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Grain expectations

Kitchen ideas from Food magazine

Highly-textured woods in warm tones are heating up contemporary kitchens from floor to ceiling.

While an all-white kitchen will never go out of style, it can sometimes feel a little impersonal, bland or even outright cold. For most people, the kitchen is the hub of the home — mission control on busy mornings, a place where family and friends congregate in times of celebration. Above all, a kitchen should always feel welcoming.

Wooden panels and stainless steel kitchen
The cheerfully-coloured cabinets in this Parsonson Architects-designed bach in Te Horo keep things casual, with Resene Crisp Green, Resene Cararra, Resene Boulevard and Resene Half Delta framed by the golden oak ceiling and flooring.

Worlds apart from the sterility of glossy white, the gold-toned richness of a kitchen decked out with oak, walnut, teak, or stained plywood invites you to pull up a chair and stay awhile. Despite being hard surfaces, these types of wood convey a real sense of warmth and are easy to look after when they’ve been properly protected.

Because kitchen renovations are such a big investment, it’s smart to choose building materials you know will last the distance. A major benefit of opting for wood millwork and joinery is their ability to be redecorated with ease if trends or personal tastes change. These surfaces also take less preparation than other man-made cabinetry materials if you do decide to switch things up later. Used on ceilings and walls, the natural grain and texture of wood can also help to hide any knocks and marks.

Depending on the quality of the wood you choose and the palette you pick to go with it, kitchens finished in warm woods can be made to look anywhere from high-end contemporary to laid-back bach.

While flat profile doors and drawers are still trending and a popular choice for a modern look, they can also be made more casual depending on the handle hardware you choose to complement them. For more texture, opt for doors and drawers in a tongue and groove style.

Arty lounge

Choosing colours to match warm wood tones can be tricky, but simple tips include: If the dominant colour in the wood seems to be reddish (which is typical of rimu and cedar), go for a green hue such as Resene Untamed or Resene Family Tree, which will enhance and intensify the wood’s natural colour.

Golden-yellow woods look impressive against warm reds such as Resene Roadster, as well as earthy greens, teal or aubergine. Resene Waiouru, Resene Fast Forward and Resene RSVP are all great options to achieve this.

Browner woods with yellow undertones (like walnut) work well with buttery-coloured walls. Resene Moonlight is a perfect choice for a bold, standout colour that provides contrast and drama.

An arty kitchen
The wood cabinetry in this modern, eclectic kitchen designed by Lymesmith has been cleverly blended with slate flooring, a brick wall and marble backsplash to create a textural masterpiece. A Mondrian-esque palette of Resene Countdown, Resene Prussian Blue, Resene Buddha Gold and Resene Eighth Tea tie this work of art together into one cohesive space.

Dark with wooden panels
Designed by Strachan Group Architects (SGA), the ply millwork and ceiling in this kitchen allow the beauty of the grain to shine through in Resene Colorwood Natural wood stain. The overall effect is offset by the contrasting Resene Hackett Black wood stain exterior.

Combinations to try:

Resene Colorwood Dark Rimu

Resene Soulful

Resene Colorwood Oregon

Resene Negroni

Resene Burnt Crimson

Top timber tips:

Resene has a comprehensive range of products to protect timber from wear and tear and make it look even better.

  • Resene Qristal Clear

    Resene Qristal Clear polyurethane imparts a yellow tone to timber, so it is best-suited to timbers with a yellow, orange or red undertone like cedar and rimu.

  • Resene Aquaclear

    Resene aquaclear doesn’t accentuate the natural undertone of timber as much, so it’s a better match for white or pale timbers such as pine and oak, plus composite boards such as MDF, particle board and strandboard.
  • Resene Colorwood

    If you want to change the colour of the timber but still see the grain, Resene Colorwood stains come in a range of colours, from natural tones to brights.

  • Resene Colorwood Whitewash

    Resene Colorwood Whitewash achieves the popular white-washed effect and can be used on floors, walls, furniture and cabinetry. It also comes in greywash options.
  • Resene Qristal Clear Poly-Flat

    Resene Qristal Clear Poly-Fla has a similar look to a wax finish, without the hassle.

  • Resene Qristal Clearfloor

    Resene Qristal Clearfloor is a tough waterborne urethane for floors that comes in two grades – 1K for low- to medium-wear areas, or 2K for high-wear areas.

When selecting a wood stain or clear finish, remember the natural colour of the wood you use will affect the final result. Different varieties and grades of wood absorb stains differently, so always test the stain colour first. See the Resene Woodcare stand and samples at your local Resene ColorShop to find a wood finish that works for you.

Resene Untamed

Resene Family Tree

Resene Fast Forward

Resene RSVP

Kitchen Decorating Ideas
View more kitchen decorating ideas from Food magazine in the Resene kitchen inspiration gallery.

More ideas

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