The Best Ways to Use Red in the Kitchen

The Best Ways to Use Red in the Kitchen

Alyssa Longobucco
Jul 13, 2017
(Image credit: Cleary O'Farrell)

There are some bold hues that take guts to pull off — no matter where in your home you're using them. One of those shades? A pop-y cherry red. It instantly adds energy and personality to any room, but go overboard (or use it wrong) and it can take over your space — in a bad way!

Here are the best ways to pull off the primary shade in your kitchen.

(Image credit: Cleary O'Farrell)

1. Add an accent wall.

Emily and Kai say their kitchen gets gasps from friends who are seeing it for the first time, and we understand why. With a mostly neutral base, the red cabinets (which are original to the house) and the green door prove that the color combo isn't just for Christmas. Even if you're on the fence regarding that mix, you can use red to create a fun accent wall that's bold but not too bold.

Take a tour: Emily and Kai's Thoughtful and Stunning Seattle Home at Apartment Therapy

(Image credit: Breanne Johnsen)

2. Choose a red stove.

Colorful appliances can be totally unexpected — especially because most people tend to gravitate toward standard black or stainless steel. Opt for a cheerful red like homeowners Elena and Judd did in their cozy Amsterdam apartment, above. It's sure to make cooking up dinner the happiest part of your day.

See the whole home: Elena and Judd's Cozy Amsterdam Apartment on Apartment Therapy

3. Paint your island.

A high-impact shade will stand out even more when painted onto the island and paired with more neutral cabinetry. (It's such an unexpected place!) In the home of design duo Craig and Amy Smith, a fire-engine red island takes on a surprisingly classic feel, thanks to clean, shaker-style cabinetry and a moody gray-ish blue hue throughout the rest of the space.

See the whole home: New Orleans Garden District-Style Home on Fort Bend Lifestyles & Homes

(Image credit: Charlotte Lucas Design)

4. Pick red pendants.

Lighting fixtures are a great way to add personality to an otherwise fairly neutral space. We usually see metallic or glass pendants over an island, but how cool is this vibrant setup? The vintage-inspired lanterns in this house — designed by Charlotte Lucas — are oversized and fun. They work especially well with the red ribbon-edged shades in a classic Schumacher print.

See more of her work: Charlotte Lucas

(Image credit: Samara Vise)

5. Add red stools.

The charming Somerville, MA kitchen of Erica and Dave has benefitted from a few smart, low-cost changes, like a faux-island that packs in extra storage. It also benefits from lots of little pops of color. Accompanying the happy teal throughout the room is an equally sassy red, found in the blooms, tea kettle, and, best of all, amazing metal and wood stools.

See the whole home: Erica & Dave's Balanced Home on Apartment Therapy

(Image credit: William Strawser)

6. Bring in red textiles.

Leave it to a fashion designer to put textiles to work in order to bring her kitchen to life. Brooklyn homeowner Christine Alcalay added color to her space with bold curtains and mats, both in a snappy red hue. Looking to mimic the look? Stick to similar patterns (like gingham and stripes) to keep things cohesive.

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