What Makes a White Kitchen Work?

 In Cabinetry, Design Trends and Ideas, Home Remodeling Ideas, Kitchens

It seems that today everyone loves the crisp, clean feel of the white kitchen.  The use of white in every style of kitchen design continues to dominate kitchen design with the use of white cabinets, white tile, white sinks, white furniture, and well, white everything!  The classic white on white seems like it’s here to stay for a while longer.

Clean, Clear, And Classic White Kitchens

By Rob Mortell, Marketing Coordinator, Advance Design Studio Ltd.

So what’s the key to good white on white kitchen design that doesn’t leave one feeling cold and impersonal, or like they’re lost in a scene from Bruce Almighty?  What is it about the great white kitchen that works; producing a living space that is both, inviting and comfortable, stylish and beautiful?

Is it in buying that perfect white cabinet?  Or is it…everything else?  Well let me share a little secret.  The key to making it work is everything else that is done with the room.  Warm or cool metals, interesting lighting, contrast with balancing tones, the use of texture and pattern, and the careful application of color all contribute to making a mostly white room “work”.

Let’s check out an example from one of our very own projects…what makes this white kitchen work?  I’ve added emphasis in ( ) to show you the details that make this white kitchen work!

A White on White Barrington Kitchen Renovation:


Quinn and Paige, residents of this tired 1960’s tri-level home hated their Barrington kitchen.  As a matter of fact, prior to making plans to renovate the first floor – they considered selling the home but were reluctant because of its enviable location near the heart of downtown Barrington, which was within walking distance to local stores and all their favorite places.  So instead they contacted Advance Design Studio after hearing about them from a neighbor, to rescue their tired home and give it new life.

The stage was set for the seaside feel of this kitchen by pairing crisp white painted maple cabinets (white cabinets!) with Dura Supreme’s one of kind hand weathered finish (texture) on the island in soft blue-green finish (contrast with balancing tones/color).   But the authentic feeling of being on her favorite beach was supremely achieved by the matching of unique Mt. Claire marble (use of color, pattern,) on the island and the specialty Wareham acid washed stone (pattern and earthy texture) on the perimeter counter tops.  Pictures don’t do justice to the feel of this stone under your hand; its water-washed texture reminds instantly of summer vacations collecting rocks softly etched by hundreds of waves.

Stainless steel appliances and satin nickel hardware (contrasting metal tones)shine brightly against the backdrop of bright white subway tiles (white on white)accentuated by subtle grey grout lines (color/contrast) contributing to the nautical feel of this comfortable kitchen.  Seeded glass door cabinetry reminiscent of beach grasses dress up the space just enough(texture/pattern), and a proud 6” stacked crown molding extends above 36” wall cabinets into the expanse of the now taller space (texture/detail); balancing this kitchen nicely within its newly integrated home.


Features in this kitchen include a built in standard depth refrigerator, pull out spice racks, tall tray dividers, under cabinet LED lighting and metal with glass pendants(interesting lighting), and wood super Susan with double pull out trash and recycling.  A cutlery divider holds sharp knives, and an angled cabinet was customized to hold a secret USB charging station.  The bright white Kohler farm sink (white on white) is graced by an elegant bridge faucet in brushed nickel (warm metal).  This now airy and spacious kitchen has room for guest and family to congregate around the large island, complete with rattan stools (color/texture) and attractive hidden storage for seldom used entertainment pieces.

This client couldn’t be more thrilled with her new kitchen!  “I love the beach.  I was sold when I saw the beautiful 3D drawings.  Advance Design nailed it, down to every last storage idea and coastal detail I envisioned, it was all in there.  It was unbelievable how accurate their interpretation was of what was in my head; working with my designer made my kitchen renovation so easy, it’s as if she literally read my mind.  It’s like having my favorite beach at home every day!” says Paige enthusiastically.

When creating the perfect white kitchen, as they say; “the devil is in the details”.  White kitchens without meticulous attention to details risk turning out as interesting as your doctor’s office waiting room if you’re not careful.  But with just the right help, you can attain the picture perfect white kitchen that you and your family will love and enjoy for years to come.

This homeowner’s dreams became a reality thanks to the thoughtful details integrated skillfully into her white kitchen by the Advance Design team. If you want to create a beautiful white kitchen to fit your home and style, visit us at AdvanceDesignStudio.comfor design ideas and to understand our Common Sense Design Process.   After 25 years of remodeling, our talented design team can help you create the perfect kitchen, bath retreat, or home of your dreams. Contact us today at 847-836-2600 or schedule an appointment to talk with us about that beautiful white kitchen you have been dreaming of.



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