There's no denying the appeal of a sleek, high-gloss kitchen, but for immediate hominess, wood is the answer. I love reclaimed wood both for its environmental cred and its unique history; it simply exudes character, and instantly makes a space one-of-a-kind.
Reclaimed wood can be as blatant or as subtle as you want. Keep the edges rough for more rustic look; sand it smooth and paint it for something more modern. From flooring to cabinets and countertops, it works anywhere.
Related: Joe's Industrial Milwaukee Kitchen
(Images: 1. Sam Oberter Photography for Richard Bubnowski Design via Cultivate; 2. Jess Edwards via Apartment Therapy; 3. Kristin Sjaarda for The Marion House Book; 4. Adrienne Breaux for Apartment Therapy; 5. Liz Vidyarthi for Apartment Therapy; 6. Living Etc via The Style Files; 7. Design*Sponge; 8. JAS Design-Build via The DIY Network)