This week’s stunning kitchen is a true midcentury marvel located in the coastal California city of Santa Barbara. With its open layout, sleek surfaces, and warm wood accents, this kitchen seamlessly blends midcentury and modern design for a truly inspiring space.

An Open, Inviting Layout

One of the standout features of this kitchen is its open, airflow layout. The kitchen flows freely into the adjacent dining area without any walls or dividers obstructing the space. This creates an inviting, communal atmosphere perfect for entertaining and brings light and energy into the home.

Large windows along the back wall flood the kitchen with natural light. The light quartz countertops and white cabinetry keep the space feeling bright and airy. The open design allows the chef to easily interact with guests in the dining and living areas while cooking up delicious creations.

A Focus on Natural Materials

While the layout feels distinctly modern, many of the finishes bring in natural, organic elements that nod to midcentury style. The beautiful wood beams on the ceiling add warmth and a sense of history to the space. The exposed wooden ceiling gives the illusion of being in a cozy cabin rather than a sleek, urban kitchen.

The kitchen island is another stunning focal point, with a solid wood countertop and x-shaped beams on the base adding sculptural appeal. The rich wood grain patterns make for an inviting surface for everything from chopping vegetables to serving appetizers when entertaining.

To contrast the wood accents, the majority of the cabinetry has a matte white finish that feels fresh and contemporary. The white quartz waterfall countertop surrounding the range has an understated elegance.

High-End Appliances and Details

While the layout and materials impress, this kitchen doesn’t skimp on high-end details and appliances. The massive stainless steel range hood makes a bold statement overlooking the stove and prep areas. It both keeps the space ventilated while cooking and acts as a modern design feature.

The kitchen has top-of-the-line intelligent appliances, like the built-in coffee maker and voice-activated faucet. There are also clever hidden storage compartments, pull-out shelving, and full-extension drawers built seamlessly into the cabinetry, maximizing every inch of space.

Blending Old and New

This Santa Barbara kitchen manages to feel distinctly Californian while blending midcentury inspiration with contemporary amenities. The wood elements interplay beautifully with the bright white cabinetry. Timeless natural materials and clean lines ensure the space will remain stylish for years to come.

This jaw-dropping kitchen is an entertainer’s dream. It’s no wonder it has been crowned our Kitchen of the Week! For more stunning spaces incorporating midcentury details, keep reading.

More Midcentury Marvels to Inspire Your Kitchen

After seeing the gorgeous Kitchen of the Week in Santa Barbara, you may be looking for more midcentury modern kitchen inspiration. Here are a few more ways to work the retro-inspired look into your own space:

Incorporate Wood Accents

Wood instantly adds warmth and ties in midcentury style. Use real wood for counters, cabinets, open shelving, or accent walls. Mix natural wood with painted cabinetry in complementary tones. Wood can be light (maple or birch) or dramatic (walnut or mahogany).

Select Vintage-Inspired Appliances

Stainless steel appliances with rounded edges and retro details can make a statement. Undercounter refrigerators, colored ovens, and built-in coffee stations also evoke midcentury flair.

Use Pops of Color

Colors like turquoise, orange, sunny yellow and grassy green were popular during the midcentury era. Add charm with a colorful glass backsplash, barstools, or stand mixer. Metallic accents in brass, copper and gold also connect to ’50s and ’60s style.

Opt for Conversation-Starter Lighting

From globe pendant lights to sculptural sconces, statement lighting can infuse personality. Go for striking silhouettes, natural materials like rattan and inventive shapes to illuminate in style.

Incorporate Relaxed, Organic Textures

Terrazzo, exposed brick, reclaimed wood and concrete add organic depth in contrast to sleek cabinetry. Consider textured backsplashes, multicolored countertops and walls with nubby character.

Display Your Collections

Midcentury decor celebrates collections, from turntables to cookbooks. Install open shelving to showcase cherished kitchenware, bar tools or cookbooks. Floating shelves add effortless display space.

With some creativity, you can design a timeless, retro-inspired kitchen that suits your personal taste and lifestyle. Seek out conversation-starting vintage pieces paired with modern conveniences for a functional, fashionable space.

Frequently Asked Questions About Achieving the Midcentury Look

Kitchen design trends come and go, but midcentury style manages to remain timelessly fresh decade after decade. If you’re considering bringing midcentury flair to your own kitchen, you probably have some questions. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about designing a midcentury-inspired cooking space.

What are the key aspects of midcentury style?

Midcentury design is marked by clean lines, gently curved silhouettes, organic textures and connections between indoor and outdoor spaces. Hallmarks of midcentury kitchens include wood cabinetry, conversation-starting lighting, pops of vibrant color and plenty of windows and skylights.

