Mixing white uppers with wood lowers
I'm doing a budget renovation of my urban original post-war built-ins kitchen, with an eye toward maximizing storage space (e.g., ripping out soffit for 42" uppers.)
Kitchen is 11x11 with two outside walls featuring lots of windows, on which there can be no cabinetry. One wall is essentially nothing but window and faces west; it's quite bright in the late afternoon, especially during seasons when the mature trees are bare. The other wall has a 36" wide window in the corner adjacent the picture window wall. To say it is a naturally well-lit room is an understatement; every speck of dirt and dust mote always seem to be highlighted.
The other two walls form the cabinetry L, with the corner being broken by a doorway into the living room. The sink run is 72" inches, barely, and the stove/fridge run is 86". At the opposite end of that run are 4 steps down to the entry door.
Not much to work with for cabinet space. On the plus side, it'll keep my costs down, and I think I can probably get some nice overruns for backsplash and counter if I'm patient.
I prefer an eclectic style, cannot stand matched sets or too much symmetry in anything.
All that said, how lame is my idea to put some form of white cabinets in for uppers, with wood lowers, with styling on the lowers maximizing the 'furniture' look. I think all white would be more than I can stand in this room but I do like the thought of an off-white or glazed white somewhere. This room is a major thoroughfare through the house and my kids beat the crap out of everything, so I think white on the lowers would look beat in a matter of months.
Stove and fridge will be stainless, dishwasher to be paneled to match the lowers so the stainless doesn't overwhelm. Right now only the fridge and dw will be purchased, I have to live with the stove for a while until it breaks or I find a really good deal on the desired new one.
I am completely undecided about the counter surface and wall color. All I know is it won't be Corian-like. What little backsplash I have will be some sort of neutral in the beige family, to coordinate with wall tile already in place in the adjacent doorway area.
Any thoughts on mixing? I'm seeing it done on cabinets and islands all the time and really like the look but I've no space for an island [sigh]. I worry if it'll look dated too quickly. I also wonder about what color for the lowers, and if I would/should go with a dark natural or painted finish.
Thanks for any thoughts!