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Grey Kitchens – Are they outdated?

14th Jun 2023
Aldana Kitchen in Light Grey and Slate Blue by Kitchen Ergonomics
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For the last 10 years, Pinterest boards across the country have been brimming with Grey Kitchen pins, fully embracing the grey-on-grey interior trends after an era of natural pine cabinetry and terracotta tiles. Intensified by the “Mrs Hinch” effect, rooms drenched in varying shades of grey were deemed the new in thing, and initially felt fresh and modern, devoid of the orange undertones from the early 2000’s. However, the absence of warmth in rooms inspired by this cool toned style has led to sterile and often cold spaces. Accentuated with chrome metallic finishes, crushed grey velvet, and minimal injections of colour the aesthetic has become monotonous.

Just as cool toned grey kitchens replaced warm wooden kitchens, we naturally become tired of trends and want to make way for something new to avoid our homes looking dated. However, let’s not dismiss grey just yet.

Grey is a timeless and sophisticated colour that encompasses a wide range of hues that can elevate any space. The issue lies in how it has been styled which has left households yearning for a change. In this blog, we will guide you on how to incorporate grey into your space in a way that brings it into 2023. We’ll explore popular colour combinations and provide styling suggestions that will breathe new life into your kitchen.

Credit: @Mrshinchhome

How to style Grey Kitchen Cabinetry

If you have your heart set on a grey kitchen, we have a selection of finishes that will be perfect for your new space as well as the tips on how to update it in line with 2023’s trends. Our Standard Palette includes four richly pigmented greys, Light Grey, Dust Grey, Gun Metal Grey and Graphite. All four shades are available across each of our painted ranges, learn more about these here and Light Grey, Dust Grey and Graphite are available in each of our foil-wrapped ranges: Dawson, Kensington & Zola Soft-Matte.

Left to right: Dawson, Graphite | Aldana, Dust Grey | Jefferson, Gun Metal Grey | Strada Gloss, Light Grey

Contrasting Colours

We love a monochromatic colour palette, but when opting for a two-toned look for your cabinetry, pick shades that provide high contrast. Instead of pairing Light Grey with Dust Grey, opt for a pairing like Light Grey & Graphite for striking variation. Alternatively, opt for an on-trend hue like Slate Blue with Light Grey to inject colour into your space just like the Real STORI projects below. Adding a pop of colour inspired by nature will balance paler greys.

Left to right: Aldana kitchen painted in Light Grey (main cabinetry) & Slate Blue (island). Real STORI project by Kitchen Ergonomics | Belgravia Kitchen painted in Light Grey (Left hand side wall cabinetry) & Slate Blue (remainder of cabinetry). Real STORI project by Broomside Design.

The paint choice for your walls is another opportunity to add colour and some warmth to cooler toned greys. Softer whites like Wimborne White by Farrow & Ball are perfect to keep a space bright and airy but have a subtle hint of yellow for something a little less stark and cold like a true white. You could also opt for warm greys like Skimming Stone or Purbeck Stone which are earthy greige that will add richness to cooler toned cabinetry and balance to dimly lit north facing rooms.

Alternatively, embrace popular green toned hues like French Gray, Trenon and Vert De Terre that will create a welcoming space whilst complimenting your grey cabinetry hues perfectly. Another bold option would be a refined romantic, muted rose like Sulking Room Pink which features incredible warmth, to create an intimate and cosy atmosphere.

Left to right: Wimborne White, Skimming Stone, Purbeck Stone, French Gray, Treron, Verte De Terre, Sulking Room Pink. Credit: Farrow & Ball. Order a free colour card from Farrow and Ball here.

Farrow & Ball Paint List

  1. Wimborne White
  2. Skimming Stone
  3. Purbeck Stone
  4. French Gray
  5. Treron
  6. Vert De Terre
  7. Sulking Room Pink

Add Warmth 

Whilst you can add warmth with additional cabinetry colours and wall paint shades, it’s important to continue this throughout the rest of your design. Steer away from a “50 shades of grey” interior by introducing natural textures and rich metallic finishes.

Antique brushed brass hardware (1), (5), (8) will not only warm up cooler cabinetry doors but will also add a lived-in look in contrast to your grey kitchen units. Add elements of nature into your palette like wood (2), (6), (7), stone (4) and greenery (3) for a rustic finish to contrast the polished look of your cabinetry from decorative pieces to your flooring choice. Limit your use of chrome, white marble, and accessories in a similar tone to your cabinets to avoid a space that is excessively colour coordinated. An effortless and organic look is the aim for an updated grey kitchen in 2023.

Accessory Shopping List 

  1. Antique Brushed Brass T-Bar Handles | STORI
  2. Rezana Range | STORI
  3. Stoneware Vase | H&M Home 
  4. Fusion Round Hot Water Tap & Soap Dispenser | Quooker 
  5. Weathered Oak Counter Stool | Cox & Cox 
  6. Marge Pendant Light | Pooky
  7. Vintage Serving Paddle Board | Dunelm 
  8. Faux Lavendar Olive Tree | Perch & Parrow


Join the Dark Side

As previously mentioned in our latest kitchen cabinetry trends for 2023, we’re seeing a surge in popularity for darker greys, like Graphite which are dramatic yet timeless. Darker hues when styled correctly provide a cosy and intimate ambience, perfect for any household. Carefully plan your lighting scheme when working with moodier hues to balance the space, LED cabinetry lighting is a must. If bold hues or cool hues aren’t your thing there’s always the option of switching to a warmer grey tone, featured in our Beige tonal palette like Taupe Grey or Stone, check out our full paint palette here.

Aldana Kitchen painted in Graphite paired with our handleless rail system in Graphite. Real STORI project by Ella Austin Kitchens.

Left to right: Zola Matte Kitchen painted in Graphite | Aldana Kitchen painted in Graphite. Real STORI projects by Everfine Installations.

While the grey-on-grey trends may be on the way out, grey itself remains an extremely versatile colour that shouldn’t be overlooked when designing your new kitchen. By incorporating contrasting colours, infusing warmth into your design and opting for a darker on-trend grey hue you can create a space that feels fresh for 2023 and beyond. For more inspiration, visit the Real Stories section of our website where you can see recent projects completed by our approved Retailers.