Be inspired by this round-up of some of the very best light, bright kitchens featured on Houzz
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Increasingly, a modern all-white kitchen is the default choice for homeowners, and it’s easy to see why. The light colour and simple lines create a feeling of space that’s uncluttered and calming to live with. White instantly stops a room feeling too closed-in or claustrophobic – especially when units stretch from floor to ceiling. Here are just a few of the most beautiful contemporary white kitchens to have featured on Houzz.
Plump for a modern parquet
You might not even consider parquet if you’re installing a new floor from scratch in your kitchen, but doesn’t it look beautiful here? The trick, if it’s a contemporary kitchen you’re after, is to opt for broader strips than is traditional; this will typically look more modern. Here, engineered chevron planks have been used. It also works amazingly well with a slick, all-white kitchen.
When choosing wooden details, think about the tones you love and mix them up to add even more interest. Wood nearly always goes with wood, and snowy white units make for a clean, fresh and slightly Scandi foil. Warm cedarwood used under the island unit here is the same wood used outside the house on a bench and canopy. This sort of continuity can help inside and out feel integrated.
Don’t automatically reach for white metro tiles, either – high-gloss black ones can offer a deeply delicious contrast to white units.
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Break it up with a two-tone design
Here, the bulk of the kitchen space – walls, ceiling, floor, worktop and chairs – are all white. The kitchen units themselves, however, and the base of the island, are a soft and elegant mushroom shade. It’s the perfect way to add colour when you don’t really want to add colour, but find all-white a little too bright for your taste.
A handful of thoughtful design touches also give this modern kitchen in a period terrace an elegant, pulled-together feel. The roof lights let daylight wash over everything. A marble splashback may not be the cheapest option, but it’s a great way to add a little texture and a luxurious edge. The row of metal bar stools creates an elegant, hotel-bar feel, while the table adds industrial attitude.
Tip Hang a colourful artwork to ‘wake up’ an all-white space.
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Add an unusual angle
In this pure white kitchen in an Arts and Crafts home in Wiltshire, white glass doors add extra sparkle and sheen. The island has an unusual and futuristic angular shape that breaks up any potential blockiness in the room and adds space for comfy bar stools. The contrast between this and the rustic wooden beam works surprisingly well – proof you can tear up the design rule book in kitchens if you wish.
The worktop is Caesarstone quartz, which has tiny flecks of colour that very subtly break up an all-white scheme without ‘shouting’.
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Take it to another level
Who wouldn’t love a spacious kitchen like this one in Northern Ireland? The mezzanine level has the wow factor, and the kitchen manages to look modern and chic yet warm and characterful.
In this space, the owners went for the largest island they could accommodate for sociable breakfasts and drinks. The smart design also makes sure the mezzanine doesn’t look down on the top of the kitchen units – which might not have been the best of views; a bulkhead off the mezzanine conceals the cupboards.
Finally a word about doors. They sometimes get forgotten, but they could make or break your modern white kitchen. Here, a stylish pivot door, made from solid ash and leading out to the hallway, is designed to complement the architecture and kitchen units around it – and it looks superb.
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Create a corridor of power
Galley kitchens can sometimes get short design shrift, but not in this calm kitchen in Surrey. The chic Scandi style is created mainly with cool whites, but it’s broken up by a black range cooker and the warm, oiled oak floor, resulting in anything but a bland thoroughfare.
Solid-wood, Shaker-style cabinets are timeless classics, but here look modern thanks to the clean, simple overall design. Meanwhile, the traditional Scandi wallpaper adds a pretty touch without descending into twee. (And have you noticed the subtle way the pattern echoes the design of the latticed cupboard panels at the top on the right-hand side? Nice touch.)
Tip It’s fine to mix up materials if you do it thoughtfully. The stainless-steel and granite worktops here add a utility feel that gives the white a gentle industrial edge.
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The large white island with a seamless Corian worktop is the undoubted star in this kitchen in the Cotswolds. However, the interesting lighting comes a close second. This unusual pendant brings the room to life, and adds a softer texture to all the gleaming hard surfaces. At night, coloured LEDs under the island and around the tops of the wall cabinets bathe the space in a purplish glow, creating a party atmosphere.
Painting the walls a subtle taupe also helps the white units to stand out, as well as adding a cosy touch that all-white kitchens sometimes lack. The made-to-order glass splashback was back-painted in the same colour as the walls.
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Soften with off-white
This Dublin kitchen features traditional, handmade timber units, but still has a modern feel, thanks to the calming colour scheme.
A cool off-white has been used rather than pure brilliant white. It’s subtly softer, but still adds a feeling of space and light, plus it’s slightly more forgiving of grubby marks.
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Warm up with wood
White goes brilliantly with timber. It’s a combination that can look ultra-contemporary – but far from clinical. This minimal white kitchen in a 1930s Somerset home has been warmed up beautifully, thanks to wooden accents and copper-lined pendants.
Wrapping oak around the island is a stylish way to turn a worktop into a feature.
The white-painted units are built from birch ply with an oak frame, and have a pleasing, artisan look, right down to the ‘J-shaped’ handles integrated into the doors.
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Hide it all away
This super-chic kitchen in Surbiton features handleless doors for a slick, modern look. Having a darkest blue splashback adds contrast and can be a stylish way to ground an all-white scheme.
The large bank of units here houses both kitchen storage and appliances, including a full-height fridge-freezer, oven and hob. This clears away any potential visual clutter and really boosts the streamlined look. Meanwhile, the white quartz worktop matches the minimal look of the units.
Don’t forget islands have two main sides – and you can be as creative as you like with the ‘living’ side. This smart unit morphs into a bespoke, integrated bench, made from oiled oak by a local joiner. Keeping the bulk of the unit white means this change works brilliantly – any other colour might have jarred.
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Mix and match
In this cute kitchen, modern and traditional elements work together effortlessly. In particular, fitted cupboards, including this tall unit, are designed to resemble freestanding furniture, avoiding a wall of continuous units. The result is homely and interesting.
The worktop is waxed maple – its deep, toffee-coloured tones are richer and redder than the more commonly used oak, and it looks lovely with all the white. And that stunning floor? It’s putty-coloured rubber: simple, modern and practical.
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Big up the island
In this impressive space, the high-tech hob sits on the island – a modern trend that’s practical, as you’re not facing the wall if you’re cooking and have friends or family round.
If you have a high ceiling, a sculptural extractor fan like this can make a stylish impact. You can also find versions that look like glamorous, curvy pendant lamps if contrast appeals instead.
Splashbacks can be made of practically anything, so think laterally. Here, it’s actually the same white laminate as the units for a uniform, pared-back feel.
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Which of these kitchens do you like best? Or is there something you’d do differently to make a white kitchen your own? Share your thoughts in the Comments below.