Kitchen Dreaming (and a little scheming)

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Hello and happy Tuesday! We are hibernating at home for yet another day because C came down with a yucky cold at the end of last week. So far she's been fever free for 12 hours or so and is in pretty good spirits, so I'm hoping she stays that way and continues to improve. Seeing your kids sick, even when it's just a cold, is never fun.

Today I wanted to talk about kitchen makeovers! When we moved into our new house a year and a half ago, it was everything we were looking for: 4 bedrooms, family-friendly/open layout, unfinished basement for lots of storage and Steve's projects, fenced backyard, close-knit and safe neighborhood with great neighbors, garage, porch, neutral colors throughout... the list goes on! And to this day, we only feel happier and more at home here. C just said to me the other day as we pulled into our garage "Mommy I love our home. It's perfect for us!" If that's not a seal of approval, I don't know what is. :)

However. There's one room that is a bit of an eyesore, and it's the kitchen. It's completely livable and most people don't seem to bat an eye, but let's just say it projects "1998" (when the house was built)... quite loudly. Actually, when we bought the house, the kitchen had gold sponge-paint walls. Yep, you read that right! We had the kitchen, dining room, and family room walls painted before we even moved in (kitchen/family room are both Pale Oak by Benjamin Moore and the dining room wall above the white wainscoting is Shale by Benjamin Moore) -- which helped enormously. But the floors are a yellowed linoleum with a hunter green diamond pattern, and our cabinets are stained cherry and not in very good shape. Our appliances are old, ill-fitted white appliances (again, somewhat yellowed - attractive!). The counters are actually in pretty good shape but are the original vinyl. 

I'm not sure about your family, but mine spends a ton of time in the kitchen. It's open to our family room, and we are in and out of both rooms all day. We eat all of our meals in our kitchen, the girls color on the floor, we cook and entertain and talk about our days there. And so, I'd love it to feel more like "us." Here's the challenge: I'd love it to feel more like us without spending our entire savings. ;) So I've been sort of obsessed with searching out high-quality, yet budget-conscious materials that will really make a beautiful impact in our kitchen. I think I have a pretty good idea of what we want, but if you've used anything in your kitchen that you're really happy with, I'd love to hear!

So here's the initial plan, subject to change:

-New floor: I'm leaning toward a light, neutral tile floor (we have wood and wood laminate throughout most of the downstairs so I feel another wood would be too hard to match).

-New countertops: Our kitchen gets a blinding amount of natural light, so I'm thinking of going darker with the counters -- I love this rich, walnut butcher block counter top option. 

-New cabinets: So far, I've heard nothing but positive reviews about Ikea cabinets so that's the way we're leaning right now. Most likely this white Bodbyn style, which will offset the more deeply colored counter tops.

-New sink: Love this affordable farmhouse, apron front sink.

-New fixtures and cabinet hardware: Yet to be decided. Would you do stainless or bronze accents with the white cabinets and maple counters?

-New stainless steel appliances: Hoping to buy as a bundle during a big sale so they will all match and we'll get the best deal. 

-Other touches: I'd love a little open shelving and under cabinet lighting.

Here's a total "before" picture of our kitchen from the listing of the house in 2016:

And here's some inspiration (check out my Home Sweet Home pinterest board for lots of home prettiness): 

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If you've undergone a kitchen makeover, I'd love to hear about your experience and if there are any great tips you have!  


  1. I had similar problems. Old, but great wood cabinets, linoleum floors, vinyl counter tops, old appliances that sometimes didn't work (double oven and only one worked), dark and just old. Like 1960s old. We redid our kitchen about a year and a half ago. It was a long process and so hard with my girls, but I love my kitchen now. I wrote several posts on it.

    There are others I can send you as well.

    1. I'm reeeally nervous to re-do it with little kids, but at the same time - might as well enjoy it with the family for as long as possible, right?! Thanks for sharing those links... I'll definitely check them out! :)

  2. Sorry to hear C is ill - it is dreadful getting a cold this time of year - makes you feel like winter won't end! Good to hear the fever has gone though - it is always worrying when your child has a high temp and such a relief when they come out of it! Your pinterest ideas for your kitchen are beauties - if our cats hadn't been so destructive we were also going for the painted white and the dark walnut tops with a Belfast sink - it is such a stylish, classic look. What I learned recently from my budget kitchen revamp is that a great way to save money without compromising on looks is having the fake wood top. My dream was solid wood all the way but the wood effect top looks identical, almost feels the same and is way more durable (i.e. anything hot, water etc) and a fraction of the price of real wood. Having mostly base units with shelving on the top has been a great choice for us - cut the price and half and has made the kitchen feel way less cluttered and claustrophobic (we did have a small space though). Will love following this project of yours - best of luck, you are off to a great start! Joanne x

    1. Thank you so much, friend! You're SO right about sickness at the tail end of the season -- it just adds to the feeling that winter is dragging its heels. It's great to hear about your experience renovating and thanks for those tips! I love the way your kitchen turned out. :)


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