Boldly colourful kitchens are all over the pages of House & Garden, but are you bold enough for the next step, the mix and match kitchen? If so, read on for our favourite colour combinations
A colourless expanse of kitchen units can be an unexciting prospect, and the designers on our pages are usually in the habit of brightening things up with bright paint colours, gloss paint and patterned tiles, or even opting out of the fitted cabinet altogether and creating variety and interest with a freestanding kitchen. If you are going down the fitted kitchen route, however, an easy way to enliven the look is by going for a mix and match kitchen, i.e. painting your top and bottom cabinets, or cabinets and island, in different colours. It's a gentle form of thinking outside the kitchen box that can produce very stylish results. For those looking to mix and match at home, we've picked three particularly lovely colour combinations in ascending order of boldness, so even the chromophobes among you can find an idea to steal.
Green and pink
For those of you who find bold colour off-putting, this understated combination of hues in interior designer Charlotte Boundy's London house is the perfect solution. The British Standard kitchen is painted in two tones – Edward Bulmer’s ‘Brunswick Green’ and ‘Lilac Pink’, a particularly delicate pink that is almost a neutral. ‘I really wanted the kitchen to be quite traditional and feel like something in the countryside,’ she says, pointing out the tongue and groove lined walls.
Pink and green is a classic colour combination at any level of saturation, and it would be remiss of us not to mention the (much) bolder version of it in a Sydney house by Australian interior designer Lisa Burdus (left). This kitchen, with walls and pantry painted in a muddy pink and bottom cabinets in a rich emerald green, is emphatically not for the faint hearted. The pink is Dulux’s ‘Morocco’ paint, while their ‘Green Gables’ offers a striking contrast. ‘The client didn’t immediately get it when I presented the ideas, but she trusted me,’ Lisa recalls.
Yellow and olive
For those working their way up the colour bravery scale, mixing and matching rich colours against a neutral backdrop can be a good way to start. In this country house in Norfolk, designer Carlos Garcia has used Plain English’s ‘Nicotine’ on the island and ‘Army Camp’ on the AGA surround and on the large larder cupboard at the back of the room. To keep things feeling restful, however, the walls of the room (which are very much visible and not covered by cabinets), are painted in a gentle pinkish magnolia, as is the long run of cupboards against one wall of the room.
Blue and black
Blue is a perennial favourite for kitchens, and this space in the grand surroundings of Eildon Hall in the Scottish Borders shows how well it can work. Unusually, this mid-blue (Devol's ‘Clerkenwell Blue’) is paired with a deep black island (in ‘Printer’s Black’). Interior designer Olivia Emery took the combination from the painting on the right, Christabel Blackburn’s Hay Barn. Again, a neutral backdrop is key; in this case, it is Benjamin Moore's ‘Paper Doll’, a greenish-grey that also tones in beautifully with the painting.