Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry?

For those of you who love classic style decorating, you should really consider incorporating blue kitchen cabinetry into your next kitchen scheme.  Whether you like a farmhouse look, an upmarket Hamptons style or a classic English scheme, using just white on its own, although lovely, can sometimes leave you wanting.  Smart dark grey works well with white and is a great neutral however introducing some blue kitchen cabinetry really injects personality into your kitchen design.  Think fashionable Ralph Lauren and beautiful East Coast American style and you are well on your way to coveting a dark blue kitchen.

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Image – Ralph Lauren

I treat dark navy blue as an alternative neutral to black or grey.  It happens to be my favourite colour so I am possibly, well almost definitely, biased, but there is something about dark blue cabinetry that I absolutely love and if you love classic style decorating, I am sure you will love it too.  Below I have my 6 key points to help you to introduce this gorgeous colour into your next kitchen renovation.

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Image – DeVol Kitchens

Here are my top 6 tips for choosing blue kitchen cabinetry

1)      Ensure that the blue that you select contains enough grey to make it work.  A navy blue that is too bright will not be successful – remember that you are using this blue as an alternative neutral, not as a feature wall colour.  I like Dulux Presidential which is a sophisticated blue/grey or you could try Dulux Grid for a slightly greyer, darker look.  Depending upon where you are in the world, Little Greene Hicks Blue, Farrow & Ball Stiffkey Blue or Porters Nova Scotia for a warmer blue/grey are all contenders.  If you would like to introduce more of this colour into your space then ensure that you use exactly the same paint on the walls as on the kitchen cabinetry so that the match is perfect.

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Image – Little Greene Paints

2)      If you are planning a two tone kitchen using blue and white, then always use the darker colour for the base cabinetry.  This grounds the scheme and prevents it from looking top heavy.  Of course you don't have to partner the blue with white as it is also very effective with a soft neutral grey.  I really like to use my accent colour on the island bench as this is a great focal point for the room.  If you keep the white or grey for the kitchen cabinetry on the outside walls, this becomes the work zone for the kitchen and then your island bench becomes the convivial meeting point for dining/drinks and chatting with friends and family.

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry?
Image: DeVol Kitchens

3)      For a classic look ensure that the kickboards are painted in the same blue as the lower cabinetry so that the joinery looks more like a piece of furniture – a white or silver kickboard would really destroy the look here.  Kitchen manufacturers are getting into the navy blue trend and are producing laminates in this colour so that you don't have to have a painted finish on your kickboards.  If the style of yours is to have set back kickboards then the shadow created here ensures that this can work and provide you with a hardier finish than paint.

 

 

 

 

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Image – Studio Surface Design

4)      Carefully consider the handles that you will use.  Dark blue kitchen cabinetry is complemented well with either silver or gold but will give you quite a different feel as you can see in the images here.  Gold is great with dark blue but will give you a more traditional feel while silver will bring a contemporary touch.  Handles really do change the personality of a kitchen so ensure that you like the effect by placing the handle against a large sample of the paint colour.

Have you ever considered blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Image: Domino Magazine

5)      Don't forget to consider the effect of a benchtop and splash back.  I do love a contrast with the dark blue so really love a white bench top, either something plain or a beautiful marble that can also be used for the splash back or for a more affordable style, a simple white subway tile looks good too.  A natural timber bench top will look great but provides less of a contrast – there is no right or wrong – it will just give you a different feel so you need to consider the outcome that you prefer.  Remember that using dark blue kitchen cabinetry is making a statement, so keep the splash back simple as there is nothing worse than too many statement pieces in a decorating scheme!

6) Finally, consider the finish of your kitchen cabinetry.  Either a matt or at the most satin finish is the way to go here.  A gloss finish will completely ruin the look as you need the beautiful depth that you get when the finish is more matt.

Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry
Photographer – Helen Ospina

I hope that this has given you some inspiration and that you will consider using some blue kitchen cabinetry.  I would love to hear if you have used dark blue in your kitchen or whether you plan to.  You can also find lots more images and inspiration on my Pinterest Classic Kitchens board – hop on and take a look.


