SEO Meta Description: This comprehensive 5000+ word guide explores how brass and navy can be paired beautifully in kitchen designs. With detailed before and after examples, tips from experts, FAQs and more, this article showcases how to use brass and navy to create a stylish, cohesive kitchen aesthetic.


When designing a kitchen, choosing a cohesive color palette is key to pulling the space together. Recently, the combination of brass and navy blue has become increasingly popular. The warm, golden tones of brass pair nicely with the cool, deep shades of navy blue – creating a bold and sophisticated look.

In this article, we’ll explore how brass and navy work so well together in kitchen designs. We’ll look at real before and after examples of kitchens that have integrated these shades. You’ll find tips from interior designers on how to successfully mix brass and navy elements. We’ll also answer common questions on selecting fixtures, accessories and paint colors to achieve this stylish two-tone aesthetic.

So if you’re considering a kitchen update using these trendy metallic and blue hues, read on for all the inspiration and advice you need!

Complementary Color Theory Explained

Before diving into the specifics of using brass and navy blue in kitchen designs, it helps to understand some basic color theory. Brass and navy are considered complementary colors on the color wheel. This means they sit directly opposite each other.

Complementary color combinations create a strong visual contrast, as the shades have very different temperatures and intensities. However, when balanced well, they also have the ability to make each other pop and stand out.

The warm, golden yellow undertones of brass directly contrast with the cool, deep blue shades of navy. This contrast creates a vibrant energy. Navy has the ability to tone down and calm the bright brass, while the brass livens up and adds warmth to the dark navy.

This balance of warm and cool, bright and muted is what makes brass and navy work harmoniously together in kitchen designs and color schemes.

Real Before and After Examples

Seeing brass and navy color schemes in action helps illustrate how lovely this pairing can be. Here are some real before and after kitchen transformation examples.

1. Bright White Kitchen Gets a Moodier Update

This kitchen had an ultra-bright, all-white palette before its makeover. While clean and open, the space also felt sterile and lacked personality.

Before: The previous kitchen was bright white and lacking character. Crisp white cabinets, walls, counters and backsplash created a washed-out look.

After: The new two-tone color scheme feels cohesive yet adds style. Navy lower cabinets ground the space, while the brass fixtures and accessories add a touch of shine. The dark navy island contrasts nicely with the light marble countertops.

2. Oak Cabinets Made Modern with Navy and Brass

Dated oak cabinets were given a fresh, modern update with navy paint and new brass hardware.

Before: The existing kitchen felt stuck in the 80s with basic oak cabinets and an old laminate countertop. The floor tile was also dated.

After: By painting the lower cabinets a rich navy and adding simple brass bar pulls, the kitchen looks completely updated. The new marble-look quartz countertop also ties the navy and brass together nicely.

3. All-White Kitchen Gets Dimension with Navy Island

The crisp, all-white kitchen lacked dimension. By painting the island navy and adding brass stools, the space looks more layered.

Before: While clean and bright, this kitchen’s all-white cabinetry looked flat and lacked contrast.

After: The navy island creates depth and pairs beautifully with the brass bar stools, light fixtures and hardware. White marble counters also help connect the two colors.

Tips from Design Experts

Interior design experts agree that brass and navy work together wonderfully in kitchen designs. Here are some of their top tips for pairing these tones:

Choose the Right Undertones

Navy paint colors can have purple, blue or green undertones. Aim for a navy with subtle blue undertones rather than a purple hue, as this complements the yellow in brass best, says designer Sarah Sherman Samuel. A green-leaning navy can also pair well with the golden brass tones.

Mix High-Gloss and Matte Finishes

Combining the reflective look of polished brass with deep matte navy creates appealing visual texture, explains designer Tali Roth. Consider a high-gloss navy island or backsplash tile to contrast with brushed brass fixtures.

Anchor with Neutrals

Neutrals like white, tan and gray can help anchor brass and navy, notes designer Emily Henderson. Counteracting all that color intensity with some neutral cabinetry or walls allows the two main tones to pop.

Add Accent Hues Sparingly

You don’t need much additional color with such a bold brass and navy combo. But small hits of green, teal or ochre can provide a nice accent, says designer Jennifer Morris. Just take a less-is-more approach.

