Anyone who keeps an eye on the design blogs, HGTV or Pinterest will know that white kitchens have been on trend for a while now. While there’s nothing wrong with white, many are starting to crave something different! The best way to buck the trend while still keeping your kitchen classic and stylish is to do a complete 180 and embrace dark shaker cabinets.

The timeless versatility of shaker kitchen cabinets can make dark colors look elegant and traditional, sleek and modern, or offbeat and unique, depending on the style you’re going for! Read on for some ideas on how to design your kitchen with dark shaker cabinets.

Why Dark Colors Work In Most Kitchens

Dark cabinets often have a richness of depth that isn’t attainable in lighter colors. They look luxurious and can elevate the look of your kitchen.

Shaker cabinets can come in a variety of dark colors, from dark wood grains to painted black, grey or even navy blue. Even colors like red or green may come in a dark enough shade to transform your kitchen.

You’ll need to decide which shade will work best for you: if you want a super-luxe look, you might want a dark chestnut brown, while a high-gloss black looks very modern.

Mixing Colors and Textures

Having an all-dark kitchen can look intimidating, or make the space look small, especially if you don’t have a lot of natural light. In that case, you’re going to want to mix and match different colors to create a balanced space.

You can pair the dark shaker cabinets with a light-colored backsplash or floor tile. Black and white is a classic color combination for a reason! Black cabinets in a white kitchen look striking and modern, or you can use a white-grey marble for a softer look.

Try Blue, Not Black

If black feels too intense for you, try a deep, rich blue instead. Blue works in many different kitchen styles: depending on the shade it can look seaside, Scandinavian or French. Plus, experts say the color is calming and relaxing, which can help you unwind while making dinner after a stressful day. Dark blue cabinets pair well with brass or copper hardware and wood flooring.

Add Open Shelves for Visual Interest

One way to utilize dark cabinets without overwhelming the space is to add open shelving in the kitchen. A set of lower cabinets in a deep hue and higher open shelves will balance out the room, and bring attention to the dishwasher or decor items on display. Add a clean backsplash like subway tile to create the perfect showcase for your wares.

Focus on The Island

If you’re not ready for dark colors across the whole kitchen, why not test it out with a pop of color on the kitchen island? A dark island in the middle of a light-colored kitchen is the perfect way to play with color. Try fitting your shaker island with dark colors that appear throughout the kitchen, whether it’s a dark grey in your marble counters or a dark blue that matches your dishware.

A Pop Of Color

If you worry that dark cabinets can make the space look too drab, bring light back into the room with pops of a bright color like yellow or red. You can keep it small with a vase or a stand mixer on your counter, or go bigger with backsplash, lighting fixtures or curtains in your chosen bold hue. This will instantly brighten up space and create visual depth.

Don’t Be Afraid of Patterns

Want to give your kitchen more character without adding color? Opt for patterns! Intricate backsplash in a Moroccan-inspired pattern can create visual interest and even warm up the kitchen. You can also try a minimalist geometric pattern in modern or Scandinavian kitchens, or just arrange neutral tiles in an interesting pattern like chevron or sunburst. 

The Perfect Match for a Butcher Block

Butcher block countertops are a popular option thanks to their affordability and versatility. They can make a kitchen look warm and inviting, and can warm up a kitchen with slate grey or dark blue cabinets.

For a really eye-catching and modern look, you can pair the warm wood of a butcher’s block with matte black cabinets. The butcher’s block will add definition and interest to the cool and sleek space.

Two-Tone Cabinets

Having two-tone cabinets is a great way to play with color in the space. You can opt for a lighter shade on upper cabinets with a darker hue on the lower cabinets to ground the room.

The beauty of this idea is that it works with every color palette! You can do black on bottom and white on top, slate grey and soft grey, or even a deep emerald green with a light pastel shade on top. No matter what colors you choose, the blend of light and dark will look stunning.

Keep It Natural

Painted cabinets aren’t for everyone! If you’d rather stick with a natural wood tone, there are lots of darker color options that you can choose from. Dark cherry or walnut cabinets are warm and inviting, while an espresso shade can look crisp and clean. Try to avoid golden or honey-toned woods and stick to rich, dark grains!

Choose the Right Hardware

After you choose the perfect hue for your shaker cabinets, you can find the perfect hardware to match. Silver, chrome and stainless steel are a good match for most dark cabinets, as they can brighten up the wood and look nice next to both cool and warm tones.

However, if you are looking for something trendier or more industrial, you can opt for matte grey or black handles, while brass or gold pulls and handles can look contemporary and modern on dark cabinets.

author avatar
Ryan is an experienced writer and kitchen renovation expert who loves sharing his knowledge with others. His background in construction and design gives him a deep understanding of what it takes to create functional and beautiful kitchens. Ryan's articles are filled with practical advice and step-by-step guides, making them a valuable resource for homeowners. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and exploring the great outdoors.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.