The Unwhite Kitchen: Kitchens That Really Celebrate Color

The Unwhite Kitchen: Kitchens That Really Celebrate Color

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Eleanor Büsing
Apr 5, 2017
(Image credit: Skona Hem)

Look, I love a white kitchen. In the past, I've gone so far as to say that certain things — namely, kitchens and linens — always look their best in cool, crisp white. But these days, while you won't find me outfitting my bed in say, cerulean sheets, I'm definitely on Team Color when it comes to kitchens.

There are loads of ways to go about injecting some color into the most utilitarian (yet also, most welcoming) room in the home. Walls are an obvious choice, and tiles or a bright back splash are another. Few people are so brave as to use bold color on the cabinetry itself — but that's what we're looking at today. Let's get inspired...

In the lead image from Skona Hem, traditional cabinetry gets a dose of sunshine yellow on the lower units. It's set off perfectly by the fact that everything else — upper units, walls, ceiling — are painted in a soft, warm gray.

(Image credit: Alyssa Rosenheck for Style Me Pretty)

Here's another kitchen (by Alyssa Rosenheck for Style Me Pretty) where color is applied sparingly yet boldly: just the island in a strong emerald green. The overall effect is as cheerful and bright as the shade chosen.

(Image credit: Play Associates)

While the super-cool Marmoreal worktop and the glam brass trim plays a role in the success of this small London kitchen by architecture firm Play Associates, my eyes are firmly on that gorgeous teal cabinetry.

(Image credit: Bedow)

But why choose just one color for your cabinets? Architecture firm Bedow applied a modular shelving-like look to these kitchen cabinets, in shades of saffron, crimson and navy.

(Image credit: Vogue Australia)

Another colorful island makes a strong case for this look, from Vogue Australia. The deep blue color feels both fun and elegant in this chic space.

(Image credit: Ida Lindhag for Elle Decoration Sweden, found via L’Essenziale)

Yellow cabinetry, green floor? Why not?! I love this ultra-modern space, captured by Ida Lindhag for Elle Decoration Sweden, and found via L'Essenziale.

(Image credit: Gisbert Pöppler)

Here's another unusual-but-fabulous color scheme: pink walls and turquoise cabinets, in a project by Berlin-based architects Gisbert Pöppler.

(Image credit: Elle Decor)

It's not only modern cabinetry in contemporary spaces that can benefit from a paintbrush. Traditional kitchens can get in on this look too, as this emerald space from Elle Decor shows us.

Case in point: this beautiful space, captured by Anke Leunissen Photography, combines modern red cabinets with classic blue-and-white tiles and an antique chandelier. When can I move in?

How do you feel about colorful kitchen cabinets? Have you noticed more of this look where you live, or does white still reign supreme?

For more inspiration, get lost in our dedicated Color section, and don't forget to play around with our super handy Color Search tool, where you can search by paint color or room to endless ideas.

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