The kitchen island feature is becoming a staple of fashionable home design

Dark blues and greens are vying with pale greys and sage as the colours of choice just now, with midnight blue and dove grey are the two most popular shades for its this year.

Marble is back, too,  which has seen a huge resurgence in popularity for marble work surfaces, splashbacks and wall covering.

Yet one kitchen fashion that goes from strength to strength is the kitchen island, which hardly even existed in British homes before the 1980s.

Islands are now becoming the focal point of the kitchen

We're seeing more and more people choosing to have their cooker hob, sinks and other appliances installed within our kitchen islands.

Anybody considering a kitchen island needs to think about where to put it: "Ensuring that the main traffic doesn't pass between the island and the kitchen cabinets is crucial."

Islands are also useful for introducing a secondary colour or a different style of furniture into the kitchen, another new trend that is likely to get stronger.

Yet if you don't have the space for an island - or the cash - there are plenty of ways to brighten up your kitchen with inexpensive accessories such as oven gloves and even cake holders.