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The Best Paint Colors to Go With Golden Oak (Cabinets, Flooring, & Trim)

Posted on March 21, 2024 by KylieMawdsley

Modernize Your Outdated Golden Oak Home With COLOR!

I’ve written a lot of blog posts on updating wood cabinets, covering a wide range of wood stains and grains. This one is all about YOU and your golden or honey oak cabinets, flooring, and trim. No maple, no cherry, and definitely no pine—it’s all oak, baby—solid wood and solid good.

And while you can use these paint color ideas with new, modern oak finishes (they’re pretty hot right now), these tips are geared more towards those found in homes from the 80s, 90s, and earlier 2000s.

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Let’s check out a few defining features of oak from these decades…

  • Golden or honey oak cabinets often have a reasonably glossy topcoat.
  • Oak kitchen cabinets have either exposed hinges, cathedral-style doors…or both. The odd lucky bum has neither.
  • These cabinets are surrounded by laminate countertops, which is typical of these decades. Details can include a beveled edge or a wood border around the perimeter of the counter, and most have a 4″ integrated counter splash (the bit of countertop that goes 4″ up the wall).
  • Golden or honey oak flooring is often narrow, strip-style, not the more modern 5-7″ width.
  • This era of oak or wood flooring is often covered in a stronger satin/semi-gloss sheen.
  • Oak trim is often thin and simple, not wide and glorious like wood trims from much older homes.

oak kitchen wood cabinets before kylie m, island, laminate counters, white appliances, oak floor

Look at all of that golden oak glory! 

Remember, not all golden or honey oak finishes look the same. Some are lighter, others darker. Some are more orange, yellow, red (pink), or brown. Whatever stain you’ve got, if you think it’s ‘golden oak,’ it likely is! If you need more clarification, some photos in this blog post should help.

Black hexagon tile floor, oak wood vanity, concrete look countertop, Benjamin Moore Stormy Sky best dark gray paint color. Kylie M Edesign.

The first topic we need to hit concerns your INTENTIONS…


To accent wood, we usually start with cool colors, specifically blue, green, and neutrals with these undertones. These cooler hues contrast with golden oak’s warmth, and they bounce off each other, enhancing each other’s best features!

accent colors to go with golden, honey or red oak, blue, green, gray. Kylie M ONline paint color expert

Blobs are just general representations of a color group

In this next foyer, while the cream color doesn’t blend in the wood, it doesn’t ENHANCE the wood as much as the blue hue in the living area – both are equally as pretty…

Sherwin Williams Neutral Ground with orange toned wood trim, stairs and flooring. Best warm neutral paint colors. Kylie M Interiors Edesign

Only stain or paint will change your wood stain—it is what it is. However, the right color on your walls can change your perception. 



On the other hand, you might not love your oak and wish it were something else (e.g., painted or restained). But for whatever reason (usually a hubby’s or wood lover’s opinion—wink, wink), that oak is staying, and you need to work around it.

In this case, it’s not about painting your walls a golden shade of orange; it’s about choosing colors that complement your wood finish without ENHANCING it. I can’t make your wood stain go away, but I can make it look way better than it does.

paint colors that go with blend in, tone down golden, honey and red oak cabinets, flooring, trim. Kylie M Interiors color expert online

Blobs are just general representations of a color group

The thing is, a lot of people come to me wanting to camouflage their wood – to make it go away. The only way to do that is to paint your walls the same color as your wood stain, which nobody is willing to do.

Instead, we need to work WITH your wood stain, lean into it, and find a color that both you and your wood are oak-ay with. 

But, as I’ve been seeing since the dawn of time (or approximately 12 years ago when I first started blogging)…

Just because it’s WOOD doesn’t mean it’s GOOD. 

What does this mean? Wood isn’t inherently good just by being itself; it needs to be doing a good job of adding emotional, visual, and ACTUAL value to your home. Some homes, especially 1990s homes, have golden oak flooring throughout. But that’s not the problem; often, the biggest pain point is in the kitchen, where the wood flooring meets the wood cabinets. And as you saw in a few previous examples…

Wood-on-wood isn’t always good.

There is something to be said for ‘too much of a good thing‘ when it comes to wood (which is what I always tell Tim, wink wink). The thing is, your wood cabinets and wood flooring could be beautiful in their own right, but there’s a chance that they’re actually canceling each other out – IT’S TOO MUCH!

