Hopefully you've been on the edge of your seat since seeing the inspiration for our kitchen design! If you haven't checked that out yet, here's the link to that post.
Now that you've seen what's inspiring me and the direction we're headed, here's a reminder of what we're starting with (the state of the kitchen before we moved in).
I'm still totally lost as to why there's a (hideous) dining pendant over the peninsula - literally right in your face while you cook. The shape and size of the kitchen doesn't really warrant a pendant over the peninsula at all, so we'll be switching that fixture to a recessed light to match the other lights in the kitchen and make the space feel open.
The backsplash doesn't match so I would want to replace it anyway, but why leave off backsplash behind where the range would go? Since the house was newly built and the range wasn't installed yet, we got to choose our own (which was awesome!). We talked about waiting to change the backsplash (because moving is overwhelming enough), but I really wanted a slide-in range...meaning that there would be nothing between the range and the wall, because hello, no backsplash. Since that's kind of a grease/fire hazard, backsplash moved to the top of the list!
Between the pantry and dining area there's this other little counter and cabinet space with more bad backsplash (why is it surrounding the light switch?!), and a bizarre 12" gap between the two lower cabinets. Again, can't figure this one out. Options to correct this:
1) Tear all those out and add custom cabinets without a countertop for lots of storage (obviously the least budget friendly option, and totally out of the question for us)
2) Have a single 12" cabinet with drawer custom made to match existing cabinets (still pricey, and I just don't think it would look quite right. Also totally unbalanced with the upper cabinets)
3) Install open shelves between cabinets (the most budget friendly option, something we can do ourselves, and a spot to store/display cookbooks. Still not balanced with the upper cabinets, but more affordable, and unless we tear everything out and start over everything will be unbalanced!)
So you've probably guessed...option 3 it is!
Those are some of the functional changes that we're making, but as you may have guessed from my design inspiration post, we'll be making some other cosmetic changes as well. Here are the finishes and materials we plan to use:
Normally I spec Benjamin Moore paint, but all these paint colors are Sherwin Williams because there is a professional grade cabinet finish from SW that I plan to use to paint the cabinets (because why bother painting them if it's going to chip and peel? And don't worry, I'll give you a whole update on that process!). I still need to test swatches, which is why there are five options on there. I always recommend that you test colors in your space before you decide so you can see how they look in that room's lighting and with the other finishes (floors, backsplash, countertops, etc.) - paint colors will look different in every space! So I'm going for a light grey-beige color, and I need it to look good with my laminate floors, warm grey grout, muddy granite countertops, and limestone peninsula (wish me luck!).
For the backsplash, I chose a smaller-sized rectangular subway tile for a couple reasons. The kitchen isn't very big, so using a smaller tile can give the illusion of more space (because, well, more tiles). Also, this tile comes in 1 square foot sheets, so I won't have to place every single tile. I'm hoping this will help installation go faster!
I still haven't decided between the handle pulls and bin pulls for the drawers, but I will for sure use the ball knobs on all the cabinets - my favorite simple, classic knob. I'm not a huge fan of knobs on drawers, and I feel like we need a mixture of handles and knobs for some variety in the space. I'm excited for some hardware that looks polished and has clean lines - it still fits the ranch style of the house, but adds an updated and more classic feel.
And because our dining area is connected to the kitchen, here are the updates we'll be making there to tie the space together:
Since we're getting rid of the hanging fixture over the peninsula, we can add a pendant over the table without making the space too busy. We'll replace the boob light (so many boob lights in this house that need to go!) over the kitchen table with a clean-lined pendant that feels more contemporary, but again still fits the ranch style of the house.
The dining table is a hand-me-down from my parents (over 20 years old!) that I refinished the top of to give it some new life. And the splurge for the space is definitely the dining chairs. Furniture-wise, there's not much worse than an uncomfortable chair. I've been saving and waiting to replace our wood chairs (that came with the dining table) with upholstered chairs because I really wanted something comfortable so that people could relax and eat, chat, and play games comfortably. We definitely value hospitality and keeping people comfortable in our home, so I decided to splurge on an upholstered wood-framed chair with a slipcover that can be washed and eventually replaced if need be. And since I'm crazy and wanted white, I chose indoor/outdoor fabric so that people can sit comfortably but also not feel bad if they spill on a chair. I also love that if one day we get a larger table, the six chairs could be the side chairs because they're so classic and work with virtually any style, and then we would just need two new head chairs.
We need to be able to use the kitchen, and we have a long list of other house projects to do, so all of these changes will be implemented slowly! And I can't really paint the cabinets until it's a reasonable temperature outside (hello Texas summer in October!), so that will have to wait at least until later in the fall or maybe the new year. Let me know what you think in the comments, and I'll be sure to post updates on our progress!