A white kitchen can look absolutely stunning when designed and decorated properly. The clean, bright aesthetic of a white kitchen creates a fresh, airy feel and makes the space look larger. However, an all-white kitchen can also come across as boring or sterile if not balanced with other elements. Here are 13 fresh ways to make a white kitchen look its best:
Mix Up The whites
Rather than sticking to just one stark white, mix multiple off-whites and cream shades on cabinets, walls, countertops, and backsplashes. Different shades and textures of whites will keep things from looking flat and monotonous. Try a antique white on the cabinets, a marble white quartz countertop, cream backsplash tiles, and soft white paint on the walls.
Add Pops of Color
Carefully selected pops of color go a long way in a white kitchen. Vivid green, blue, or yellow accent pieces make the white really stand out. Try bold colored appliances like a fire-engine red mixer. Use colorful cookware and brightly patterned dish towels. Paint or replace wall trim molding in a contrasting color for visual interest. Just take care not to overdo it on competing colors.
Choose Warm Metallic Accents
Warm metals like brass and copper work beautifully with white for a subtle luxe feel. Copper or brass pendant lights, cabinet hardware, faucets, and fixtures lend just the right amount of richness without taking away from the white palette. Metallic quartz countertops also nicely complement white cabinetry.
Natural Wood Elements
The natural grain and texture of wood adds wonderful warmth and visual interest to an all-white space. Dark walnut butcher block countertops or a large wood chopping block island contrast elegantly with white cabinetry. Open wood shelving, natural wood barstools, and exposed wood beams also incorporate nature into the mix.
Vary Textures and Materials
Varied textures keep a white kitchen lively. Try mixing countertops materials like cool marble, concrete, or stone with warm wood accents. Distressed white cabinets also add rustic texture. Use a combination of knobs, pulls, handles in different shapes and materials for cabinet hardware. Try open wood shelving next to smooth white cabinet doors for contrast.
Play With Patterns
An all-white kitchen begs for some beautiful patterns to give the eye places to rest. Add interest with Moroccan tile backsplashes, chevron floors, or herringbone brick backsplashes. Try hammered metal pendants or patterned textiles. Just beware of overloading the space with too many busy patterns competing for attention.
Plants instantly boost freshness and creativity in an all-white kitchen. Greenery on windowsills, small herb planters, or a vertical garden provide lovely pops of vibrant green. suspended air plants, succulents, or a mini fruit tree also liven up the space. For an earthy feel, decorate shelves with moss frames, terrariums, or wood trays holding potted plants.
Stylish Storage Solutions
Clean white kitchens beg to show off collections in open shelving, glass-front cabinets, or plate racks. Display colored cookware, patterned china, or rustic pottery behind cabinet doors fitted with glass. Try canopy racks over an island to hang copper pots. Just avoid clutter by containing collections.
Chic lighting transforms a white kitchen from boring to brilliant. Try pendant lights in groups over islands or dining tables. Install decorative sconces, under cabinet lighting, or track lighting. Luxurious crystal chandeliers add elegance. Play with light and shadow on white surfaces using recessed or cove lighting to create ambiance.
Mirrored backsplashes, strategically-placed mirrors, or mirrored cabinet doors practically double the brightness in a white kitchen. The reflection expands the feel of the space and bounces light around. Mirrored cabinets or a statement mirror work wonders behind a white kitchen sink. Just avoid using too many mirrors which can feel busy.
Add Architectural Interest
White kitchens are the perfect blank canvas for interesting architectural details. Experiment with unique ceiling details like exposed wood beams or fretwork. Try open corner shelving, arched doorways, or glass cabinet inserts. Unique hood designs, decorative rails, and custom range surrounds also upgrade plain white spaces.
Cool Metal Finishes
For a sleek modern edge, incorporate metal finishes like nickel, stainless steel, or chrome into the mix. Try a stainless steel waterfall countertop island, nickel hardware, or chrome light fixtures. Let metal appliances like a pro-range hood or wine fridge take center stage without added color competition. Just don’t overwhelm the white scheme.
Whitewashed wood or concrete floors keep the white kitchen feeling light and airy. A gray wash balances cool and warm tones. Try a bold black stain perimeter with light whitewashed planks on the inside. Distressed paint techniques work on concrete floors too. Just avoid completely white floors which can feel sterile.
FAQ About Decorating a White Kitchen
What colors go well with a white kitchen?
Some of the best colors to pair with a white kitchen include light blue, soft green, gray, black, navy, yellow, and pink. Crisp brights in moderation add youthful contrast while earth tones and deeper colors ground the space. Wood tones also complement white.
How do you decorate a large white kitchen?
Big white kitchens feel even larger with ample task lighting, bold island fixtures, and decorative range hoods. Add architectural details on the ceiling and glass cabinet accents. Use large accessories like oversized clocks and dramatic open shelving. Anchor the room with a substantial island or eye-catching tile backsplash.
What flooring works best with white cabinets?
Light hardwoods, whitewashed wood, concrete, or tile floors pair beautifully with white cabinets. Gray-toned woods or tile keep the palette light and airy. For contrast add a perimeter of dark flooring with light planks in the main space. Tile or stone with veining works nicely too. Avoid solid black or very dark floors.
What backsplash looks best with white cabinets?
White marble, soft gray stone, or glass tile backsplashes complement white cabinets beautifully. Moroccan fish scale tile, herringbone, or chevron patterns add interest. Try pale blue glass or muted green subway tiles for subtle pops of color. White cabinets can handle bolder jewel-toned backsplash colors too for drama.
Should white kitchen cabinets have white or colored hardware?
Either white or metallic hardware looks sharp with white cabinets. Brass and oil-rubbed bronze have a timeless vintage vibe. Chrome and nickel keep things contemporary. Avoid competing with colored cabinet hardware but feel free to add punches of color with appliances, stools or cookware instead.
How do you update old white kitchen cabinets on a budget?
Some budget-friendly ways to update worn white cabinets include painting the walls a fresh color, adding new knobs and handles, installing creative open shelving, updating the faucet and sink, painting the cabinets, whitewashing cabinets, refinishing cabinets, adding a bright colorful backsplash, or adding peel-and-stick wallpaper inside glass cabinet doors.
A white kitchen can be a gorgeous yet challenging space to decorate. When balanced with other colors, textures, materials, lighting and architectural details, a white kitchen comes alive with fresh, contemporary style. Clever mixes of white tones, natural wood grains, black accents, and vivid pops of color keep an all-white space from feeling flat. Metallic finishes, cool countertop materials, warm wood elements and green plants boost the appeal as well. Unique storage solutions, creative patterns and stylish mirrors expand a white kitchen’s possibilities. With so many options for adding beauty and visual interest, a white kitchen can transform into a welcoming and truly inspiring space.