Decorating & Furniture/color for cabinets


I have just painted my kitchen walls white with matching crown molding and woodwork. I have a blue and white wallpaper border and curtains that match the blue and white border at the windows. The floor is grey with a tinge of blue. countertops are white. Backsplash is white tile with a small blue fleur de lis design running thru the middle. The chandlier is blue delft with white shades.

Suddenly, I felt the need for color. So I hung a large Tarkey print with lots of yellow (mustard) deep red, green and blue. I also have a small red lamp under it on a cabinet which picks up the red in the print, and at the other side of the cabinet I have a blue enameled antique coffee pot with gold and deep red silk flowers in an arrangemnt that also picks up colors in the print.

My cabinets now seem very out of place in the kitchen. They are dark walnut stained wood. I would like to have them painted. I am pretty tired of white cabinets that have been around for a long time, and I think with so much white on the walls the addition of more white on the cabinets would be boring. Blue is another choice, but I keep coming back to yellow (mustard). I can't seem to find the color, but I keep thinking of early american painted furniture in yellow. What do you think of this idea and do you think it would work? Do you know where I can go to find the paint and how to create the antique look in yellow (mustard).

Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.


Hi Sally,

In your particular situation you are dealing with too much contrast between the cabinetry (dark) and the walls (white).  The eye always goes to color first, and in this case, the eye would naturally go to the cabinets.  The white and blue sounds fine, but it's so minimal, it doesn't help with the contrast problem.

I think you'd be better off painting the walls in the mustard yellow color and leaving the cabinets as they are. Then again, if you are tired of the dark cabinet color, you might consider painting them.  If you paint them mustard yellow, you're going to have the same problem - too much contrast.  To avoid that, paint them a pale shade of yellow.  (Glidden has a color called Chiffon which is a buttery, warm tone.)  There will be less contrast with the white walls, the pale buttery color will coordinate with the border and backsplash and the mustard yellow that's in the print will still be "accentuated" by the paler shade.

Good luck making your decision.


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Jennifer Taylor Wojcik


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