Let's talk appliance colors

I’m in the market for a new dishwasher. All my appliances are white.

I am discovering that, in narrowing my preferences to white, I am severely limiting my options. I believe there is an appliance shortage in general, and my outdated color scheme ain’t helping.

Stainless steel, which I thought was already yesterday’s color, dominates the choices. There is a darker, “black stainless steel” that I like, but I wonder how challenging that would be to match when my new dishwasher’s older siblings decide to crap out.

Which brings me to my main question: Do most folks consider it a major faux pas to have mis-matched appliance colors? There is no need to replace my white fridge, microwave, or oven at this time, and my dishwasher-of-color will stick out like a bruised nose.

Or will it?

Personally, I could not care less. But someone I live with :slight_smile: has qualms about a gradual changeover from white.


As long as it’s not avocado I’m fine with it.

Can you still get appliances in “avocado” or “harvest gold”?

Are your kitchen cabinets white? What about your kitchen table? Floor? Unless your entire kitchen is in a single uniform shade, something is going to stand out. You have to look at an appliance in the context of the kitchen as a whole, not just relative to other appliances.

Or you can say “fuck it” and just buy something that works. Unless you have a Better Homes and Gardens photoshoot lined up, who cares if your kitchen is color-coordinated?

Cabinets are natural maple, floor is pretty much like this:


We’re in the same boat. Nice, classic white appliances. AND we have to fit them in a tiny kitchen. Our options are slim, and we just bought a smaller dishwasher because it was the only one that would fit, that was white.

But dammit, white is classic.

It’s clean. And it’s not some nouveau-riche “color” like brushed stainless steel. (Sorry, but I always picture soulless yuppies saying “Let’s try to look like we’ve ‘made it’ by filling our kitchen with granite countertops and his ‘n’ hers industrial-strength juicers , and stainless everywhere we can put it!” “Awright, Muffy, I’ll write the check, babe…”)

Stick with white. Or get all new appliances if you truly love the look of metal.

Can’t go wrong sticking with white. Stainless if you want a contrast that matches cabinet hardware and your sink.
Avoid the black stainless. Basically stainless with a black coating and when it scratches leaves very very noticeable silver scratches.

We have some stainless, but when we redid our kitchen a few years back I picked a white microwave/vent hood combe, because I liked it better with the white cabinets. It’s a shiny, sleek white, not the old pebbly white of my childhood. When we replace our dishwasher, I’d like to find one with that finish, but I have no idea if it will be available.

That’s the thing about basic white, as well as stainless steel once it gained enough popularity. They are available enough that you can match them years after your last purchase, and in many cases you can even mix and match – our stainless steel appliances are not all the same brand, but look fine together.

My preference has always been white. I keep saying that someday stainless steel is going to go out of style, and when that happens it’s going to look just as dated as avocado and harvest gold. Whereas white never looks dated. But it seems like stainless steel has stuck around for a long time, longer than I would have expected. So I’m starting to wonder if maybe I’m wrong. Is stainless steel the new white perhaps?

I bought white appliances when I moved into my house, partly because of what I said above, but mostly because the house came with a white gas range and the sink is white enamel, and I wanted the rest of the appliances to match them.

My appliances, bought three years ago are stainless gray or greige, it’s a gray brown tone that is warmer looking than stainless or white while still being neutral. It’s not a matter for me of my appliances matching. Personally, I don’t care much, as long as they work. But it is done for resale value. It not only looks more “put together” but can give the impression of care to potential buyers of the home.

Our original appliances, installed in 2004, were all “biscuit” - what I used to call almond. When our fridge died and we had to get an immediate replacement, we got white because it was in stock at a local store. I figure when the dishwasher dies (probably the next to go) it’s going to be white. And same when the stove and microwave eventually crap out. But in the interim, I don’t care. And even if I noticed someone had different colors for their kitchen appliances, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t care about that either. I know it matters to some people. I’m not one of those people.

White, black, or stainless all seem like pretty safe choices to me.

You can buy new front panels for some brands of appliances.

I’ve seen decorators do that on HGTV shows. I like wood grain panels. Real wood. Not fake plastic.

Harvest Gold is a great color. I wish it would become available again.

I’m very glad black is no longer popular. I never understood using a color that shows scratches and fingerprints.

Yup, there’s been an explosion on retro themed appliances starting from Smeg and now expanding into other major manufacturers. eg: Kitchenaid just launched a brand new range of appliances in retro styles including one colored “Avocado Cream”. No Harvest Gold though.

As the one who cared, when our dishwasher died, I didn’t want a mismatched one and washed dishes by hand until a white one that suited our needs came available.

Hubs would have (has had) bought appliances by price and performance factors without considering how our kitchen would look.

Okay, fess up. Someone here had to buy those red appliances I see everywhere. Who was it? Also, show pics, please.

When we did our apartment (NY), we wanted the most choices so we stayed with white.

Same here. I grew up in a house where nothing matched—not even the plates, silverware, etc. so it doesn’t occur to me to think along those lines.

Mrs. L bought this place with mismatched appliances. As we updated etc. we ended up gravitating to stainless steel so they would all match.

It makes me wonder, though. Some car manufacturers might offer “Polar White” and another might be “Arctic White” etc. Does a white Frigidaire match a white GE etc.? To keep your whites the same, do you have to stick to one brand?

Please, don’t give them any ideas!

I don’t know, but I have heard people refer to the shade of white typically found on rental cars and other fleet vehicles as “Appliance White” (although I’m sure the car manufacturers don’t actually call it that).

We also had unmatched stuff growing up. I saw homes with matching stuff and thought it was pretty special. Hubs and I did our time decorating in Early American Poverty, but finally were able to start paying attention to how things looked awhile back.

I can still remember how special it felt when we bought an entire set of matching flatware AND a drawer organizer, then donated all of the mismatched stuff. That was years ago, but there are still days when I look at our nicely organized, matching flatware drawer and think “Yeah, we finally made it.”

Hubs doesn’t feel that way, he goes along because we still love each other and want each other to be happy. If I die first, I totally expect him to buy a red appliance just because it was on clearance and matched his specs.