Kitchen colours, as we have discussed in Kitchen Design Tips and Planning a Kitchen Budget, is just one of many subjects to consider when planning your new kitchen (or refurbishing your existing one). Broadly speaking decisions break down into these main categories: –
Room – i.e. building, layout, extensions, doors, windows, planning permission
Structure – i.e. cupboards, floor, ceiling, surfaces, plumbing, electrics, gas
Appliances – i.e. hob, extractor, ovens, dishwasher, sous vide, microwave
Aesthetics – i.e. colour, lighting, tiling, natural stone, wood
You can see that the issue of colour in the kitchen pops up early on. Your kitchen structure will require a choice of cupboards, flooring and surfaces all of which have a colour and texture that will need to work together. It may even occur earlier if you wish to have an exposed brick wall, beams or light wells.
This is why selecting a colour scheme for your kitchen walls is something that you‘ll need to address early on. And don’t forget, you’ll spend a lot of time in this room. A survey by B&Q revealed, on average, we spend 3 years of our lives in the kitchen so it’s pretty important that you like it. The wall covering also needs to be hard wearing and able to withstand heat and steam. Here’s a handy prompt to get you thinking along the right lines…..
The time you spend investigating colours is never wasted as it’s a pain to have to go back and re-paint. The internet has made research like this much easier and there are many sites, like ours where kitchens of all colours can be seen to give you inspiration. Houzz is also a good site. Visit shops, showrooms and kitchen designers, manufacturers and fitters like ourselves. Pinterest is a good way of building up a mood board to take with you on your phone or tablet when shopping for your paint or wall coverings. A mood board also allows you to consider what colours go well together if you are selecting a number of colours for one room. Some will, but others will clash.
Many DIY and hardware shops offer free or cheap samples tins of paint that you can try out prior to making the commitment. When you’re testing samples consider the design style, not just the size and colour scheme. The colour should work well with the overall finish, materials and textures in your kitchen. There are no rules – but you might not want to use bright colours within a traditional kitchen. You might even want to follow the strong colour of a painting, kitchen furniture, cushion or even appliance, KitchenAid for example – whose mixers come in a range of strong colours as well as pastels. Here at Anglia Factors we offer a full kitchen design consultation and advice service – to help you in decorating of your lovely new kitchen.
Is your new kitchen going to be cosy or cavernous? Usually the smaller kitchens suit a lighter colour to give the impression of size so white; off-white, magnolia and pastel shades of primary colours can all do the job. You might also consider light greys or metallic colours.
Larger kitchens have the size and space to take much bolder colours as some of the kitchens in our Portfolio section demonstrate. Blues, greens, reds, oranges and yellows can all hit the spot. An emerging trend is to have one wall in a dominant colour that creates a striking theme to the kitchen while not totally overwhelming those in it. Let’s take the main colours one at a time: –
warmer colours such as red are believed to stimulate the appetite and so are an excellent choice for kitchens. Red is really versatile and comes in so many shades that would really sizzle in a kitchen, either on the cabinets or the walls.
white can really energize a kitchen which is helpful as most people start their days in their kitchens. It feels pristine and new and an all-white kitchen will really wake you up over your cornflakes. You can also have more fun with your surfaces and splash-backs in an all-white kitchen and choose brighter colours or finishes for those.
okay, so not a colour to over-use, however black has it’s part to play. As you can see here some striking extractors are in sleek, gloss black and it makes a great contrast to a white kitchen. Many cupboards, appliances, work-tops and floors are offered in very dark colours or black.
this is a neutral colour that’s been rising in popularity in recent years. It might be thought of as too cold but, with the right shade, it can look really good in a kitchen. The fashionable paint ranges from Farrow & Ball and our own Myland’s range have widened the popularity of grey as it compliments a wide range of other colours and is the perfect base to build upon in a kitchen. It also works well as a work surface (let’s face it slate and a lot of granite is grey) or cabinet colour.
