Refreshing our kitchen had been on our to-do list for at least five years, which gave me a lot of time to thing about what I wanted.
Here’s a before shot, looking from the eating area into the kitchen.
The bones of the kitchen were good, but the surfaces were worn and dated. They included:
- Popcorn ceiling
- White laminate countertops
- Fruit wallpaper in jewel tones
There was also a big fluorescent light box that needed to go. The opening was ever slightly too big for the plastic panels, which were prone to come crashing down at random times.
Here’s the after pic of that same view.
The changes we made included:
- New textured ceiling
- Granite countertops in Giallo Ornamental
- Wallpaper replaced with paint (Benjamin Moore Beigewood)
- Cabinets repainted (Benjamin Moore White Dove)
- Lanterns replacing the box light over the island (we also added more canned lights and new under cabinet lighting)
Here’s the before view from the kitchen into the eating area.
And here’s the after. This light fixture was changed out. We also discovered that, once the wooden blinds were removed, we liked the windows that way. I put up drapery panels on rings that can be closed when we want privacy, but usually they’re open like this to take better advantage of the view.
It’s difficult to see in the picture below, but another problem we had was that the refrigerator opening was too short for many fridges and the cabinet area to the right of it did not have the best design; it had mostly become a dumping ground.
So the existing refrigerator cabinet was raised up a few inches and crown moulding was added at the bottom to accommodate a taller fridge. That also created a height differential between the refrigerator cabinet and the cabinet next to it, which I thought created some interest.
Speaking of the cabinet area to the right of the refrigerator, it was re-worked to be more efficient. We gained some shelving, a microwave space, and an additional drawer.
Another other area we had re-worked was the island. Our contractor decided it was easier to just pull out the old one and re-build it vs. trying to work with what we had.
Our new island is about six inches longer than the old, but the big score was organized storage. Hallelujah! Our old island was one big jumble of pots and pats. Now we have a couple of pull-out drawers instead.
I also requested some vertical storage for cutting boards, cookie sheets, etc.
We had them replace the sliding door on our appliance garage (the one that pretty much took two hands to operate) with a regular cabinet door matching the rest of our cabinets.
By the way, I had a couple of contractors tell me it would be nearly impossible to match the doors we had. They suggested refacing or replacing all of our cabinets. While that would have been nice, it wasn’t in the budget. And the cabinets we had were mostly fine. We kept interviewing contractors until we found one that was on board with what we wanted to do.
The rest of the changes were pretty cosmetic and were made to add some character to the space. I had glass put in the cabinets on either side of the sink.
That turned out to be a pretty simple change done by a woodworking shop. I saved the wood sections that they took out in case I – or a future homeowner – want to replace them.
We had crown moulding put around the entire kitchen.
Also, new cabinet hardware.
A champagne bucket – bought at an estate sale – and pressed into service as a utensil holder.
These plates I begged off my Mom ;), but she originally bought them at Target.
Most of these pictures were taken last winter, but having lived with it a year, we still really love the result.
Related post: No-Sew Kitchen Cafe Curtains.