Monday, January 7, 2013

A Kitchen Look Back.

I'm a bit torn about my kitchen update. I feel like I should know exactly want I want in there and just do it. I mean, isn't this sort of thing what I am passionate about? I wish someone would just come into my kitchen and tell me what I should do, when in reality, that's actually what people to ask me to do. When I choose things for myself, I tend to over think it a bit.

Let's do a little lookback to nearly 5 years ago when I purchased my home. They say some people have vision and can see past the ugliness. I like to think I did ;)
  • dated brown cupboards
  • stove but no fridge
  • mint Formica countertop (as much as love mint now.. it had to go!)
  • high gloss ceiling, seriously blinding. Due to paint sheen or grease, I'm not sure I want to know..
  • layer upon layer of dated flooring and tile.

Thankfully, the stars aligned that summer and my brother, a cabinet maker by trade, had some free time and came to the rescue. He offered to build me some new cabinets, provided I pulled my own weight, helping out where I could. Lots of help came in other forms as well. My mom was a cleaning machine, Stephane pulled up all the floors (that's when I decided he was a keeper), and my dad did everything in between.

Things started looking up..

 Can you believe that under all that was this:

After lots of elbow grease, new cupboards, lots of paint and new appliances, this is were I ended up. And on a very slim budget, I might add. You can read about the rest of the transformation here.

I've been very happy with the end result for 4 1/2 years now. The cabinets have held up very well and so have the wood countertops. However, it is starting to show its wear. The cabinets are in desperate need of a paint job and so are the wall. Besides, I'm so tired of the blue.

Problem is, I'm unsure what direction to go.

Should I go all white, walls and all?

Source: via Jane on Pinterest

What about white cupboards and a very light shade of grey on the walls? (I've narrowed it down to Benjamin Moore Intense White)

Source: via Jane on Pinterest

Then there is two tone. I had nixed the idea and now I keep coming back to it. I quite like it.

So here is the plan:

  • Repaint the cabinets (white or with darker lower cabinets)
  • Paint the walls. (White or BM Intense White)
  • Share our new piece in the kitchen that has given us much more storage and dramatically changed the way we use the kitchen. (Soon I swear.. we ran into a couple of delays)
  • Replace the chandeliers? I'm over them but they may have to stay for a while longer and I can live with that.
Hope you enjoyed the look back. I really shouldn't complain at all. It is so different from where it started. I would love your opinion about what direction I should take with paint!


  1. Wow...that transformation is crazy good! I'm in the midst of painting my kitchen, of course that's been going on for 2 years...I'm going all white. I started to paint the lower wood paneling on the walls gray, but since I don't love it I decided to do the same color as the walls to disguise the panel. I love a white kitchen with steel appliances...unfortunately the paint is going to be the cheapest part of what the kitchen really needs in making over!! Can't wait to see which direction you go...

  2. It looks sooooo much better! but if you need to re-paint, which I can understand, I'd go all white on the walls and paint the lower cupboards a different colour from the top ones....

  3. I am loving darker lower cabinets right now. I say give it a try and if you don't like it it's an easy fix!

  4. First of all, your kitchen is lovely as is, but I understand the need for change. I would paint the uppers and walls white, and the lowers a darker color, and maybe change out the light fixture for something more mod. Looking forward to the big decision!

  5. What a huge transformation you gave that ugly kitchen. Nicely done!! I LOVE darker base cabinets. I had it our last house and can't stop wanting to do the same. BTW, we're all the same when it's our house. I just helped a designer friend with her reno and I'm always in need of help when it's my own house.

  6. That is one incredible before and after! Are those the original floors? I love darker base cabinets, especially if you're going white with the walls. That said, your wood counter would really pop in an all white kitchen. Hmmm...not very helpful, but I can't wait to see what you choose! Oh, and I can't wait for this new kitchen piece reveal!

  7. Can't wait to follow the progress - love the idea of dark lower cabinets!

  8. It's always fun to do something different. I vote for dark lowers!

  9. I am sure whatever you choose will look amazing. I've been coveting that same pic with the two-toned cabinets and brass hardware. And I think it's always harder to design for your own home, than for others!

  10. Yikes that is a hard one. I love the two-tone cabinets and really dig the brass hardware rage. I say the chandeliers must go when you can - your look is more mod than they are ;) Can't wait to see where you end up with it all.

  11. I vote for the darker base cabinets. It's time for a change!

    Also could you please share the source for your kitchen faucet.

  12. gorgeous hardwood floors under all that? and a brother cabinet maker?

    im seriously jealous.

  13. It is SO different! It looks amazing...I still can't believe those floors were hiding under there. You are brave to make a change, I like the kitchen as is! But...I tend to agree, dark bottom (two tone cabinets) would look great.

  14. What a transformation. I'm sure you will love the improvements you have planned. And bravo on the floors, those are a gem!

  15. That was a great transformation, I really love it! And with your problem on which color for the repaint, I like the white and light shade of grey, however whatever color you will choose will still be great.

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  16. Jane, I love your kitchen as is! But, I understand the need for change too :) I really like ANY of these ideas. I am all for a white kitchen and then you can add colour as you like with accessories etc. But, I do like the idea of the darker cabinets on bottom too {I've pinned that image}! I know whatever you decided will look awesome. Looking forward to following along with the transformation :)

  17. Your kitchen looks amazing as is. I always love a white kitchen with white walls but the tricky part is not to have a brighter shade of white on the wall than on the cabinets. Btw, I am hosting a giveaway for a free pair of designer pillows (value up to $140) so don't forget to check it out. :)

  18. I like both looks, really - it's so hard to choose! I'm still in awe of how far your kitchen has come already! It's beautiful! I know whatever you choose to do will be equally fantastic. :-)

  19. I saw the vision for the kitchen in our home. I don't think my husband did but I think he's happy with how far it's come, so I can appreciate all of the hard work that you put into your kitchen. I guess I would start with the smaller committment, which would be the wall color. See what happens when you freshen up the walls and then go from there as far as the base cabinets and the lighting.

  20. I say white walls with the two toned cabinets. I think it will be the most dramatic change, and two toned cabinets always look SO GOOD. And I agree that you should eventually replace the chandeliers with something sleeker... it will go with your new walls and cabinets.

    I think that whatever you do it will look great. Can't wait to see the final product!

  21. I say white walls with the two toned cabinets. I think it will be the most dramatic change, and two toned cabinets always look SO GOOD. And I agree that you should eventually replace the chandeliers with something sleeker... it will go with your new walls and cabinets.

    I think that whatever you do it will look great. Can't wait to see the final product!

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