Kitchen colour that ‘oozes sophistication’ – what to ‘avoid’

When choosing the perfect paint colour for a kitchen there are a number of things to consider. Households should think about the look and style they want for their kitchen – maybe it is a classic timeless look or perhaps some may prefer a more contemporary or industrial style. For those who are unsure on how to choose their kitchen colour, Ruth Lavender, design expert at Benchmarx Kitchens, has suggested what to opt for and the impact they will have on the room.

She said: “When embarking on a kitchen design project, it’s very easy to leave choosing paint colours at the bottom of your to-do list. However, the colours of your walls have a huge impact on the rest of your kitchen design and can completely change the look of the space. 

“Picking the right paint colour that suits your interior scheme and embodies how you want the space to feel is crucial. So, it’s important that whatever you pick pairs well with your cabinets too.”

One of the first kitchen colours Ruth suggests opting for are neutral shades as they are a “safe and timeless” option for kitchens, especially in spaces with modest dimensions. However, that doesn’t make them “boring”, claimed the designer. 

She explained: “Layering different neutrals is a simple way to create a relaxed, calming space with a pared-back but sophisticated scheme. Alternatively, you can use neutral paint to offset a bolder colour choice, and give it the breathing space it needs to really stand out.

“Cool neutrals are perfect for rooms that enjoy a lot of natural light, and they are a particularly good match for dark greens and blues. The joy of cool hues is that they don’t overpower a room, thereby allowing other elements of your kitchen to take centre stage.”

Ruth explained that these colours also pair well with other neutrals, but it’s important to soften a cool colour palette with texture and accessories “to avoid things looking too clinical”. Alternatively, warm neutral paints are growing increasingly popular – particularly earthy, natural tones that evoke a sense of light and brightness.

The expert said: “Wild Wonder, Dulux’s colour of the year, is a great example of an on-trend neutral tone that brings warmth to a space. This yellow-toned neutral pairs beautifully with other nature- inspired colours, such as greys, greens, and blues, for a natural and calming scheme. It can also perfectly offset more vibrant colours, such as pinks and oranges.”

Dark hues are another favourite of Ruth’s to use in kitchens. She claimed that dark walls “ooze sophistication”, giving richness and depth to create a real statement in any space.

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The designer said: “Dark blues, greens, and greys have become staple colours to create an interior scheme that embodies the ‘moody’ trend and it’s easy to see why. 

“These tones help to blur and soften the lines between walls, often making a space feel soft and cocooning, giving the room a real air of drama and elegance. They also work brilliantly when contrasted with lighter tones, such as pale greys, whites, and pinks to create countless looks and finishes.”

Not only does this type of feature add personality to a space, but it is practical too, as darker colours “don’t easily show dirt or marks”, making it easier to “keep walls looking fresh and clean”, which is perfect for busy households. The expert added: “To make a real statement, match your wall colour with your cabinets for a seamless and striking design.”

While dark colours are a great solution for open-plan spaces as they “make a room feel cosy”, if a kitchen doesn’t benefit from a lot of natural light, painting walls with a dark shade may “make it feel dingy”. 

Although, this doesn’t mean households have to forgo their dreams of a statement kitchen. Ruth said: “Instead to avoid this, opt for a brighter neutral wall colour and pick dark cabinetry. Or, to ensure your room remains light and airy, you can opt for a dark colour on floor-standing cabinets and white or soft grey on wall-hung units.”

For those looking to make a statement, but are not a fan of dark shades, bright paint colours are a fun way to do this. Ruth noted that having fun with a bold paint colour may be “the perfect way” to create a design that makes households smile every time they enter their kitchen.

However, she warned that for those who are prone to changing their mind and don’t want to repaint too frequently, she recommended trying the trend out with pastels, as they’re “a great way of injecting colour in a more subtle but still mood-boosting way”.

While playing around with colour in the kitchen can add impact, there are other ways to do this for those more indecisive. 

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The kitchen designer explained: “If you’re drawn to bright tones, add accents of colour through your accessories by choosing statement crockery, soft furnishings, and artwork – opting for a brightly coloured splashback is another great option. This way, if you do decide you want to mix things up again, it won’t require a total re-work of your kitchen scheme.”

Regardless of the colour households choose, Ruth urged that it’s important to “master the preparation” in order to achieve that “luxe finish”. 

She instructed: “Make sure to clean the walls using a soft, damp sponge and sugar soap, before filling in any cracks or holes to ensure you have a smooth surface before starting to paint. 

“I’d also recommend applying tape around your light switches, cabinets, windows, and door frames to make creating clean lines a breeze.”

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