In need of kitchen design advice

Last week we began looking around for new lower kitchen cabinets, counter-tops and back splash, we can’t continue to live with the mold much longer. (If you missed it, you can read about it here)  I was actually somewhat excited for the first time to shop and quickly my bubble was burst, poof just like that.  We were told our “dream kitchen” was not possible because of our existing floors.

In all my inspiration pictures you see one thing in common.  White and/or grey cabinets combined with a white counter-top with grey veins. Pretty right?  Well, look at all the floors, they are either dark wood or a light tile.


Traditional Home

Elle Decor

Elle Decor


Decor Provence

“The design lady” said since our travertine floors have a lot of browns we couldn’t pull it off.

Our kitchen

So I began to look

Decor Pad


C-J Abbey Design vía desire to  inspire

Traditional Home

Decor Pad

Look at that; brown/orange floors do exist in grey/white kitchens, I’m not crazy, well, I’m sure my husband would beg to differ.

Do I like the look of the dark floors better? Of course I do! But being the insurance isn’t giving us a dime, changing out the floors  isn’t a option.

Then I started to think a little more about dropping the white top and going with more of a creamy top to coordinate with the floors?

Decor Pad

I don’t know, I am so confused, I need your help.

Should we just go for it  or do you think white counters would look out of place with our floors?  Or go for option B and bring in more creams?

Similar Posts


  1. i love the white countertops and i notice in the image from houzz that has creamy floors with white countertops that the grout is white/gray which helps tie it in. you could just regrout your floors. plus, let’s say in a couple years you have the money to redo the flooring- won’t you be happy you chose the countertops you wanted?

  2. First of all you have such a great eye, I know you will make this amazing. It’s surely overwhelming with the image overload we have access to with the internet! But okay my friend, this is what I think. You have a lot of warm colors in your house already – the stone on your fireplace, the walls on your first floor, the dark wood. The picture right under your kitchen photo has a white kitchen with the warm-colored tile floor. I think you should use your floors as that warm cohesive element and then go white with the cabinets, countertop and backsplash to get the look you want. BM White Dove is a great in-between white – not too creamy, not too stark white…I used it in my kitchen because I have those cream colored appliances to contend with but it does read more white than cream, which I like. Are you doing new countertops? Maybe a white that has a bit of gold AND grey in it. Maybe bring in some gray and beige fabric on barstools or at the window to get your cool gray in the space along with the stainless steel appliances you have.

    Can’t wait to see what you come up with!! xxoo

  3. Cream on the countertops, itll pull a little of the brown up. There are so many “grey” paints that morph into browns and visa versa…it all blends when you have it. I redid my living room with a paint that is a brownish grey, brow. Leather couch, cream pillows…it looks so natural all together.

  4. We have white cabinets (chocolate brown countertops) and a white subway tile backsplash. Our floors are red oak hardwoods stained Provencial (a bit of a redish brown undertone). We painted our island the chocolate brown to tie in with the countertops. I think you can pull off white cabinets, white tile and white countertops (ours were originally white when we moved in, but the old school formica). If you want to go with a gray for the base cabinets, just chose one that is more “greige”, it will blend in nicely.
    My two cents…yes, decorators/interior designers are trained and very knowledgeable…but YOU live there, YOU know what you like & don’t like. Go with your gut!!! While most in our neighborhood were going with granite countertops (Ubba Tubba anyone?) and tumbled marble backsplashes, we were drawn toward the rich chocolate brown Corian and the white subway tile. We have received tons of compliments because it doesn’t look like EVERYONE elses!!

  5. I am sorry to hear that someone told you that what you want is wrong. I think you should go with what you like, it is your home. Take some samples home to set against your floor to see if you still like it. Don’t let someone take away your designer spirit. Good luck. Alaina

  6. I say go with a creamier countertop to tie in with the floors better. I’m sitting here eyeballing my own floors and comparing them with your pictures! Mine are similar to the first kitchen you show that has tile. It’s making me wonder if I could do a shade of gray in my kitchen someday! You have an impeccable eye, I’m sure you will make it beautiful while working with what you have. You did it the first time around, right? 😉

  7. I just read a blog post (sorry can’t remember which blog) where there were a bunch of beautiful white & gray rooms that had been warmed up by adding a warm gold/orange/apricot-ish accent, either through warm wood floors or some other element like accessories or drapes.
    I have to say, it was beautiful and felt so much warmer than many of the gray and white rooms you see out there. It struck me as a very good thing to remember for the future, and then up you pop with this “dilemma” which I actually think is a great opportunity to make your space feel rich and warm, yet updated while incorporating the looks you love. I say go for it. You can make anything work, as long as you choose carefully and echo the color in a few other pieces in the room.

  8. If you actually look at your kitchen. It really does have a lot of the same hues. At least it looks that way in the picture. I think you should go with what makes you happy. Some lady at a design store will not be living in your house. I agree w/ the reader above. You can do gray and off white cushions and maybe the same colors for roman shades. I would take your idea and run with it. Maybe tweak it a little to match your beautiful floors. I think you have this!!! Your home is beautiful.

  9. I wouldn’t worry about one person saying “it’s impossible”, it’s waht people tell me every time I have a new idea! Some people just can’t seem to think outside the box or outside what they think is correct decoration-wise. I’m pretty sure you can do the white and gray kitchen you dream of because to me your floor is fairly neutral. The fact that it has lots of brown in it will only make picking the perfect gray a little more tricky. Go with your guts!

