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Decorating & Furniture/kitchen: new countertops/old cabinets


QUESTION: I have medium oak cabinets with a grayish white ceramic floor time and a backsplash that is white ceramic tiles with occasional gray/blue/green tile dispersed throughout.  After 15 years, we are installing granite countertops, replacing the laminate.  I am also painting the walls.  I have a solid surface on top separated by a chair rail and real barnboard on the bottom.  I was thinking of painting two different shades of the same color...dark on bottom & couple of shades lighter on top, perhaps in a gray, taupe, or other suggestions would be welcome.  Also I am at a loss as to what color granite to use.  We have white appliances.  Any help you could give would be most appreciated.

ANSWER: Madeline,

I love the idea for painting.  The darker tone on the bottom will give great balance to the wall.  Be sure to paint the chair rail white.  Since your cabinets are medium oak, the gray shades would produce a smart, crisp look.  As for your granite, I'd opt to incorporate all of the colors (the wall color, the cabinet color and the white from the appliances).  Look at samples that are as large as possible; visiting a quarry or direct supplier allows you to look at the entire piece of granite before it is cut to fit your kitchen.  There is a lot of "veining" that takes place (naturally) in granite, so the bigger the sample, the more true picture you will have.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

Thank you so much for your quick response.  I would like to ask one more question.  What tone of gray would you use...true gray, toward the taupe, green, etc.  Also (I guess I'm asking more than one), we have two large windows in the kitchen that I always keep covered with curtains due to the proximity of my neighbor's fence, what would you do for window treatments...color, etc.
Thanks again for all your advice.

You're welcome, and thank you for the nice comments.  

The gray tone should lean toward a greener shade because of your cabinets.  And for the windows, I'd opt for a blind rather than curtains.  A faux wood blind in a medium oak shade would look smart, could be wiped clean with a damp cloth and would eliminate the view of your neighbor's fence while allowing some valuable light into the space.  


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Jennifer Taylor Wojcik


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