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50 Kitchen Design Ideas and Inspiration Images

For the home chef: Get inspired by these kitchen design ideas* and inspiration images. From practical islands to trendy countertops to beautiful art, the ideas are a’cookin’!

*For this article, we partnered with Modernize, a home improvement service. Check out the tips brought to you by their kitchen remodel pros throughout the list below.

1. Strategic Coloring

This kitchen is simple but doesn’t get lost thanks to strategic coloring. Black-paneled walls contrast against a white countertop and chairs – distressed to keep the vibe soft. Meanwhile, small wall art lines the sink area and wall and adds a touch of rustic style. Finally, a space-defining rug adds texture and separates ‘cooking area’ from ‘sitting room.’ Key takeaway: Sometimes, simpler is better. What little decoration there is (like the cake and tray stand along the counter) is kept to a minimum for a polished look.

2. Off-Kitchen Storage

An off-kitchen storage space, designed for meal-prepping, makes practical use of a counter/island set in a corner. True, the charming rustic chair and stool steal the show, but we have to give honorable mention to the spacious chef’s shelves under-table (shown here storing a rolling pin, mixing bowl, jar storage and tray accessories).

3. Kitchenette

The focal point of this kitchenette is undeniably the marble countertops. Clean white + a touch of subtle grey is trending (a quick search for #decor on Instagram is all the proof you’ll need) and grounds the row of white + black cabinetry along the back wall. Also note the matte black faucet, black-and-chrome appliances and black vinyl and silver metal stools, which provide a textural contrast against the marble.

— Tip from the Modernize Pros —

"The wall of floor-to-ceiling cabinets is a remarkable addition to this kitchen. If you’re considering a budget remodeling project, you can easily keep the same cabinet boxes, assuming they’re in good shape, and simply choose to replace or resurface the cabinet and drawer fronts. Replacing costs more but might be worth it if the cabinets are very old and you need new functionality; resurfacing can be an excellent budget-friendly option if your cabinet fronts are still in good shape." - Modernize

4. Stone Top

Another example of how marble fits perfectly into a kitchen setting: This floating island (with a built-in sink) boasts a beautiful stone top. We also love the highly-modern chrome refrigerator and stove, both of which are also built into the structural design to save space and create a cohesive feel. Last but not least, we’ve got the obligatory word art; though word art (or “message art”) is less in fashion now than it was a few years ago (decorators are favoring abstract art over it), this particular design gets away with fitting into a contemporary scheme thanks to its minimalism, small size and chic grey frame).

5. Minimalism

Who knew a refrigerator could be such a statement? Here, its sleek chrome finish pops out against a white-paneled pantry and balances out the stove on the left. At the forefront, a warm table-and-chairs setup runs parallel to the kitchen border, itself a practical counter space. Again, a clean look – with minimal clutter/decor.

6. Grey Granite

Ahh, the sweet, sweet look of grey granite in a modern kitchen. In this space, it grounds, creating mod-cool definition. It’s edgy, but not so much; a row of more traditional-looking fabric counter stools helps to ease off the sharpness. (Granite, by the way, is less expensive than marble but provides the same ‘glossy stone’ aesthetic – a perfect alternative for budget-seekers.)

— Tip from the Modernize Pros —

"Also notice that the sink, stovetop, and ovens are all strategically placed in this kitchen. When you’re planning a possible remodel, ask yourself: are there any areas where appliances will collide? For instance, can you open the oven door and the refrigerator at the same time? Also keep in mind the typical foot traffic in your kitchen. Will the island be a hindrance?" - Modernize

7. Cutting Board Countertop 

A sleek grey slab acts as this kitchen’s heavy-duty surface; thanks to the high-cleanability of Corian, quartz, stainless steel and other popular materials, using a countertop as a cutting board, meal prep area and serving station is the easiest thing ever. A bright white base, neutral wood floors and blue kitchen chairs act as the finishing touch.


8. Modern

This space brings “modern” to the front, showcasing a delightfully abstract art piece, a plaid backsplash, grey cabinetry and hanging sphere-shaped bulbs. In the kitchenette area to the side, a round dining table complements nicely with crushed velvet chairs – the entire set “scaled down” to fit comfortably in a small space.

