Kitchens: is it blue for you?

Why is blue such a well-loved colour? Well, it’s soothing, it’s peaceful and it’s versatile. You have deep inky blues, light airy blues, dusky duck egg blues, sea blues… one colour becomes many when it comes to blue.

Blue has been a bathroom favourite for ever. Now, it’s also appearing more and more often in our kitchens. White has been a go-to colour for kitchen cabinetry for many years now, and with good reason. But are we a bit bored of it? Now that colour is creeping back into our homes and onto our walls, is it time to conquer the last bastion of white-ness – the kitchen?

Adding kitchen colour

Some ways to introduce colour without going overboard and to suit every level of bravery.

  • Using a back-painted glass splashback. You can always remove the splashback and install another one in the future.
  • Paint the base of the island bench in a bold colour. Make sure that the colour links to other elements in the space so that it doesn’t appear as an orphan.
  • Use a stronger colour on the tall cabinets, especially if they are isolated on one wall.
  • Include some peek-a-boo colour by painting the shelves or the walls in your pantry, or in certain cupboards, in a strong colour.
  • Paint the walls behind white cabinetry in a strong colour. The amount of visible wall in a kitchen is often reduced because so much wall space is taken up with the cabinetry. It’s an opportunity to be bold without being too in-your-face. It’s also the easiest option to change if you tire of the colour.
  • Paint the furniture. If a dining table or chairs are an integral part of the kitchen, use bold colour on them instead of the cabinets.

Top tip: Use Resene Enamacryl (gloss) or Resene Lustacryl (semi-gloss) to paint furniture, especially if it’s likely to get the sort of wear and tear you get in a kitchen space. These are ultra-tough waterborne enamels that are perfect for the job.

Here, we look at how one colour can be used in two completely different ways by two kitchen designers. One is bright, bold, contemporary and glossy; the other is restrained, restful and more traditional.

Published: 22 Feb 2018

Do you have a home full of wonderful Resene paint and colour? Send us some snaps by emailing [email protected].

Just a splash

blue, kitchen, blue kitchen, modern kitchen

A non-scary way of introducing bold colour is to paint the base of a kitchen island. Designed by Rochelle Jackson of Kitchen Elements, Wellington, the island is this kitchen is painted in Resene Wind Talker with the rest of the cabinets in Resene Half Sea Fog.

blue, kitchen, blue kitchen, modern kitchen

The kitchen is actually in a new home, designed for a young couple and their new baby who wanted a stunning yet homely feel to the room. The panelled cabinetry, the recessed open display shelves and white subway tiles give the kitchen a traditional vibe and shows how you can mix a classic style with a modern twist within a new home.

The kitchen is painted in Resene Wind Talker with the rest of the cabinets in Resene Half Sea Fog.

Going bright

blue, kitchen, blue kitchen, modern kitchen

The bold colour choice of Resene Resolution Blue was inspired by a painting the owner had hanging in the hallway of this Australian apartment and used with skill by designer by Marianne Gailer of Kitchens By Design, Auckland.

The high-gloss finish on the cabinetry add to the dramatic look, along with the swathe of hexagonal copper and stainless steel tiles that help the kitchen blend into the existing copper panelling in the living area.

blue, kitchen, blue kitchen, modern kitchen

The facing of the island bench is clad in mitred Corian Cirrus White, giving a stark contrast to cobalt Resene Resolution Blue of the cabinetry behind. A built-in table protrudes from the island and can be adjusted in height depending on its intended use. A mirror finish on the central plinth lifting mechanism makes the table appear to float, adding a little magic to the whole design.

the look

If you're stuck on what
colour to use or need colour
advice, try out the Resene
Ask a Colour Expert service.