Guide to Dark Kitchens: Concerns & What to Consider

One common concern we hear from our clients is regarding dark cabinetry colours. Set the scene: You’ve spent weeks gazing at the paint swatches in adoration, you keep going back to that one colour (or, more than likely, two) Bond Street, Borough Market, or maybe even Sinner. The main concern: “Will it make my kitchen feel really dark and small?”

South East Kitchen 11.jpg

It’s understandable that you might find a dark colour daunting. While a dark kitchen won’t work for everyone, it’s less scary than you might think. If you are worried about the space looking too dark, here are a few considerations to make:

Choose a light worktop, wall and floor colour-

When choosing a darker hue for your cabinetry, if you want to keep the space feeling airy and bright, choose a lighter colour for the worktops, walls and floor. A lighter worktop and walls will reflect light in the space and create a beautiful contrast with your cabinetry. Your cabinetry design will really stand out with this contrast, so make sure you are in love with the design.

Westgate Kitchen 26.jpg

Choose a light or contrasting tile-

Another way to create balance in your kitchen is by introducing a contrasting tile for your splashback. You could run the tiles all around your walls between the upper and lower cabinetry to carry out the balance. We have some of our favourite decorative tiles available to purchase from the Herringbone Pantry.

Bromley kitchen 14.jpg

Think about light-

Consider the windows in your kitchen and which direction they facing. If you are having an extension, this should be a consideration that is made early in the planning stages and gives you the freedom to make it work with your kitchen design. Depending on the amount of natural light flowing into your kitchen, your dark cabintery will vary in darkness and tone. Paint a sample board with your colour and see how the light will change the colour at different times of the day and in different parts of the room. Don’t be disheartened if you don’t have lots of big windows, there are other ways to introduce light into the space with pendant lighting, under unit lighting and spotlights.

Brentwood Kitchen 09.jpg

Play with handles-

The style and finish of your cabinetry handles will impact the aesthetic of your kitchen. Aside from making a difference in the overall style of the cabinetry, juxtaposing dark cabinets with a brass, nickel or chrome handle will create contrast and reflect more light into the room.

Embrace the dark-

If darker tones is right up your street, why not go all out and embrace the moody & cosy feeling that comes with darker colours. Paint your walls with the same or a contrasting dark colour. For an even grander effect, take the colour all the way up your ceiling.

Dark kitchen


Do you love it?-

The most important thing to consider is ultimately, are you in love with the colour? Do not worry what your aunts, neighbours or colleagues have to say about it, if the colour best reflects your family personality than it will always work for you. Does it create the mood that you want bring to the space? You will spend a lot of time in your kitchen, so think about what colour will make you feel happiest.

South East Kitchen 28.jpg

As always, we are here if you are unsure and need some more guidance! Drop us an email or ring us to have a chat about your project.

A Guide to Mood Boarding & Colour Combinations

We know renovating or redecorating a space can seem like a daunting task to take on. With endless options of paint colours, decorative tiles and handles in all shapes and finishes; it’s a lot to take in. This is why mood-boarding can be a great way to narrow down your options and help you visualise your space easier. A little visual aid never hurt anyone after all!

Moodboard Collage (1).jpg

Mood Boarding Basics

There a few different ways of creating a mood board. Traditionally, a mood board consists of a physical board like a push pin board of foam, where images and textiles can be attached. However nowadays it’s more common to use apps like Pinterest, or photo editing software to create collages full of your inspiration images. More and more clients are using Instagram to help organise their thoughts. You may want to keep things even simpler, by ordering samples of things like paint, handles, tiles and textiles and laying them out in different arrangements. This way you can have a very clear understanding of what works with your scheme.

Pinterest to The Rescue

If Pinterest is already something you’re familiar with, there’s no better place to start your mood boarding journey. Start by collecting images of completed spaces you find attractive or that speak to you and evoke the feeling you want your own space to feel like. Then go on to Pinning images of more specific things like taps, patterned tiles, fabrics and paint swatches. Pinterest in particular is a great app to use, as not only can you save inspirational images to your Board, but you can also add images directly from company websites. For example if you have your heart set on that Perrin & Rowe tap, you can Pin that exact tap.

Start by collecting images that speak to you or evoke the feeling you’re after in a space. You can find these anywhere from magazines, company websites, Pinterest or even taking photos yourself when visiting shops or different spaces. Restaurants, galleries and other commercial interiors often serve as great inspiration. Once you have a general idea of what you want in your space, try arranging images around one larger image of a completed space with a similar vibe or similar elements to what you’re after. This can be used as a visual aid througout the project and help you to understand what does and doesn’t work for you and your space.

Herringbone Pinterst
What defines whether a colour is stimulating or soothing is not the colour, it’s the intensity. A strong, bright colour will stimulate, and a colour with low saturation will soothe
— Angela Wright, Colour Psychologist

Choosing your Colour Combinations

Lily Pebbles Kitchen 10.jpg

Colour combinations are often a part of design that people have the most trouble with. How to choose different colours and make sure they live harmoniously and above all, are pleasing to the eye. Artists and designers often use the Colour Wheel method. By looking at the wheel, working out which colours, hues and tones work best with each other.

You may well have chosen a colour you absolutely love and have settled it! The best thing to always remember is that in design, it’s all about balance and juxtaposition.

Some examples:

  • If you’re using a bold and vibrant colour, on your main or island cabinetry, introduce a softer, lighter version of that colour respectively.

  • If you’re going neutral and inoffensive all the way, why not add a bold and intricate patterned tile to avoid looking clinical.

As with anything, there are exceptions to the “rules” if you may. If it looks and feels right to you go with your instinct. If you’re still unsure, you can always call us and ask for our advice. We love helping you out and making sure you’re as happy as possible with the end product!

One very important thing to remember is, you can follow all the “rules” and trendy colour combinations, but the most crucial part of any design is that you love it. Imagine yourself waking up each morning and making yourself a cup of coffee (or tea) in that kitchen and feeling happy! So get on that Pinterest board, or whack out a scrapbook and have fun!

Rye; Kitchen Galore!

With the new display fitted in the showroom, the Rye kitchen is now available from Herringbone Kitchens. A beautiful contrast of white, grey and black, the display matches the artistry of beautiful granite with wonderful simplistic design. We are ever so proud of this new design, and are thrilled that our first installment of the design was so loved by our lucky customers! 

As a happy customer described, "I would recommend Herringbone to anyone who wants an amazing kitchen that is fitted to the highest standard by a lovely family run company who care about what they do, we are so happy!". We can't wait to help you make your kitchen dreams come true, so pop into our Canterbury showroom at any time, or Contact us, and we'll be happy to help.