9. Open Floor Plan

Here, an open floor plan punctuated only by a trim breakfast bar made of marble (a motif in this article, to be sure!). There’s no getting around it, this is a small kitchen space, but it appears big for a number of reasons. There’s the modish refrigerator, inset against an all-white backsplash; the white-and-black seating; the ethereal pendants; and the loads of natural light – which is softened by a sheer blind.

10. Wood Island

A wood island with a butcher-block-like surface gets converted into an off-the-kitchen area devoted to seating. The beauty of it lies in the dual purpose of the island itself; when not in use for entertaining, it’s portable enough to be moved back into the kitchen as a meal prep station. We also love the black-metal hanging pendant as the industrial touch to this all-rustic aesthetic. (A back curio cabinet also adds unassuming charm.)

11. Neutrals

In a small space, making the most of an open floor plan is pivotal, and this one executes it perfectly – using the magic of a room-dividing kitchen island/counter set. Meanwhile, the wood dining table matches the floors in color almost to a tee. Bright white wall-to-wall cabinets also hold their own in a neutral-heavy palette and make the most of the high-ceiling design. (Oh, and shoutout to the mini counter stools under the island ledge – a creative use of multi-purpose furniture if we ever saw one!)

12. Recessed Lighting

Recessed light fixtures create an enchanting glow, but even without them, we have a feeling this spacious, wood-lined kitchen would feel just as magical. Perhaps it’s the clean, wide scenic windows that are doing it for us. Or perhaps it’s the rustic stools and chairs. Or even the industrial-black metal frame of the hanging pendant. Whatever it is, we’re all on board!

— Tip from the Modernize Pros —

"In general, there are three types of kitchen lighting depending on style and décor: recessed, under-cabinet lighting, and ceiling fixtures. Incorporating all three can give you the best experience in the kitchen. Ceiling fixtures often take the form of pendant lighting, which lowers the lighting center just a bit and better illuminates the room. Under-cabinet lighting should be bright enough for serious cooking tasks, and recessed lighting can provide quite handsome ambient light." - Modernize

13. Warm Palette

This warm kitchen looks the perfect spot for a cup of hot cocoa on a rainy day. Deep brown cabinets, a red and brown backsplash and low lighting all play no small part, each bringing warmth, pattern and glow, respectively. Also noteworthy is the plant centerpiece with its subtle green and purple; a reminder to us all that color doesn’t have to come from some fancy art piece or paint job but rather something as simple as a succulent.

— Tip from the Modernize Pros —

"However, if you are considering painting your kitchen, don’t forget the ceiling! Look up and you’ll likely see some discoloration from moisture, smoke and the like. Feeling adventurous? A contrasting color can create some visual fun in the space." - Modernize

14. Storage Wall

Black in the kitchen is something you don’t see every day, but this design pulls it off without a hitch. A stained wood storage wall (broken apart by the glossy silver appliances) contains a subtle red undertone, the perfect contrast against the warm light brown-tinted granite countertops and floors. Of course, the stools deserve a mention here, too: tufted upholstery in cool grey is as chic of a statement as any!

15. Cozy Chairs

Another warm gem, this cabin-y kitchen space feels just the right amount of ‘lived-in.’ The warm brown chairs bring out the dark cabinetry, but we deem it’s the “little things” – like the hanging plates in the background – that create the cozy aesthetic. The ever-so-small cross figurine floating in the window – blink and you’ll miss it! – also brings a hint of sentimentality, in a good way, and instantly adds a personalized touch.

16. Marble

But wait, a marble wall!? If this isn’t candy for the modern décor-obsessed eye, we don’t know what is! There are a few ways to get the look – printed wallpaper, an actual sheet of marble panel or a decal (temp wallpaper). Of the three, our personal favorite is the latter. (Permanent wallpaper can be a pain to glue on and not to mention doesn’t help your home’s resell value; and actual marble is, well, a tad more expensive than its paper counterparts.

