Elements such as millwork, cabinetry and built ins often comprise large portions of space in residential projects. Particularly in kitchens and large scale wall units or bookshelves, it can be difficult committing to a certain color, style or finish. While darker living rooms, kitchens and dark bathrooms can look elegant and represent a distinct contrast from other parts of an interior, natural lighting, size or layout can often preclude this as an option. Dark accent walls are usually relegated to walls which do not necessitate storage components.
On the flipside there is often a sense that selecting clean, light, modern cabinetry or wall units will leave a living room or kitchen feeling cold or colorless. If you would like to move up a bit from light, neutral colors, here are some beautiful kitchen examples which utilize medium gray color palettes to cultivate a delicate balance of warmth, light and functionality. In the first example the designer selected a medium gray brown color for the cabinetry, medium brown flooring and brown accents. The darker accents are offset by the carrara white marble backsplash and countertop which brightens up the space. The gray color in the backsplash matches the cabinet colors.
Over all the kitchen is has a balanced design where no single element dominates the feel. The second kitchen incorporates a similar combination of colors. As the space is small it still feels open, warm and inviting. The brown accent wall, accent wood elements and dark gray accent lights provide a nice counterbalance with the medium gray colored cabinetry.
Often when new residential buildings are completed, particularly in New York City where it is very expensive to build, kitchens, flooring, fixtures and bathrooms feel modern, cold and functional. Developers will usually not install high or even medium end kitchens due to the expense, at usually between 50-150k/ per kitchen depending on size, it is easy to see why.