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Grey Kitchen Cabinets With White Countertops (before & after)

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It’s kitchen reveal day and I cannot wait to finally show you our grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops. If you have ever thought about painting your kitchen cabinets and replacing your countertops, you are going to love this post! Let’s take a look at our full journey of remodeling our dark and dated kitchen into a modern and bright space.

In the early 2000s our traditional kitchen was all the rage with its old-world, Italian-style charm. Fast forward to now, times have changed and what was appealing then, is not so appealing now. At least for me!

The dark cabinets and deep brown granite countertops with orange swirls, once a style statement and focal point, began to feel outdated.

grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops
Loving our grey painted kitchen cabinets with white quartz countertops

Grey Cabinets With White Quartz Countertops

Call it a trend or not, we personally wanted and overall lighter kitchen.

With the wave of modern design and a desire for a brighter space, we decided to embark on a kitchen renovation that 100% changed the look for the better.

The Pre-Renovation Kitchen

Prior to starting the kitchen renovation, we painted all of our dark trim and interior doors an off white color (the same color as our walls) and also decided to refinish the floors exposing a lighter wood tone.

When it came to picking the color combination for the kitchen, we wanted to make sure it flowed nicely into the rest of the house. 

Here is the kitchen before we renovated. The original kitchen from early 2000’s and featured an old world Italian style theme.

old world Italian style kitchen with dark cherry stained cabinets and brown granite
our old world Italian style kitchen with dark granite, cherry stained cabinets and dark hardwoods

Whether you are choosing between dark gray kitchen cabinets or light gray kitchen cabinets, be sure to take you time and try the colors in your space!

I’ll be honest, we were torn between white or gray cabinets. While white kitchen cabinets with gold hardware are a popular choice, I felt like we needed to take a different route. A modern kitchen color scheme can vary from a light or dark color and one thing I knew I wanted was a neutral soft look. 

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops create a modern transitional kitchen

After considering the pros and cons of both, we decided that grey kitchen cabinets would be a more timeless and versatile color, especially given the Mediterranean style of our home. 

Grey cabinets would provide the perfect combination of a modern style without entirely forgoing the classic feel.

After painting several different shades or neutral colors on my cabinets, we settled for Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray. There are several kitchen cabinet colors to pick from so my best piece of advice is to buy several shades, some light and some a darker shade and paint swatches on your existing cabinets. 

If you are buying new cabinets and having them custom made, your cabinet maker can paint swatches on the wall for you.

Island Decisions

While tempted by the idea of a contrasting black kitchen island, we decided to maintain cohesion and painted the island in the same light gray hue as the rest of the cabinets. 

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
the grey island painted the same color as the cabinets creates a cohesive feel

This choice ensured that the island remained a focal point, but without interrupting the seamless look.

One of the best things about paint is you can repaint at any time! I may decided to paint the island black later on but for now, we are loving the the grey color.

What countertops look good with gray cabinets?

I knew I wanted a variation of white quartz countertops but honestly, black was my second choice.

grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops
Calcutta Marcella quartz countertops look good with gray kitchen cabinets

Ultimately, we decided to use Cosmos Calcutta Marcella white quartz with grey veining. This countertop is very similar to Cambria Britannica but without the expensive price tag. Marcella was about 25% less than Britannica!

Be sure to click through this post, our quartz backsplash and counters to get all the details on if a full height quartz backsplash is right for you.

This decision gave our kitchen a clean modern look.

5 Quartz Styles

  • Cosmos Calcutta Sponda – we used this white quartz in the the split level home renovation
  • Cosmos Calcutta Luna – this countertop is a little less veining than Sponda but still noticeable
  • Cosmos Calcutta Luna – we used this countertop in our ranch house renovation kitchen
  • Cosmos Calcutta Marcella (our kitchen countertop and backsplash below)
  • Cosmos Calcutta Carrara – this is an almost white quartz with light grey speckles (pictures coming soon in our cape house style kitchen renovation)

Click through this post, calacatta quartz countertops to see all of the style listed above.

What backsplash goes with white and gray cabinets?

For those wondering about the backsplash – we took a unique approach.

Instead of the classic white subway tile backsplash, we decided to install a full-height quartz backsplash.

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after, installing backsplash
white quartz countertop with grey veining backsplash

You will notice above, we used the Calcutta Marcella white quartz for the backsplash as well.

Grey Kitchen Cabinets

The transformation began with painting over the cherry colored stain, breathing new life into the kitchen with a shade of light gray for the cabinets.

Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray

I personally love gray shaker cabinets and while our cabinets are more traditional style, I feel like the light gray cabinet color provides a clean look similar to a shaker style. 

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover with quartz farm sink
grey kitchen cabinets with white quartz quartz countertops and glass doors

Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray was the perfect choice for our cabinets.

Keep in mind though, lighting will make a huge impact on the color. Notice above, the paint color looks blue gray.

Notice below, the color swatch has a brown khaki tone.

grey kitchen cabinet paint color - sherwin williams mindful grey
Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray Paint Color

You will notice that the grey paint color also appears a blue grey in many settings and that is because of the lighting.

If we have the lights are on and there is a lot of natural light flowing through the adjacent windows, the cabinets appear more blue gray.