17. Grey and White

This grey-and-white palette takes inspiration from the coastal style; it’s easy to imagine this kitchen facing a scenic ocean view. The square rug pulling it all together and which seems almost designed just for this kitchen is the perfect size: not too small as to make the set feel cramped, and not too large as to take up more floor space than necessary. (Cabinet + hutch along the back wall makes for easy dish storage, in lieu of the built-in variety.)

18. Open Kitchenette

This open kitchenette is pulled together by a tidy warm wood dinette set. The galvanized farmhouse-inspired milk jug in the back doubles as a planter – the perfect place for a fresh bouquet of hand-picked flowers. (We’re also digging the floors – soft grey and light brown go hand-in-hand, especially in this neural-heavy space.)

19. Cottage-Chic

A word of appreciation for these intensely cottage-chic cabinets: Two sets of window-front doors with white panes portray a charming collection of dishes, plates and curios. In between these darling designs, an actual window with black panes invites in a flood of natural light. Overhead, a hanging pendant draws the eye up, and below it, white-washed wood furniture is as peaceful as it is practical.

20. Fabric Seating

Black sink faucets and handles are a thing (as shown by more than a few photos here). Even from a faraway perspective, it catches the eye amidst a dusty grey wall and sink base. The other center of attention is the dark grey seating area; stunning fabric seats and a hard wood table raise the level of sophistication. Helping the cause is the stylish rectangle rug, sharp black paint (around the window) and crystal wine glasses.

21. Wood Flooring

Where, oh where, to start? The chic floating shelves of naturally brown wood? The high grey counter stools that make breakfast the funnest meal of the day? What about the unique industrial pendant, the stylish answer to the more typical recessed lighting often found in kitchens? All make a splash (and we love them all), so instead we’ll focus on the less obvious (but not any less delightfully “designy”) tonal plank wood floors.

22. Dark Neutrals

And yet another black sink faucet (can you spot it?), proving once again that no matter how many colors you choose to incorporate into your kitchen (this one employs brown, black, white, beige and gold, for starters), black will always be powerful enough to define and not “get lost.” (P.S. How cute is that wood-and-metal bookcase?)

23. Plaid Floor

A large kitchen window, especially overlooking sunrise, is power unrivaled when it comes to creating a “glowy” aesthetic. A plaid floor just makes things more irresistable, and an iridescent vase reflects light so beautifully, it’s stupid. While this image only gets a partial view of the room (oh, how we wish we could see more!), it manages to capture one of our favorite design features ever: a rustic brick wall. 

24. Architectural

Whew! These architectural counter stools are something else! (We simply can’t get over the charming headrest and curvy base – give us a cold towel, it’s simply too much!) Combined with the grand black-and-white wall art, silver coffee dispenser and textural brown-greyish wood countertop, it’s definitely, as the kids say, a lewk. With that said, can someone please invite us over for brunch in this hygge-as-heck kitchen? (We’ll bring the mimosas, we promise!)

25. Curved-Top Stools

These curved-top stools look almost like the “Picasso version” of a captain’s chair – very quaint, and unique. Closely contrasted against the 100% solid wood aesthetic, the fabric provides textural relief. All in all, there’s something to be said about understatement. When there’s not much to look at except for breathtakingly calm colors, simplicity can and most certainly does feel refined.

26. Banquette Style

You can stop reading this article, pack up your bags and go home, because this photo wins at kitchen design. Truly, it’s everything any entertainer will ever need: like the biggest floor plan, ever; banquette-style seating mixed with “tables-for-two;” and an entire wall of wine storage. Not to sound over-the-top, but we truly love this kitchen design so much, we’re considering framing it and hanging it up in our own kitchen (is that weird)?

27. High Ceilings

How do we love high ceilings? Let us count the ways… Half-joking aside, this luxury kitchen continues to impress even after you think you’ve seen it all. Sky-high chandeliers, made of gold, of course, float in space above a thrillingly modern counter set. Trendy silver spheres make geometry “cool” again and a row of matte-silver-and-gold stools unharnesses the power of symmetry.

28. White Walls

For the hostess with the mostest: white walls, white pantry and white island; blue velvet seating with gold legs; a trio of black pendants. As if that weren’t enough, soft grey blinds cascade down windows that look straight out of a model home. The icing on the cake: sand-colored granite to match a gorgeous backsplash. With a kitchen like this, who wouldn’t want to do dishes all day?

