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Kitchen ideas from Food magazine

Is your style vibrant or soft? These striking and sophisticated kitchens show you how to get the look you love.

Pink bench colour scheme.

It’s a colour lover’s feast...

Few homeowners would choose hot pink for their kitchen cabinetry and few architects would have the vision to interpret that colour with such a stunningly sophisticated result.

Neil Fenwick Architects in Hawke’s Bay took colour inspiration from a client who loves bright colours. They decided to make the kitchen the focal point of the house with the use of colour, while leaving the rest of the home fairly neutral. The client wanted a magenta kitchen; finding the right magenta was a challenge but Resene Colour Me Pink proved to be the solution. The complementary colours of the island bench front (Resene Daredevil) and the entry hall (Resene Maestro) were chosen for their matching intensity.

Cedar, a soothing counterpoint
Cedar has been used for durability and a warm aesthetic. Here, it’s a soothing counterpoint to the boldness of the colour. The oversized pantry door in the kitchen designed by Neil Fenwick Architects is finished in Resene Daredevil.

Kitchen designed by Neil Fenwick Architects

The entry is on the eastern side of the house and was designed to be a darker space, breaking out into the open plan larger lighter space. Resene Maestro was chosen to help achieve the architectural intent.

Resene Black White was used throughout the rest of the house as it is the perfect shade of white to complement the modern architecture and to keep the aesthetic fresh. The splashback was chosen to tie the kitchen colours together.

And the best thing? This vibrant kitchen enhances rather than fights with the sensational views from the home’s large windows.

Pale and interesting

Traditionally styled timber kitchens often call to mind heavily detailed cabinetry with either a dark or bright amber finish. When the Johnstones of Christchurch were faced with a complete rebuild of their quakewrecked 1920s house, the kitchen was naturally a hugely important part of the build. They wisely chose not only to use American oak for the cabinets, but to enhance the pale beauty of the timber by finishing it with Resene Colorwood Whitewash. The cabinets were then protected from wear and tear with Resene Aquaclear urethane.

In the Johnstone kitchen, subtle use of black complements the whitewashed oak cabinets. Once the black oven had been chosen, shiny textured tiles followed.

The pale yet warm aesthetic set the tone for all the other colour choices, for example, the Resene Spanish White on the walls encourages occupants to look beyond, into the garden. The trims are Resene Quarter Villa White.

The effect of Resene Colorwood Whitewash and the warm, neutral paint colours are enhanced by the kitchen’s positioning beside the home’s large windows, bathing the space in all-day sun and opening on to the garden. Says owner Liesl, “I had always wanted a whitewashed timber interior. It’s already garnered many compliments, and feels enduringly fresh.”

Liesl and her husband didn’t spend time worrying about how the kitchen would function. They had an experienced team of design professionals on the job, including architect Ashley Muir of Mason & Wales, and interior architectural designer Stephen Cashmore.

Whitewashed oak kitchen cabinets
To enhance the traditional feel of the kitchen, Liesl chose gutsy lighting and beautifully detailed and burnished cabinetry handles.

It’s in the details

More than any other room in the house, this kitchen succeeds in its attention to detail. There is a multitude of elements to consider – finishes and surfaces, the choice of appliances and the colours are just a few, as are handles, taps, sinks, flooring... the list goes on!

Treat your timber well

As more homeowners are turning to the beauty of timber for interiors, it’s opportune to think about how to protect the timber or enhance its natural good looks.

From stains to urethanes, Resene has products specially formulated for timber. The Resene Colorwood interior stains range gives a colour boost to timber while letting the grain show – colours range from subtle and natural, to smoky and discreet.

The Colorwood range also includes the popular Resene Colorwood Whitewash and a deeper version, Resene Colorwood Greywash, for a more antique look. Both are applied directly to the timber and can be used on floors, walls, furniture, cabinetry or accessories.

To protect a stained or raw timber finish from wear and tear or marks, use Resene Aquaclear clear urethane. It’s a tough waterborne urethane that’s perfect for the job.

Colours used in these 2 projects...

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

More ideas


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Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.