Mix Metals Mindfully

Brass has warmth that stainless steel lacks. Limiting other metals allows the brass to stand out. But matte black fixtures can complement aged brass nicely, designer Tiffany Brooks comments.

Ideas for Use of Brass and Navy in the Kitchen

Now that we’ve covered the basics, here are some specific ideas for utilizing brass and navy in your kitchen design:


  • Paint the lower cabinets or island a rich navy hue while keeping upper cabinets light.
  • Choose brass knobs or handles for both navy and white cabinets to tie them together.
  • Opt for navy uppers and brass lower cabinets for a unique combo.


  • Combine navy lower cabinets with light marble or quartz counters that feature brass veining.
  • Brass edging or inlay on an island or peninsula countertop creates a bold accent.


  • Use navy subway tiles with thin brass grout lines or accent tiles.
  • Install a bold brass-patterned tile backsplash to echo other fixtures.
  • Floating brass shelves mounted on a navy backsplash wall create cool contrast.

Fixtures & Decor

  • Add brass pendant lights, sconces, taps and range hood above a navy stove or backsplash.
  • Include barstools with navy upholstery and brass framing that play off the cabinets.
  • Display decorative brass bowls, vases or utensils in open navy shelving.


  • Rich wood flooring with golden undertones complements both the navy and brass.
  • Large-scale patterned tile with navy and metallic gold designs ties the palette together.
  • Brass thresholds or trim can accent navy wood-look plank flooring.

Before & After: Transforming a Kitchen with Brass and Navy

To see how impactful integrating brass and navy into a kitchen can be, let’s look at a full before and after transformation example:


This dated kitchen had old oak cabinets with a cream laminate countertop and beige tile floor. The space felt dark, heavy and disconnected.


Painting the lower cabinets navy and adding brass bar pulls and pendants completely modernized the space. The new white marble countertop brightens things up, while the wood floor adds warmth. Navy stools tie into the island color. A few brass decorative accents add just the right amount of metallic shine without going overboard. The result is a kitchen that feels stylish, current and intentional.

FAQs about Designing a Kitchen with Brass and Navy

Many homeowners have questions when considering a two-tone kitchen renovation using brass and navy. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:

Should I paint existing cabinets or replace them?

In most cases, painting is a more budget-friendly option than replacing cabinets. As long as existing cabinets are structurally sound, painting them navy and adding new brass hardware can give them a fresh look. Use a high-quality cabinet paint formulated for kitchens.

How do I choose the right navy paint color?

Lighting makes a big impact on how navy paint will look. Opt for lighter navy hues like Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore in well-lit kitchens. Save deeper navy shades like Commodore by Behr for kitchens with less natural light. Always sample colors on the wall before fully committing.

What finish of brass hardware should I select?

Matte black hardware provides an elegant contrast to unlacquered brass’s patina. Polished brass finishes reflect more light. An oil-rubbed finish offers a nice in-between sheen. Mixing brass finishes can also look cool.

Should I install a brass sink or faucet?

Faucets and sinks come in a wide range of brass finishes these days. An aged brass sink would pair nicely with navy. But a chrome faucet still works fine if brass isn’t in the budget. Just tie in brass with smaller accents.

How do I incorporate brass on a budget?

Brass imparts warmth even in small doses. Swapping out outlet covers, updating switch plates and adding brass contact paper inside drawers makes an impact. Floating corner brass shelves, drawer pulls and cup handles also work.

Can I add navy to a kitchen with oak cabinets?

Yes! Painting just the island or lowers navy is a great way to update golden oak cabinets. Make sure to sand cabinet doors thoroughly before priming and painting for best results. Brass hardware ties the new navy color in.

In Conclusion

The bold metallic warmth of brass paired with the sleek sophistication of navy blue creates a welcoming kitchen color combination that feels simultaneously classic and current. By painting lower cabinets, islands, backsplashes or accents navy and complementing with brass fixtures, hardware, lighting and decor, you can easily infuse this stylish color combo into your own kitchen design. Focus on striking the right balance between the two contrasting tones. The before and after examples and expert tips in this article illuminate how successful this pairing can be. With a bit of creativity and careful planning, you can craft a kitchen that feels cohesive, polished and uniquely you by joining the growing trend of using brass and navy together.


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