Have you ever considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry

Are you renovating your kitchen?  If so you should read my in-depth article about how to choose a kitchen benchtop with the pros and cons of the major types available.

How to select a kitchen benchtop

I have written another post on how to use navy blue and white which you might also find helpful:

Let me show you how to use Navy Blue and White

60 thoughts on “Have you considered using blue for your kitchen cabinetry?

  1. Avatar
    Kate says:

    Perfect timing I have a blue kitchen being installed now. My husband discovered in the paint shop Dulux now make chalkboard paint in any dark colour so we had Senate which is the perimeter cabinets colour mixed for a family notice board.

  2. Avatar
    Di Sinclair says:

    Hi Sam,
    Di Sinclair here.I too love navy blue. I am thinking of

    having a white kitchen with Devonshire sky splash

    back tiles,no overhead cupboards though. Also an

    island bench with timber top and v panelled back in

    navy blue, which is the first thing you see as house is

    very open plan.
    I love the timber bench top on the island bench in

    photo.

    Cheers

  3. Avatar
    Caren says:

    I think if I just follow your board I will be consistent. I love the blue. Is there a marble I do not have to worry about? Honed?
    As per my other note, I will have to use Benjamin Moore. And can you clarify regarding the modification of strengths? This is new to me. Does it insure to avoid clashing? Thanks

    Caren

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Caren I’m glad you love the blue kitchens – I think they’re gorgeous. Natural marble is always something that you have to maintain carefully but I have found that a honed finish is more resilient and this is what I recommend to clients. You might like to consider one that has more of a grey background than a pure white as this would hide the occasional stain that you can’t remove. You also might like to consider a Caesarstone quartz product. Their Statuario Maximus or Statuario Nuvo stone is very realistic and being Caesarstone, will be far more resilient than natural marble. Both have pros and cons so you should consider carefully. I do really love the natural product – you can’t beat it but you do have a bit of worry with it. Good luck Samantha

    • Avatar
      Verity says:

      Hi Samantha,
      Thank you for your post. I am about to install a kitchen into my new home and want to do a navy island bench – there are just so many to choose from! And it’s hard to know how it will look in situ. We are in Australia so need to use a paint colour we can access here – Is the Dulux Presidential actually in any of these photos you have used in this article? Everything I have looked at so far is too bright blue or teal! The struggle is real.
      Thank you

      • Samantha Bacon
        Samantha Bacon says:

        Hi Verity I don’t have a kitchen to show you with Dulux Presidential. This is a lovely dark grey blue but if you are looking for a true navy you should look at something a touch less grey and with a little more warmth. Your local Australian Dulux store can show you their Navy Trim colour – if this is too bright then Boatswain or Blue Lobelia may fit the bill. Hopefully this is the blue you have in mind. Samantha

  4. Avatar
    Melisa says:

    Love the blue cabinets but am so afraid of getting the right shade without seeing it in person. I am considering grey cabinets with a blur island but have to use Benjamin Moore. Any suggestions on a Benjamin Moore color?

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Melisa you will really need to grab some Benjamin Moore samples to see them in situ with your other colours in the room as there are so many greys – as with whites they have different bases. For a blue grey I really like Benajamin Moore’s Gentleman’s Gray – this is from their 2017 trend palette and is a lovely blue that has neither too much green or too much read but with heaps of gray to make it contemporary – this may work for your island and then choose your other gray from there but you will need to consider flooring, walls, bench top etc. so this is only a stab in the dark and a suggestion to look at their latest trend ideas. I hope this helps Samantha

  5. Avatar
    Risa says:

    What color are the cabinets in the image from studio surface design? I’m looking for a dark navy almost black cabinet color for my island!