For example, check out this next wood-on-wood wonder…

oak cabinets before being painted (3)

The last time I saw this much wood-on-wood, it was in a very inappropriate movie (and the above isn’t doing it for me either).


The sheer amount of wood is overwhelming, and one degrades the visual value of the other. My client hired me, as she agreed—she didn’t love how her floor and cabinets (and wood trim) disappeared into each other. But she wasn’t ready to do the whole shebang. Instead, I suggested some pretty island colors, including Sherwin Williams Cyberspace.

Oak wood kitchen cabinets update ideas painted island in Sherwin Williams Cyberspace, brass hardware, oak flooring. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, online paint colour expert decorating blogger (8)

JEEZ FRIGGIN’ LOUISE, it’s like this kitchen can breathe again! Before, the floor was no screamin’ glory, but now it looks gorgeous as it has the navy blue island to PLAY with! Not only that, the main cabinets come to life as well, as they aren’t being buried in a sea of wood.

See my CURATED COLLECTION OF ISLAND PAINT COLORS – making your sampling life a heck of a lot easier. 

Now without further ado, let’s see what’s up my colorful little sleeves…



As mentioned earlier, what do you want your wood to do? Do you want your oak to come to life with a color that’s like the Viagra of the wood world? Do you want your wood to take a bit more of a backseat, knowing it’s not going away until you paint it or restain it? Whatever you’re looking for, I’ve got some great colors for you to explore.

This first section discusses actual paint colors (non-whites). The second section covers the best white paint colors for cabinets (and walls)—NO SKIPPING FORWARD OR THREE SLAPS WITH A WET NOODLE! There’s so much to learn from every section of this blog!

We’re going to hit it all, starting with one of my faves…



As far as popular warm neutrals go, it’s hard to beat Edgecomb Gray (although this color and this color sure try). Edgecomb Gray is like the half-sibling of beige and gray – it’s related to each, but not 100% by blood.

This makes Edgecomb Gray a great option for golden oak, which can also hover between worlds – not quite red oak (although it can wink at it pretty hard), but not super yellow (again, a polite nod).

This next client consulted with me about their walls, and we chose Edgecomb Gray. After the walls were done, they also consulted with me about the stair railing as they weren’t happy with the black they chose (and I agree—it’s too harsh).

Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray in foyer, staircase with carpet, south facing exposure, orange oak floor. Client photo Kylie M Interiors

While the railings are a work in progress, notice how pretty Edgecomb Gray looks with the golden oak flooring, wood stair treads, and the carpet as well.

Remember, it’s not just about your wood (I tell Tim this ALL THE TIME). Often, your wood stain is the least of your concerns – be sure to humor your other finishes and their needs, too! 

It can be easy to get caught up in our wood stain, especially if we don’t love it. However, MORE OFTEN than not, other, bossier finishes need to be accommodated!

FULL Paint Color Review of Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray



Imperial Gray is a gorgeous color, mixing blue, green, and gray in a melange of magic. Because it has a lot of gray, Imperial Gray can accent oak or any wood, but it’s more calming than a color with less gray and more color (e.g., Sherwin Williams Rainwashed, which would offer considerably more contrast with a wood stain).

This next photo shows Imperial Gray in a living room with muted golden oak flooring (more brown than rich orange-yellow or pink).

Benjamin Moore Silver Satin warm gr

Sure, it accents the wood a bit, but just because it’s slightly accented doesn’t mean it’s bad—it comes down to the look you love for your space. If you’re curious, the dining room is painted Benjamin Moore’s Silver Satin.

Compare Imperial Gray to similar shades to see which is best for your space. Check out Benjamin Moore Beach Glass, Gray Wisp, and Sherwin Williams Argos.

The 18 Best Blue and Green Paint Colors for Bedrooms



If you want to accent your wood without making a huge statement about it, check out colors like Paris Rain. Paris Rain (also known as Mountain Air CC 636) is green-gray. A cool shade of green (green-blue) would accent the wood trim and cabinets even more. However, because Paris Rain is a warm blend of green and gray, the palette is a bit calmer and more organic-looking.

