Ultimate Combinations: The Dark & The Light

This month’s instalment of Ultimate Combinations sees us taking a closer look at some ultimate combinations of light and dark colours, materials and accessories that have been used together for striking kitchen schemes. If you’re slightly wary of including dark and dramatic accessories in your kitchen style then read on and we’ll show you how it can be done to devastating effect…

White Heights

Soaring ceilings and roof lights make this kitchen look beautifully light and spacious, even though the floor is very dark… from a selection of our Dakota porcelain slabs…and there is that enormous island too, painted in dark grey. The addition of ivory perimeter cabinetry and white glossy work surfaces adds to the drama and style of this ultimate combination of light and dark.

Gloss & Gold

We love the combination of black and white for a simple, glamorous kitchen. Trends are shifting (although not that quickly!) from brass and copper highlights to full on golden highlights, beautifully illustrated here with the gold rails in the cabinetry, plus gold tap and lights too. Similar bar stools are available from Cult Furniture, and similar gold finish taps from Abode. So, to contrast with the dark island and door frames, the choice of our Alaska glossy white porcelain floor tiles is spot on. Install diagonally for added interest and a unique look.

A Light Shell

A light and dark combination or contrast can be achieved by the choice of furniture and accessories – and not just kitchen furniture; walls and floors too. We love the added layer of ‘dark’ provided by the seating and coffee table in this open plan kitchen. It’s a perfectly light simple space that’s been transformed with the addition of bold accessories. The tiles are our very own Stonebase in Light Grey, which are ceramic tiles designed to look like natural stone, and they come in two formats, 600mm x 600mm and 600mm x 300mm.

Table Top Treats

Carry on the combination of darks and lights to your kitchen and dining room tableware, linens and cutlery… the latest collections for next season include lots of dramatic navy and black/white patterns from Matalan. Small accessories like these can add a different emphasis to a kitchen scheme. We’re imagining this striking black and white crockery would team up well with our dark grey or black Trinity Lux wall tiles.

Balancing Dark & Light

This kitchen from Trend Interiors illustrates the combination of dark and light again – this time very simply, in a white kitchen with black glazing bars and cabinetry in Denim Blue, Smoke Blue and Fjord Green. The colours are balanced and inviting, with each shade standing clearly against the contrasting white walls. And of course, we would suggest natural wood-look flooring; for a hard-wearing option try our Baltimore Beige Wood Effect porcelain planks.

Vertical and Horizontal Combinations

Work surface materials are increasingly being seen used for the upright side panels of islands, and when dark finishes are used they work as a great contrast against lighter walls and floors. These surfaces are from Lundhs stone surface specialists. And of course, result in a great kitchen combination of light and dark. We’d suggest, once again, our Baltimore wood-look floor tiles as a suitable contrast.

Simply Striking

A simple solution to adding dark accents to a light kitchen is to make the bold choice of black or nearly-black furniture. This hardwood table is actually dark grey, and certainly makes a very strong contrasting statement in this bright white shiny kitchen. Pale floor tiles make the furniture stand out – try our Regale Cream Matt Porcelain tiles for a similarly spacious and elegant look. The Hampshire dining set with black faux leather seat pads is from Furniture Choice.

It’s Simply Black & White

You can’t get a much more straightforward combination than black and white in the kitchen, and we never tire of our Linear Black Gloss wall tiles. They can add  retro style to a scheme without over-complicating things, and are a good option for smaller kitchens too.

Take A Seat

A light kitchen colour scheme often needs a tweak to stop it looking bland or clinical. So, we’re rather keen on these Valerie black stools, which are supplied in a set of four, each with a slightly different black patterned seat pad. A very good example of combining light and dark for a sophisticated and stylish result. And don’t forget, we have plenty of wood-effect porcelain plank designs which can be used as a neutral base for your dark/light combo colour scheme. Or, try our Huntsville Oak vinyl planks to balance that contrast between light and dark kitchen finishes.

Deep & Dark

Our Dorset Grey wall and floor tiles work together with to create a balance with dark cabinetry and white work surfaces – linking two extremes together and ensuring all three elements (light, dark, pattern) blend harmoniously. What a combination!

Don’t forget, we would love to see examples of your projects with interesting combinations of light and dark shades – go on, inspire us! Send us you pics via Facebook or tag us on Instagram

You might also like these posts on the Tile Mountain blog…

Bitchin’ Kitchens: The Most On-Trend Kitchen Styles for 2020

Trend Watch: Dark Kitchens

Trend Watch: Mixed Material Kitchens


Linda has worked as a freelance interiors writer and blogger for many years; she has written for most of the major home and design magazines, including KBB Magazine, Grand Designs, Homes & Gardens, House Beautiful, Period Homes and Good Homes. She made the break and moved from London back to her home town of Shrewsbury three years ago and has just finished renovating her house. She also works in an interior design studio, produces copy for brochures and website, tries to tame her garden, aims to finish all the home furnishing projects she has on the go … and loves walking.