6 Witty Tricks on How to Lighten Up A Dark Kitchen!

A dark and dreary kitchen is one of the most painful things that I have experienced. I’d been struggling for several years to find out how to fix this. My home looks so much better now.

I still remember the day when my family decided to move into this house. The kitchen literally disappointed me so much. Even with creamy white cabinets and light tiles, the whole kitchen was just giving a horror movie vibe. It was terrible!

I, of course, made the mistake of picking the wrong light fixtures. Also, a bit guilty of not picking the granite color choice.

However, I made some changes and gladly it’s totally different now.

6 Witty Tricks on How to Lighten Up A Dark Kitchen!

Ideas & Changes That will Lighten Your Dark Kitchen!

Let me share how you can make yours one brighter. My 6 hot-shot tips are right below, make sure to read till the end, you’ll love it!

Bright Accents Are the Way to Go!

This is probably the most affordable solution that I tried at the very beginning. The results were of course, amazing! I just added some bright accents to fix the dark get-up. You can do so by including a pop of colors.

For example, a nice yellow flower jar or bright wall hanging will surely glam up and bring light. These should be clutter-free for sure. Just a bit of key accent and the whole space will simply feel super fresh.

Golden silver, copper, and bronze are the colors that are good to touch for walls. You may want to try similar shades for tiles and appliances as well. This will give a reflective surface and bounce light into space.

Recessed & Pendant Lighting Deco!

Lighting is another huge impact creating stuff that we take too casually. If the area feels tight, get some recessed lighting for it.

Underneath the overhanging cabinets, you can simply install lights and give the quickest boost of mood. Get a multi-use ladder and climb to those ceiling for some recessed improvement.

Putting recessed lighting on the ceiling is a great idea. You may want to try Halogen light bulbs. These will bring a huge amount of light into the dark space.

However, CFL lights are more favorable for giving a more natural vibe. You can also bring fixtures down off the ceiling. Simply adding some pendant lights on the ceiling is another fabulous idea.

An upcycled chandelier is also a great décor thought. This will not only bring light closer to your workplace but give an amazing scheme too. Not to mention, your food prep-up space will look and feel even more comfortable.

A New Kitchen Countertop!

A worn out and dull looking countertop will take away all the glow. So, consider going to a new one. Maybe something that comes with light-colored granite. Or try the bright laminate. Marbles are also a fascinating option.

Yes, surely some kitchen looks marvelous with dark stone countertops. However light lacking kitchen can never be on that list. Off-white, light gray, or tan finish is the way to go for such kitchens.

I know some of you may consider white as too plain. But, trust me, this lighter shade can really brighten up a dark kitchen like nothing else. Don’t be scared to go for too light. With key accents, a plain-white countertop can look really lively.

New or Painted Cabinetry

A complete kitchen remodeling option must include light and bright cabinets. Go for oak cabinets that come with white or light woody shades. Avoid mahogany here.

Don’t want to spend on a new one? No problem, just go for repainting it. Another way is to buy new doors and drawers keeping the box unchanged. This will also save you money while giving a better look.

Dark Corners Are Secret Criminals!

Do you know, there are many out of reach corners, empty and awkward spaces that are sometimes the reason behind a dull looking kitchen.

The cleverest lighting trick is to brighten up those areas. You can fill those cabinet spaces with faux accessories for the kitchen. Place some light fixtures into it and see how the look dramatically changes.

Play with Colors

Get the fastest update if you are living with paneling, wallpaper or paints that look dark. Get rid of those wallpaper! Let the paneling go away! Prime paint on the wall!

Possibly the biggest impact will come from color white. However sunny shades such as pick or aquamarine and of course, yellow are good options too. Here are some theme suggestions.

Whitely -Brightly

You are a fan of vintage themes or cape cod and country? Then get a fresh, airy oak with bright accent white color. Begin with light wood cabinets and creamy white walls. If you want to keep a stark look away, go for mid-tone wood or tile.

A cheerful bright shade should be the accent. The vintage-style kitchen looks best in red. While blue will bring the traditions into for a Cane cod style.

Grass green and tangerine are some other flawless choices for this idea. Keep bright tones in mind when choosing chair cushions, mats, dishtowels, and decorative accents. You will not believe the impact of bright blender, toast or teapot, just try it!

Power of Pastels

Do you consider pastel shades for only kid’s room? Surprisingly they fit in the kitchen too. A bit of oomph included pastels are the way to for. Don’t opt for palest shades, however. Try pastel blue, green, peach, or pink.

These shades are on a cheerful side and give enough brightening in that space. Also, the kitchen feels open and airy.

Using such shades are best for walls and accessories. You can keep some impact with white painted trim. Brighter shade dishtowel and other stuff will complete the look.

Ravishing Rainbow Scheme

There are people like me who love bright things. If you are one of them, choose the rainbow theme color for lighting your kitchen. A light-to-medium hue with pure color will give a great look. Try contrasting with light wood or white cabinets. Dark flooring will look better in this concept.

Artwork, pottery, and dishes of a different color can really shine brightly from a wall-mounted shelf. Kitchen accessories such as a small rug, pace mats, dishtowel, and chair cushions should be colorful with bold patterns.

However, if things look too overwhelming, balance it up with a warmer palette such as red, yellow, or bright orange. Bright purple, blue, and green can create a really beautiful combination as well.

Neutral but Dynamic

Gone are the days when neutral shades were considered boring. Today, they are like a sun in a dark kitchen. Buttery yellow washed walls go wonderful for such a concept. Or maybe a tan sandy shade can be a perfect move.

Get a relaxing and welcoming aura with soft brown. Straw or palest terra can be an ideal lighter shade too. The yellow or orange neutral base will have a better impact on the dark kitchen. Warm cream-like shades will give an open space illusion.

Medium-tome cabinets with a painting of the same darker hue wall shade will do the job. Natural wood is a great way too. Laminate, tile, vinyl, or medium brown wood shade flooring will look even in such a concept. Go for slightly darker than a wall or cabinet color for accessories.


Once you are done implementing these ideas, see how much change it brings. Just enjoy the bright and cheerful look that was once dark and pale. Hopefully, my ideas will inspire you enough for the few little changes in your kitchen.

Hasta la vista!

George Sab is a retired home improvement professional. For over 30 years, he has educated his clients and helped them make the best choice for their homes. George started A Great Sink in 2017 to share his knowledge with the world and assist his readers on their journey to their perfect home!


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