Kitchens With COLOR: Yellow
Well, October is officially over, and November is here. To me, this marks the beginning of the holiday season. And before you jump down my throat about celebrating holidays too early (Christmas decorations for sale in October? Slightly excessive, Costco), let me clarify that my mood begins to shift from winter dread to childlike excitement. The short days and dark skies suddenly don’t seem so terrible when there are good times on the horizon.
And, best of all, I can begin planning my Christmas decorating extravaganza.
With this cheerfulness in mind, today we will explore sunny, happy, yellow kitchens.
This traditional kitchen utilized yellow ceramic tile with trims of navy blue and white wainscot for a preppy look. With lots of natural light, a farmhouse sink, and windowed cabinets, this kitchen appears very homey and comfortable while still remaining refined.
The beauty of this design is that it is extremely inexpensive. Yellow ceramic tile in a 4×4 is a very easy find, and the trim was completed using cut navy blue 4×4 pieces around the edge of the counter. A navy blue pencil trim was added into the splash to tie in with the edging. Easy peazy.
Here’s another traditional yellow kitchen:
This one inserted a rustic stone medallion into the yellow-tinted glazed stone backsplash to add a focal point in the room.
Now this backsplash is interesting, because the designer chose to use the exact same stone in 3 different ways: as an offset field (see far right) for around the majority of the room, in a herringbone pattern for above the stove area, and set as a vertical trim to surround the herringbone.
This reminds me of the post I wrote discussing all the different ways you can use subway tile. Since a 1×2 follows the same ratio as the traditional subway tile (3×6), all the same rules apply.
The difference with this kitchen is slight: the tile used is a slightly larger size (2×4) and the herringbone was set at a 90 degree angle. This designer also opted to frame the herringbone in with a pencil trim rather than more 2×4 tiles. This makes the frame appear cleaner and more minimalistic, and lets the pattern inside shine.
Of course: glass. This is an interesting juxtoposition of a modern material in a modern kitchen being used in a traditional way. These tiles are in a 2×2 format, which are slightly harder to find. To be perfectly honest with you, I am really not sure who is manufacturing yellow 2×2 glass tiles. But the look is nice, clean, and simple.
This is an excellent example of a shabby chic kitchen done well. The bright pops of yellow emphasize the brightness and airiness of the room, and the color doesn’t look out of place because it’s repeated through the pottery on the opposing wall.
This is another easily accomplished and budget-friendly design: simply alternate white and yellow 4×4 ceramic tiles throughout the field, and trim with matching 2×2 yellow tiles.
This kitchen is slightly reminiscent of a classic Frank Lloyd Wright fireplace with the exposed wooden beam, but nearly everything else about it is very Spanish. This kitchen is very themey, but because of that, the amount of yellow in the space actually works. The pattern on the backsplash is mimicked on the floor, which ties together both elements and gives a sense of continuity. Continuing the color of the backsplash onto the counter is usually a giant no-no (re: green gone wrong), but because this kitchen is clearly so themed, it works in this space.
This is another easily accomplished look: some ceramic 4×4 tiles come with the corners nipped off to allow for inserts, but it may be difficult to find these in yellow. But never fear, it’s very easy to nip off the corners yourself. This kitchen chose navy blue 1×1 tiles as inserts, and then continued this pattern on the floor. Inserts can be done with 2×2 tiles as well if you want a heavier look.
This is a new category for this series, but I didn’t want to list this kitchen under “modern” since there’s no tile involved. But it’s so awesome, I had to include it in this post.
I don’t even really have anything to say about this except that it’s awesome, and would certainly make the dark days of winter much more bearable! This is probably not a look you could re-create yourself, unless you’re planning a major kitchen renovation that involves tearing down walls.
Yellow Kitchen Gone Wrong
On first glance, this kitchen doesn’t seem terrible. And it’s not terrible, per say, but there are definite problems.
For starters; the choice of green paint was all wrong. Green could have potentially worked if it had the same hues that are in the yellow tile.
Second, and listen to this carefully: trim can go very, very wrong if there isn’t enough continuity around the room. To explain, it’s ok to break up trim with a window if there’s say, one window in the room and the rest of the trim runs continuously. But this trim is broken up significantly by a huge window, and by the glass behind the stove. They would have been better off without the trim in this space, of running it low enough that it could run below the window. But with the trim only running about 50% uninterrupted, it looks disjointed.
Third, the choice of trim tile wasn’t appropriate for this space. The colors don’t coordinate with any of the bright colors presented in the room. If this trim had included the green in the paint above the trim, it might have worked better, but it just looks busy and out of place here.
In short, please remember that trim should only be used in a space that doesn’t have a lot going on with color, and if it can run at least 75% uninterrupted by windows or other fixtures.
There is a time and a place!
If you’re unsure about what that time and place is, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or clarifications 🙂