There’s no straightforward definition of eclectic design, but chances are, you know it when you see it. An eclectic style can be seen in a kitchen through patterned backsplashes, plenty of plants, unique light fixtures, worldly touches, and perhaps a wild wallpaper or two. Maybe there are open shelves that show off vintage trinkets and personalized touches. There are likely lots of natural materials, like wood and tile.
Whatever an eclectic-style kitchen means to you, it should show off your personality—and lots of it. Scroll on for 13 eclectic-style kitchens that you can steal styling notes from, whether it’s a retro-looking stove, a pretty patterned tile, or simply the abandon and freedom used in decorating.
Add Elements from Various Eras
For her own eclectic-style kitchen, Lindsey Jamison, partner and lead designer of Colorado-based Rumor Designs, mixed and matched different design elements from a wide range of eras.
"My goal was to establish an eclectic kitchen by adding touches of design elements through a variety of eras and styles,” she says. “Mixing design elements, using bold colors, and graphic patterns all while making the selections flow together is key.”
That meant pairing a bold red refrigerator (a throwback to ‘50s style) with wallpaper resembling ‘80s graphics, a mid-century modern island with tapered legs, and a vintage traditional rug. Eclectic kitchen achieved.
Highlight Natural Materials
Leave it to interior designer extraordinaire Leanne Ford to create the kitchen of anyone and everyone's dreams, no matter your style. For this design, she used Native Trails’ Farmhouse 3018 sink as a focal point, which, when paired with the wooden elements, makes for an eclectic-style feel. It makes doing the dishes not such a drag too.
Go Bold With a Backsplash
Take a cue from this Unique Kitchens and Bath-designed space. The patterned tile backsplash extends from the countertop to the ceiling for a burst of fun without being too loud; it's subdued with natural features, like the wood beams, and luxe materials, like the marble countertops. The overall effect is part farmhouse, part contemporary, and a touch eclectic.
Veer Retro With Your Appliances
Buying a new oven is no small purchase, but if you're in the market for one and want to embrace eclectic style fully, a retro-looking one from Big Chill would be a show-stopper. The colorful appliances bring a vintage vibe with all the modern features.
Display Your Collected Treasures
In this kitchen, Sarah Fischer of Sarah & Sons Interiors highlighted vintage items, like the 1950s wood tool bench-turned-island and ruffled milk glass pendants, which particularly pop against the sleek black-painted counter stools and a steel and glass shelving unit.
“Overall, you get the sense that these items were gathered over time and repurposed, which is as eclectic as it gets,” Fischer says.
Play With Color
Eclectic style can be defined in many different ways, but one thing it's not is all white, all the time. If you're not afraid of a little (or a lot) of bold color, take notes from this kitchen by Danielle Nagel of Dazey Den. She matched the peachy-pink tone of the tile with the walls with the barstools for a tone-on-tone kitchen that is anything but boring.
Utilize Modest Materials
“This is our version of a cottage kitchen that had a glow-up, without losing the charm,” designer Peter Spalding says. When he renovated this late colonial revival house in Portland, he focused on humble materials—like a metal pegboard, stainless appliances, and basket weave barstools—to achieve this eclectic-style kitchen.
“The result is a contemporary kitchen with nods to the past,” he says. “The punchy colors against a warm white backdrop make it instantly appealing to the eye without compromising the functionality a kitchen needs.”
Show Off Your Colorful Glassware Collection
Open shelves are great. Open shelves that put your personal style on display are even better. Stephanie Watkins of Casa Watkins Living knows. She arranged her glassware, ceramics, and little trinkets by color for a pop of eclectic-style fun.
Add a Little Glitz
For the design of her eclectic kitchen, Home Remedies founder Rachel Ambrose drew inspiration from her parents’ wedding china.
“My parents were married in 1962, and I decided that not only was I going to use that china as my everyday ware, but that 1962 would be the inspiration for the décor of my new place," she explains. That influence can be seen in color (a lot of color), texture, and those I Dream of Jeannie-like gold pendants.
Get Creative With Storage
No matter how big or small your kitchen is, smart storage is always key to staying sane while whipping up dinner. For easy access to your most used utensils, like measuring cups, a whisk, and a potholder, take inspiration from Karen Emile of Milk and Honey Life. She installed a rod and S-hook system that's not only practical, but happens to look cool too.
Forget Tiled Backsplash
While most backsplashes are comprised of tile, if you're not much of a cook and aren't worried about cleaning spaghetti sauce splatters, think outside the (tiled) box. Mani of Afro Bohemian Living paired a clean wooden backsplash with a wide, earthy tapestry instead. It's a little rustic, a little eccentric, and a little (of course) eclectic style.
There are no rules with eclectic style, so you can mix and match patterns and textiles to your maximalist-loving heart's desire. K Shan Design did just that in this energetic kitchen, mixing a palm wallpaper with graphic tiled flooring, offbeat artwork, and a vintage rug.
Add Textured Light Fixtures
To contrast an otherwise sleek white kitchen, add an eclectic-style touch with textured pendants, like these woven shades from Globe Electric. They add character, soften the light, and cost just $60 each. Win/win/win.