This next kitchen has my heart. While the oak cabinets and trim have a touch more red-pink than most golden oaks, the contrast with the wall color (similar to Paris Rain) is a great example of a ‘accenting your wood stain’.

Red oak wood kitchen cabinet update, white quartz countertop, marble backsplash tile, island, wood trim, white oak floor.

If you like the looks of Paris Rain, you’ll want to do some comparisons. I recommend checking out my Curated Green Color Bundle to save time and money in your sampling journey (paint sample pots are the worst). Never pick a color based on how it looks alone. When I compare colors for my home, I try to hit 4-6 similar shades to see the ebb and flow between temperature, depth, and degree of color (chroma).



If you prefer a more muted approach, check out Stone Hearth. Stone Hearth is a light-medium depth shade of beige with a light dusting of gray, making it a very atypical approach to beige and tan. If you love colors that lean into your wood stain without blending, shades that slightly soften its approach, this could be the winner winner chicken dinner.

The thing is, rooms with golden oak flooring often have finishes catering to warmth—they don’t want green, blue, or gray walls. A color like Stone Hearth is a MODERN approach to beige, as shown in this games room with glorious golden oak flooring and a pool table.

Pool table in family room, fireplace, Benjamin Moore Stone Hearth and White Dove. Manly room. PHoto by Rick Pharoah. Client photo

Seriously, SO PRETTY. And I bet you’ve never seen a regular old home with a SUIT OF FRIGGIN’ ARMOR IN IT…

Benjamin Moore Stone Hearth, White Dove, family room with slate pool table and fireplace, masculine style. Kylie M Interiors blog. Rick Pharoah Photography, client photo

I hereby dub thee Sir Benjamin Sherwin Mc’Williams.

Again, comparison is key—don’t buy paint without it! I have mad love for Sherwin Williams Balanced Beige and Accessible Beige (equally as modern shades). Check out my CURATED BEIGE COLOR BUNDLE to compare a few more key colors. Seriously, these peel-and-stick paint samples from Samplize will change your paint-pickin’ life.

You might also want to check out Benjamin Moore Smokey Taupe, which is a close relative of Stone Hearth but just a bit lighter.

Benjamin Moore Smokey Taupe, orange warm hue wood floors, bench in front of wall. Best popular greige taupe paint colours. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, online

While the above oak floors are more red oak via their strong pink hue, you can see how soft a color like Smokey Taupe can look.



Amazing Gray is a beautiful color that slightly accents golden oak. With its light-medium depth, Amazing Gray has a bit lower contrast compared to colors with higher LRVs. It’s a greige, meaning it’s like a warm gray with some beige in it and a soft green undertone.

Sherwin Williams Colonnade Gray with golden oak trim, fireplace and wood flooring. Kylie M INteriors Edesign

But here’s a fun fact…the above photo isn’t Amazing Gray; it’s Sherwin Williams Colonnade Gray. Here’s why I switched things up…

  • Colonnade Gray rarely looks THIS WARM – this picture is an exception, not the rule.
  • This photo looks way more like Amazing Gray in action, making it a great example.

The exposure of your room can greatly affect how a color looks. For example, I chose Colonnade Gray for our last home as it best suited the interior finishes (shown below). This photo shows how it can look in north-facing light (with a sprinkling of east)…

Sherwin Williams Colonnade Gray, best warm grey paint color. Cambria Summerhill quartz countertop. White cabinets. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, diy decorating blogger

When you get into this type of color, you risk highlighting your oak OR having the overall palette fall flat. LONG STORY SHORT (as usual), this is why I didn’t want to give you the wrong impression with Colonnade Gray when Amazing Gray could be a better partner for your particular golden oak surface.

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Amazing Gray



Oh, bestill my beating heart, to hear the wind’s breath…just joking; I ain’t that fancy (as I refill my glass from a box of wine). Regardless, Wind’s Breath can be absolutely stunning with golden oak cabinets, flooring, and trim.


Benjamin MOore Winds Breath match with wood floor, cream cabinets on island, dark wood upper cabinets, wood beams.

Whereas many warm neutrals commit to a certain shade or undertone, Wind’s Breath is a hybrid color – a color ninja, meaning it can morph into a range of warm neutrals with minimal commitment. Cream, tan, a feather-dusting of gray? Wind’s Breath has it covered.

