Timeless Living:  Kitchen by Kitchen Architecture

​Seeking a subtle yet stylish look? Try these grey kitchen ideas

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan

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There is undeniably something special about a white kitchen – that look of cleanliness, tidiness, and a welcoming glow that can make even the simplest task (like pouring tea) seem super glamorous. However, many homeowners refrain from all-white colour palettes for their culinary spaces, as those super white surfaces don’t tend to be very practical in a room where spills and splatters regularly occur.

And that’s where the colour grey comes in and saves the day. Grey kitchen ideas have proven to transform a sleek white cooking space into a more practical area with strong character and a timeless look. Retro styles have shown that bringing colour into the kitchen was usually an all-or-nothing approach (remember those lime greens and oranges of the 1970s?). Modern times, however, take on a more restrained look with colour palettes, which makes grey (and its thousands of hues) a major hit. 

So, what do you need to keep in mind when it comes to grey kitchen ideas? When deciding on an accent colour or a mixed palette for your grey kitchen, follow trend and trusted colour theory. Either go with complementary hues (placed next to each other on the colour wheel, which are calming) or contrasting shades (opposite one another on the wheel, which are energising). 

Let’s have a look at some more successful grey kitchen ideas you can try out.

1. The colour psychology of grey

Nobilia 20mm Laser laminate door in Satin and Mineral Grey:  Kitchen by Eco German Kitchens
Eco German Kitchens

Nobilia 20mm Laser laminate door in Satin and Mineral Grey

Eco German Kitchens

Considering all the bright and overly warm options that are available (candy red, sunflower yellow, etc.), grey may seem like an odd choice for a kitchen. So, why is it that more and more homeowners (and kitchen planners) are opting for this neutral choice? The answer is in the psychology of the colour.

According to colour psychology, grey is associated with coolness, knowledge, peacefulness, and cleanliness. 

True, a kitchen covered in grey from floor to ceiling will seem dull and depressing. But our grey kitchen ideas focus on the theme of using fewer elements coated in these neutral hues, like the cabinets, island, backsplash, etc. Making only one of these elements in a kitchen grey can ensure:  

• A feeling of expectation. Grey cabinets, for example, build anticipation for other aspects of the cooking space. In a way, grey allows the other features of the kitchen to become more prominent. Thus, instead of boring, the colour grey actually makes the kitchen more exciting.  

• A luxurious ambience. Seeing as neutrals are timeless and always on trend, you can be sure that a grey kitchen will always seem stylish as opposed to a green or blue one, for example.  

• A tranquil vibe. Grey (along with other soft neutrals like whites and creams) causes a deep sense of relaxation – the perfect touch for a cooking space.

2. Grey kitchen ideas: Bring a touch of warmth with wood

To ensure those greys don’t cool down your kitchen to a cold-looking space, mix in some wooden surfaces for a positively warm and cosy look. The trick, however, is to find the right shade and mix it with the right tone of timber. 

Here, a steel grey palette for the cabinetry offset stunningly with the warmer, beach-like hues of the wooden floors and island extension.

3. Grey kitchen ideas: Use layers of grey

Mr & Mrs H, Kitchen, Byfleet Village, Surrey:  Kitchen by Raycross Interiors
Raycross Interiors

Mr & Mrs H, Kitchen, Byfleet Village, Surrey

Raycross Interiors

With various hues of grey bouncing off one another, individual elements in your kitchen will stand out, yet the overall feeling of the space will be one of cohesion. 

Here we see a kitchen with dark cabinetry and stools, lighter hues for the backsplash, and very soft (almost completely white) colours adorning the countertops and breakfast bar. Despite the dark charcoal greys taking up a lot of space, the rest of the room enjoys an airy feel thanks to the softer tones and incoming natural light.

4. Grey kitchen ideas: Smarten up a small kitchen

Country Kitchen:  Kitchen by Studio TO
Studio TO

Country Kitchen

Studio TO

Think that white is your only option for making a small kitchen seem bigger? With the right greys styling up the right pieces, your tiny kitchen can seem most inviting. 

See how this small kitchen pulls it off: shaker-style cabinets and a granite backsplash bring in a touch of detail (yet not too much), while the majority of the kitchen enjoys a lighter palette. Of course the stainless steel cabinets ensure some shine, which is welcome in any space, particularly smaller ones!

5. Grey kitchen ideas: Go with French grey for a rustic style

Hehku Cucina Range:  Kitchen by Hehku

Hehku Cucina Range


Flaunting a most soothing vibe thanks to a touch of green, French grey takes its name from the shade heavily featured in French design and wallpapers from the 19th century. Fortunately, this colour hasn’t fallen out of trend, making it a perfect choice for modern kitchens. 

We love bringing this shade into a rustic-style kitchen, as is evidenced by this one with its timber floorboards and wooden countertops. Who says you need to go 100% green for a fresh, natural look?

6. Grey kitchen ideas: Add pops of bright yellow

Snack bar for 4:  Kitchen by Pyram

Snack bar for 4


A bit of sunshine is welcome any day (especially here in the UK), and that’s why a spot of yellow in an otherwise grey kitchen gets our vote of approval. 

Notice how the ceiling pendants perfectly mimic the bright yellow of the backsplash, ensuring a cohesive look that doesn’t make that additional cheery tone seem out of place.

7. Grey kitchen ideas: Add some copper

Crisp Kew Kitchen:  Kitchen by Pyram

Crisp Kew Kitchen


Paired with the right colour palette, copper surfaces can become wonderful additions – and what could be more striking than copper lighting fixtures combined with a grey kitchen?

Copper can also be used for pans or (if your budget is flexible enough) a range cooker – it’s that touch of shine that stainless steel appliances usually add to a cooking area, instead this time the copper ensures a warmer look and feel. 

What do the experts say when it comes to culinary spaces’ colour palettes? Well, apparently These 8 are the best kitchen colours to paint.

Would a grey colour palette be perfect for your kitchen, or do you prefer something else?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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