Also visit

When it comes to kitchens, we love testing new colors and embracing trending details, but one thing is here to stay: shaker cabinets

More traditional than slab styles, but more pared-back than beadboard or French country designs, shaker cabinets strike the perfect balance between old and new, making them suitable for homes of any era.

It’s no wonder designers consistently turn to this option in kitchen renovations. Paint colors, from vibrant jewel tones to refreshing neutrals, can dramatically impact how a cabinet style reads—cozy and intimate, or expansive and stately—and evolve with you as your style shifts through the years. The six shaker kitchens ahead, each with a totally different appeal, show there really is something for everyone.


The Crisp and Clean

White shaker kitchen with brass harwdare

Photography and Design: Jessica Jones

Jessica Jones’s lakefront Northern California home is a minimalist’s dream. Though she stuck to a mostly white palette,  brass hardware accents elevate the space. On the island, shaker cabinets in Cove (a wood effect that’s the perfect balance between warm and cool) provide just the right amount of contrast. 


The Warm Neutral

Beige shaker kitchen cabinets

Design: Daniel Kanter

In this cottage kitchen designed by Daniel Kanter, marble countertops and subway tile are modern classics. Valspar’s warm beige Country Charm paint on Semihandmade’s DIY Shaker cabinet fronts gives the room a more rustic feel that’s perfectly fitting for a home in upstate New York.


The Moody Blue

Black shaker kitchen cabinets

Photography and Design: Catherine Williamson

Beginning in the Middle’s sophisticated kitchen renovation is all about the drama—that’s what led designers Bryan and Catherine Williamson to pick Behr’s Black Sable for their DIY Shaker cabinets that line the space. Of course, the beauty is in the details: Latch knobs from Emtek lend a stately appeal. 


The Contemporary Combo

Wood shaker kitchen cabinets

Design: Oak Design Project

Sure, the rolling library ladder in this lofty kitchen by Oak Design Project might be the star of the show (followed by the ceiling-high glass cabinetry), but the lower wood shaker cabinets in Cove play an important role, too. The wood effect design has a modern rustic appeal that balances the contemporary shelving. 


The Cool and Collected

Gray shaker kitchen in Brooklyn

Photography: Nicole Franzen; Design: Sheena Murphy

This Brooklyn townhouse kitchen designed by interior design studio Núne is a masterclass in pared-back (but not minimal) design. Farrow and Ball’s Pigeon is the ideal light gray to make the shaker cabinets feel cozy but bright.


The Fresh Green

Blue-green shaker kitchen cabinets

Design by Velinda Hellen; Photograhy by Sara Tramp

A few coats of Sherwin-Williams’s Riverway blue-green paint make the cupboards pop in this space designed by Velinda Hellen for Emily Henderson Design. The subtle detailing of the shaker kitchen cabinets lends a more traditional touch to the overall modern space. Simple elements, like a white countertop and sleek brushed nickel cabinet pulls, let the cabinet color stand out, without adding any overpowering distractions.

Comments (1)

  • Your examples of moody blue kitchen cabinets were definitely my favorite from your article. The kind of dark color that this gives off while still not being completely dull really helps make the kitchen look very sophisticated, something I feel my current kitchen is lacking. With that in mind, once I find a cabinetry professional in the area, I’ll make sure I ask for something like this from them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


What’s the best paint color for my kitchen cabinets? How do I personalize my rental without renovating? Which interior design trends will stick around beyond 2021? How did marble become so popular in kitchen design (and should I splurge on my dream countertops)? Our interior design journeys are filled with questions which we at SemiStories attempt to answer every week through expert interviews, inspiring home tours, and trend reports. “Do As a Designer Does,” our monthly advice column, takes us behind the scenes of kitchen and bathroom design (and beyond) by spotlighting the best brains in the business. Here, we turn the microphone over to you to ask all your burning interior design, trend, and renovation questions to your favorite experts, from Sarah Sherman Samuel to Bobby Berk. Have a question? Shoot us a message on Instagram, or email us at for a chance to be featured! Have you ever wondered why certain details exist in your home? Maybe you’ve questioned who came up with the idea for forks, or perhaps you’ve contemplated how pantries have evolved over centuries—after all, both can be intriguing in their own right. The truth is, most of what we surround ourselves with at home has an interesting story to tell. In our monthly series “Design History” with (actual) design historian Amy Azzarito, we’ll explore the backstories of your favorite things. Home tours are intriguing for a reason: they give us a rare glimpse into the way other people live and inspire us to improve our own spaces. Maybe it’ll motivate you to paint your laundry room a bright sunshine yellow, persuade you a stacked teal backsplash is the way to go, or convince you the entryway is the perfect place for a gumball machine (hey, why not?). Whatever you take away, we have no doubt you’ll get tons of kitchen and bathroom design ideas to bring home. Are farmhouse islands here to stay? What will be the biggest interior design and hardware trends in 2021? Will the pandemic affect what homes of the future look like? Our weekly trend stories will keep your finger on the pulse of interior design, renovating, and more.