7 key elements to help you create an industrial style kitchen


Industrial style kitchens are all about raw textures and simplicity. Bare brick walls, tiles and even raw concrete work beautifully and when these are combined with wood or natural stone floors and exposed steel surfaces, you have a kitchen right out of a design magazine.

If you’re thinking of an industrial style kitchen for your home, take a look at our 7 key design elements. You may also wish to consult a professional kitchen design company such as The Brighton Kitchen Company where an award winning design team is on hand to help you create your ideal industrial chic space.

1. The warehouse look

Nothing beats a factory or warehouse space for a genuine industrial look – exposed brick walls, worn flooring, aged paintwork, high ceilings, natural lighting and acres of floor space. In contrast to other kitchen styles, where all the piping, ducting, air conditioning and even the light fittings are hidden from view, industrial style leaves these elements exposed for everyone to see.

Chic industrial kitchens are ultra-modern and equipped with stylish cabinets, islands and worktops – it’s the ceilings, lighting, and rustic walls around it that give it a truly industrial look and feel.

2. Countertop materials

A counter or benchtop is a major kitchen accessory and, as it’s used almost all the time, you should think carefully about what material it’s made from. A stainless steel fabricated worktop is a good idea because it’s durable, easy to clean and looks great.

Concrete worktops are also popular but beware because they can chip easily and you’ll need to reseal the surface from time to time. Another good option is soapstone – it’s durable, has a natural, dark, earthy look, is heat resistant and doesn’t stain.

3. Kitchen cabinets

There’s a wide range of cabinet materials to choose from and these all work well in an industrial setting. The choices include

• a decorative recessed panel in a hand-painted finish

• a flat panel in a polyurethane lacquer

• stainless steel

• old reclaimed wood

• a mix of all these styles together

4. Recycled items

Using old items that look like they’ve come from a factory floor add character and charm and an authentic touch. Recycled timber on island countertops and old or antique chairs and tables are just the job. Reclaimed iron light fittings like old chandeliers look great hanging above a kitchen island.

Cables stretching across the entire ceiling with carefully arranged light bulbs are very chic, and bare metal wall fixtures and brackets blend in perfectly with white or bare brick walls and exposed pipes and ducting.

5. Appliances and aged surfaces

The choice of kitchen appliances is vast, but modern European appliance classics in stainless steel or black work well in an industrial setting – what you’re after is the chunky, engineered look. Old wood floors, natural stone or even concrete blend in best – the concrete can be treated and polished – and for contrast, some rough sisal rugs can be scattered around the room.

Bare brick walls work well, but you could also paint these to leave the brickwork texture showing underneath. The walls behind the cooktop or sink could be tiled with small rustic tiles – just like the tube station tiles. Combine metal surfaces with wooden ones for a great contrast, for instance, metal ceilings with wooden floors, or even the other way around.

6. Décor ideas

When it comes to the kitchen décor, why not mix stainless steel with leather furniture, incorporate bar stools, metal floor lamps, reclaimed wood for your kitchen island and shelves, and black or stainless steel appliances. These all add to that factory or industrial feel. Here are a few more ideas:

Iron and timber stools – Bar stools of cast iron or steel-based stools with wooden seats

Desk – an old desk done up and roughly painted, gives you another surface top and will blend in perfectly with the industrial theme

Sofas and chairs – If you have the space, a distressed leather sofa, two chairs and a low rustic coffee table make a great addition in an area away from the food preparation

Table and chairs – How about a rustic wooden table with two timber benches?

Steel racks – Look out for an old office steel storage rack and position this up against a wall

Miscellaneous – Old travel trunks, wooden wine boxes and old-fashioned drinks trolleys of wood and glass make great industrial kitchen accessories.

7. Lighting

Spacious kitchens with high ceilings are perfect for pendant lighting – big, heavy industrial lights with large shades in glass or metal work beautifully, while smaller spaces work better with more delicate lights like the old-fashioned Edison bulbs. Keep your eye out for fittings of chrome, glass, black, copper, wood, and brushed steel.

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