Cab guy suggested, But, what do you think?

susied3July 25, 2012

Perimeter cabinets are white, island is alder, range hood and range are black with a reclaimed wood edging around bottom of hood.

There will be two spice pullouts next to the range. He thinks it would look nice to go with the alder for the spice racks to tie in the island to the perimeter. I had planned on the white.

After many conversations here, I am second guessing the alder island with walnut top, and may actually go white island with walnut top. Just can't decide, I've always been set on the alder. So, as you can see, I'm second guessing a lot of things. Actual construction of cabinets are three weeks away so I can change materials up to then, however, I need to decide.

Perimeter counters will be soapstone, would a marble top on the alder look better? Or white cabinet with walnut top? I think I would like it either way, just concerned about going with the marble in a very informal, rustic looking kitchen.


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If you do the island in the stained wood, the trim around the hood ties it together, not that you even have to "tie" the two together.

Don't do the spice racks in stained wood. Will look like you are trying "too hard" to tie them together. They are in the same room, so they automatically are tied toegether.

White cabinets with a walnut top will look incredible too. Just look at Breezy's kitchen as one fantastic example.

I have no opinion on the marble/alder option.

Marble is a very old material, look at all the old French (real ones, not the ones in Jersey) kitchens, they are rustic. Marble is the bomb. I was just too chicken to use it. And what a foolish move that was. My Super White etches like crazy....

Anyhow, you need to choose finishes YOU love. It will be your kitchen.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 6:56PM
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I don't know how to mix a number of materials in a partial way (goulash is easy), but I'm sure those materials can be combined very nicely by those who know how.

Framing the hood in alder pullouts would be a very strong design statement, however, so I don't think I risk doing too much harm in suggesting no to them to keep your options open while you're unsure, but also to keep the wood generally lower and the white higher for a more airy, simpler, and frankly bit more feminine look--because that's what I would like. :) You can always carry the alder or walnut up higher with a hand-carved bowl, or whatever.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 7:11PM
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Just for clarification - you're talking about unstained Alder, right? And your desire is to have a rustic, informal look? Which are the elements you want, and which are the cabinet guy's suggestions?

You're doing a variation of black and white - white cabs w/ soapstone, black range/hood - which is generally a more formal look. I think Alder is kind of superfluous here and will be overlooked; and Alder w/ walnut - ehn?

I like the idea rosie is getting at - perhaps a white range hood. Consider an island of walnut stained cabs to warm things up, and a marble counter top per Bee's suggestion.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 9:56PM
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Wood top on a wood island is a VERY tricky look to pull off. I also don't think just a sliver of alder around the hood is going to work to tie the island to the perimeter cabinets all that well. I'd skip the wood top on the island in favor of a white quartz and do a bumped out alder sink base and maybe the cabinet above the fridge. I'd have to actually see the design to see how to tie in the alder a bit more evenly though.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 10:04PM
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Well, I think y'all are right. Bee, I just couldn't see the alder in my mind. I want the range to stand out and I think the wood amidst the white cabinets would take away from it. Thanks for reaffirming my thought! Breezy's kitchen has always been a favorite, and the walnut top was always in the top #5 of things I wanted in the kitchen. But so was the alder!

My range is black, so, the reason thinking in my mind for black hood with the wood trim. But, you think white would be better? It's a design like allison704's hood, kind of trianglish. I thought about doing the top part in copper like hers, but then left that idea because it would seem kind of orphaned.

Live_Wire_Oak, that's what I'm just now seeing, the wood on wood trick. It's black walnut, but any way I've tried to mock it up, the look I like is not there.

So now, I guess the decision to be made first is whether to go with alder for the island or the wood top. Is that what you all would decide first?
Thanks for the help! I can't see things like they need to be seen until you all point it out.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 10:44PM
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What about doing an alder island with a soapstone top and doing the walnut (or a rustic cherry) on the perimeter? That way you have the warm wood all around the room, and the black soapstone island ties in with the black range and hood. I'd do black hardware and call it enough black. Maybe a deer antler chandelier above the island if you want to go really rustic?

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 10:59PM
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Is there anyway the cab guy could give you a sketch of these combos? Mixing materials is tricky and unless you feel the cab guy has a good eye for design and doing this, I would want to have a better idea on how this would all look when done.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 7:53AM
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live_wire_, haven't jumped on the antler bandwagon. (yet)
Wouldn't soapstone on alder still be the dark on dark look? I've looked on HOUZZ at a lot of pictures and the ones that make my heart jump are the white/wood combo. The soapstone on wood, not so much.

maries1120, my cabinet maker has no design capabilities. He just told me what a lot of people are doing, as he put it. He's a good cabinet maker, but he makes cabinets for designers mostly and just makes what they order. I had a cabinet/kitchen designer give us a quote, they were over double in price, and had no extra input other than what Rhome and bmore have been harping on since day one, and that is to move the range to the middle of the range wall. I'm going to play with the color combo on my design program, but it doesn't seem to look very accurate to me.

This is hard.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 3:39PM
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A black walnut island, walnut hood and white quartz or one of the white granites. I think marble on the island is curiously formal and would negate some of your other choices.

Black walnut for a counter is a little soft for as much cooking as you do.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 6:02PM
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    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 5:08PM
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I have cancelled THREE finalization appointments with the cabinet maker. I HAVE to make a decision. What the heck is wrong that I can't make a decision? I don't want to make a mistake.

When I look at kitchens, googling all different combinations, this is what I feel....
The white island with wood top makes my heart leap.
The Alder island with white top makes my heart leap.

No wood on wood, no white on white, no wood with anything other than white, and no white with anything other than wood. (for the island)

So, how do you decide? I LOVE the white perimeter, wood island contrast.

But, I Don't love giving up the wood top on the island. It makes me sick to my stomach just thinking of giving up on it.
Now, for a bit of information that might make a difference in your suggestions, I just bought the antique table with three chairs that will sit on the end of the island. It is 3'x3', and it is oak. This has been in the plan all along, a small table at the end of the island for the grandkids or me and DH when just the two of us. The large dining table is caddy-corner from the kitchen and it will be a 10' farmhouse table with walnut top. Should I just say "that is enough wood" and call it good? And, no wood top on island? (sick feeling)

The "side" kitchen is planned white cabinets which houses fridge/freezer, oven, and microwave. Would it look like I bought some craigslist cabinets and threw them in there if I have those made alder? It's clearly visible to the main area of the kitchen.

I think I need a therapist.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 5:05PM
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I feel your anguish. I am planning a whole house build and it is the darned kitchen that is driving me insane! The more I look at Houzz, the more confused I get....and trying to keep within the contractor's allowance. your cabinet bid for white a lot more than stained? Mine is 22 percent! Good luck and I am anxious to see your decision.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 5:50PM
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