Whew! It’s been six months since we started working in our kitchen. The kitchen plan was simple – lighting, painted cabinets, and paint walls/trim. You can read all about our initial plans here. Easy right? The work started at the very end of December and within a month we were getting quotes for countertops and thinking about tile. Yep, our remodel snowballed and looking back it was the right thing to do.
In addition to the above changes, we decided to demo more items in the kitchen, including the sink and countertops. We also added a tile backsplash, a custom butcher-block island, and a built-in banquette, to the design plan. We already had ceramic tile flooring installed a few years back, so these “snowball” changes would transform the whole kitchen. But that meant a lot of work was in store. Here is the updated design board that represents all of the changes that we wanted to do in the kitchen.
So we slowly started moving forward with the updated changes. We got quotes for countertops, an island, countertops, and a tile backsplash. Of course, we still took on the big task of painting all 50+ cabinets and bases. Brandon took off a few days in December and helped me start the cabinet painting process. That was a lot of work and I’l be sharing more on that soon. I’m just happy to be over the hump with that project! Will I ever paint cabinets again? Not anytime soon, but I’ll never say NEVER.
Here’s some before pictures of the kitchen. The lighting was subpar, the cabinets were dark brown, the countertops were dated, the cooktop was rusted, and the big green cast iron sink had seen better days. Over the years, we’ve replaced the all-fridge, all-freezer, the flooring, and the dishwasher. However, the kitchen was really in need of a lot of upgrades.
So, after many months and a surgery, which I recovered from for two of those months, we got the space to 95% completion! Brandon was able to help me a few times, however, I took over the day-to-day-decision for the kitchen. Let’s be honest – I wouldn’t have it any other way. Ha! I picked Vicostone Carrara quartz countertops, a sink, a range hood, cooktop, greige subway tile for the backsplash, final paint colors, a kitchen faucet, and all the lighting. Sounds simple, but it was a lot of work! I was so stressed some days. I love our home and wanted to make the right choices.
In spite of the few items left on the to-do list, I felt like it was time to share a big reveal with you. The cabinets are painted, tile backsplash is done, the lighting project is done, the walls are painted, as well as the island and banquette are complete too. It’s been nice to see the project come to life. Here’s some after pictures of the kitchen remodel, taken by Stacie Gordon of WhimsyClo Photography.
The cabinets and bases are painted SW Mindful Gray. It took testing several gray colors to find the right gray. I learned a lot about using the color gray in my home and I will definitely use this color again. The gold knobs are from Amazon and were easily installed by Brandon. The gold adds a nice touch and you’ll notice the gold color in the lights and the food scale.
We’ve always wanted an island in this kitchen. Previously, we used 2 wine barrels (from one of my previous businesses) and put a wood top on it. That served as an island for a few years. We also had a table in the middle of the kitchen before too! But this island that our talented carpenter built far exceeds my expectations. It has a beautiful butcher block top, storage for appliances, and an inset area for bar stools. It’s multi-functional and we love it so much! I painted the island base SW Midnight Owl and the butcher block came from Lowe’s. The bar stools are a Dirt Cheap find.
The banquette area has changed so much. Previously, we used a bench, table, and chairs to create an eat-in area. It worked well, but in the back of mind I always knew this space needed a pendant light and a built-in banquette. I’m happy to report that’s what’s now in the space. Our carpenter built a custom banquette bench for us. It even has storage so we can store the pillows when not needed. It was so much fun seeing that custom piece come to life. To spruce up the banquette area, I added two new dining chairs, two linen pillows, along with two chunky rust-colored pillows.
We’ve been having the Pier 1 dining table for about 2 years and it fits perfectly in the space. The framed canvas artwork and gold round mirror are from the Project 62 line at Target. Artwork, pillows, and a mirror make the banquette a cozy part of our home. We use it everyday for eating, school work, and entertaining guests. I’m just smitten with this space!
Originally, there was a set of cabinets with a built-in microwave next to the fridge area. When we were getting countertops they removed the cabinets. We hadn’t taken this into consideration and decided to leave the cabinets off. Now we have extra countertop space and open shelving to display kitchen items. This area is now our coffee area too! I’m so glad we didn’t put the chunky cabinets back in this space. It’s a happy mistake that we pivoted nicely.
One more before and after…
Well, after ten years, our kitchen looks so much better! So what’s left? We have to replace a piece of crown molding around the range hood, touch-up trim/paint around the bottom of the cabinet bases, find a double-oven (that isn’t out of stock for 3 months), and do some ceiling paint touch-ups. With proper planning, it should take us approximately one day to finish those tasks. However, the transformation has happened and I’m so happy to cook in this kitchen.
Thanks so much for following along in my Instagram stories as we took on this project. Thanks to the amazing friends and professionals who helped us with lighting, custom woodwork, tile, and advice.
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