David Whitehorn, a designer in Derry, N.H., believes white cabinets have gotten a bad rap. "The classic white look was perceived to be low-end," Whitehorn says, "but it doesn't have to be that way."
For Whitehorn, one particularly memorable kitchen was a '50s look that used plain cabinet doors with rounded edges with a black countertop. The island countertop had red and white tiles to resemble a checked tablecloth, and the owner finished the look with "all kinds of bright-colored appliances." It was a beautiful kitchen and it started with a nice, basic white cabinet."
Jamie Reitz, selections coordinator for Riggs Construction and Design in Kirkwood, Mo., has done "quite a few" white kitchens lately and considers it a "really pretty, classic look. It's that Pottery Barn, Williams & Sonoma, very clean, classic look."
By using different finishes and door styles, white cabinets can work for a wide range of styles, says Reitz. She's done "super-contemporary cabinets with long, polished chrome bars for drawer pulls. That looks great with black polished granite."
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