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Should A Kitchen Floor Be Lighter Or Darker Than Cabinets?

Kitchen renovations are at the top of most home remodelling projects.

When designing your dream kitchen, the floor is an area that will require careful consideration.

As one of the largest surfaces in the room, it has the ability to impact the overall look of your kitchen. So, if you are wondering which floor colour to pair with your cabinets, read on for expert advice and tips. 

1. Should a kitchen floor be lighter or darker than your cabinetry?

We can’t give a hard yes or no response to this question because there are several factors to consider. Apart from your cabinetry, the amount of natural light, the room size and the overall desired aesthetic, all play a role in creating a balanced room.

That being said, your kitchen cabinets and flooring should complement and not match each other. Instead of being identical twins, think of these two elements as salt and pepper.

Contrasting both the colour and texture of the two will create visual interest even if the difference is subtle. Rich colour wooden floors look great with light colour cabinets and vice versa.

Find out about the most common kitchen shapes and how to decorate them.

2. Benefits of light floors

Light kitchen floor

Perfect for small kitchens, light floors provide a reflective surface for light to bounce off, making the room feel brighter and more spacious.

Do you have a busy home? These floors will hide scratches, pet hairs, dust and small debris, making them ideal for homes with a lot of activity.

We recommend this option if you want your dark wood or rich-coloured cabinets to stand out. Perhaps you have invested in some intricately designed, ornate cupboards, a toned-down floor will create a plain backdrop that will help them stand out.

However, be careful not to choose crisp white hues as they can make your kitchen feel cold or clinical. Furthermore, light-coloured floors can appear cheap if you don’t use a high-quality finish.

3. Benefits of dark floors

Dark kitchen floor

If you have a large kitchen, dark floors can work well to make the space feel more intimate. Additionally, they can be used to make a bold statement that adds a unique look to your kitchen.

Unfortunately, whilst they may need less maintenance, any light-coloured pieces of dirt or hair will show up easily against their dark tint.

If you are attracted to this moody flooring, pair it with mid-toned neutral cabinets for an elegant design. 

You can consider dark floors if you have an east-west facing kitchen that receives lots of natural light. 

An added bonus is that dark floors will fit into several décor styles, so choose this option if you regularly change your kitchen’s look.

Whilst the contrast with light cabinets produces a contemporary feel, avoid stark colours like pure white which will make the room feel hard and stern.

4. Painted or wooden floors?

Painting floors is an affordable, quick-fix way to upgrade your kitchen flooring. You can achieve a rustic, minimalist aesthetic by adding some light-coloured paint over your floors. However, paint will chip. As far as fixes go, this is not a particularly durable one.

Paint will inevitably crack no matter how well it is applied. In contrast, wooden floors will stay in mint condition for ten years longer.

It is hard to find a substitute for the natural beauty of wood. It ages well, developing a unique and interesting character over time. 

As such, if you want to darken a light-coloured wood floor, we suggest turning to wood stains versus a can of paint.

Certainly, if you plan to sell your home in the future, a painted kitchen floor might deter potential buyers. Restoring a painted floor to its natural state is a time and money-consuming exercise.

5. Kitchen floor and cabinetry colour pairings

Kitchen cabinets and floor colour pairings

There are countless cabinet and floor colour combinations that we adore, but some stand out more than others. In line with current interior design trends these are our favourites:

  • Warm dove grey cabinets paired with light maple floors, in a farmhouse kitchen.
  • Sage green cabinets complimented by a natural dark-wood floor, for a calming and warm kitchen.
  • Bright icy blue cabinets paired with a reddish-brown wooden floor which anchors the space.
  • Rich navy blue cabinets contrasted with a farmhouse-style inspired natural wood floor, for a high impact, rustic meets modern look.
  • Timeless all-white cabinets and near-black flooring bring an edge to the clean design.

6. Would exactly the same colour work?

Contrasting and matching kitchen cabinet and floor colours

We strongly discourage choosing a matching colour and style for both your kitchen cabinets and flooring. The monotony will overwhelm the eye and make the room feel dull. 

Using the same colour is not out of the question but make sure there are noticeable, even if subtle differences in the tones you use. 

A great tip when you are using a similar colour is to contrast the texture/materials of the two surfaces for visual interest.

It may be a good idea to work with a professional interior designer if you are particularly keen on a monochromatic aesthetic. Otherwise, stick to contrasting colour schemes.

7. Research Ideas

When it comes to choosing your kitchen colours, we encourage you to do your research. There may be combinations that you have not considered, so flip through magazines, browse online or visit showrooms for inspiration. Take some time to read our tips on choosing the right kitchen colour for added help.

Check out these top 2022 flooring trends for some ideas:

  • Lived-in hardwood.
  • Bleached and blanched wood.
  • Wood and stone look-alike flooring.
  • Hand-scraped engineered wood.
  • Cool tones.
  • Distressed concrete tiles.
  • Unique prints and patterns.

It is also important to remember that your kitchen colour scheme should match up with the rest of your home, particularly for open-plan layouts. There should be a natural visual flow from your kitchen to the dining and living room area.

In Conclusion

Ultimately, focus on bringing balance to your kitchen. Whether you opt for dark or light floors, contrast them with cabinets in different materials and/or colours.

As a full-service residential and commercial interior design company,  we are ready to assist you with your remodelling needs. Get in touch today and let’s chat.

To see and feel the materials for yourself, visit our London showroom where we will open your eyes to the wide range of finishes you can employ for a truly unique and breathtaking kitchen. 

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