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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Need kitchen help!

Lori AustinOctober 20, 2012
We are in the process of purchasing this otherwise perfect vacation condo with gorgeous Lake Michigan views, but the cabinet/counter combo makes me crazy! Husband says we will not do anything more than fresh wall paint for now. Color suggestions to make the granite look less pink? Simple decor ideas for pulling the cabinets & counter together?
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It look like someone painted the bottom cabinets, which is too bad since the cabinet wood tone is lovely. But it does allow you an opportunity to repaint the bottom ones. How about a grey?
Timeless kitchen · More Info
It would make the top less pink but the whole look will be more attractive. See this combination with natural wood stain:
Helotes · More Info
Here, too:
Bosch Kitchens · More Info
1 Like    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 3:34PM
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You could paint the little bottom cabinets of the upper cabinents to isolate the wood tone--just doesn't go with the counter. Could match the wall color and put black or charcoal grey on the bottom--or grey with a touch of green as suggested above.

It is a small enough counter you might be able to replace the bottom part it pretty cheap. I saw 8' black granite counter with ougee edge advertized about 2 months ago at Menard's for $200.

If you had a rug or some pottery that just picked up the pink and rusts a little bit, maybe along with some greens, browns and grey, It could maybe nuetralize it a bit.

That black faucet and sink kind of bothers me--perhaps you could replace the faucet and the cabinet hardward some chrome?

Or you could just go with it all the way and get some vintage-type 50s-60's fabric in those colors and make a little valance (the back can be lined to go with the other room. I have a swatch that would be perfect that I found in my grandmother's stash.

I have ballet slipper pink tiles myself and they have grown on me with time. Pink/salmon was a popular color back then and you can find it in a lot of old fabrics, or vintage inspired fabric in mod or kischy kitchen or stylized prints. It is almost terracotta, so that might work too.

Painting the whole thing white or grey could work too.
1 Like    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:29PM
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I see two ways to go here: 1. embrace the pink countertop and make it look great OR 2. minimize the "pinkness" through color choices. Either way you are keeping the counter. It has to do with the color wheel. Complementary colors will make the countertop be a star -- paint top and bottom a green/grey. To "hide" it, as I think you want to do, paint both the top and bottom cabinets a color in the marble itself, so that it will blend. Find a pink, burgundy, etc. that you can live with and the counter itself will disappear. Then, use the complementary color, or white or cream, in accessories, to draw attention away from the unified background. If you haven't stopped reading by now, I personally would paint the cabinets a cream with a hint of pink and I think that would be great. You can look through the Benjamin Moore "Whites" fandex. The pink in cream won't be "seen" but will make the countertop less pink.
3 Likes    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:44PM
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I'd ignore the pink and push the black more. Black (ORB) knobs on all cabinets and a black pattern rug, black potholders, soap etc.
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    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:51PM
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Oh, and if you put weird knobs, pulls, that will draw attention to something besides the color of the counter.
    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:55PM
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Aggie Purvinska
the pink granite doesn't look so bad with the base cabinets. Any chance you could paint the wood ones that color, too? I think that would help.
2 Likes    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:57PM
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You could pull out a color in the granite, and paint the cabinets that color, so it would draw the attention to that color instead of the pink.
1 Like    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 5:38PM
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Lori Austin
Thanks for all the input. I agree the counter looks much better with the darker lower cabinets. They are actually stained, not painted. As you can see from this next shot, the current owner wanted extra storage and put in a double bank of upper cabinets that go all the way up to the extra tall ceiling. Just not sure what she was thinking with the two kinds of wood! :-(
1 Like    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 6:08PM
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Congratulations on your Lake Michigan condo! We just built a cottage 5 blocks from the Lake Michigan beach, and I put in formica that looks like soapstone. I absolutely LOVE it, even more than my granite at home as it is so low-maintenance, it is warmer-feeling, and it makes me feel like I am on vacation as I am not so up tight or worried about anything happening to it....and it was so cheap!
It is a soapstone fakeout (Formica's Oiled Soapstone) that I had contractors make thinner than the standard Formica thickness. This could be a very cheap fix that could make a huge difference visually, and you can always put the real deal (soapstone, etc) in if you want to down the road.
I attached my photos so you could get a better idea.
6 Likes    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 6:09PM
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Wow, they look great! Maybe I'll put them in my kitchen with the ballet slipper pink tiles. The house framing can't take the weight of granite--more than 120 years old. How did you get them to install it thinner than usual--did they have to fabricate it on-site?
    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 8:48PM
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I also used laminate to fake-out stone! The contractor does it on site, but you have to ask for thinner than usual b/c laminate is put in thicker than stone and that itself is a giveaway. Mine is Wilsonart Honed Slate. I love it. Everyone thinks it IS slate. You will never want to go from the laminate to "real" because laminate just performs so well. The pictures of the Formica Soapstone are gorgeous. I picked the fake slate because has random grey lines which would "hide" any scratches from my 4 kids.
    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 9:25PM
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My GC had a fabricator do it. I believe they were fabricated off site. I would just ask around to a couple different places regarding thuckness. This could even be a DIY if you are/you know anyone who is handy.
If you go with the laminate in a seating area, make sure you get radiused corners. I asked for the tightest radius possible to still look like soapstone, but to also be safer. You can see that they only got that right in my kitchen on the seating side. The working side are just 90 degree corners...and while they 'look' great with that 90 degree corner, their sharpness makes me nervous. The other side is the radius.
    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 9:33PM
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Theresa Kemink
ccwatters I am located in your area and wondering if you are willing to share the name of your contractor? I am interested in the exact thing you did. I LOVE your cottage kitchen!
    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 6:30PM
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Thank you! We have really enjoyed it.
Our cottage is in West MI area
Harbor Design and Construction is who built it, put up with my every detail ;)
The whole process from start to finish was a great experience for us. I highly recommend them and am more than happy to share their contact info.
Harbor Design and Construction
    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 8:43PM
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Theresa Kemink
Perfect! Thanks so much! I am in Grand Rapids, I'll be sure to check them out!
    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 8:48PM
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ccwaters- we are in the process of deciding on new countertops. I'm going between the Formica Basalt Slate in matte finish, or Wilsonart Oiled Soapstone. Your countertops are beautiful!! Are they from Formica Company or Wilsonart? Love them!
    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 8:20PM
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Thank you. They are the formica oiled soapstone.
I took a simple butter knife across several black/gray sample swatches I brought home and found that the basalt slate scratched (leaving a white mark/etching) whereas the oiled soapstone didn't scratch as much/didn't leave a white mark. Could have just been the nature of the samples, but knew that if we rented the cottage out that I couldn't count on a knife not coming into contact with the countertops. I also felt the oiled soapstone was more non-descript / would just "blend in" more with the overall look of the kitchen, which is what I wanted. The basalt slate had a texture that might make it stand out more.
It all really depends on what you are hoping to achieve. Good luck :)
1 Like    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:36AM
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