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  1. We built a house that was completed in May 2016. Choosing everything was pretty much up to me because it was hard for my husband to get off work to go to the builder’s design center. This is the second time I had to do this! He was happy with all of my choices. He isn’t a fan of the white cabinets and when we saw a model home with the espresso cabinets, he did like that, so that is what we did. I did go with light counter tops though, and a light color back splash. My stepdaughter did go with white cabinets in hers and the gray island and the dark hardwood. But like you, I think of the gray being a design fad but I also think the white island makes the kitchen way too white, especially with the lighter color floors. But if those were my choices, I’d go for the gray island and dark hardwood now that I’ve seen it in my stepdaughter’s house.

    Just wait until you have to choose paint colors. The builder just uses crappy flat paint that is sprayed on, so before we moved in, we had the whole house painted. It took me forever to decide on colors and painting always makes me nervous because it never turns out the way I am expecting! This time I am happy with everything except for the color in our foyer, hallway, and great room. This is because I wanted something neutral, couldn’t decide and my husband rushed me into choosing something the painter said a lot of her clients have chosen. Unfortunately, this paint looks pink at certain times of the day and I hate it! After that, I took my ever loving sweet time choosing the rest of the colors!

  2. I would do the grey island (that is really easy to change down the road if you want to mix it up). But I would definitely NOT do grey hardwoods! (If you’re worried about grey island cabinets, then choosing the most expensive thing in the house- the hardwoods- in grey is bold and I wouldn’t do it!) I personally love the light brown, but if you love dark brown then go with that again! The browns are classic and “go” with everything!
    And I love the porcelain farmhouse apron front sink. The stainless scratches easily and it never really “looks” clean. The porcelain is a much better look! (I’ve had both!) I would also look into getting cabinet fronts for some/all your appliances if you really want all the white cabinets on the perimeter to be the focus.
    The white quartz that is made to look like marble is great! Marble is so high maintenance! I know it’s great for baking, but unless you have an area that is just for baking I’d stick with something less porous! Also, I’m seeing a lot of butcher block sections on islands for cutting- it’s a fun feature, is very practical, and adds warmth if you decide to go with the all white kitchen! Good luck, and congrats!

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