  10. I say go with the white. You have great style sense and besides, you should go with what makes you happy, not with what some design lady thinks will work. Besides, you can always bring in cream accessories to tie things together, even lighter colored pendant lights over the island. Again, go with what makes you happy. It’s your home.

  11. I say find yourself a different designer. They show every combination in decorating mags, online, etc. Nothing is impossible. Can’t wait to see what you choose.

  12. I would say to go with the creams. We have a kitchen floor almost identical to yours and I think that bringing in the cream colors would be gorgeous – even just a very pale cream would look better than stark white.

  13. You don’t need to go with “cream”. Just use a white that leans more warm rather than a white with blue undertones. Like Benjamin Moore White Dove. It leans more warm toned. I probably wouldn’t do a white marble counter though. It may not look right since it will compete with the “stone” on the floor that is yellow/warm toned.

  14. I love the photo from Houzz – the cabinets aren’t so stark white that they clash against the floors. The little bit of antiquing also helps.
    I agree – regrouting your floors a lighter color could help too. 🙂

  15. As long as your cabinets are a cool white, the floor will be just fine in my opinion. If you lean towards a more creamy white for the cabinets; yes, it will compliment the floor better, but the white marble will look dingy.

  16. I’m a “white kitchen” girl and just recently renovated my kitchen (cherry look cabinets) by painting cabinets white and replacing countertops with quartz. Because my house is old, with original hardwood floors (white oak)in adjoining rooms, I ended going with the hardwood floors in the same mid-tone for the kitchen. I longed for marble counters but so many people dissuaded me from using marble in the kitchen (including shops that sold marble!), so I ended up selecting Cambria Torquay — the pattern in quartz that most reminded me of marble. In particular I liked it because the “veins” included grays and also colors more in the taupe range (a little more like Calcatta than carrara). I combined it with a light taupey wall color (Benjamin Moore Pale Oak) and my white oak mid-town floors and I’m very pleased with the results. Don’t give up on figuring out a way to combine the kitchen of your dreams with your existing floors!!

  17. Good Morning, Did your insurance co pull up a tile under the cabinets to make sure there was no mold? if it was down the wall to the floor it is possible it has mold too.
    I agree warm whites also.

  18. I think you should go with what you LOVE …remember the “design lady” doesn’t live there …if it works for your family that’s what matters

  19. Kristin, you are so talented, and if you can imagine it, you know it will work! Your kitchen largely influenced my kitchen reno, and while we chose black granite for the counters (a compromise for my husband), I dreamed of white or cream marble. And we have travertine floors very similar in color to yours. It would totally work! I say go for it!

  20. Look for a granite with brown veining with the gray. I wouldn’t want to compromise on the countertop you want. Is your plan to still have gray for the bottom cabinets? There are plenty of beige-y grays. Sorry you were told that what you have won’t work.

  21. I have seen a grey paint with a hint of donkey-brown in it, which sounds odd but looked really interesting. I notice nowadays that there is a lot of decoration using warm colours as well as cool ones together, as long as the lightness is similar. You can make the grey work, just try to look out for a brown-grey and a warm white.

  22. If the lady hadn’t said that to you, would you have ever had that thought? You have such beautiful style…I think you should go with what you love and don’t worry about it. I don’t worry about mixing white and creams any more and it’s quite freeing!

  23. Kristin, I am going gray and white in my new kitchen so I totally get the look you want. How about a color like annie sloan’s chateau gray? There are plenty of gray colors that have a bit of brown in them. I went with river white granite in my kitchen. It is gray but has brown hints in it. I know you could pull off a gray if you went with the right shade. Think warm gray not cool gray.

  24. very tough decision Kristin – I personally would go for the white counters since white can go with anything, even your travertine floors. good luck!

  25. which do you prefer? white counters or the white cabinets or white backsplash? i would pick one and then do the contrast for the other. one nice way to keep it really light is to do butcher block counters with white cabinets and backsplash and that will bring the warm browns of the tile in!

  26. I would go with what you love, the white countertops, and accent the warm tones from the floors in your accessories. Natural wood items and assorted darker colored objects will fit the bill and not make your room look so beiged to death.
    Have fun hunting! We are about to turn our Dining Room into our kitchen. Let the craziness begin!

  27. Kristen, the kitchen by CJ Abbey Designs seems to have the color palette you’re going for, including what counters. What I take away from that one is that, considering your floors, you could use that color palette in warm tones like the inspiration photo.

    I also love the one below it by Traditional Home…the countertops seem to have a blue-ish gray which works really well at tying the space together.

    Good luck!

  28. I just read all of the comments and am amazed at all of the inspiration out there! I have a 35 yr old kitchen with dark cabs and white tile floors and white counter tops. Maybe I was ahead of the game all those years ago? Gray and white paint along with a backsplash treatment might give me the look that is similar to what you are talking about and what I have been wishing for now for several years. My question is on painting the (many) to the ceiling cupboards that are walnut stained. What are your suggestions? All of you have inspired me and I feel very encouraged with your enthusiasm. Is there a special technique to use? Getting the color is not a problem but I am curious about the techniques used.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *