Solutions to Transform Your 90s Oak-Filled Home
So, how DO you work with your honey oak kitchen and trim to update your 90s home? We get it, your home is filled from top to bottom with honey oak trim, and oak stained cabinets. We’re going to dive right in and show you how easily we can create a balance making your honey oak work for you, not against you!
New Wall Color to Update your Honey Oak
First, and possibly the least expensive solution is to simply change your wall color. The hallmark of a 90s-style home is the pairing of honey oak with paint colors in shades of brown or red. The result, an all-over aesthetic that feels outdated. A paint color that brings out the best of oak – and its inherent warmth – will completely transform your room.
Paint Colors that go with Oak Wood Trim and Cabinets
90s oak tends to fall more into the yellow-orange-tinged categories. You’ll want to choose a color that highlights these features. An entire room in an overall shade of orange or yellow lacks personality. Look to contrasting colors that are a bit cooler in tone. Shades of blue, green, grey, white, and greige (grey-beige), are all options. By making the oak stand out in an intentional way, it feels fresh. Not sure which color to choose? Receive our free paint guide to help you find that perfect cool shade or other paint colors that go with oak wood trim and cabinetry.
Get peel & stick (real) paint color samples to try in your home – HERE!
A fresh paint color on the walls can transform your oak wood tones!
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Break Up the Sea of Oak
What is a sea of oak exactly? Well, if everywhere you look brings you an unobstructed view of a shade of oak, you’ve got a sea. We’re talking a combination of wall-to-wall oak kitchen cabinets, oak built-ins, oak trim, oak flooring, and more. You get the picture. To work with your honey oak and elevate its style is to break it up visually.
How do we do that? Paint the elements that feel the most oak-heavy visually in a complimentary color. Think of your old oak kitchen cabinets with a pop of color on them or in a creamy white, leaving the floors and trim intact. The oak sea will part!
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New Flooring with Oak Cabinets
One way we like to bring in a new vibe… changing your flooring. Oftentimes the already oak-heavy 90s home will also have honey oak hardwood flooring. A new and unexpected flooring option can instantly elevate the room and the honey oak will feel warm and inviting. Tile is a great option. By choosing graphic tile, natural stone, or LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile), you can easily achieve a nice contrast with oak cabinets. If you want to stick with hardwood flooring or go with super durable LVP (Luxury Vinyl Plank), you can opt for a different finish color to compliment the oak. What we want to achieve is contrast. This will give your eye a rest from that never-ending sea of oak.
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Create a Contrasting Focal Point
Paint and flooring can have a profound impact on your oak-filled home. The answer to your oak woes, is to create a contrasting focal point within the room. By incorporating bold artwork, a feature wall, or driving the focus towards a brightly-tiled fireplace, the oak is less jarring. Balance goes a long way!
In this ASID Showcase Home award winner for Best Use of Color, we added a bold iridescent aqua blue and green tiled backsplash with bright white quartz countertops and chrome hardware and fixtures to soften the oak vanity. Design by Carla Bast
You aren’t forever relegated to an outdated 90s-era home. With a bit of creativity and the creative ideas shared here, you can work with your honey oak, and your 90s oak home can be updated in a way that feels oh-so-modern and totally you.