29. Natural Light

If you love to cook, you’ll definitely want to invest in a space that you’ll enjoy being in for long periods of time. No matter your style, one of the easiest ways to create a space you’ll love is through natural light. While we can’t all own beautiful floor-to-ceiling skylights like these (oh, but wouldn’t it be lovely), consider the things you can control: like keeping your windows clean and installing lighter curtains.

30. Home Restaurant

Welcome to your home restaurant! Everything on the menu is a feast for the eyes: to start, we recommend a slice of the delectable hanging gold ornaments with a side of hanging gardens; for the chef’s special, a palette of black, blue and marble-white. If you have room for dessert, feel free to help yourself to some eye-candy in the back – we’ve prepared some lush floor-to-ceiling drapes for your viewing pleasure.

31. Vignette

In this quaint kitchen vignette, the buffalo-checkered floor undeniably steals the show. But if you can peel your eyes away from it for a moment (we know it’s hard), you’ll notice so many other things to love, like the old-fashioned tea kettle, sleek seating and dignified, charcoal-colored table. (By the way, see the laptop-on-table? If you ever feel bad about using your kitchen table as a home office, just think back to this image and know you’re not alone!)

32. Table Set

If this kitchenette is looking a little familiar, sharp eye; it’s the same one from the previous image, but doesn’t it look totally refreshed? You can thank the stellar table set, paintwork and statement shelving unit for that. A unique grey backsplash also stands out here; it’s lightly distressed to create a faux marbleized look. To top off the aesthetic, a pair of candlesticks: in small spaces, it’s the little things that can take your style from casual to elegant.

33. Low Bench

If you look closely, you’ll notice the back kitchen is anything but ordinary. Instead of the all-too-common kitchen stools, you’ve got a low bench, pushed against the “knee wall,” an architect’s term for the short wall that separates a kitchen from the dining room (there’s your vocab word of the day!). What’s more, the traditional pendant is replaced by a pair of woven lampshades. The shelving along the back wall isn’t that unusual, but we still wanted to call it out (we always love a good shelving moment)!

34. Coastal

When a spontaneous Mediterranean getaway isn’t always just a plane ticket away, this blue and white kitchen will be there for you. This coastal situation features bright white appliances – including microwave, stove, dishwasher and windows – and classic blue cabinets, under-sink storage and crown molding. Pale yellow drapes accentuate with a warmer splash, and spindle chairs focalize. (If you’re unsure about decorating with houseplants, this kitchen should dispel any doubts; it’s always a good idea.)

— Tip from the Modernize Pros —

"In addition, the outlets are well-placed in this kitchen. If you’re considering a remodeling project, don’t forget to think through exactly where you’ll need new outlets. Make sure your kitchen can handle plenty of current from high-load products like a powerful blender and keep the outlets handy – one every three linear feet is recommended." - Modernize

35. Wall Art

When in doubt, wall art. To the left of a tall room divider, pastel abstracts fill up blank wall space; to the right, a decorative tree and more art does the same. To balance out the color, furniture, pendant and divider are in black. A casual rug “collects” the aesthetic.

36. Seating Area

The photographer of this one may have wanted to focus on the seating area, but we can’t help but notice what’s reflected in the mirror – the chic silver range hood, shiny kitchen walls and part of the fridge). We’re not really sure why we called all of that out – perhaps to prove how perceptive we are?

37. Bay Windows

Fresh lemonade, a tray of biscuits and whatever yummy-looking treat is inside those white bowls, please! (And while you’re at it, we’ll also take bay window seating.) This is one kitchen aesthetic we could definitely get used to.

38. Grey Seating

Thanks to generous use of natural light, the grey pieces above feel fresh and hold their own against a black countertop. (The grey here, in fact, is so stunning, we’re half-considering officially changing our favorite “color” to grey – no offense to Roy G. Biv!) 

39. Bed-and-Breakfast

In an upscale bed-and-breakfast look, lightness is the name of the game. (By lightness, of course, we mean light colors, light frames (notice the airy metal legs) and the ever-stylish natural light. Plus, ivory leather seating is always a win…and so is a reclaimed kitchen table…and so is a pale blue accent wall…and so is brown and white kitchen art. Looks like this kitchen wins, all around!