This beautiful shade is a great choice if you neither want to highlight nor camouflage your wood tone – you just want a color that looks friggin’ gorgeous.

Benjamin Moore Winds Breath match Sherwin. Hallway with arch and wood floor.

FULL Paint Color Review of Benjamin Moore Wind’s Breath

A few of my fave colors that are similar to Wind’s Breath include Sherwin Williams White Duck, Benjamin Moore Ballet White, and Sherwin Williams Shoji White.



benjamin moore winds breath samplize peel and stick paint sample




If you’re looking to jazz things up and want a color that accents and contrasts with your wood finishes, look no further than GREEN. Green directly contrasts with the warmth of ANY oak, making it a great partner when you want your wall and wood finishes to play with each other. One of my fave shades of green to jazz up almost any wood finish is Dry Sage…


Dry Sage has an LRV of 34.63, making it a very solid medium-depth shade of green. Combine this with a golden oak floor, cabinet, or trim, and you have one gorgeous combo on your hot lil’ hands.

While you can get a similar effect from cool greens (greens that mix with blue), because Dry Sage is a warm green (green-yellow) with a lovely greige base to calm it down, it contrasts while still looking organic and natural.



As far as gray goes, it’s hard to beat the timeless look of Revere Pewter.

While some grays are too cool for the long haul, and others are too flat-looking with golden oak, Revere Pewter is often the perfect shade, as shown with the golden oak flooring below…

Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter to go with cream trim and cream kitchen cabinets. Kylie M Interiors Edesign and update ideas

Revere Pewter is a warm gray-greige with a beautiful, earthy green undertone. It also has a bit more depth than the ‘usual gray bunch.’ With an LRV of 55.05, Revere Pewter is on the lower, darker end of the light range, making it a really calming, classic partner to golden oak.

Will Revere Pewter accent oak or calm it down?

It can all depend on what you currently have on your walls. If your walls are beige, well, Revere Pewter will lightly contrast with your oak in comparison. On the other hand, if your walls are currently a stronger shade of blue or blue-green, you might find Revere Pewter the PERFECT, calming partner to your oak finishes.

While this next home has more red oak than golden oak, look at the difference between the main room, with its Revere Pewter walls, and the back room, with the stronger green hue.

Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter, red orange toned wood floor. White wainscoting. Best gray paint colour. Kylie M interiors edesign, online paint color consulting

FULL Paint Color Review of Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter

Neither of these colors makes the floor look LESS RED; it’s about not making it look MORE RED than it needs to! 



Now, if you’re a bit more traditional and you like warm neutrals with a bit more meat on their bones, you might love Malabar. While the most ‘trendy’ beiges and tans are lighter and a touch grayer, Malabar is still a step above the heavy, saturated beiges of the early 2000s.

How to Update Your 2000s Home

As shown in this kitchen, Malabar flows nicely with orange-toned woods…

Sea Pearl laminate countertop, Sherwin Williams Malabar, lightened Natural Linen ceiling. Wood trim and cabinets. Kylie M Interiors edesign

malabar natural linen - sea pearl countertop laminate (1)

The 14 Best MODERN Beige & Tan Paint Colors



While gray isn’t trendy anymore and warmer shades are moving in, not everyone wants warmth on their walls – ESPECIALLY when their golden oak offers enough warmth as it is!

Keeping in mind that cool colors add contrast, and with the thought of not going too far, check out Front Porch in this bedroom…

Sherwin Williams Front Porch, gray paint colour wioth wood trim and doors in bedroom. Blue green undertones. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, diy update ideas

My client wanted a soft, muted shade to complement her beautiful oak trims, doors, and furniture. Front Porch is a gooder because while it’s gray, it has a beautiful, slightly coastal backdrop of green and blue. The slightly stronger undercurrent of colors offers some subtle interest and contrast against wood stains.



While violet can be cool-toned (if it’s violet mixed with blue), a warm violet can be a beautiful, updated partner to golden oak. Whereas blues and greens directly contrast, and some beiges blend a bit more, the right violet tone is a great happy medium between the warm and cool worlds.

One of my favorite warm gray-taupes to suggest to my Online Color Consulting clients is Alpaca. With its warm violet undertones (violet-pink, whereas violet-blue is cool), colors like Alpaca can look a bit more modern than some shades of beige without bouncing off the wood as much as blue and green hues.

