A kitchen remodel can completely transform the heart of your home. This week, we’re inspired by a gorgeous kitchen makeover featuring creamy cabinets and a stunning walnut island. Keep reading for an inside look at everything from the layout and materials to the lighting and accessories.

Overview of the Kitchen Design

This kitchen was redesigned for a family looking to update their dated, cramped space. Key elements of the new design include:

  • Spacious layout with large island
  • Shaker-style cabinets in a creamy off-white finish
  • Walnut island top and open shelving adding warmth
  • Marble herringbone backsplash and polished quartz countertops
  • Stainless steel appliances and matte black hardware
  • Pendant lights over the island illuminating a dining space
  • Built-in banquette seating for casual family meals

The new layout improves flow and functionality. By opening the wall separating the kitchen and dining room, the space feels much more open and airy. The large central island provides ample prep space and casual seating while also defining the cooking zone.

Cabinetry – Shaker Style in a Creamy Off-White

The cabinetry plays a starring role in this kitchen’s design. Crisp, Shaker-style cabinetry was selected for its timeless appeal and custom look. The cabinet boxes have a durable plywood construction, while the doors feature a recessed center panel and subtle trim details.

The creamy off-white finish has just a hint of gray that pairs beautifully with the warmer wood tones. This versatile shade keeps the space feeling fresh and bright. The finish has a velvety smooth lacquer that resists fingerprints and cleans easily.

The lower cabinets are adorned with simple square knobs in brushed nickel, while the drawers have subtle finger pulls, maintaining the streamlined aesthetic.

For the island, one side features open shelving. This provides a place to display pretty cookware while breaking up the cabinetry. The other side has enclosed cabinets for housing smaller appliances, cookbooks and more.

Walnut Island Top – A Warm Focal Point

The rich walnut island top is truly the pièce de résistance. Its pronounced wood grain and organic edges provide natural beauty and visual interest. The overhang at the ends creates space for seating on both sides.

Walnut’s mid-tone brown color pairs nicely with the lighter cabinets while also complementing the black accents. Its natural luster develops a lovely patina over time. Compared to oak, walnut has greater dimensional stability, making it well-suited for the generously sized island top.

This multitasking island has become the new hub for casual meals, homeworking, socializing and food prep. It softens the kitchen layout while also drawing the eye.

Backsplash and Countertops – Marble Meets Quartz

The backsplash and countertops needed to work cohesively with the cabinets and island top. Marble herringbone tile in a polished white finish was chosen for the backsplash. The modular size allows easy installation, while the herringbone pattern adds visual intrigue.

For the countertops, a Cambria quartz called Brittanicca was selected. This provides the low maintenance and durability of quartz with an elegant white background and faint gray veining. The island countertop is also quartz, seamlessly integrated with the walnut top.

Having some contrast between the backsplash and countertops keeps each surface from blending together. The combination feels fresh and contemporary.

Lighting – Pendants & Recessed Lights

Proper lighting is essential for any kitchen. For general ambient lighting, recessed LED can lights are tucked into the ceiling. Dimmable bulbs allow adjusting the brightness as needed.

The main feature lighting comes from triple pendant lights positioned above the island. The matte black metal fixtures have an industrial vibe. Opal glass lampshades cast a soft, diffused glow – ideal for dining. The pendants are suspended at different heights for visual appeal.

Task lighting at the sink and cooktop ensures prep and cooking surfaces are illuminated as needed. LED strip lighting inside the cabinetry provides visibility when doors are opened.

Appliances – Stainless Steel Suite

Choosing the right appliances is critical for any kitchen remodel. This kitchen was outfitted with durable stainless steel appliances that deliver professional results:

  • 48” pro-style dual-fuel range with 6 sealed burners, griddle and double ovens
  • Quiet dishwasher with adjustable upper rack and soil sensor
  • Counter-depth refrigerator with bottom freezer drawer
  • Undermount stainless steel sink with pull-down faucet
  • Microwave drawer providing hidden convenience

The appliances all feature streamlined styling with solid handles that align nicely with the hardware on the cabinetry. The suite provides a balance of form and function.

