Gray… at least 50 shades of it, is still going strong in DC interiors these days. And suddenly, everyone seems to want “Tuscany” out of the kitchen.
I view gray as a neutral, but it can be tricky to work with. When layering grays and other neutrals, there are those pesky undertones that come into play (grays have an undertone of either violet, blue or green). But another important factor to consider when “going gray” in a kitchen is how to balance it with warmer elements so you don’t end up stirring your marinara sauce in what feels like a chilly operating room. Here are 15 “gray” kitchens that manage to achieve that balance.
This is one of my favorites– designed by Jeanne Rapone and Bronwyn McCarthy Huffard. The weight of the dark cabinetry is balanced by the soft, light floors and a fabulous pop of yellow on the door and rug (below).
Here, the austerity of the gray and stainless steel surfaces is balanced by the texture of baskets and rustic wood floor.
Pattern comes into play with this gorgeous marble backsplash and chevron rug. But the warm orange tone of the floor pairs perfectly with the soft blue-toned gray cabinetry.
There is nothing soft, warm or quiet about this next kitchen… but what fun! The Decor Demon is obvioulsy no “shrinking violet”.
The kitchen below is uber elegant and soft with glints of polished chrome– but the sight lines take us into what looks like a warm wood paneled library.
Again, wood floors are an important component here. Cabinetry (below) is painted in Benjamin Moore Gentle Gray, with uppers lightened by 50%.
From across the pond, the sublime work of Plain English. The soft chalky finishes on floor and cabinetry are just beautiful.
Below… a two-toned cabinet treatment with walls and upper cabinets ‘Lime White’; lower cabinets, ‘Mouse’s Back’ ; window sashes and doors, ‘Stoney Ground’ (all Farrow & Ball).
Below, Benjamin Moore ‘Storm’ is paired with a warm gold wall color and chesnut flooring. Works.
And here, a subtle treatment of Benjamin Moore ‘Gray Owl’ on the cabinets with a warm, rustic wide-planked pine floor feels warm and cozy.
And Martha always gets things right in the kitchen. Here, cabinets are painted in Bedford Gray.
And next, a warm gray marries beautifully with an antique pine table (I love this one).
There are many good tutorials out there on painting kitchen cabinets. One of the better ones is here. Most major cabinetry lines are now offering a nice range of gray finishes. Crown Point Cabintery offers beautiful custom painted finishes in the Farrow & Ball range. And appliance manufacturers are getting in on the act. GE has debuted a new finish called “Slate”
But of course another way to get gray into the kitchen is to pair a great gray wall color with white cabinetry. Another post. Another day.
Until next time… thanks for dropping by!