Natural materials meet a contemporary color scheme in Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes' textured kitchen

Clean, textured kitchens are an ever-lasting trend, according to experts

Ryan Gosling
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Is there a better combination than white and wood? Versatile, warm, modern, and classic, this duo has staying power for a reason; it works everywhere from the bedroom, where wooden bed frames can contrast white walls, to the kitchen, where white cabinetry looks effortless amongst wooden countertops. 

Eva Mendes is an ambassador of the latter camp; in a recent Instagram post, the actor shared a mini house tour, showing off the living and dining areas of her and husband Ryan Gosling's home. The white and wood runs throughout, from the kitchen to the sitting area, which features white walls and mid-century modern wood seats.

According to experts, the reason white and wood work so well together is because they're the perfect combination of textural detail with a calm, pleasing color.

'The key with a neutral kitchen is to pair cabinetry with contrasting walls and textural elements,' says Tom Howley, design director at the eponymous kitchen company. 'This will give the design an edge and create appealing visual interest. If your kitchen cabinets are crisp white or cream, you could opt for a contrasting walnut finish for the racks and shelving within. Choose a smoky wood finish for the internal shelving for a stylish edge.'

Tom Howley
Tom Howley

Tom Howley founded the luxury British kitchen brand in 2004. With showrooms across the country, Tom Howley specialize in fitting beautiful, bespoke kitchen designs crafted from the finest materials.

To enhance the visual interest of white and wood even further, Tom suggests incorporating multiple hues into the design scheme. 

'Soft shades of warm whites and earthy beige work well on their own but even better when used in a two-tone scheme,' he says. 'If you're using lighter colors to enhance your space, then try painting your walls in the same shade; this will focus your eye on the whole area, allowing it to feel larger and lighter.'

White kitchen with wood island

A kitchen with a similar aesthetic to Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes' space

(Image credit: Pluck)

To top it all off, consider how the room is lit; this is make or break in ensuring the ambiance remains warm with an airy feel (bonus points for big windows that allow natural light to stream through).

'Timeless neutrals are susceptible to change, depending on the light available,' Tom explains. 'We consider where natural light is coming from and how task lighting will create varying shades. Use lighting to your advantage and choose a combination of colors that look fresh in the day but warm and inviting at night.'

Hannah Ziegler
News Editor

Hannah is Homes & Gardens’ News Editor, with a focus on celebrity style and entertainment content. She got her start in media as a digital editorial assistant at ELLE Canada, and has since written about lifestyle and culture for publications such as Nylon and i-D.


Her love of film is rivalled only by one with a great soundtrack, and she hopes to someday decorate a Nancy Meyers-worthy kitchen.