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Risa I don’t know the exact colour of these cabinets as Studio Surface Design is a US company however you could try something like Dulux Winter Sea or Academic Blue as a similar colour – North Sea Blue is more black. If you go along to a Dulux trade store you can ask to see their Atlas and this may help you to determine the right blue. Good luck Samantha

      • Avatar
        Leonie Burford says:

        Hi there,
        I’ve got an old style weatherboard cottage that I’ve painted North Sea Blue… on the outside with white trims.
        Is it too much to take this colour inside as well? I’ve oiled the rustic jarrah floor boards, so they are a very dark brown, rather then the reddish tones you see with poly coating. Walls are casper white, with lexicon skirting and architraves. a stone 1m wide wall behind the fireplace on the other end of the long kitchen/dining/lounge area….
        Should I a) not use blue inside as well
        b) use a different blue
        c) use the same blue?

        I’m keen to take on your suggestions of blue base cabinets against the wall and/or island with white cabinets on the wall up top. Then perhaps a lighter (than jarrah) timber, may Oak, for the dining table should work ok?

        Keen for your thoughts… this is a complete reno, so clean slate for the kitchen. I’ve got Bunnings workshops chipboard shelves at the moment!? hahhaa

        Cheers
        Leonie

        • Samantha Bacon
          Samantha Bacon says:

          Hi Leonie Dulux North Sea Blue is a gorgeous dark mid blue and I’m sure the house looks great. I don’t see any issue with bringing this inside as an accent and wouldn’t see any reason to change this. You could use this for the base cabinets or the island or both in your kitchen. As you have some nice whites on the walls with natural stone and oak you can afford to introduce some darker tones. With your kitchen white you should link it to the trim colour. Definitely an improvement on Bunnings chipboard shelving! Hope it turns out well – it sounds delightful Samantha

  6. Avatar
    Judy brown says:

    Just starting to look at kitchen ideas. Enjoy your thoughts. I need to remove part of a wall and then revamp the whole kitchen which is small. Money will be a factor so I will have to go slow. First I need the kitchen design done. Where do you think I should start and who would I get to do the design

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Judy a good interior designer will be able to put together a kitchen plan for you and then you can ask joiners to quote the job for you. Alternatively, you can go to a kitchen showroom and one of their in-house designers will draw up a plan but you don’t get to keep this unless you pay a deposit and use this company to make the kitchen. The benefit to this is you don’t have to pay a design fee however if you pay an interior designer once, you can then get lots of different quotes from joiners rather than be tied to the one company. Either way you should get good advice but you might need to try a couple of kitchen companies first to find someone that you gel with and whose ideas you like. Good luck with the renovation Samantha

  7. Avatar
    Janell says:

    Love these images! Quick question for you…we are doing our large island in Hale Navy (other base cabinets are white, lots of open shelving with basic subway tile/gray grout and stainless appliances)…we’ve picked oil rubbed bronze for sconces and such…designer is recommending black hardware on all cabinets…how do you think that will look against the navy? Would love your opinion.

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Janell black handles will look smart but will not be obvious against the navy however this could be your designer’s vision as sometimes rows of handles can actually spoil kitchen cabinetry and it can be beneficial to have a more understated, less obvious look. Perhaps just double check your designer’s thinking behind this – they may be linking it to the grey grout in the subway tiles. It really depends on the look and feel you want to achieve for the kitchen but I definitely wouldn’t say that this will be wrong. Love the idea of the rubbed bronze – beautiful! Hope you love the end result Samantha

  8. Avatar
    Caren says:

    Back to my cabinets at the beach: the Benjamin Moore Gentleman’s Gray suggestion to Melisa looks good to me for the island cabinets. I would like white walls and have left the ceiling open, to where the attic would be- thinking a very light gray, almost silvery against white rafters. Sort of Boathouse look, Scandi, Australian- if there is such a thing. Do you have any suggestions?

    I do like your suggestion about avoiding too many competing foci- perhaps the light gray ceiling should even be white.

