When thinking of renovating the kitchen, most of us are presented with tried-and-true design choices: wood or white cabinets, granite or quartz countertops, basic or stainless steel finishes.
But when you start exploring your options and thinking outside of the box, you’ll find the most droolworthy kitchens are colorful, unexpected and designed with a range of materials and hues.
Whether your style is minimalist modern or rustic chic, kitchen color ideas for your cabinets, backsplashes and accessories can range from understated grays to bold, glossy red. Even your hardware can be blinged out, as brass is making a huge comeback.
Here are a few of our favorite kitchen color ideas:
Like a ray of sunshine, yellow is the color of optimism and cheerfulness; it is even known to stimulate appetites. It’s a fantastic color to brighten any kitchen, especially dark or small spaces.
When choosing a yellow tone, be mindful of its intensity. Vibrant yellows are best used as accent colors throughout the kitchen; think bar stools, an accent wall or a backsplash. Pale or buttery yellows nicely take the place of white cabinets or surfaces. They also pair well with existing brown and wood tones.
Regardless of what shade of yellow you choose, embrace your new happy vibe by accessorizing with a fresh bowl of lemons or a beautiful bouquet of daffodils. Positively golden!
Always sophisticated and serene, navy is an unexpected trend in today’s kitchen color ideas. Like a sleek, dark suit with a crisp white shirt and brown shoes, navy cabinets are gorgeous with white and wood finishes. Accents of gray or gold add another layer of drama in the form of hardware and lighting fixtures.
Updating your backsplash is also a super-simple way to introduce navy. Try modern painted subway tile, or mosaic or patterned tiles. And don’t forget to accessorize. Navy chair cushions or bar stools would be a terrific addition to your gorgeous updated kitchen.
Adding a little glitz to your kitchen is easier than you think. Since a little bling goes a long way, metallic accents in brass, silver or copper can be inexpensive and will definitely make a surprising and unique statement.
Brass has made a huge comeback as an accent throughout the entire home. In the kitchen, replacing chrome hardware with brass pieces can turn ordinary cabinets into extraordinary. Follow up with brass accessories, such as a teakettle or rimmed plates and drinkware.
Lighting is another terrific way to add a little shine to the kitchen. Copper pendants or hammered metal over a kitchen island create an exciting focal point in an otherwise plain space.
If you want to go a little further, metallic tile in gold and silver can turn any backsplash or kitchen island into a dazzling showpiece. It’s almost too glamorous to cook in!
Bright, Bold Combos
Artfully pairing two or more vibrant colors can really make a statement in a kitchen. Vibrant color palettes such as turquoise and chartreuse, orange or yellow with gray, and red and white are seen in more and more creative combinations. It’s the perfect way to truly express the different sides of your personality, and ideal way to combine a few of your favorite kitchen color ideas.
Creating a standout feature is a terrific way to introduce a new hue while updating your kitchen. Select something in the kitchen to highlight; this can be a backsplash, center island, shelf wall or even a kitchen appliance.
Contrasting white cabinets with a bold color can easily transform a kitchen. Focus on replacing or repainting your lower white cabinets for a bolder color. The vibrant or dramatic lower portion will creatively anchor your space.
Accessorizing with colors is also an easy and inexpensive alternative to renew any room. Colorful bar stools, chairs, window treatments or accessories can really breathe new life to the kitchen while giving you the freedom to update with new colors every year.
Shades of Gray
Sure, gray is the new beige — but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Gray is always elegant and clean, and it easily pairs with the wood and white finishes found in most kitchens.
In the kitchen, gray is best shown in larger features rather than small accessories. One of the best ways to infuse gray into the kitchen is to replace or paint your cabinets. For smaller spaces, try a medium to pale gray (sometime called a French gray).
Other ideas for bringing this new neutral into your kitchen include painting a feature wall; replacing your floor with ash-gray herringbone tile; or selecting gray stone for your backsplash or countertops. To complete your elegant kitchen, accent with contrasting finishes such as polished chrome, brass or textured wood.
We hope these kitchen color ideas will inspire you to take the leap into the color zone. What are your favorites?
Neila Deen is a devils-den contributor and NYC-based interior designer, writer and photographer. Passionate about beautiful functional spaces, she founded , an interior design and organizing studio.