These 9 Yellow Kitchens Are the Definition of Dopamine Decor
Sunny scalloped shelving to smile about.
Updated Jan 30, 2023 5:07 PM
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We’ve seen every shade of sage on kitchen cabinets, and this year we’re ready for a new kind of nature-inspired rush: yellow. Plus it’s not just a pretty hue—some experts say it can actually make you feel happy.
From lemon-colored cupboards to cooking spaces literally inspired by butter, we’re seeing more and more daring homeowners spruce up their spaces with this sunshiny shade. So consider this your invitation to rethink white and infuse your surroundings with a bit of brightness. Here are nine ways to lend yellow kitchen cabinets your personal touch.
Spread It All Over
Food personality and cookbook author Molly Baz’s kitchen (which also doubles as a content studio) is all about butter. It’s not just what she’s cooking with, it’s the creamy shade that covers every cabinet, counter, and appliance.
Bear It All
It’s not uncommon to let a kid’s favorite film inform the design of their room, but the rest of a house is usually left to the grown-ups. This London family, however, took all their inspo from Paddington. Rather than fill the home with teddy bears, “they wanted to capture the spirit of a fun, slightly mad house,” explains James Arkoulis, cofounder of Howark Design. That translated into fluid patterns, decorative tile, and rain boot–yellow kitchen cabinets.
Slather It On
These Atlanta homeowners and condiment connoisseurs found the perfect shade for the cabinets in their Georgian-style townhouse. Naturally it just so happened to imitate their favorite sandwich spread: Dijon mustard. Paired with modern millwork and impressive marble surfaces, the duo’s choice adds just enough flavor.
Make It Modern
Fear not, modernists, you can keep your sleek lines, structural furnishings, and cool grays while still adding a touch of fun. Take notes from this Mondrian-esque setup. The radiant upper cabinet doors contrast with open nooks to create a staggered storage solution in a way that any postmodern enthusiast would appreciate.
Go Almost Orange
Toe the line like Londoners Emily Jane and Dan Lathan did with an extra-warm hue that replaced an outdated brown. While traces of all the old millwork are gone, they didn’t have to start completely over. Apparently, butcher block countertops pair seamlessly with this citrusy tone.
Keep It Mellow
The main appeal for this laid-back yellow? It plays very well with others. Multihued cabinets were always a part of the design for architects Jody Beck and Ross-Alan Tisdale on this color-coded kitchen. Unfamiliar guests will catch on to the easy organization system quickly. “The idea that you can be like, ‘Grab the silverware in the mint drawer’ or ‘The trash is in the blue cabinet,’—I love that,” says Beck.
Get a Grip
Congratulations, you’ve decided to color-block! If you’ve still got concerns about your space reading as overly busy, ditch the hardware. In her unfussy kitchen, Sophia Cook opted for integrated handles on the lower drawers and cabinets, and a palette inspired by her yard’s autumn foliage. Take this fall-like scheme as your sign to not stop at one shade.
Go Beyond the Cupboards
This charming space, designed by London-based firm Salvesen Graham, is a testament to how good yellow kitchens can get. When combined with details like sweet scalloped shelving, the cheerful pantry nook makes us want to flee to the English countryside.
Try a Tiny Take
If you’re dealing with a kitchenette, that’s all the more reason to pack a big punch. Invite the light in with your favorite shade, and take a page out of this homeowner’s book with a tiny sink curtain to really dress it up.