Kitchen trends come and go. For a while, homeowners favoured a gleaming white, sparkling-yet-sometimes-sterile blank canvas of Carrara marble countertops and slick subway tiles. More recently, we saw the rise of that fad’s polar opposite—the black kitchen. But lately, like so many other parts of the home, kitchens are taking their stylistic cues from the outdoors. From mint and sage to dazzling emerald and deep forest, green of every shade is entering the kitchen.
“Green has always been a go-to colour for me,” says Los Angeles–based designer Faith Blakeney, who has used the hue prominently in several kitchen designs. “It’s a fantastic way to bring nature—or nature’s spirit—into a space. It feels refreshing and organic.”
Others have followed suit, embracing colours we might have once couched in 1960s kitsch. (Remember the minty green cabinets in the Brady Bunch house?) Dakota Johnson’s Pierce & Ward–designed Los Angeles kitchen is painted in Benjamin Moore’s Alligator Alley. Kendall Jenner’s is sporting a Benjamin Moore teal. Meanwhile, Charlotte Ronson and Nate Ruess’s Manhattan kitchen is coated in a subtle sage.
“I use green in every project as much as I can,” says Frances Merrill, who coaxed her client to add a dash of the grassy hue into a pattern-forward L.A. pad. “It feels fresh and clean and speaks to the green outside, but because it’s dark and more subdued, it doesn’t detract from it.”
Across the pond, London-based designer Beata Heuman declares a similar devotion, saying one of her favourite looks is a dark green kitchen, painted in the almost-black Studio Green shade by Farrow and Ball. “The eye can actually decipher more shades of green than any other color, which gives it great depth,” she explains. “So if you want to do something bold, it’s a relatively safe choice.”
Below, explore eight kitchens that make a case for the earthy hue.
California ranch house by Faith Blakeney
When Faith Blakeney got her hands on this 1950s California ranch house, it was, in her words, “a total disaster.” After rejiggering the layout and opening the space up a bit, she chose a deep forest green (developed with Sydney Harbour Paint Company) to “bring good cheer and play to the space.” She was confident that the bold move would tie in well with the wood elements in the house and echo the landscape out the window. But more than anything, she explains, “The clients immediately gravitated to the color, so we knew we were onto something!”
Charlotte Ronson and Nate Ruess’s NYC home
Cabinetry, wainscot, and moldings in sage green—a custom color developed by Benjamin Moore—lend a retro feel to the open kitchen and dining room in Charlotte Ronson and Nate Ruess’s NYC loft designed by Paul Fortune and Gachot Studios.
Brooklyn townhouse by GRT Architects
For the renovation of a townhouse in Brooklyn’s Prospect Lefferts Gardens landmark district, GRT Architects sought to strike a balance in the kitchen. “We wanted to create a space that didn’t adhere to an obvious or datable style,” explains partner Rustam Mehta. They looked at a spectrum of colors, but landed on a shade of emerald laminate that felt “unexpected, without trying too hard.” The uniformity of the green laminate played well with the home’s otherwise more organic material palette of exposed plywood and unlaquered brass. As Mehta explains: “Green is a natural partner to yellow tones which present in many woods and metals such as brass and copper.”
Reinaldo Leandro and Patrick McGrath’s Hamptons cottage
A deep forest green island and stools add a jolt of drama to the white kitchen in architect Reinaldo Leandro and designer Patrick McGrath’s Hamptons cottage.
A family lodge in the Adirondacks by Miles Redd
A punchy shade of kelly green features prominently throughout this Adirondacks lodge, designed by Miles Redd. In the kitchen, the designer delivers an unexpected dose of the hue via high-gloss floors, painted in Benjamin Moore’s Chrome Green.
An L.A. home by Reath Design
When Reath Design’s Frances Merrill began working on a client’s midcentury-modern home in Altadena, the whole house was green. “The client was set on removing any trace of it and replacing with other colors,” recalls Merrill, who was game to add piles of anything-but-green pattern and punch. Still, Merrill convinced the client to revisit the color in the kitchen. “We really felt it was the perfect subdued shade,” she says of the hue, which she likens to a dark green crayon. “The space is filled with light from the large windows, so the color sort of recedes from the space and reflects the green outside. It’s a neutralizing color in this context.”
A writer’s London flat by Beata Heuman
Beata Heuman’s client wanted a striking color that wasn’t too overwhelming for the kitchen of her London pied-à-terre. “Green is a great color for that reason,” reports the designer, who went with a slightly yellow shade of forest green. “With its association to nature it will always feel calming, but it is quite rich at the same time.” Since this kitchen was located in the middle of the apartment, with no windows or direct natural light, the color was, in Heuman’s words, “a nod to the outside.”
A family kitchen by Muller Van Severen
Custom-made green enamel cabinets by Emaillerie Belge punch up this family kitchen by Muller Van Severen, created in collaboration with Atelier Ternier.