Aug. 8, 2018
I never thought I'd say this, you guys, but I love my kitchen!
And no, we didn't move! We finally got around to the updates that took our 90's kitchen from dated-golden-oak-palooza to lovely, farmhouse charm. I knew going into this project that it was going to be a huge improvement, but I didn't realize the full impact and thought that later down the road when money allows I might still want to do the full-tear down project. But I don't think so now. The kitchen is officially my favorite room in our house and I am so in love and excited to get cooking in there!
I'm posting the before pictures at the very bottom of this post because I'd hate for them to be the first thing you see. We'll get there, but for now you'll just have to take my word for it: It was bad.
The biggest updates that we completed included new hardwood flooring throughout our main-level, adding trim to the island and peninsula, and having everything painted. I'll talk about the floors in a different post coming up soon (so like us on Facebook so you see it as soon as it's live!) so I'll focus more on the other, kitchen-specific updates in this post.
I've mentioned Shade Brothers' Painting before as they painted the exterior of our home last year. Finally having them back out to finish up the interior was a great experience, and after completing the enormous diy painting of a cabinet in our upstairs bathroom myself, I have a very deep appreciation for the ease of working with them and the professional, beautiful job they did. The finish on the cabinet upstairs that I did myself doesn't even come close.
I had selected a crisp white for the trim throughout the house and wanted the cabinets to match, so selecting that color was easy. However, I knew I wanted a contrasting color on the Island, which is a trend I am seeing everywhere right now and am obsessed with! I selected a warm, light grey so the contrast is somewhat subtle, but it ties in perfectly with the dark countertops, grey tile-backsplash, and stainless steel appliances that we already had.
Dan Kelley from 20 for $20 Handyman Service was great to work with and was able to fill in the gaps between the other contractors we hired for for this project. He helped me design and install the trim on the cabinets, installed the new Pfister faucet, and completed a variety of other jobs around the house. It's actually kind of dangerous having his number programmed into my phone because now every time there's something that I don't want to do myself, he's just a text away!
Speaking of that faucet...
Yeah I know- it's pretty.
We've been updating the hardware throughout our home over the last two years and added cabinet pulls in oil rubbed bronze a few months back. At the time, I was hoping that adding the new hardware would give the kitchen enough of a facelift to tide us over, but that obviously didn't work. I picked the pulls up at Lowes and love that they are very simple yet rustic.
This faucet on the other hand, is anything but simple. It's called the Ashfield 1-Handle Pull-Down Kitchen Faucet. It's commercial grade, yet features elegant detailing, and is one of only a few faucets available in this lovely rustic bronze. Pfister also offers a tuscan bronze, which is more like the oil-rubbed bronze finish that you see in the rest of our home. It's lovely, but when I saw the rustic, speckled finish I was in love! The look is vintage, rustic and modern-farmhouse all at once and is basically a work of art. The deep, rich bronze and browns also really coordinate with the dark countertop and backsplash in a way that no nickel faucet could ever compete with.
It's weird to say that I don't even hate doing the dishes anymore because I'm so enamored by this faucet. I'm full of phrases I never thought I'd say today!
Dated in appearance, yes, that was the main thing we were looking to resolve. However, I was also getting frustrated with what felt like a deficit in usability to me. Likely partially due to the fact that I have kids who like to play in and rearrange cabinets, this kitchen has felt so disorganized and chaotic to me since we moved in. I can never find anything! And as a Realtor, looking at modern, functional kitchens in beautiful new construction homes for clients has been almost more than I could bear!
Knape & Vogt to the rescue!
I had to include the picture above showing four empty cabinets, because those were jammed full of the most disorganized pot and pan disaster you've ever seen. What used to fill up all four of those cabinets now fits into one with this wonderful pull-out Pot and Pan Caddy organizer. I actually installed it myself and it was super easy. The hardest step is finding the patience for your drill to charge (note that I'm using a regular old screwdriver).
I'm getting a kick out of the fact that people now have to ask me where our trash is. For the longest time we had one of those big stainless steel, step on trashcans that was functional to an extent, but was so obvious it was like we had it on display and held so much trash that my kitchen always smelled like diapers. So no, I don't miss it.
Installing the WUSC Series Pulll-out Trashcan was easy too, although a few more steps since I picked one that you attach to the cabinet door. Well, mine had the additional step of modifying a shelf inside the cabinet which I didn't take into account when I took measurements. Turned out to be a pretty easy fix- I sawed it in half so the trash can pull-out could have one side of the cabinet, and the neighboring cabinet that is connected on the inside still has a shelf and is unaffected. Knape & Vogt also sells trashcans that pull out separately from the door, but I love the one-step access and the soft-close feature! I also love having the trash and recycling both right next to my sink where I do a ton of prep-work.
While the paint, floors and faucet were a huge transformation in the appearance of our kitchen, these organizers have had the biggest impact in how our kitchen actually feels. My kitchen now feels like I can actually cook in here. It feels like I can find things. It feels like a custom kitchen that was built just for me. And not to be overly dramatic here, which I admit that I can be sometimes, but it makes me feel like a better mom because I now look forward to getting up in the morning and making my family waffles in this kitchen. This is how all kitchens should feel, isn't it?
And because no kitchen should ever be complete without pictures of adorable little kids eating watermelon, I have to give a high five to Colorado small business, Sage Ranch Company that made these beautiful rustic frames. Distressed white handmade frames hanging from rustic black chains couldn't match the finishes in my new kitchen better. Adding pictures of my kids in the breakfast nook was the finishing touch the kitchen needed to make it feel like it was ours and it feels so nice to have this project done!
Okay, here come the before pictures, brace yourselves!
Yeah, it was a little orange!