farmer’s market, florist, grocery store or online.

• If you’re growing edible flowers in your own garden keep in mind it’s best to pick them early in the morning. Wash them in cold water and let air dry. If you’re not using immediately wrap them in a damp paper towel and store in the fridge for up to a week.

• Once your flowers have been cleaned and dried, lay them flat on a piece of parchment, cover with another sheet of parchment and press between the pages of a heavy book.

Immerse yourself in “The World of Edible Flowers”

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Three daisies gathered together.
“This flower came from a mountaintop, it grew toward the sun as best it could…”

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A table filled with a variety of whole vegetables.


A purple tomato, a yellow carrot, a black radish, we’re talking about heirlooms. Discover more about how these open-pollinators contribute to our plates and our planet.

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“When I’m in a wildflower field I just feel at peace...” – LORIA STERN


As spring gets underway, the pace of life speeds up. The to do lists get longer with the days. It’s more important than ever to carve out a little time to refresh. The natural rhythms and sounds of the kitchen – the chopping, kneading, mixing and stirring – can be a meditative and restorative experience in and of itself. But getting organized and finding a spot to take a few deep, cleansing breaths can be helpful in creating a calm environment as well. Here are a few tips for making a peaceful oasis right in your kitchen.

Man in grey t-shirt watering plants in windowsill.


The goal with any meditative space is to create a simple, uncluttered place where you can take a moment to center your day and clear your mind. Think about the appliances in your space. An organized refrigerator will help you feel more in control and a quiet dishwasher helps create calm. The KitchenAid® FreeFlex™ dishwasher has the largest third rack available* and at only 44 dBA it won’t disturb your “peace.”

Start by finding a spot near a window if possible. Natural light is ideal but a bright, clear light filling the space should be the focus. You’re trying to induce mental clarity, not sleep.

Creating a comfortable place to sit is key – a cushion, a window seat or a favorite chair all work. Surround yourself with a few items that inspire you and help personalize the experience – a photo of a favorite memory, a painting or an object that represents the state of mind you’re trying to achieve. When you’re curating items for your space remember that neutral or calming colors work best and natural textiles can help produce positive sensory vibes.
*Among leading brands based on usable volume.

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Our sense of smell has the power to stir up emotions that can evoke a memory or alter our state of mind...

The scent of something delicious cooking on the stove or in the oven, a pot of fresh herbs, a vase of cut flowers, an indoor plant – all of these can instantly impact mood or trigger happy associations. And don’t forget to open the windows and breathe in through your nose – hold it, hold it – then breathe out through your mouth.

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Person watering an assortment of plants in window sill with copper watering can.
Bouquet of fresh, green herbs
Pink flowers in amber vase next to two grey glass vases
Man holding a black mug with a KichenAid® French Door Refrigerator in the background.
“...a simple, uncluttered place where you can take a moment to center your day and clear your mind.”

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There’s something deeply satisfying – and even calming – about opening up a clean, well organized refrigerator. Find the best ways to maximize space and store your groceries so they stay fresh longer in How to Organize Your Fridge.

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“...an uncluttered mind begins with an uncluttered space.”


Snout to tail cooking has been popular for a while but the concept works for produce as well. Discover How to Cook More Sustainably by using every stem, seed, stalk and peel in soups, sauces, stocks and more.

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A woman cooking on a range, her counter full of veggies.


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