Harmonizing Your Kitchen Design: The Art of Matching Finishes

Kitchen Designed  with Warm Bronze Hardware and Hood
Kitchen Design: Kim Lambert Design  Photography: Lauren Miller Photograpy  Hardware: Casson Hardware Line Appliance Pulls

Exploring Finishes in Kitchen Design

Kitchen finishes refer to the surface textures and colors of various components like faucets, hardware (knobs, pulls), appliances, lighting fixtures, and even countertops and cabinetry. These finishes can range from matte to glossy, and from modern and shiny vs. aged and patina'ed metals; bold colours to classic neutrals.

Matching finishes in your kitchen design is an art that significantly enhances the overall aesthetic. It's about creating a dialogue between the different elements, where each finish complements and enhances the other. By thoughtfully selecting and coordinating these finishes, you can create a kitchen that is not only functional but also a true reflection of your personal style.

The above photo shows a contemporary and modern kitchen design by Kim Lambert Design using warm and rich tones. Clean and minimal wood cabinets are paired with moody deep hued stone countertops and backsplash. This is then complemented with accents of blackened bronze handles, antique bronze stove hood, and warm brushed stainless steel knobs. 

Minimal Kitchen Design by Studio AC
Kitchen Design: Studio AC
Minimal Wood Kitchen Island
Photography: Jeremie Worshafsky

Complementing and Coordinating Kitchen Design Elements

When designing a kitchen, one of the most important aspects to consider is the harmony of finishes. From the gleam of your faucet to the patina of your cabinet hardware, ensuring these elements complement each other is key to creating a balanced and aesthetically pleasing space. In this post, we'll explore the significance of matching finishes in kitchen design, focusing on how similar tones and balanced compositions can bring your kitchen to life.

The kitchen design by Studio AC has a brighter and lighter palette of a minimal white backdrop showcasing a clean-lined and crisp wood island. Over time, the finishing touches of copper handles and pulls have developed a patina and add an element of age and warmth.

Finish Samples

You can explore a range of finish samples for purchase on our website here, ideal for comparing various finishes from different suppliers. This allows you to visualize with other design elements like countertops, flooring, fixtures, cabinet colors, tiles, backsplashes, upholstery, and curtain fabrics, ensuring a cohesive design. Small finish samples are helpful to view against other elements being used in your personal kitchen design or for client presentations and mood boards.


How to Match Finishes in your Kitchen Design

Identify Your Base Tone: Start by choosing a base tone for your primary finish. This could be a classic stainless steel, a warm brass, or a modern matte black. This tone will guide the selection for other finishes.

Complement, Don’t Clone: Matching doesn’t mean everything has to be the exact same color or texture. It’s about complementary tones. For example, brushed nickel hardware can beautifully complement a stainless-steel faucet.

Consider Lighting: Lighting is plays a significant role in determining how finishes look, as natural and artificial light can alter the perception of colors and textures. When choosing finishes for your kitchen design, consider the lighting conditions. Different shapes and locations of the same finish can reflect light uniquely, so exact matches aren't necessary. Similarly finished items from various suppliers can harmonize well overall, particularly when they aren't adjacent to each other.

Mixing Metals: If done right, mixing metals can add depth and interest. Keep a consistent undertone for a cohesive look (e.g., warm tones with warm tones, cool with cool).

The image below showcases a stunning kitchen design by Oda & King, exuding classic elegance and luxurious warmth. The refined space features walls finished in Plaster Lime Wash and an eye-catching statement custom stone sink. The design is enhanced with polished stainless steel faucets, blackened antique bronze sconces, and door pulls, along with a polished nickel lighting toggle switch panel by Forbes and Lomax. The designers skillfully mix and match finishes, aligning them with the bright yet warm and tactile tones that define this exquisite kitchen.

Classic Kitchen Design overlooking garden by Oda and King
Kitchen Design: Oda & King

Why Matching Matters

Visual Cohesion: Matching kitchen design finishes create a sense of unity, tying together the different elements of your kitchen. This doesn’t mean everything has to be identical, but there should be a harmonious dialogue between the textures and tones.

Balanced Composition: A well-balanced composition in finishes prevents any one element from overpowering the others. It's about finding the right equilibrium where each piece complements and enhances the overall design.

Timeless Elegance: While trends come and go, a kitchen with harmoniously matched finishes has a timeless appeal, making your space feel classic and well-curated.

Style Applications

Minimalist Elegance: For a minimalist kitchen, consider matching a satin stainless steel with similarly finished cabinet handles. This creates a sleek, unified look.

Classic Charm: In a more traditional kitchen design, brass fixtures with a brushed finish can pair beautifully with creamy white cabinetry, offering a warm, inviting ambiance.

Contemporary Twist: Stainless steel or black appliances with chrome fixtures offer a clean, modern look. Add in brushed nickel hardware for a subtle contrast that keeps the design fresh.