yellow pairs well with white and grey, and is like a burst of sunshine, instantly brightening up a kitchen which is why it’s long been a favourite. Apparently yellow is also rumoured to make people feel peckish and has a calming quality that makes them feel relaxed and comfortable in your kitchen. A good option for small spaces, yellow can make rooms feel bigger and brighter.
yet another colour that works well in kitchens and has been much in evidence for our clients recently (see Portfolio). It’s a lively colour which works best when used sparingly because it can overwhelm a room if used to excess. Dark blues can also work well but, again, it helps if there are touches of white, grey or other lighter shades to prevent the overall feel from becoming too dark. When lighter blues are used, as with some of our examples, they are sharp and pure which can look really great on walls, cabinets, or even the ceiling.
a novel colour to use in the kitchen. It’s available in a host of different shades from apple, asparagus, moss, myrtle, jade and even emerald for the bold. It looks delightful with white and also natural tones of wood and granite. It’s an in-your-face colour that gets attention and, you never know, maybe due a comeback for modern kitchens.
we have noticed more and more colour variety recently. In our Portfolio pages you might notice, as well as a number of blue kitchens, a couple of purple kitchens. But what about chocolate, Wedgwood, blue grey, turquoise, black, pink, orange, mint and any number of other greens and more. The fact is that these days, with so many great paints, it’s only our imagination that’s the limiting factor – within the bounds of good taste of course.
There aren’t any rules really but we’ve noticed that clients increasingly want to push the envelope and question some of the ideas above.
Why not? Dark kitchen colours can work. But using dark kitchen colours in a small space requires considerable thought at the planning stage. They will be fine as long as you have thought carefully about where they’re used, in what quantity and with what other colours. Crucial also is the lighting – both electric and natural.
The darkest of colours can be contemplated if you’re installing light wells, roof lights and/or bright LEDs and much of the rest of the kitchen is painted in light finishes. Using dark colours a lot in a small kitchen can easily overwhelm. This can make the kitchen feel smaller than it actually is, as well as risking being too dark to use and enjoy. A good place to use dark colour in a small kitchen is for the lower cabinets (not the eye-level cupboards). With under cabinet lighting at surface and floor level this will contrast nicely with lighter eye-level cupboards to lift any risk of claustrophobia.
– for the majority it’s clear that the kitchen is the last place they would want wallpaper. Typically, kitchen finishes involve light colours, clean surfaces and an absence of busy design. On the other hand if you want to make strong impression in a small space wallpaper has its advantages. It’s also cheaper than tiling and as easy to keep clean. Especially if you put it behind a sheet of high quality Perspex, say between the upper and lower kitchen cupboards. This way you might even save on the splash-backs if you were planning some.
are cheap, easy to maintain (especially if you go for ceramic floor or wall tiles) and easy to keep clean. They are durable and, in the context of kitchen colour, offer a wide range of colour and style options. You may prefer plain tiles but, if you fancy design and don’t want to risk wallpaper then there will be something for you. Designer tiles can add so many colours to your kitchen and they aren’t that hard to fit yourself if you fancy it.
of course a few pictures or even painted murals or trompe l’oeil will also add your mark to any kitchen. Traditionally kitchen decoration is themed upon the light-hearted or bucolic with much made of food and drink. With its status as a centre for entertainment growing, the modern kitchen is part preparation and part party – so kitchen colours have reflected that change with everything from alternating mood lighting to a full glitter ball featuring.
Suffice it to say that your choice of kitchen colour has never been wider. The colour of the walls is important yes, but with today’s kitchen worktop materials, cabinet colours, floor covering options and LED lighting ranges it is just one of many decisions you’ll have to make.
We have several things we can do to help you: –
1. We have designers that can help
2. We have samples we can show you
3. We have Computer Aided Design software that can show you what your kitchen will look like before you buy a drop of paint
4. We have 40 years’ experience and an up-to-date knowledge of what’s on offer
5. We have the understanding and patience to help you
Please call us or pop in – we’d be delighted to help.