If there is no natural light and the lights are on, then the cabinets can have a slight khaki undertone.

Lighting plays a huge role in paint colors!

Want to learn more about this grey color we used, click through this post, Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray and read my review.

If you need a little inspiration for grey paint colors, read this post I recently shared, the best grey kitchen cabinet paint colors this year.

From Dark Brown Stain to Grey Paint

If you have older style cabinets that are not exactly what you love but you can’t afford to purchase new ones, then consider painting them a color that will enhance the beauty and tone down the style.

how to remove tile backsplash in a traditional kitchen with dark stained cherry cabinets
Tuscan style gourmet kitchen with cherry stain cabinets

For example, our cabinets have a lot of detail and ornate character (the scroll corbels ect) and I felt like the neutral grey paint would help minimize the overall traditional Italian style.

The transformation began with painting over the cherry colored stain, breathing new life into the kitchen with a shade of light gray for the cabinets.

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
Loving the lighter colored floors with the grey kitchen cabinets and white countertops

For the countertops, white countertops in quartz was an excellent choice. We settled on the Cosmos Marcella, which complemented the grey cabinets perfectly.

I love how the lighter gray cabinetry looks with our glass door cabinets.

One thing I do need to address, is the the organizational component in the cabinets with glass. Glass doors and open shelving are beautiful but show messy cabinets.  Getting some cute baskets and an under-the-sink organizer is next on my to-do list!

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
Loving the grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops!

You can see the entire painting process of the cabinets by clicking through this post, how to paint kitchen cabinets professionally.

Soft Close Hinges and More

We chose to go a step further in enhancing functionality by installing soft close hinges and swapping out the old hardware for stainless steel cabinet pulls that would coordinate with the stainless steel appliances. 

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
Stainless steel coordinates perfectly with grey kitchen cabinets

The new cabinet pulls were the icing on the cake giving our new kitchen an overall modern and designer look.

​You will notice that we installed long cabinet pulls on every cabinet door. 

Budgeting the Makeover

With a $28,000 budget set aside for our kitchen makeover, we were able to incorporate just about all the changes but we did exceed our budget by $3,500. 

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after

These additional costs arose from the soft close hinge installation, hardware and the splurge on a custom farmhouse sink, which became a focal point of our kitchen space.

Grey Kitchen Cabinets Before and After

Our renovated space makes me so happy! The grey kitchen cabinets with the white quartz countertops, introduced a lot of natural light into the room. 

Pictures speak a thousand words.

mediterranean kitchen with dark cherry cabinets

From the dated cherry wood look to the sleek grey and white combination, our kitchen is now a testament to the power of a kitchen renovation.

Here is the same view of the new modern grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops.

grey painted kitchen cabinets and white countertops
I love how much brighter our painted grey kitchen cabinets and white countertops make the kitchen feel

The white walls and newly refinished wood floors further accentuated the brightness, making our kitchen feel more spacious.

Every guest now comments on how our kitchen design, with its white countertops and grey cabinets, looks so much more modern and inviting. I couldn’t agree more!

Recommendations and Tips

The Renovation Timeline

The kitchen transformation spanned a little over 30 days.

Whenever you are doing a kitchen renovation, there will always be delays. Whether it be products on back order or simply waiting for one contractor to finish so another can start, that is the nature of the business,

We brought in a professional painter for the cabinets and Discover Surfaces for the countertop and backsplash installation.

Maintenance and Longevity

Our kitchen not only looks good but is also built to last. We used a special paint base for the grey cabinets, ensuring they don’t retain water marks or fade.

Grey kitchen cabinets with white countertops - kitchen makeover before and after
grey kitchen cabinets with white quartz countertops

The white quartz countertops have also held up exceptionally well, proving that our choice wasn’t just about aesthetics but also durability.

I’m not going to lie, custom cabinets that are factory painted of course, provide the best durability and will not chip or scratch but spending over 50,000 for new cabinetry was not an option and I am really impressed with how our new gray cabinets look. I will deal with some minor chipping and touch ups over the next several years know I saved thousands! 

You can still have a beautiful kitchen without replacing your cabinets!

Lessons Learned

While our grey and white kitchen looks effortlessly chic, the process wasn’t without its challenges.

1. I recommend setting up a temporary kitchen space elsewhere in the home during the renovation. A table set up with necessities like a coffee pot, microwave and paper goods are key! 

2. Tape off your kitchen with plastic to contain any dust or mess

3. Protect your floors! You can purchase large rolls of construction paper that easily tapes to the floors. 

4. Be prepared for delays.

A kitchen renovation is more than just a design overhaul; it’s about bringing your vision to life. Our journey from a classic kitchen to a modern gray and white kitchen stands as a testament to this.

Whether it’s the versatile color palette, the farmhouse sink, the stainless steel appliances, or the unique backsplash choice, every element works together. We now have a kitchen space that’s both a pleasure to look at and to work in.

More Of Our Kitchen Renovation Posts You Will Love

Meet Jessica

What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.

2 Comments

  1. With the grey cabinets, what color did you paint the walls/ceiling? TY

    1. Hi, the walls are sherwin Williams Westhighland and the ceiling is basic ceiling white (SW)

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