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Caren I’ve just seen this comment and answered your later one first! Certainly a boathouse/Scandi/Australian look would all employ white ceilings so for the rafters I would just continue up with the chosen white for the walls keeping the look light and airy and making the most of your beautiful open ceiling. Hope this makes sense? Samantha

  9. Avatar
    Caren says:

    Thanks for another reply! My builder likes Benjamin Moore so now- 12 samples later- I have found Hale Navy for the island, Super White for Joists ( showing them) trim and Ceiling. The paint store recommend Decorator White for the walls. Then I found a beautiful gray, Gray Cloud.I wonder if that would detract or add on walls.? In other words will the temptation to add more colors detract? Thanks again for your advice! Wish I could import you for this project!You will definitely get credit here for your suggestions.

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Caren I love the look of Gray Cloud and this would certainly work on your walls instead of a pure white – it would look great with your Super White trim. It is certainly pale enough that you are not bringing in another colour as such. Just ensure with such a pale gray that it won’t appear dirty so possibly paint a sample wall first – it really will depend on how much natural light the room receives. Don’t forget too that you need to consider all the other greys/whites and colours in the room too – upholstery, rugs, throws etc. So look at the palette as a whole. I wish I could come to the US for a holiday – just what I would like at the moment! Good luck and keep in touch Samantha

  10. Avatar
    Caren says:

    Thanks so much for the thoughtful reply- I am trying out the colors in my non cottage primary home just to see.
    I just noticed this site’s discussion board is gray and white!
    I will send pictures of how it turns out, and hope you do take a turn through here someday!
    Caren

  11. Avatar
    Jen says:

    I am currently having a dark blue and white kitchen installed and saw this article when looking for inspiration for benchtop choices. It is a corner kitchen in an open plan living area. The corner cabinets are all white. The island bench will be a smokey blue (dulux snoop). I am considering doing 2 different stone tops – caesarstone marble effect (such as calacatta) on the island and a grey effect (such as clamshell or oyster) on the corner benches – the sink/tap is black and on the side bench not island.
    Do you think two different tops will be too much?

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Jen I do think that you run the risk of making the look overcomplicated with two benchtops. As you are using two different cupboard colours in the kitchen you need a uniform bench colour to tie it all together. I like the idea of the Caesarstone marble effect – but you will need to consider everything else in the room. Two different benchtops can work but I think in this case you are probably better off with one. Hope this helps with your decision making Samantha

  12. Avatar
    Sara says:

    Hi Samantha,

    I am trying to achieve the same look as the “Studio Surface Design” image you have posted above. Is there any way to get the paint color/brand of the navy blue on the bottom cabinets?

    Thanks,
    Sara

    • Avatar
      Sara says:

      I just noticed your comment above about the same image. I’ll take a look at the colors you mentioned in that post. Thanks!

  13. Avatar
    Emily says:

    Hi! Any suggestion regarding where to look for brushed brass hardware? I want to avoid gold, want a muted look on dark cabinets. So much variation. I’m in Canada but can order online

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Emily I don’t have any recommendations unfortunately – the supplier I use in Sydney is Mother of Pearl and Sons but I have checked and they don’t send overseas – perhaps some other readers may have a recommendation they could share?

  14. Avatar
    Lucy says:

    Hi Samantha,

    Thank you for all the information and advice you have provided. I have found it really useful and would appreciate your dvice on a coupleof points. I am going with blue cabinetry and I have settled on Taubman’s Annapolis Blue for my underbench cabinets. My kitchen is P-shaped with a long bench under the east-facing window, an island bench at the top of the P and the stove and oven behind the island perpendicular to the window. For my benchtop I am leaning towards QuantumQuartz Everest (beige-based white with flecks of black which look blue) as it feels warmer though Turino (white based quartz) is a close second.

    I would appreciate your advice on 2 things:

    1. I only have 2 overhead cabinets above the stove – Should these be blue or white? The walls will be white (I will be reading your post on whites very closely to choose my colour) and I am concerned that blue over head cabinets will be too conspicuous.

    2. I am having trouble selecting a spashback. I would like to introduce a touch of colour or subtle pattern and, depending on the splashback, considering repeating it on the front of the island bench which faces the dining area. Am I getting too complicated? Should I simply go for one colour?

