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Modern Kitchens with Oak Cabinets

POSTED ON Wednesday, May 24, 2023 IN Kitchen

While painted cabinets have been en vogue for years, warm wood tones are making a comeback. Discover color schemes that create a modern look using traditional oak cabinets.

Wood cabinets are a classic and never truly go out of style, however the popular grain patterns, stain colors, and finish techniques change over time. There’s a lot to love about oak cabinets. Oak is durable, the grain pattern hides imperfections well, and the wood pairs wonderfully with the right colors. Plus, beautiful quality wood is timeless.

Today’s contemporary oak wood cabinets exhibit sleek, modern designs and color palettes. They are often paired harmoniously with various accent shades, such as creamy whites, off-blacks,  and calming sage green. Depending on the shade of oak you choose, your overall kitchen color scheme can downplay or enhance your cabinets. 

Light toned kitchen with oak cabinets

Light and bright modern oak kitchen

  • Style: Riverside (Kitchen +)
  • Wood/Material: Quarter Sawn Oak
  • Color/Finish: Natural

If your personal design style is light and bright consider using lighter neutral accent colors to brighten the room. Shown above, the natural tone of the wood complements the warm creamy off-white walls and neutral countertops. This is a great example of keeping a kitchen light and bright while maintaining the warm and organic feel of natural wood cabinets. The quarter sawn oak cabinets are finished with a natural stain, allowing the beauty of the grain to shine through. This kitchen mixes and matches wood tones with a wide plank floor and wood accent barstools, giving variation and texture while remaining cohesive. 

Dark and moody kitchen with oak cabinet

Dark moody oak kitchen

  • Style: District (Kitchen +)
  • Wood/Material: Oak
  • Color/Finish: Brindle

Oak is a great cornerstone for moody, dark design. Oak wood pairs beautifully with matte black, creating a rich combination that exudes timeless sophistication and a striking visual contrast. The warm, natural tones of oak wood harmonize with the sleek, boldness of black, resulting in a captivating interplay of textures and colors. Shown above, the pairing of black and oak lends a sense of depth and character to the space. The combination of the warm, organic oak wood with the cool, contemporary allure of matte black adds a touch of drama and refinement to the design, creating a statement-making aesthetic. 

SEE ALSO: Home Trends: Moody Kitchens

To get this look, consider pairing your oak cabinets with dark countertops, matte black hardware, or black appliances. Dark color palettes including black, charcoal, and deep navy create a dramatic atmosphere in the space while natural wood textures in oak cabinets adds organic texture. Dark kitchen designs integrate varying shades and textures for depth and dimension.

Warm earth tones modernize oak finishes

Design Flat Lay with Oak
Image Credit via

Natural toned oak goes well with other nature-inspired colors. Earthy vibes and natural colors have been trending in the realm of home design over the past few years, inspired by the beauty and tranquility of nature. Warm, earthy toned colors such as sandy beige, soft terracotta, and sage green create a soothing and inviting atmosphere, transforming living spaces into serene retreats. 

SEE ALSO: Kitchen and Bath Trends: The Color Sage

To bring a touch of the outdoors in and infuse your space with a sense of natural elegance, incorporate natural wood finishes like Oak alongside earth-toned textiles, or muted shades on walls and furniture. These finishes foster a calming ambiance and an overall sense of well-being, complement the warm tones of oak rather than creating contrast

Need inspiration? Visit our nearest showroom to talk to a designer and see our products up close before deciding on the best color palette for your home.


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  1. design trends
  2. kitchen
  3. modern
  4. oak


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