Sherwin Williams Alpaca, best warm gray, taupe paint colours. Dark wood floor. Kylie M Interiors Edesign diy consultant blogger

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Alpaca

Alpaca runs in the same world as other warm grays and taupes like Benjamin Moore Collingwood, Balboa Mist, Pale Oak, and Sherwin Williams Popular Gray.



If you want a warm paint color for your walls that doesn’t overreact with your oak but also doesn’t entirely blend in (woof, nobody wants that), you have to check out Natural Linen (color review HERE).

Beiges have a bad rap, thanks to the early 2000s. However, the new age of beiges is so much different – SO MUCH BETTER – beiges that include shades like Natural Linen…

the difference between beiges, Kilim, Natural Linen, Accessible, Malabar with dark wood trim. Kylie M

This trim isn’t oak, more like maple, but it’s got a golden-oak vibe (brownish)

If you ask me, Natural Linen is the PERFECT beige. While it centers on an orange undertone (like most golden oaks), it’s flexible towards orange-yellow and orange-pink – JUST LIKE MANY GOLDEN OAKS! Natural Linen is also a great depth for the average room. With its LRV of 66, it sits in the middle of the ideal range for the average home.

Again, comparison is key, so check out the similar looks of Sherwin Williams River’s Edge, Accessible Beige, and Benjamin Moore Muslin.

To see my top shades of beige, check out this CURATED LIGHT BEIGE COLOR BUNDLE



There’s no better way to play with oak than with CONTRAST – not just in color, but in DEPTH. And one of the prettiest colors to do that with is the classic, timeless blue hue – Hale Navy.

Can I get a HALE YES!?

Hale Navy is a dark shade of blue—not as muted as the equally lovely Sherwin Williams Cyberspace but not as punchy as Naval. This is what makes Hale Navy so good.

Home office, dark wood, walls pain

FULL Paint Color Review of Benjamin Moore Hale Navy

And Hale Navy isn’t just for walls, either. Sure, it’s fabulous for an entire room or as an accent wall, but it’s also a beautiful choice for the inside of your front door or kitchen island!

While the fuzzy thing on the wall of this next bedroom isn’t golden oak, it has a similar vibe. Look at how it bounces off Hale Navy…

Benjamin Moore Hale Navy accent wall, Silver Satin, primary bedroom, wood floor, gray upholstered bed. Off white warm gray wall color. Kylie M blog

The 13 Best Dark Shades of Blue



As far as light beiges go, it’s hard to beat the beauty and balance of Moderate White. Like most golden oaks, Moderate White sits on an orange base with some flexibility towards orange-yellow and orange-pink tones.

And unlike the OLD beiges, Moderate White is more modern-looking because of its depth. This gorgeous warm neutral is an off-white with an LRV of 74. Look at how beautiful it looks with this traditional golden oak dining set.

Sherwin Williams best off white beige paint colour, Moderate White, beige tile floor, oak dining room

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Moderate White

This next photo shows the very similar Sherwin Williams Divine White, with golden oak flooring and a maple handrail…

Living room with warm beige cream blend walls, Sherwin Williams Divine White, tuscan stone yellow cream fireplace, wood floor. Kylie M Edesign, diy ideas

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Divine White

By the way, I have Color Bundles for EVERY COLOR GROUP. If you want a bundle for a specific color/depth, leave a comment, and I’ll send the link (rather than inundate you with links throughout this blog post). 



As far as green-grays go, Sensible Hue is one of my faves. While I’m usually more of a warm green fan, the subtle gray-green of Sensible Hue isn’t overly committed to warm or cool tones—it settles in the middle and is really subject to the exposure of a room and its surrounding finishes.

Offering the perfect amount of contrast to golden, honey, or even red oak, Sensible Hue’s LRV of 46 (light-medium depth) grounds this gorgeous shade. Shown in this next kitchen with Sherwin Williams Night Owl on the cabinets and island, this golden oak hutch and trim are in their glory!

Sherwin Williams Night Owl on painted wood oak cabinets, vinyl white and black floor, wood trim, best shade of green paint

Although you could convince me to paint those doors Night Owl, too, or a shade in between – I’m torn about their stark white. 