Finishing Touches – Hardware, Seating & Styling

Beyond the major elements, the details complete the kitchen’s design:

  • Matte black hardware on cabinets/drawers provides understated contrast
  • Built-in banquette seating creates a cozy dining nook
  • Cafe curtains and an area rug lend softness and warmth
  • Stylish accessories like a KitchenAid stand mixer and Vitamix blender
  • Glass canisters, ceramics and fresh flowers display personality

The metal hardware, curtain rods, light fixtures and barstools all share a matte black finish that plays off the stainless appliances nicely. Incorporating decor in metal, wood, glass and greenery finishes the polished look.

Design Takeaways

There are many aspects of this kitchen makeover that can inspire your own redesign. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Blend cabinet colors like creamy whites with natural wood tones
  • Consider an oversized island for additional seating and surface space
  • Use pendant lighting over islands to define an eat-in dining zone
  • Combine textures like marble tile, wood and quartz for visual interest
  • Don’t overlook the power of great lighting and hardware
  • Splurge on showstopping materials like the walnut island top
  • Incorporate built-in banquettes or casual seating areas whenever possible

With smart layout adaptations, upscale finishes and the right accents, you can craft a kitchen that achieves the perfect balance of form and function tailored to your family’s lifestyle. This light-filled kitchen with its warm walnut island is sure to inspire your own dream space.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some common questions about designing and remodeling kitchens similar to this one:

What are the main costs involved in a kitchen remodel like this?

The biggest costs for a kitchen remodel of this caliber are typically the cabinetry, countertops, appliances, flooring and labor. High-end custom cabinetry can range $30,000-60,000. Stone countertops like marble average $60-100 per square foot installed. Top appliances can be $5,000-10,000 for a suite. Flooring can range from $3-8 per square foot. Labor will depend on your market but expect $50-100 per hour.

What size should a kitchen island be?

As a general rule, plan on 36-48 inches for circulation around an island. For a family kitchen, look for an island in the range of 6-8 feet long and 36-42 inches deep. Allow at least 4 feet between opposite cabinets/countertops if incorporating a dining area.

How much space do you need for a kitchen banquette?

Look for a minimum of 36-42 inches from the banquette to the table edge for comfortable seating and leg room. A typical banquette depth is 24-30 inches. The length depends on your space but 5-6 feet can seat 3-4 people.

Should you put upper cabinets on the kitchen island?

It depends on your storage needs and preferences. Some designers opt for an open look or just lower cabinets. Upper cabinets can make an island feel too bulky but do provide useful storage. Glass door uppers keep it lighter. 42 inches is a typical island cabinet height.

What backsplash styles work well with white kitchens?

White kitchens pair beautifully with both light and dark backsplash materials. Popular choices include marble or ceramic tile, metal like stainless steel or nickel gap, glass or mirrored tile, and patterned tile with white in the design.

What kitchen colors are trending right now?

White kitchens remain popular, but mixed cabinet colors are on trend – think white uppers with navy lowers. Two-toned kitchens combining paint colors like light blue-gray and cream are also widely seen. Warm wood tones and black accents look current and elegant.

Should I get a kitchen island or peninsula?

Islands are more spacious and better for entertaining. But peninsulas work well in narrow spaces. If you’re tight on room but want seating, look for a peninsula with an overhang or banquette. Measure thoroughly as islands require significant clearance.

How much does a high-end kitchen remodel cost?

For a luxury kitchen remodel in a 200 sq.ft. space, expect costs upwards of $125,000. High-end materials like custom cabinetry, granite, marble, high-end appliances and extras like built-ins will increase costs. The national average for a major kitchen overhaul is around $75,000.


This airy kitchen redesign made smart use of the existing footprint while opening up the space. By reworking the layout and switching from closed off rooms to open concept, the kitchen now feels much more expansive and suited to family life.

The design choices like creamy Shaker cabinets paired with warm walnut accents help the new kitchen feel cohesive, current and full of character. Special details like the stunning marble backsplash, pendant lights and built-in seating create an inviting, functional space tailored to the homeowners’ needs.

While this level of renovation requires a significant investment, there are elements that can be incorporated into any budget. Focus on the details that have the most visual impact like statement lighting, hardware and accent materials like a rich wood island top. Approach your layout thoughtfully, create zones for cooking, dining and storage, and select finishes that flow together seamlessly. With careful planning and design, you can create a kitchen that beautifully supports your family’s lifestyle.