Kitchen designers say that mixing the colors of cabinetry and farmhouse sinks is trending this year.

Kitchen designers say that mixing the colors of cabinetry and farmhouse sinks is trending this year.

Photo provided by Keith Sadowski

Clean, simple and on trend

Painted cabinets popular with kitchen renovations

By: Kristyne E. Demske | C&G Newspapers | Published March 4, 2020

 Quartzite is a popular countertop option, as shown on this island that is covered in a waterfall style from Cutting Edge Countertops.

Quartzite is a popular countertop option, as shown on this island that is covered in a waterfall style from Cutting Edge Countertops.

Photo provided by Keith Sadowski

METRO DETROIT — Dark is out and bright is in, according to experts in kitchen design.

“We still see quite a bit of white. It’s a trend that’s really never going to go away. It’s a stable force, (and) it’s something that’s a good backdrop to everything else,” said Christine Ramaekers, vice president and certified kitchen designer at MainStreet Design Build in Birmingham.

Painted finishes in a variety of colors for cabinets are a growing trend, said Andrea Yeip, owner of Cabinetry by Better Bilt in Mount Clemens.

“White has always been pretty timeless, and yes, it’s a very big trend right now, but also grays and navy blues are big,” said Yeip.

She said she noticed a change in tastes about two years ago, when her customers stopped buying cabinets in darker colors, such as maple or cherry stains, and started asking for painted cabinets.

“It opens it up and brightens it,” she said of the look. “A lot of the homes in our area are smaller, so it makes it look larger. It really brightens the area up and makes it look bigger.”

Ramaekers said that clients are looking to go “just a shade off of white” with their painted cabinets now, either a shade to gray or a shade to taupe.

In addition, she said, “Blues and greens are back, and wood tones are back.

“You’re seeing kitchens with a lot more diversity than just a plain white kitchen from a few years ago,” she said. “You might have your bases one color and your upper cabinets another color.”

Depending on the size of the kitchen, Ramaekers said, a third color might even be brought in for the kitchen island.

More traditional kitchens are opting for painted tones, while more contemporary, transitional homes are using more light walnut or rift cut oak with white liming or white glazes.

The style of cabinet door is also trending to a sleeker, more modern look.

“We haven’t done a raised panel kitchen in almost a decade,” Ramaekers said. “Your more contemporary kitchens are just a sleek door.”

Yeip agreed.

Shaker-style cabinets, with clean, simple lines and no raised panels, have been popular for the past few years, Yeip said.

“If I only had Shaker here, I would do just fine,” she said. “The last two years have been all Shaker.”

Mixed metals and soft golds are en vogue for lighting, hardware and plumbing fixtures, she said.

“For probably the last five to eight years, we were predominantly doing white kitchens with a little bit of color here and there,” Yeip said. Over the past year and a half, however, customers have been wanting to add “a little color here and there so (the kitchen is) not so sterile.”

“Even though the lines might be clean, it might be a little more fun. Sometimes a little bit of whimsy, sometimes it’s just really adding somebody’s favorite colors or pieces in (to make it) a little more personal,” she said.

To top the look, quartz is the current king of countertops. The man-made stone countertops are popular, especially in designs that look like marble, Yeip said.

Customers are installing gray cabinets with white countertops and white on white, she said, with backsplashes in white subway tile.

“They just want the simple, sleek look,” she explained.

Quartz countertops are more consistent than granite because they are man-made, and they have a sealer built into http://cectops.comthem, said Keith Sadowski, regional sales manager for Cutting Edge Countertops in Troy.

The lighter colors are still very popular.

“More people (are) gravitating toward cabinets that are gray, and then these blue islands,” Sadowski said. “We’ve brought in quartz and granite that have accents of blue in it, and gray in it, to (complement) those cabinets that are going in.”

The blue and gray cabinets really pop, he said.

“When you walk into a kitchen, it’s stunning,” he said.

He said that clients can choose to have a “chip minimizer” upgrade that will put a 1/4-inch bullnose on the countertop surrounding the sink, where the stone is most likely to chip because it’s the busiest area of the kitchen. Sadowski said that his company also offers the option for a 15-year sealer to keep stains off the countertop, as well.

Quartzite is another popular countertop, Ramaekers said. The natural stone is much denser than quartz and marble, so it is heat resistant and doesn’t chip easily, but it costs more because it comes from much deeper in the earth.

A good countertop can bring an entire kitchen design together, said Sadowski.

“The cabinet is like the pants, the wall covering is a good shirt, and the jacket that brings everything together is the countertop,” he said. “It’s usually the countertop that, boom, people go to — they put their hands on it immediately.”

For more information, call (248) 644-6330 for MainStreet Design Build in Birmingham or visit; call (586) 469-0080 for Cabinetry by Better Bilt in Mount Clemens or visit; or call (248) 509-4838 for Cutting Edge Countertops in Troy or visit