Check out colors that are similar to Sensible Hue in this GRAY COLOR BUNDLE

Now, the moment many of you have been waiting for – the best shades of white.



With white paint colors being on-trend (they’re sloooowly on their way out), I get a lot of clients asking for white walls (or white cabinets to go with their wood flooring).

Now, the thing to know about what white is that no matter which golden or honey oak you have, white adds contrast to your palette – it’s in its nature. This alone can contrast oak, but this doesn’t mean it jacks it up; it just doesn’t necessarily ‘calm it down’ – although it can seem like it does if you currently have cool-toned walls.

If you’re picking a white paint color for your walls, your flooring (or wood cabinets or trim) calls a lot of the shots. HOWEVER, if you’re reading this for the best shade of white for your cabinets, your oak flooring plays second fiddle.


Your countertop and backsplash are the big ‘shot callers’ (a fun reference for those who were teenagers in the 90s who loved rap). 

Now, let’s see what I’ve got…



White Dove is a soft, warm white that can look gorgeous with various shades of golden oak. It isn’t overly creamy, but it’s also not stark or cold, making it a pretty partner to oak.

Take a peek at this next kitchen. The oak floors are likely red oak via the subtle pink undertone. Combined with the STRONG orange-red of the cabinets, this is one hot pot of woody goodness. Repeat after me…

Just because it’s wood doesn’t mean it’s good. 

maple or cherry red hue kitchen cabinets (wood) before being painted warm white. Red oak floor. Warm hue granite countertops, travertine look backsplash.

FULL Paint Color Review of Benjamin Moore White Dove

Because the beige tile backsplash and granite countertop are bossy, they call the big shots – they’re not as flexible as the wood floor. However, because golden oak is so easy to please, we could focus on the other finishes, creating a kitchen with a fresh new look where the beautiful oak floors come to life…

Cherry, maple wood cabinets. Painted a warm soft white by Benjamin Moore. travertine look backsplash. Older granite countertops. Red oak floor. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, diy update ideas (1)

The 3 Best Sherwin Williams Warm Whites / Benjamin Moore’s 4 Best Warm Whites 

Seriously. You don’t need to love painted cabinets to appreciate HOW MUCH BETTER THIS LOOKS. I mean, look at the floor, it’s alive again!

Of course, I’d love to ‘next-level’ this kitchen with a few smart changes, including…you guessed it, 3 x 6 subway tile in a warm, creamy tone that matches the cabinets. I might also beef up the island a bit, maybe adding some paneling/baseboard to it so it looks more custom. But really, this space looks great. And I have to be honest, I’ve never seen a kitchen faucet to the side like that—crazy!

But more to the point, if you’re struggling to update your oak cabinets (or other wood) and oak flooring, something’s got to give, and I’m pretty sure you’re not ripping out your wood floor…

IT MIGHT BE PAINT TIME, my funny friend!

Here’s another kitchen with beautiful white cabinets and traditional golden oak flooring…

Painted maple kitchen cabinets, similar to Benjamin Moore White Dove, dark granite. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, online paint color consultant

How to Update Your Outdated Granite Countertops

You’ll never convince me that the above kitchen would look better with wood cabinets – that’s a hard no from this cowgirl. If this kitchen had a fussy backsplash or countertop, we might not be able to focus on the floor as much (golden oak flooring is often the LEAST fussy of the bunch). Because the backsplash is painted the same color as the cabinets, the focus can be on the needs of a) the countertop first and b) the oak flooring, which is pretty easygoing.

Painted maple kitchen cabinets before and after. Similar to Benjamin White Dove. Kylie M Interiors Edesign online advice to update

Lastly, if you want to paint your walls white, White Dove is a gorgeous choice for the average home with golden oak trim, doors, or flooring…

Best warm white paint color, Benjamin Moore Whtie Dove, white trim, slipcovered sofa, area rug, wood floor, home decor. Kylie M Interiors paint color expert

This flooring is a touch closer to honey oak in depth, but has a touch of pink.

