For the most part, home owners choose kitchen styles that fit with the local geography. Here in the Southwest, it’s not uncommon to see farmhouse and rustic as a throw-back to territorial days. Modern and contemporary are also popular but they fit in anywhere. Around Arizona, you really can’t go wrong with any of these styles.

But what if you love a style normally found by the sea?

Homes located by large bodies of water tend to reflect a nautical theme which includes beach and Mediterranean style kitchens. They do have distinct differences but you might be surprised at how many features they share with farmhouse, rustic and contemporary kitchens.

For example:

Reclaimed wood is a feature of rustic, farmhouse and Mediterranean kitchens. Rustic is the most rough and worn while farmhouse is characterized by distressed wood. Mediterranean also uses wood, usually a dark rich wood such as walnut. The differences come with how much texture and color the woods display.

What distinguishes Mediterranean from the others are colorful tiles, curving arches and natural fibers that include leather. It also incorporates materials with patina such as brick, stone and reclaimed wood.

Both contemporary and modern kitchens use a lot of white. As defined in “What distinguishes modern from contemporary kitchens?,” both feature clean, smooth appearances with minimal detail and adornment. Some of the same applies to beach which is also a bright, open style.

 What differentiates beach are the natural textures like jute, sea grass and rattan; plus nautical themes for lighting.

In today’s customized world, home owners bring the style they prefer to wherever they live. Since so many characteristics are shared by more than one kitchen style, it’s no problem to make your setting adapt to what you truly desire. In fact, it’s a great way to define your individual personality and taste.