Monday, October 28, 2013

Tips on HOW TO update your Builder Grade Kitchen

I know that so many of us today are faced with a kitchen that is not our dream space, 
consisting of builder grade oak cabinetry,  laminate tops, and just years of collections
of STUFF.  It can seem daunting after looking at the same space for so long... 
Where to begin?  How can I change my kitchen without Major Renovation or room additions?  

I am going to share with you, the simple steps of how we updated this space:


This kitchen is dated, cluttered, and builder grade.  The counter tops are faded and white laminate, the oak cabinetry is no longer functional, counter space is sparse.  The room feels dark, crowded and not very inviting.  

We are going to change the flooring, lighting, cabinetry, and countertops.  Add backsplash and mount a microwave above the oven to gain more counter space.   

This pantry is going to be removed.  This room feels a bit crowded and closed in.

This half wall dividing the family room and kitchen must go also!!
Unfortunately this space just collects clutter and divides the flow between the two rooms.  

So here is the AFTER photo of the updated kitchen:

This is the same kitchen!!!

The client had just a few requests, which were the color of cabinetry and they wanted ceramic tile flooring for longevity.  

We updated this space with minimum construction and by following a few simple rules:

Lighting:  Removed hanging lights, added can lights with dimmers and under cabinet lighting, really lightened the space and highlighted some of the best features of the room.
Lighting is critical, and can really change a space dramatically!

Finishes: Mix things up! We used a very traditional paneled cabinet with a traditional mahogany finish.  We used a tumbled stone backsplash for texture and interest.  The countertops were the sparkle of elegance...Quartz frost.  The diamond flecked tops reflect light!  

Flooring:  Using the two tone tumbled tiles, we laid in a brick pattern to break up the grout lines and to create a visually wider and larger space.  The tiles are 18" squares.

Appliances:  We installed a microwave/hood combo over the stove to free up counter space. 

Visual:  By removing the pantry our line of sight is a wider room than it really is.

Removal:  By concealing clutter and creating spaces for items that previously sat out in the room, this created a clean stream lined space.  Removing that half wall, created  a better traffic flow between the rooms and your eye continues all the way through the house and isn't stopped by a clutter filled half bookcase.

Finishing Touches:  Crown molding around the tops of all the cabinetry and the brushed nickel finish on the hardware and faucet fixture kept the look unified.

This room only has 8 foot ceilings, so we achieved height by using 42" cabinets with crown molding and the can lights.  So little tricks help draw the eye up and it really feels like the ceiling is taller.

This coffee bar was one of my favorite additions.  
By removing the pantry and the side wall, it opened up this space tremendously.  We used just narrow cabinetry here create a built in look and added so much more counter space. 

This coffee bar hosts several jobs:

 A serving station, and storage of canned goods and appliances on the bottom, the top cabinets store dry goods and coffee station items. Also, we installed a charging station inside the right cabinet.  So now, all electronics and paperwork are concealed and the  room can be kept free of clutter.

The backsplash was the last "wow factor" for this kitchen.
We used a tumbled travertine tile, both subway and 4" squares laid in an alternating pattern to create that last bit of interest without being too busy.  

The space is now modern, fresh and clean. 
We did  not have to do any major renovations, just  created a smarter use of the space.

The homeowners are so happy and say they just love to come home after work to see how beautiful everything is.  This is what makes my job so fun!  Helping create beautiful spaces for people to enjoy!  

Thank you so much for reading today.   Please let me know if you have any questions, I would love to answer as well as hear your comments about this kitchen.

Have a beautiful day!


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