    Thanks,
    Lucy

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Lucy My feeling is to have your overhead cabinets in white and you may find that Quantum Quartz Turino will give you a longer lasting more classic look for your benchtop. With a two tone kitchen, your splashback should probably remain fairly simple – perhaps employ some texture or a very simple pattern instead of another colour? Look very carefully at the stone benchtop sample and ensure that whatever you choose works with that. The two tone cabinetry with the beautiful rich dark blue on the base is a gorgeous statement in itself and therefore I certainly wouldn’t introduce something else on the front of the island bench. I hope this helps with your planning and that you love the end result! Samantha

      • Avatar
        Nicole says:

        Hi, so glad I found your blog. Am just about to renovate my kitchen and you’re tips are very helpful.

        I have the opposite situation of above. I would like to do navy cabinets on bottom but have more cabinets on top. So. I would have more white cabinets then navy and am worried it wouldn’t feel grounded enough.

        I have L shapes kitchen and with the exception of microwave, the entire top has cabinets. The bottom has my oven and dishwasher then about 3 cabinets.

        The ratio would be approximately 6 white to 3 navy (plus ss dishwasher and oven)

        Any thoughts appreciated!

        • Samantha Bacon
          Samantha Bacon says:

          Hi Nicole It’s always a good idea with a feature colour to have less of it rather than more so you don’t need to be concerned about this and I always like the darker colour below so I think you are exactly on the right track! Samantha

  15. Avatar
    Mary says:

    Hi Samantha,

    We are installing a blue kitchen with all base cupboards in Taubmans ‘Black granite’, is this an ok colour? The top cupboards will be white and we are stuck on either silver or bronze handles. Floor is brown/grey grain, benchtop white shimmer and back splash is a cloudy/marble polished grey and white tile 600×600, ant advise would be appreciated!

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Mary I really like Taubmans Black Granite – a lovely deep grey mid blue – not too much green and not too much red – so I think this will work well. I love bronze handles with blue and it sounds as though you have a warm coloured floor. You will need to put all your samples together on a plain background and hold up the handles next to it all to see which you prefer. Hope you love the end result! Samantha

      • Avatar
        Mary says:

        Thank you so much for your reply Samantha, I really appreciate it. Dulux colour matched Benjamin moores hale navy , it’s much more grey and now I’m torn. I’m afraid black granite is too blue?

  16. Avatar
    Shelley says:

    Hi Samantha
    Awesome advice, love your blog, thank you. We, too, are planning a new kitchen and are keen to try a dark blue island kitchen. A recent episode of 9Life’s “Fixer Upper” did this with a matching shiplap feature wall https://magnoliamarket.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/PhipsTouchedUp-17-of-57.jpg?x75932 – are you able to suggest a match for the colour used please? I’ve not had any luck searching online, no one seems to know what paint was used. All suggestions much appreciated. Thanks so much!
    Shelley from Perth, WA

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Shelley glad you are enjoying the blog! I love the image in the link – what a gorgeous kitchen and definitely proof that blue can look stunning in kitchens. You could try Dulux Signature – just grab a sample of this and remember that it will appear different depending on the amount of light that you have in your kitchen. You could also engage the services of a local colour consultant who will come with large samples of all the blue greys and you can look at them in situ – sometimes saves you money on sample pots! Let us know how you go Samantha

  17. Avatar
    Ann says:

    Hi I’m looking for a navy that’s almost black for my Living window frames. The room is painted Dulux Casper white. Any suggestions?

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Ann Dulux has a powdercoat colour called Charcoal which is a great window frame colour – more grey inside and blue outside when the sun hits it. I really like it as a dark blue/grey neutral for exteriors. They will mix paint to match this too. Hope this helps Samantha

  18. Avatar
    Keisha says:

    We are looking for a cabinet color in our remodel. The entire house is grey and white. We have installed dark grey concrete countertops and I’m having trouble deciding on what cabinet color will look best. Can you share the color of the above picture “DeVol Kitchens”. I love that blue and it’s dark enough to not be so BLUE!! Thanks so much!

