dark vs light cabinets
Jun 20, 2019 Custom Home Design

The Great Debate: Dark or Light Cabinets?

Dark or light cabinets? That is the question. Some people are very divided on the issue, while others may even consider a blend of each in their kitchen. Let’s compare the two, and you can decide for yourself.

Go to the Dark Side

Deep wood tones or rich painted cabinets can both inspire an air of drama. Darker cabinets tend to create a more formal, luxurious feel to your home. Here are the pros and cons of dark cabinets:


  • Make a statement
  • Puts the focal point on your kitchen
  • Creates a moody feel for your home


  • Can make a kitchen feel “heavy” or small
  • Requires ample light to avoid being too dark
  • Dark wood can show scratching easily

See the Light

Light cabinets can make your kitchen feel airy and are generally regarded as a more timeless look. Here are some of the pros and cons:


  • Can make a smaller kitchen feel larger
  • Versatility with countertop and backsplash colors – white goes with anything


  • Light cabinets show dirt and smudges easier than dark cabinets
  • Can feel too airy or clinical without some warm or contrasting colors

A combination of both light and dark may be the answer. Dark wood or paint on the lower cabinets and lighter or white tones on the upper cabinets can create the balance you are looking for. You could also try having your kitchen island a different color from the rest of the cabinets for that light/dark variation. If all white seems too sterile, add in some wood accents for warmth. Similarly, if all dark cabinets seem too severe, adding in some gold tones or pale tile can lighten things up.

Whatever you choose, lighting is important to be sure that whether moody or airy, there’s lots of light to highlight your beautiful kitchen. And remember – the most important rule is…you have to love it!

Get inspired for your new kitchen with our photo galleries.

When you’re ready to create the kitchen – and home – of your dreams, contact us to get started.

About Wayne Homes

Wayne Homes is a custom homebuilder in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Michigan, and West Virginia (see all Model Home Centers). We offer 50 fully customizable floor plans and a team dedicated to providing the best experience in the home building industry. For more information, Ask Julie by Live Chat or call us at (866) 253-6807.

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