What colors work well in a midcentury kitchen?

While advanced paint technology gives you limitless color options, midcentury palettes focus on sunny pastels and vivid primaries. Evoke the era with butter yellow, grass green, pale blue, and terra cotta. Metallics like brass, copper and chrome were also popular midcentury finishes.

How do I add warmth to a sleek, modern kitchen?

The tension between organic and modern drives midcentury appeal. Temper contemporary materials like glass, metal and high-gloss lacquers with tactile wood elements. Wood counters, open shelving, flooring and accent walls make kitchens cozier.

What flooring options complement a midcentury design?

Vinyl tiles reminiscent of retro linoleum make a fun vintage statement. Wood parquet adds geometric appeal. Concrete, stone and cork give an earthy, textured look. For easy maintenance, porcelain or ceramic tiles in retro checkerboard patterns or terrazzo styles work beautifully.

How can I get the midcentury look on a budget?

Use small doses of pricier materials strategically, like a marble-patterned laminate countertop or ceramic tile backsplash. Paint existing cabinetry a retro shade like mustard or seafoam green. Source vintage accessories from thrift stores, like clocks, storage canisters and tableware. Focus on big impact for little investment.

What should I avoid in a midcentury kitchen?

Stay away from ornate details and over-the-top accents that feel cluttered or fussy. Skip heavy carved wood finishes and elaborate Mediterranean or Victorian motifs. Keep the overall vibe light, bright and pared back to let midcentury elements shine. Focus the eye on thoughtful vintage-inspired details.

Whether you’re doing a full renovation or simple refresh, a midcentury vibe can make your kitchen stand out. Keep the era’s signature elements in mind, and you’re sure to cook up a space with standout style.

Bringing Santa Barbara Flair to Your Kitchen Design

The stunning midcentury kitchen featured as our Kitchen of the Week seamlessly blends vintage charm and coastal California style. If you want to bring a similar relaxed yet sophisticated vibe into your own space, here are some ideas to capture the essence of Santa Barbara through design.

Breezy and Bright

Channel sun-drenched Southern California with plenty of natural light. Skylights, Solatubes and ample windows invite the outdoors in. A light color palette of whites and pale blues keeps things fresh and ethereal. Strategic task lighting prevents shadows.

Sustainably Sourced Materials

Santa Barbara pride extends to eco-conscious design. Look for FSC-certified wood, low-VOC paints and finishes safe for people and the planet. Reclaimed wood and upcycled accents give new life to salvaged materials. Energy-efficient appliances do their part too.

Indoor-Outdoor Connection

One of the area’s signatures is seamless indoor-outdoor living. Frame views of gardens, patios or terraces with generous windows and glass doorways. Opt for kitchen cabinetry that withstands moisture and select outdoor-friendly materials.

Relaxed Sophistication

While laidback, Santa Barbara skips beachy kitsch in favor of refined simplicity. Aim for an uncluttered look with clean lines and minimal ornamentation outside of inspired vintage finds. It’s coastal chic at its finest.

Spanish and Mediterranean Notes

From terracotta tiles to wrought iron accents, details borrowed from Spanish and Mediterranean aesthetics reflect the region’s heritage. Arches, exposed beams and decorative tiles add handcrafted flair.

Fruit Orchard and Ocean Inspiration

From citrus trees to Pacific coastline, pay homage to local landscapes. Look for peel-and-stick wallpaper with banana plants or oranges as a mood-boosting backsplash. Add textural greenery and oceanic hues.

Effortless Entertaining

With its temperate climate and laidback vibe, the area lends itself to easygoing entertaining. Opt for flexible seating, bar carts and portable kitchen islands. Outdoor kitchens and living merge indoor and outdoor fun.

Bring a little of Santa Barbara’s breezy, organic aesthetic to your own kitchen with these cues. Balancing sophisticated and unfussy allows you to create a space that’s as welcoming as the California city itself.


This midcentury marvel in Santa Barbara offers major design inspiration. Its seamless blend of retro charm and contemporary amenities creates a kitchen that truly stands out while remaining highly functional. From the warm, organic wood elements to the sleek finishes, it strikes that quintessential midcentury balance.

Beyond admiring this week’s style star, there are so many ways to bring similar midcentury flair into your own space. From conversation-starting lighting to pops of sunny color, signature trends like open shelving and indoor/outdoor connection, and eco-conscious materials, a kitchen redesign can evoke the relaxed sophistication of the era. Whether you’re dreaming of a full renovation or simple refresh, Santa Barbara style is an excellent source of ideas for kitchens that impress with breezy coastal appeal and timeless design.