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      I’m sorry Keisha – I don’t know the colour name. DeVol are a UK company that make the most amazing kitchens so it would be from a UK colour chart. The main thing to remember is you need it to be fairly dark and grey to knock out the blue but still retain it if that makes sense! Samantha

  19. Avatar
    Felicity Kneen says:

    Hi there,

    We are just about to complete a kitchen reno using blue as the colour for cabinets. Apologies if you have answered this question above, but can you tell me the colour of the cabinets in the Helen Ospina picture?

    Many thanks,
    Felicity

  20. Avatar
    Vicki says:

    Hi Samantha.
    We have beautiful wooden cupboards in our kitchen which would be a shame to paint over or change to laminated base cupboards. I’ve updated the handles to silver and they look great. We are going to update the bench top to white stone with white wall tiles. The only problem we have is that we are needing new cupboards up high and along the side wall where the pantry cupboards are. I had an idea to make the new cupboards a navy-grey colour, just as you’ve mentioned in this article. It will be better than white cupboards, and it would be too much wood to have all the new ones done in the base cupboards. You mentioned to have the blue cupboards as the base, but since our base cupboards don’t need replacing and looked great with the white floor tiles, and the soon to add white bench top and wall tiles, do you think the blue would be great on the higher and side wall cupboards? Thanks.

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Vicki I suggest the blue as the base if you are using white to complement the blue so that you don’t get a top heavy effect. However as you have a dark colour on the base this will be absolutely fine to introduce the blue for the upper cabinetry. To ensure you like the effect get a large sample of the colour blue and look at it with your timber and white – hope you love the end result Samantha

  21. Avatar
    Rebecca says:

    Hi Samantha,
    I’ve been reading and re- reading this article for a few months now! We’re renovating our home and having a new kitchen installed. Our kitchen cabinets will be lexicon quarter and our island will be dulux enterprise. I was planning on painting our trim lexicon quarter and am leaning towards dulux silver teaset for the walls. Our floors are spotted gum. I am undecided and anxious about which caesarstone colour we should choose for our benchtop… I really like Alpine Mist but am unsure if it would look okay with the island in dulux enterprise. I’ve also considered London Grey, Calacatta Nuvo, Georgian Bluffs and others. I’m terrified of making a poor choice and am struggling to decide. I would very much appreciate hearing your thoughts.
    Many thanks and kindest regards,
    Rebecca

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Rebecca Lovely to hear that you have found the post so inspiring! Caesarstone Alpine Mist is a lovely benchtop but I feel it has a touch of green and works better with more neutral stone whites etc. Georgian Bluffs may be too dark. London Grey is a nice grey and looks great with Lexicon Quarter, dark blue and the warm grey in your walls but I think my choice would be Calacatta Nuvo as it is such a classic being made to look like marble so it tends to go with more things as it stands out in its own right and you’re not getting any other underlying grey or colour. This is a classic look with a blue and white kitchen so I think that would be where I am leaning. Have you had a chance to go to either the Caesarstone display centres or to a good stonemason who has large slabs to view? This would be my recommendation if you have the time and take all your samples with you. Good luck Samantha

  22. Avatar
    Adria says:

    Hi Samantha,
    I have chosen this decorative spanish tile for my laundry. It has navy, gold and black colours through out.
    See the link, it’s the tile with 3 people standing on it…
    http://www.kalafranaceramics.com.au/federationtilesydney.html
    I love blue cabinetry and gold handles/tapware and thought these tiles would look lovely with it. My only concern is that we aren’t going with shaker cabinetry which I think suits navy blue the best. If I go for a navy satin cabinetry on the bottom and satin white cabinetry on the overhead cabinetry do you think it would work, or look like a hot mess LOL Thanks for your time.

    • Samantha Bacon
      Samantha Bacon says:

      Hi Adria I love the tiles – beautiful. You’re right that you don’t get quite the same look without the Shaker cabinetry but by using a simple satin finish the kitchen will look smart in these colours and you are absolutely right to have the navy on the bottom. It won’t look like a hot mess! Good luck Samantha

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