You guys. My kitchen is done. FINALLY. Only four months and six days after we sprung that darn leak. (But who’s counting?) Now, the actual rebuild didn’t take that long. That was only about a month. The other three months and six days were spent getting all the water damage dried out, testing for mold, then going back and forth … and back and forth … and back and forth with our insurance company. In the end, we had to pony up a little extra money out of pocket, since the original kitchen was a total builder’s grade and we wanted some extra upgrades, but it was so worth the wait. Because I LOVE IT.
I’m so excited to share these pictures with you, along with my design inspiration and details about the finishes. I know I personally poured over Pinterest and Houzz looking for ideas, and I loved it when actual materials like brands of tiles and paint colors were listed, because it made it that much easier for me to steal … I mean, replicate … the ideas.
First of all, here’s what the kitchen looked like before. Sure, there are tons of way worse kitchens and technically ours wasn’t THAT BAD. In fact, the hubz even saw this “before” photo and said, “Our kitchen really wasn’t terrible.” I agree, it wasn’t bad. But it was a Monet kitchen. You know … it looks good from far away, but up close it’s a total mess. The builder’s grade cabinets had been shoddily painted bright white—the paint job was so bad, I could scrape it off with my fingernail—and I hated the black granite. Plus, the travertine-wannabe tile backsplash was so not my jam.
So yeah, I wasn’t at all sad when we had to start from scratch. What I did like about the old kitchen was the light-colored cabinets. I’ve long been a huge fan of white kitchens, so I wanted to keep that element. What I didn’t want, however, was a PURE white kitchen. I’m a much bigger fan of off-white, to soften things up. (And actually, we almost got a pure white kitchen … more about that later!). I knew I also wanted to do a classic Shaker cabinet, a light colored granite and some kind of subway tiled backsplash.
I combed hundreds of Pinterest boards to get my inspiration. Our first big decision was the flooring. The previous owners installed laminate in a reddish-brown color I absolutely abhorred. (Unfortunately, we still have that floor in our two bathrooms upstairs!) I;m also not a huge fan of having wood floors in the kitchen, at least not with the way we splash around doing dishes. Our contractor proposed a wood-look tile, and once we visited his showroom and saw how realistic-looking they can be, we were sold. I mean, ours actually looks like scraped hardwood! Unfortunately, I don’t know the exact brand and style of the floors. I’ll try to find out, though!
Next was countertops. I would have loved a Carrera marble, but I’ve read mixed reviews on their durability. So instead I was looking for something with a similar feeling of lightness. I wandered and wandered around the granite warehouse looking for something I liked, but couldn’t find anything. In fact, I came THIS CLOSE to picking a grey quartz, but the hubz didn’t love it. Luckily, one of the granite warehouse workers showed me an option that was similar to the Super White granite I was eyeing on Pinterest. I’m honestly not sure what the style of our granite is called, as it was prefab (our kitchen is such a simple shape that it saved us a bunch of money to prefab versus slab), but it’s comparable to a White Galaxy granite.
The granite has these beautify taupey-grey shades running throughout it, which I thought would go really well with a taupey-grey glass subway tile. Luckily, I had pinned just the thing from this blog— Lucente 3”x6” glass subway tiles in Morning Fog. My contractor ordered me a sample, and when I finally put it up next to my new countertops, I second guessed myself. I was a little worried they would make the kitchen feel too dark, and I debated for several days—and asked several friends’ opinions—before I decided to go for it. I am so glad I did!
Our sink is probably the hubz’ favorite part of the kitchen. He wanted a huge sink, and we found a great deal on Costco.com for a stainless steel Hahn farmhouse sink. It’s a single basin, which means we can fit tons of dishes in there, plus all my huge cutting boards, woks, and other giant/awkward-shaped kitchen items. The faucet is a Pfister from Lowes (style name Vosa).
For cabinet hardware, we wanted a simple, yet modern, option, and the simple stainless pulls were a great option. We purchased this style from Home Depot. And finally, we went with stainless steel outlet covers from Lowes, which blend in really nicely with the tile.
The cabinets were custom built by our contractor’s team, and the paint color was their off-white option, so I can’t share details about those. But I will say that if you have a chance to get soft-close cabinets and drawers, DO IT. It’s so nice!
I’m sure you saw the old, white appliances in the “before” photo. That’s actually a photo I took when we toured the house the first time. We replaced those bad boys with new stainless steel appliances the week we moved in—the same you see in the after photo. I just couldn’t seem to find a more recent photo, pre-demolition but post-appliance replacement.
Since there was so much grey, white and stainless steel, I wanted to brighten it up with a few pops of color. While browsing around Target one day, I saw a really pretty watering can with the most gorgeous color combo: coral/poppy and seafoam green. That’s where I got the inspiration for the color scheme, and I found all the little details at Target: kitchen mat, hand towels in coral and grey, candle, flower (a clearance item I can’t find online), and bulldog cookie jar (which we use for dog treats for our English Bulldog, Lucy – so fitting, right??). The amazing Gerber daisies—that happen to perfectly match my hand towels!—are from Whole Foods. I may have to keep purchasing these as long as they’re in season, as they really add something to the room!
Like any remodeling project, it wasn’t without its snags. Remember how I said we almost got a pure white kitchen on accident? After they finished installing the cabinets, I was in the kitchen admiring their handiwork when I thought to myself: “Wow, this off white is still really bright. I’m glad we didn’t go with pure white!” We had a sample cabinet door our contractor gave us to use in picking out granite, and I decided to hold it up to the cabinets to double check the color. Sure enough, the cabinets were pure white. Total fail. They had to come in and repaint all of the cabinets, which wasted a few extra days.
There you have it, my friends! It is SO nice to cook in such a beautiful kitchen. In fact, I know I’ve been slacking on the blog as of late, so I’m going to make it my goal to share more food posts with you, now that I have such a great place to try out new recipes!
Have you gone through a remodel project and have any great stories to share? Let me know in the comments!