Classic Kitchen Design

Q. I am moving into a new home with a choice of cabinet colours. Please advise me on the pros and cons of going with a dark finish vs. white/cream cabinets (to go with my existing light wood table and chairs) and the best complementary but neutral flooring tones. Also, would stainless steel or white appliances be best? My tastes lean towards a timeless, classic look that must last years with small updates such as curtains or accessories.

? J.M., Elmsdale, N.S.

A. While cream painted kitchen cabinets are a hot trend at the moment, they also have a classic, enduring appeal and would complement your existing light wood table and chairs.

Cream cabinets will give your kitchen a light, airy look but also lend it warmth and charm. The only negative aspect of light coloured cabinets is that they require a little more upkeep as they tend to show smudges more easily than darker finishes.

In terms of flooring, either wood laminate or cork tile in a medium to dark neutral tone would go beautifully with cream cabinets and would add contrast to the space. White appliances may look too bland with cream cabinetry. Choose stainless steel for extra contrast and a hit of luxurious style.