/ Kitchenology

Color Charged

Pantone's color of the year, Honeysuckle pink.

Pantone's color of the year, Honeysuckle pink.

"Courageous. Confident. Vital... It's a color for every day, with nothing 'everyday' about it." -- Pantone LLC on its 2011 Color of the Year.


Maybe Pantone 18-2120 Honeysuckle is your color of the year, too. You love its vibrant pink energy and want it in your kitchen. But how do you incorporate a hot, trendy shade without dating your kitchen or anchoring yourself into a strong color you may not love down the line?

Trust me on this one: Don't buy honeysuckle-painted cabinets, large appliances or honeysuckle stone countertops unless you've loved pink your whole life and are absolutely certain you'll never, ever, sell your house.

You can still use this rich hue in your kitchen, but a little bit of a strong color goes a long way. Here are some Sensible Style approaches to integrating a strong color like this.



Dish towels, like the ones found in the Verano line from Crate & Barrel (pictured), are easy ways to incorporate color without commitment. Photo from Crate & Barrel.



Go soft

  • Integrate your preferred color into your kitchen fabrics:

  • Find chandelier shades in your color of choice.

  • Add dish towels in solids or patterns that tie in that shade.

  • Find place mats and napkins that bring in your color du jour.

  • Tie it on with seat cushion fabric.


For more soft color solutions, click here.


Pretty serving pieces, like Ikea's Yngaren bowl shown here, can integrate today's color without tomorrow regrets! Photo from Ikea.


Serve it up

  • Add the color in serving platters and bowls.

  • Choose canisters in your selected shade.

  • Incorporate it in your bakeware collection.

  • Find cooking utensils or serving utensils with handles in that shade.

For more serveware style color solutions, click here.



Accent tile, like Perennial Poppy Mosaic from Ann Sacks, can incorporate today's hot color with others for a pleasing, permanent, kitchen addition. Photo from Ann Sacks.



Bigger splash

OK, perhaps those last items were too wimpy and you want your accent color to make a stronger impression. I'm still going to try to talk you out of big, expensive, permanent elements like cabinetry, countertops and flooring. But try these methods to give your kitchen an accent color that makes a big impression:


  • Find a countertop appliance available in your color choice.
  • Install cabinet hardware; it's available in pretty much any color.
  • Use the color you love in easy-to-change wall paint.
  • Apply an accent tile to integrate into your backsplash.



For more serveware style color solutions, click here.


Final thoughts

Remember that your space should reflect your personal likes and loves, not those of a website, TV show or magazine. I'm not a pink person and I also have no insecurities about missing out on Pantone's color of the year. I may miss next year's, too, without any regrets. But I have friends and clients who love the "now" color and style. So this post is dedicated to the trendies among us. You know who you are.

To read the entire Sensible Style - Color Charged posting on Gold Notes, click here.


Kitchen and bath designer Jamie Goldberg

 © 2011, Jamie Goldberg, AKBD, CAPS. Excerpted from Gold Notes: Nuggets from the World of Residential Design. Jamie is an NKBA-certified designer of kitchens and baths in San Diego, CA, and offers Sensible Style for Home Seller consultations around the country. She can be reached at (619) 796-2217 or