Home interior design can convey so much within the selected materials, colors and various choices. Often, you can tell a lot about a person or family by viewing where they spend the most time, and for many of us, that gathering place is the kitchen. In kitchen design, options are endless, with an infinite amount of statements to make with each. As a designer who appreciates elevated looks in home spaces, the tuxedo kitchen is a must-have. They have such a timeless appeal. And contrary to popular opinion, they are not that hard to achieve!

What is a Tuxedo Kitchen

So what, exactly, is a tuxedo kitchen? Simply put, it’s a dual-tone kitchen space with white cabinetry around the top or higher spaces and dark elements in lower areas. The upper area could be interpreted as the white “shirt,” and the lower area could function as the dark “trousers.” The black-and-white combination, just like the outfit, is a classy design that exudes elegance.

Tuxedo kitchens are always en vogue because of the lasting appeal of two-tone styling in home design. And while there’s no set rule on which elements are dark and which are light, tuxedo kitchens generally follow the “lighter upper, darker lower” template. Aesthetically speaking, using brighter colors and elements above allows additional light reflection in kitchen areas. This will make your kitchen appear more open and spacious. The darker elements in lower areas will help to visually ground the space. Collectively, the combination provides a satisfying balance.

How to Choose Cabinet Colors

So you’ve decided to create a tuxedo kitchen for your home. There are a few things to consider, starting with the colors you choose. Though the style suggests a black-and-white color scheme, I would advise against using true black and white in your tuxedo kitchen design. True black can be visually harsh, and that might impact the overall look you’re aiming for. Instead, consider a dark grey or smoky black with navy undertones. These options are much warmer than true black.

That’s important to know because you want to opt for cooler-toned whites to balance the opposite end of the spectrum of your tuxedo kitchen. All tones of white are not created equal, so be sure to test the shade you want to use. I would advise against going too beige or yellow with your light/white choices. If you’re creating a tuxedo kitchen on a budget, the right paint colors will be the key to the perfect transformation. Choose wisely, and remember if you need help selecting the perfect shade, we can jump on a video call and I will help you.

Apply the Right Accents

Color sets the framework for a tuxedo kitchen, but other accents can help take your space from eye-catching to head-turning! Incorporating mixed metals will bring just the right amount of contrast needed to add interest in the room. Personally (and professionally), I think pops of brushed or polished brass are so elegant in black-and-white kitchens. Touches of metal in the fixtures, faucets or drawer pulls act as flashes of jewelry for your “tuxedo” look. They provide extra opulence in small doses, making your kitchen that much more magnificent.

Finally, don’t forget to think about the right furniture for your kitchen’s new look! Many designers would most likely accent your black and white elements with furniture of either color. I, however, prefer to incorporate natural elements in the furniture for tuxedo kitchens. While splendor is the name of the game for tuxedo visuals, using natural elements helps the overall space feel more approachable. Consider using wood shelving, dining tables or chairs to finish the look of your kitchen. The two design elements complement the kitchen’s formal aesthetic.

Tuxedo kitchens have been on-trend for several years. Done correctly, they can be timeless focal points of the home that rarely need to be updated. The combination presents class and panache in a way that side-steps “period piece” colors used in kitchens. Together, black and white have a universal appeal that caters to any design taste. And, like a tuxedo, it has a distinguished appeal that will elevate any home.

Would you consider a tuxedo kitchen for your home? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!


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