White kitchens? Why are we talking about them when the current trend is grey/blue/black kitchens? This post is actually inspired by one of my Instagram followers, who messaged me after I posted an image of a grey kitchen. She was lamenting her decision to go with a white kitchen a couple of years ago as it now felt a bit blah in the face of different colour kitchens that are currently trending.
I don’t like to think of kitchens in terms of trends because when you design one, it needs to stand the test of time, whatever trends come and go. If you go with the sort of kitchen you’ve always loved – whether grey or blue or white or whatever – the secret to making it amazing is in all the other design details.
It wasn’t long ago when white kitchens were all the rage, and I’m betting they will be again in the near future because, when done right, white kitchens feel bright, crisp, clean and serene, which makes them totally classic and timeless. They never go out of fashion.
If you have/want/love a white kitchen, read on to see how to make it dazzle. Even if a white kitchen isn’t for you, I hope you enjoy the inspiration as much as my sun-starved self has enjoyed pouring over bright white spaces. I’ve also included some of my favourite kitchenware picks in the post.
Caveat: a white kitchen is best located in a space with plenty of natural light. If you’ve extended the back of your house, for example, and choose to locate your kitchen towards the inside of the new space away from windows, a white kitchen is not the answer as it’ll look dull. White needs light to bounce off it.
1. WARM IT UP WITH WOOD
Whether it is the floor (wood, engineered wood or wood-effect tiles), the worktop, wood cladding on an island or even just kitchen accessories on display, rich wood tones are a beautiful and warm contrast to white, and make it come alive.
2. SPARKLE WITH WARM METAL FINISHES
I think chrome finishes can look cold in a white kitchen, so opt for brass or gold finishes on handles, taps and lighting. If you prefer silvery finishes, go for polished nickel as it has a much warmer and richer tone than chrome.
3. TANTALISE WITH TEXTURES
This is the big one. Different textures give depth to a white interior so it doesn’t look flat and boring. Wood (or wood effect), stone (or stone effect), metal, ceramic and porcelain are the expected materials in many kitchens, but what about a shell chandelier, or leather barstools, or rattan lampshades, or clear acrylic barstools? Bookmatched marble to wow, or glossy white tiles to bounce the light, or matt grey tiles to contrast the white? Decisions decisions… what would make a white kitchen beautiful for you?
4. BRING IN COLOUR
I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t recommend adding colour. If you have an island or peninsula and it isn’t clad in wood like in point 1 above, consider having it in a different colour. Soft muted greens and blues work particularly well for this, or try a dark colour like black, dark green or dark blue for a dramatic contrast. Have a look at examples of both below. Ok so this would mean that it isn’t an all-white kitchen anymore, but a bit of colour adds vibrancy and dimension to a white space.
Colour can also be brought in through kitchenwares, plants, fruit, books etc, which brings me to my next point…
Show off your pretty kitchen items by having them on the worktop, on open shelves or in wall cabinets with glazed doors. Things like cookbooks, wood and marble chopping boards, nicely bottled oils and vinegars, herbs and other plants, fruit basket, beautiful bowls and mugs all deserve to be seen and add personality to a kitchen. Also hang art if you have wall space, or lean it on the worktop like in the kitchen below.
6. EYECATCHING LIGHTING
Oversized pendants, a pretty vintage chandelier, or a cluster of pendants… lighting that draws your eye is always a winner.
Bonus tip: Avoid a black worktop in a white kitchen. Opt for wood or pale stone. If you’re asking why, just do an image search for “white kitchen with black worktop” and you’ll get your answer. A black worktop totally takes away the bright airy feel of a white kitchen, it just doesn’t work.
What do you think of white kitchens? I know you wouldn’t call any of these kitchens ‘blah’, yes? 🙂 For more kitchen inspiration, follow my Pinterest board KITCHENS.