Traditional Kitchen Ideas with a Contemporary Twist

Beautiful Green and White Kitchen by UK based Wren Kitchens

Paying attention to simple details is the difference between a ho-hum kitchen remodel and one that will make you want to just sit and look at it, like art!

I found this great looking green and white kitchen while looking at the traditional kitchens by Wren Kitchens page of a UK based site. I’m not sure I agree that there really is any such thing as “traditional” when it comes to kitchen design, but I suppose it’s as good a term as any.

No matter what you call it, the ideas and details in this design can transform the most important room in your home.

Here are a few great ideas you can take from this design:

Combine Three or More Colors -

traditional kitchen ideas colors

Far be it from me to recommend completely copying a color scheme, but then again, who’s gonna know? If you like this green and white kitchen (and who wouldn’t?) then go for it.

But the design idea holds true for any colors. Combining more than just two colors creates interest, adds depth, and fills your design with character. notice the varying shades in the green tile, the green cabinets, and the darker green of the doors. These all offset against the bright white cabinets and ceiling accented by brushed metal hardware. Awesome!

Do Something Different on The Bar Front

traditional kitchen ideas vertical joints

Or is that the bar back? Whatever.

I’ve seen a bazillion kitchens with beadboard paneling against the back of the bar area, but I really like the fresh look of this vertical joint paneling. It’s hard to tell from the picture if that is squared off joints, like you might get with a sheet of T1-11, or if it’s a V-Joint like you would get with solid lounge-and-groove lumber. Either way, the look is a great idea.

Stepping Out, Up, In, Down, Etc.

traditional kitchen ideas stepping out up

This idea really does qualify for the name “traditional” owing simply to the fact that it’s been around forever and ever. Maybe because it rocks!

The best way to fix the otherwise boring plainness of a straight wall of cabinets is to add some variation in height and depth of the cabinets. Most traditional designs step out as you approach the center whereas the design above steps in. I like it.

No matter whether you go in, out, up, down… steps in depth and height can make your long flat wall sing. Look closely at the picture above. Brilliance lives there.

Get Creative With Doors and Drawers

traditional kitchen ideas creative cabinet doors

I love the outward facing doors and drawers on this peninsula of cabinets. It’s very common to see this be finished with panels and the only access be from the sink side.

I also think the mixture of doors and drawers, while a little more expensive for sure, really adds something to this.

The final touch is the use of curved cabinet doors to allow for a rounded corner on the counter. It looks great, but if your cabinet maker or provider doesn’t offer this don’t fret. The same idea would look great squared off.


So now that I totally want to go tear out my cabinets, I hope you feel inspired for your own kitchen and you’ve got a couple of ideas to take with you.

Which part of this kitchen design is your favorite?


Gorgeous Black Woodgrain Kitchens

Are you ready for this? Black kitchen cabs have been the talk for awhile but most of the time it’s black painted cabinets, not woodgrain. This kitchen does the whole black thing but dials it back just a tad by letting the wood show through. I love it!


polygon homes on flickr

This whole thing just works for me. It’s not too dark thanks to the beautiful white counters, which appear to be something along the lines of a Silestone White Platinum.

Silestone White Platinum Counter

It really doesn’t end there. I’m liking a ton about this kitchen:

  • The layout is nice and easy – great for real life
  • I like the big island with nothing (like a sink or cooktop) in the way
  • Even though I thought I was over stainless appliances, they work here
  • I know it’s strange, but I like the little metal nailheads on the stool covers!
  • The white on white crown molding…goood

The only thing I’m not sure of is the floor. Another color would have been better.

Onyx Stain on Quartersawn Oak

Here’s another one:


I’m in love with the black stain thing. I was kind of into the whole black painted cabinet thing. I even wrote a post about spray painting your cabinets black a couple of years ago, but something about it just didn’t totally jive with me.

This jives. I guess it’s the woodgrain. Especially the “quartersawn” oak which has a much different grain than what you usually think of when you think of oak. This is very linear, no big color variations. Usually just vertical grain in two alternating shades: dark, light, dark, light, dark, light…

The image above is from Kraftmaid

So what about you? You dig? You can see the top kitchen in a white color scheme and vote on your favorite at Black vs. White on Remodeling Guy.

Winning Kitchen Storage Ideas

Sometimes we need just a little more space, or just the right space, to keep everything in order in the kitchen.  I love, love, love seeing my pretty dishes and vintage pyrex bowls so I wouldn’t want to hide them away in a regular kitchen cabinet.  Decorating with what you use can keep it all in reach and look beautiful at the same time. 

Here are some fabulous ideas for storage in your kitchen.


Our old kitchen had lots of space, but not a ton of storage.  Something like this freestanding armoire could holds tons of holiday china and become a beautiful accent you’ll never want to do without.  I love the green!



Open shelves are one of my favorite things!  Just stack all your colorful dishes and you’ve decorated your kitchen with style.  Now it looks like a kitchen that actually gets cooked in…that’s a good thing!


What should you do with all those small appliances that you love?  How about cubbies??  This is a fun way to organize everything so you can find it when you need it.  On a side note, I just got an ice cream make like this one and it rocks!


So much space gets wasted!  Go all the way to the top with your cabinets and make your kitchen HOT!  You’ll love all the extra storage space you get and it only makes your kitchen more beautiful.

I hope you found a kitchen storage idea that works for you.  Think outside the box of ordinary cabinets and make your kitchen your own.

I love my colorful dishes and display them on open shelves. What’s your favorite thing to display in your kitchen?