40. Texture

Texture is a main character in the play that is this rustic-modern off-kitchen seating area. You can see it in the jute rug, layered over the smooth stone floor. It’s in the soft throw, layered over the wood bench. In the chairs, it peeps out from wood spindles, metal legs and vinyl seats. (From this photo, you can even glimpse a portion of it in the rustic metal-and-wood wall shelving.)

41. Fresh and Airy

This kitchen speaks for itself, and there’s nothing we can say to enhance it, so we’ll use this space to leave you with something of a “fun fact”: In 1802, Frederick Albert Winson, a German inventor, cooked food with gas – the first time that’s ever been done in history – in what is considered today to have been the first kitchen. Bet you didn’t know that!

42. Rustic-Chic

To be honest, we impressed ourselves with that last fact, so here’s another (because we just can’t help ourselves): From 1856 to 1920 (also known as the Gilded Age, when economy, government and technology were booming), there were 700 patents issued for the egg beater. Ironically, the one we all use today is a French design from the 1500s. Don’t believe us? Read all about it here.

43. Modern Scandi

And another: Did you know the date November 15, 2020 is officially designated in the U.S. as Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day? None other than Whirlpool Home Appliances came up with the idea (who would have thought?). Apparently (according to a quick Google search), you should be cleaning out your fridge every 3-4 months – and the fastest way to do so is by spraying the shelves with vinegar and water. The more you know!

44. Sleek Seating

Just one more: In 1735, a man named Françios Cuvillés invented the completely-enclosed stove. Nearly 100 years would pass before the world would see the invention of the first electric stove – and at the time, it was too large to fit in a normal house. Today, in the U.S. federal regulations state the maximum smoke that can be generated from a kitchen stove is 7.5 grams ever hour.

45. Red and Black

….okay, one more: Ever notice how when you microwave a mug of just water, it seems to heat up faster than, say, a bowl of oatmeal? There’s a scientific reason for that. Water contains dipole molecules, which are easier to break down than the charged polar molecules of sugar and carbs. (While we’re on the subject of microwaves: The typical household microwave uses around 2.45 gigahertz – compare that to industrial-grade microwave, which can use up to an astounding 915 megahertz.)

46. Stainless Steel

Last one (we promise): Inventor Stephen Poplawski, in 1922, had the bright idea to pair a mechanical spinning blade with a glass bottle – thus introducing the world to the first blender. (His original intended use was for the production of soda drinks.) Almost two decades later, the new-and-improved version made its debut, under the name of ‘The Waring Blender,’ after infamous band leader Fred Waring – who supported the financial development of the product.

47. Modern Small Space

If you’re one of those people who feel they just don’t have the time, space or budget for interior design, we kindly refer you to this modern small space – a kitchen setup that is as easy to live in as it is to put together. To recreate the look: Place a practical table + colorful chairs (the color adds refreshing style), and you’re good to go. Textured placemats optional!

48. Brown Furnishings

Get a load of this: a kitchen with a garland border! Combined with warm brown furnishings, it gives off year-round coziness. Who knew such a “seasonal” decoration could feel so evergreen? (As a side note: If you’re as eagle-eyed as us, you’ll also have noticed the lattice tile stone floors – a growing trend, especially for the ways in which diagonal lines can elongate a small space.)

49. Good Lighting

What would a kitchen be without good lighting? We shudder to think. Luckily, we don’t have to – because this well-lighted space is attention-grabbing enough to ease us of all meandering thoughts. The main “drum shade” is low and bright enough to reflect off the white fridge, white microwave and white stove (white is known to be a natural enhancer of light); the brown table warms things up a notch.

50. Stone Backsplash

A chic stone backsplash, slick white pendants and what we’re calling maple wood overhead cabinetry. (For what it’s worth, we’re loving the use of color blocking.) For the modern-obsessed decorator, it truly doesn’t get any better than this. Grab a mug from the showy floating shelf (that’s “showy” in a good way), and settle yourself a spot at the cozy table!

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