These next wood floors are more modern (as shown by the wide plank style); White Dove is a great complement to them, and the hand railing on the stairs…

Open concept living room, kitchen, dining room, raised 10 foot ceiling, oak wood floor and open railing, blue accents. BEnjamin Moore White Dove walls, cabinets, trims, Kylie M Interiors



This next kitchen belongs to the super-talented blogger Jenna Christian. She hired me to help her find a color to update her home, complete with golden oak flooring (slightly red-stained) and black granite countertops…

Sherwin Williams Alabaster warm white painted wood cabinets, black granite countertop, wood floor. beige backsplash tile, Kylie M Interiors Edesign, Jenna Christians home

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Alabaster

We chose Sherwin Williams Alabaster because, unlike some whites that can fall flat in north-facing rooms or areas with low light, Alabaster has the most beautiful, passive warmth. Because Jenna wanted this color for her walls, cabinets, trims, and ceiling, we couldn’t choose a one-trick pony; we needed a white that was bright, light, and more than alright – Alabaster was the perfect choice.

One reason Alabaster works is because Jenna’s dark granite countertop isn’t super fussy about its paint color partners, leaving the backsplash and the wood flooring to be the big bosses.

Painted white kitchen cabinets, black granite countertop, beige taupe backsplash tile, Sherwin Williams Alabaster cabinets, Kylie M and Jenna Christian



While the previous two whites can be great for walls or cabinets (depending on your backsplash and countertop), I’m more likely to recommend Pure White for CABINETS only.


I love Pure White; it’s in my top three. However, because it has less warmth than the previous two shades, it’s a bit less likely to suit the ‘average’ home—it can come off a bit stark on walls (especially in a north-facing home).

This being said, Pure White can be a gorgeous cabinet or trim color. This next kitchen has golden oak flooring that’s playing second fiddle to the darker maple cabinets…

Maple or oak kitchen cabinets before being painted with edesign (2)

We tuned into the needs of the black granite countertop and its cool undertones and painted the cabinets white…

Painted wood maple cabinets. Pure White and Iron Ore, Sherwin Williams Kylie M Interiors online virtual paint colour and decorating advice

FULL Paint Color Review of Sherwin Williams Pure White

With a dark island, and a new white subway tile backsplash (surprise surpise), this space looks brighter and more updated. SAME COUNTERTOP, SAME CABINETS – new paint, backsplash, and hardware. While I would change the light fixtures and might prefer a white island myself, I love how this space looks.

But what if your wood floor has a lot of pink, orange, yellow, or red? Shouldn’t that matter?

You might think so, but it doesn’t – remember who the REAL shot-callers in your kitchen are.

Your flooring can play a larger part when it comes to wall color OUTSIDE of the kitchen. But in the kitchen, the floor is usually your last worry. Look at the previous kitchen – this floor has a pink undertone. Does this mean we need a cabinet color with pink in it? Heck no. We listen to the needs of the other finishes and make a better choice.

By the way, do your countertop and backsplash need an update? Do you need finishes that look good with your golden oak?

Check out my CURATED PALETTES – I’ve done the work for you (you’ll find them on Pg 2 of that link)! 

Palette color, countertop, backsplash tile, paint color, cabinet ideas to update wood, oak, maple, cherry kitchen cabinets. Kylie M, online color expert

Which means you can relax and enjoy your gorgeous golden oak.


Ideas to Update Your Golden or Honey Oak Cabinets (non-paint)

How to Update Your Wood Cabinets (5-PART SERIES)

Ideas to Update Your Outdated Granite Countertops



The best paint colours for any room from Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams. Popular Edesign blogger Kylie M Interiors. Diy decor and design advice. Market

Chat soon, 

Kylie M Interiors Edesign, signature, online paint colour consultant using Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams paint colours. DIY update advice ideas


  1. Thank you for all the suggestions Kylie! After hours and hours of reading and re-reading your posts, today we finished painting our hallway (with oak trim staircase and terra cotta-ish tile from 2000)…SW Natural Linen. I love how it blends in with everything. It changes colour throughout the day based on light coming in from the front door side light, the south facing side door and the west facing patio doors. Absolutely thrilled!

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  2. What I wouldn’t give for a piece or two of advice from you! I appreciate you not excluding rooms that are literally all medium honey oak; not just a table or one piece of furniture. You have houses that have the trim, windows, cupboards, tables, and chairs as oak, yet your choices are a breath of fresh air. I’d be honored for you to provide me with suggestions~

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