8 colorful small kitchen ideas for a fun and playful look

Embrace the rainbow with these colorful small kitchen ideas

A great example of colorful small kitchen ideas with this pastel green and orange kitchen cabinetry with white counters and backsplash
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Inject some personality into your home with these colorful small kitchen ideas. Vivid hues and joyful patterns are an amazing way to make the most of a small space, and there's nowhere better to start than the heart of the home. 

From painting walls, picking out wallpapers, to buying a new toaster in a fun, retro shade, there are so many ways to bring extra personality into this all-important room, according to our design experts.

So, don't let the so-called design rules tell you what to do — if you love color and are hunting down small kitchen ideas, stick with us for the best tips from super-stylish influencers and experts to make the space your own. 

Colorful small kitchen ideas

Scroll this way for easy and budget-friendly colorful kitchen ideas for small spaces from those in the know. From interior designers to home experts, check out these ideas on how to bring more color to your kitchen. 

1. Go bright with appliances

Pink kitchen cabinets, splashback tiles and dinnerware on open shelving

(Image credit: Kate Rose Morgan)

Don't have the budget to re-vamp the whole space? No problem! Get your hands on a colorful small kitchen appliance instead and we bet it will make you smile every time you see it, as well as brighten up your countertops. 

Kettles, toasters, and coffee machines are the easiest bet. This pink kettle from Smeg is a total dream for adding a pop of color to a small kitchen counter. This fan-favorite product features a swivel base and smart auto-shutoff. 

2. Try the half-and-half paint trend

Kitchen with green-blue cabinets and white subway tile splashbacks

(Image credit: Roo Roobell)

While painting a kitchen feels like a lot of effort, the cost vs. the impact is actually pretty amazing. Matilda Martin, trend specialist at home decor brand Lick, says, "A coat of paint changes the entire look of a room and can cost less than $100. So, if a dramatic effect is what you're after, I'd always recommend working out if painting is possible."

The best news is you don't have to paint the whole room for a stunning result. Matilda adds, "For me, the half-and-half trend is perfect for small spaces as it can really elongate the ceiling. Paint the bottom half of the room in a bold, punchy hue and keep the top half white. It works wonders and is very on-trend right now. In this example, Lick's Green04 is the perfect balanced green with hints of sky blue undertones."

Matilda Martin

Matilda Martin is trend specialist at decor brand Lick Home, as well as Editor of the brand's in-house magazine, Lift The Lid. 

3. Lean into patterned wallpaper

Kitchen with leaf print wallpaper

(Image credit: Layered Home)

While you might have thought that busy patterns, like checkerboard print, have no place in a small space, the opposite is true. As the eye is distracted by the pattern, it moves around the room and doesn't focus so much on little nooks, which tend to get lost in the pattern.

Keely Smith, a lead interior designer at JD Elite Interiors, explains, “For your small kitchen, vibrant wallpaper is an excellent option. It's inexpensive, easy to apply, removable if needed down the line, and will transform any space. Consider a bold floral or geometric pattern in colors like lime, cobalt, or tangerine. I would apply it to one wall as an eye-catching focal point behind the sink.”

Peel and stick wallpapers are perfect for creating an accent wall. This botanical mural from Etsy is easy to apply and you can simply peel it off when you move.

Keely Smith

Keely Smith is a Lead Interior Designer at North Vancouver-based JD Elite Interiors.

4. Glow up with a neon sign

Kitchen with powder blue cabinets and peach tiles

(Image credit: Zoes Colourful Interiors)

Don't they say that people always stand in the kitchen at a party? Well, we're about to bring the party to the kitchen with a Vegas-style neon sign. If you're looking for pizzazz, this is it. 

Imagine how fun it would be having your friends over for cocktails and lighting the space up with a moody glow? You can even make your own neon sign pretty easily at home for a truly custom and fitting design. 

5. Bring texture with a wall hanging

Kitchen with bright pink walls 3x3 white framed colorful prints and large macrame wall decor in white, pink and orange

(Image credit: Candy Courn)

Colorful artwork is a great way to bring different hues to the space, and of course, they can be moved or changed at any time. But, why not try something a little different and instead of a standard print, lean into a wall hanging instead?

The great thing about wall hangings is that they're textured, bringing another dimension into the space. If you're trying to level up your interiors game, this is a great way to go above and beyond the usual picture wall. We are obsessed with this ombre version from Etsy with loads of movement.

6. Jazz things up with a patterned rug

Kitchen with green cabinets and rug

(Image credit: Ruggable)

Didn't think rugs were for the kitchen? Absolutely false! Rugs in a flat weave and a smaller shape, like our favorite Target rugs, are an amazing idea for this room, as they add some much-needed warmth and coziness. 

Kerry Sherin, a consumer advocate at Ownerly, says, "Don't forget about the floor! It can be so easy, when we're making colorful changes to a space, to only think about smaller accessories or the walls. But a patterned floor is very striking so take the plunge with a colorful rug. It's easy to change if you get tired of the look. Remember, though, no shaggy textures or thick piles — we don't want food or crumbs hiding in there!”

Kerry Sherin

Kerry Sherin is a Consumer Advocate at Ownerly, a website which shares home and property data. 

7. DIY your grout lines

Small pink kitchen with white tile, pink grouting, tap and appliances

(Image credit: Lindsey Isla)

Hats off to Lindsey Isla who has taken her kitchen DIY to the next level with this adorable pink grout. While still colorful and full of personality, she's also managed to incorporate the minimalist trend with aplomb.

Thomas Borcherding, owner and lead designer at Homestar Design Remodel agrees, saying, "Your tile’s grout color doesn’t have to be permanent. Painting your kitchen’s grout lines, inckuding on the floor, counter, and backsplash, can revitalize and dramatically change the appearance of your kitchen. Doing so can add the color infusion that you’re looking for.”

Thomas Borcherding

Thomas Borcherding is the founder and lead designer at Homestar Design Remodel.

8. Make boring things, not boring

Small kitchen open shelves with colorful accessories including framed art, nested mugs, tall metal tins and trinkets

(Image credit: Poppy Almond)

This tip does what it says on the tin, literally. If a whole kitchen makeover feels a little out of reach, to achieve a colorful small kitchen take a leaf out of influencer Poppy Almond's book.

Use small, eye-catching utensils, decorative cans, and kitchen accessories to make a difference with decor. Scatter these personal decor items around your kitchen shelves to add points of interest as reflect your personal brand of style.

These HAY canisters are iconic and will really pop on your shelves.


What color combination should I choose for a small kitchen?

It all depends on your personal taste, but Matilda Martin, Trend Specialist at Lick, does have a few suggestions. "Try pairing an olive green with off white, teal and slate grey, or something really fun like pink and red,” she says.

What is the easiest way to add color to a small kitchen?

Tableware is a lovely way to get more color into your kitchen. Treat yourself to some pretty mugs and hang underneath a shelf on little hooks, stack a few colorful plates on some open shelving or lean into textiles, such as a patterned dishcloth, tablecloth or oven mitts.

We don't know who created the rule that small spaces should only be painted in light, neutral colors but news flash — they were wrong.

If you're looking for the inside scoop on the best colors to try at home in 2024, we found the six shades that are going to be everywhere, according to Valspar's director of color marketing. Run, don't walk!