I’m spilling all the details about Our Kitchen Remodel. What the kitchen looked like before, what we changed and how it looks now that it’s complete!
We moved into our new house on July 31st and the kitchen spent the majority of August getting a remodel. When we saw the house we were happy with the layout of the kitchen, it was open concept with high ceilings and big windows overlooking the backyard. The design details were just not our (read: my) style. The black countertops and backsplash, cabinets lacking hardware, beige walls and orange stained hardwood floors had to go!
The great thing is, the kitchen already had great bones. The appliances are in good shape, the layout of the kitchen flows well and the cabinets are good quality with plenty of storage. The only structural change we made in the kitchen was to the island and the only appliance we changed out was the sink. When you are dealing almost entirely with aesthetic changes a kitchen remodel is much less overwhelming and way more cost effective.
As you can see, there is nothing at all wrong with this kitchen, it is completely functional, it just wasn’t, well… me! After a long house search in a very competitive market, we decided that taking on some projects to make a house our home was the better route to take than trying to find a house that checked all of our boxes.
Our Kitchen Remodel:
Put Up A New Backsplash
In the old kitchen, the same black granite used for the countertops extended up the backsplash and above the stovetop there was a stainless steal plate. We had the contractors pull that all out and install a subway tile backsplash. I ultimately decided on the Catalina Subway Tile from Wayfair in the color white. We had thought about putting in a backsplash with a little more interest, like a mosaic tile, but after much consideration decided to keep it simple. It’s timeless and gives the kitchen that bright, clean look we were going for. The Catalina Subway Tile is designed to have a little wave to it which I like verses a standard flat subway tile.
Painted the Cabinets
As I mentioned, the cabinets were in great shape. We believe that this kitchen was an addition added to the house approximately 8 years ago, so we assume that is about how old the cabinets are. There is a ton of storage in this kitchen included a pantry, which I am so happy about! I was having to store a lot of dry food items in our basement at our Townhouse and now I have plenty of room to fit what I need!
As you can see from the before photos above, the cabinets were not painted, they were a finished light natural wood. Because the cabinet fronts are smooth, they were pretty simple for our contractors to paint. They actually took all of the doors off and sprayed them out in our front yard!
I knew I wanted to use Sherwin Williams Repose Gray for the upper and lower cabinets. I had seen it in other kitchen remodels on Pinterest and fell in love with the color. I debated for a while if we should also paint the island cabinets repose gray, but ultimately decided, because of the simpler backsplash, we needed a pop of color. We went with Sherwin Williams Blue Peacock (which is really more of a green than a blue) and I absolutely love the contrast it adds to the kitchen. Blue Peacock also appears on a few other accent walls throughout the house, so it helped to tie everything together.
Installed Hardware on Upper Cabinets
In the before kitchen they were going for a really modern, sleek look, which they achieved partially by not adding hardware to the upper cabinets in the kitchen. This is probably what stood out to me the most and was high on my priority list to change. Since the lower cabinets did already have hardware and it would have been a much bigger project to try to switch it all out for new matching hardware, we decided to keep the hardware on the lower cabinets and island. We bought a matching hardware for all the upper cabinets.
Sprayed the Hardware Gold
I really wanted bronze hardware, but since we were not replacing the lower cabinet hardware which was platinum, we decided to spray all of the hardware gold. The contractors used this Rust-Oleum Metallic Gold Spray Paint to spray all of the hardware and give it a matte, gold finish – easy fix!
Removed the Step-Up and Sink from the Island and Expanded it to a large rectangle
The before island was triangular in shape and had a step-up portion that created a separate bar eating area. We opted to get rid of this and the second sink for a much larger, flat, rectangular island. Aside from removing the step-up and installing the leg support for the countertop the rest of the island stayed the same. We did not add or lose any cabinets in the transformation.
Our island is now approximately 5-foot by 7-foot, it is so large I can barely reach the center when I am cleaning it, haha. I am obsessed with how big it is, there is so much room for so many different activities at once!
Replaced the countertops with quartz
I knew I wanted something light and simple for the countertops. Because of the size of the island there is a lot of countertop area to cover, so it was important to choose something simple to keep the bright, clean look.
Our contractor talked us into quartz over granite and I’m really glad he did. Quartz is slightly more expensive than granite and comes in far less color/pattern options because it is an engineered stone made from natural materials verse granite which is found naturally. What sold me on quartz is that it does not require any on-going maintenance. Granite, on the other hand, is porous so you should reseal it every 5 years or so. Quartz is also stronger than granite because of how it is engineered.
Added 3 New Pendant Lights
The kitchen has recessed lighting, so the pendant lights were more for decor than functionality. It is nice to have the option of turning on just the pendant lights at night or early in the morning when you don’t need it to be so bright. I picked out 2 of these simple pendant lights to hang over the island and this gold pendant to hang over the sink.
Installed New Vinyl Floors
Changing out the floors was not in our original plan, but ultimately we decided to cover the wood floors seen in the before picture with this high quality vinyl. The lighter, white oak-like floors look much better with the overall design of the kitchen and the flooring is also more practical. It is 100% waterproof as well as scratch, stain and dent resistant making it very durable – which is important with a dog and (soon) a kid running around! Because it is so thin and uses an easy-install locking system the contractors were able to lay it right over the existing floor, saving on time and labor.
I am so happy we ultimately decided to make this change. The floors really tie the whole kitchen together and do so much to brighten up the space!
Installed a Farmhouse Sink and New Bronze Faucet
I have dreamt of having a farmhouse sink for years. We did a small kitchen renovation on our Townhouse when we first moved in and I was somehow talked out of putting in a farmhouse sink. I totally regretted it! I am obsessed with the sleek, white porcelain front on a classic farmhouse sink. It may sound silly, but no farmhouse sink was on my list of dealbreakers for our new home!
The first thing I confirmed with the contractor was that putting in a farmhouse sink would be possible and practical and he assured me it would not be a problem. I picked out this farmhouse sink from Wayfair and I’m in love. It’s my favorite part of our kitchen remodel and it makes me smile everyday! If you have to do dishes, you might as well be smiling while your doing them, right!?
To tie in with the gold hardware and gold pendant light above the sink, I choose this tall, sleek gold faucet. I love how simple it is and it completes the look of the farmhouse sink! It’s also very functional with a 2-way pull out sprayer. The photo on Amazon shows a shiny gold, but it is really the matte, brushed gold you see in the photo below.
I did most of the dreaming on this project, but I have to give a huge shoutout to our contractors that worked tirelessly to understand my vision and get our project done quickly! Living with a kitchen that is under construction as a food blogger/photographer is not exactly practical, so the speed at which they were able to work was much appreciated. If anyone is looking for a great contractor in the Northern VA area feel free to contact me and I will pass along their info.
(photo credit: Rachel E.H. Photography)
And lastly, I have to give some credit to Walter. I was not feeling this house at all when we first saw it. The kitchen had black countertops, no farmhouse sink and every wall in the whole house was painted beige. From the moment we walked in he saw the potential – an open concept kitchen, a big backyard for Layla and an attractive price tag. He convinced me it was going to be a great house for us and trusted me to take the reigns on our kitchen remodel to make it a place we now happily call home!
So there you have it, a peek into the new Sprinkles & Sea Salt Kitchen! I look forward to many, many years creating new recipes for you here!
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