Choosing Kitchen Color – The 60-30-10 Rule

It's true that color influences our moods. That's why it's important to choose the right combination of colors for your kitchen to make it a pleasant place to be. Studies have shown that "hot" colors like reds and oranges can quicken the pulse rate, breathing rate and increase appetite. Soft yellows and blues can make people feel happier, and shades of green and earth tones found in nature-warm toasty browns and sandstone-can give a sense of calm and tranquility.

Color can also be used to highlight the architecture of your kitchen, or hide it, depending on your preferences. Some colors will cause cabinets and counter tops to pop forward, making them the main focus of the kitchen layout, while other colors are designed to blend with cabinets and counter spaces, giving your kitchen a more monochromatic look, with a sense of visual flow. You can also use colors to influence how large or small your kitchen will feel, and how it relates to the other adjoining rooms of your home.

While there is no "wrong" way to choose kitchen colors, be sure to take into account the cabinets, counter tops, and appliances that will be going into your kitchen. They have an overall color scheme, and make up the bulk of your kitchen space. With this in mind, choose colors that highlight and accent the counter tops, back splash tile and cabinets. The 60-30-10 rule is helpful:

1. With your kitchen designer, find the ratio of your new kitchen. 60% representing the main or dominant color, probably on the counter tops, walls or cabinets. 30% of a secondary color used in the flooring or rugs, as well as window treatments and some furniture, like bar stools and café tables. 10% for accents such as, dishes, artwork, utensils and other small counter top appliances.

2. Choose a kitchen color that will compliment the dominant, 60% color of your kitchen-meaning, it will cause your cabinets and counter tops to "pop" and give a feeling of warmth to the space. The accents (10%) can be a different color that goes well with your dominant color. OR …

3. Choose a kitchen color that blends with the dominant color of your kitchen-for example, white cabinets and gray / white granite counter tops, may benefit from a soft, blue-gray wall color and darker gray or blue accents, to give the kitchen a more clean and monochromatic look.

Based on the new appliances, hardware, cabinetry and counter tops, a professional custom cabinet manufacturer and installer can assist you in choosing the best color scheme possible, and can match color schemes using the most advanced, computer generated techniques, so you can see how your kitchen will look before a paintbrush is ever used.

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