Don’t Believe the Hype
The prevailing school of thought these days is that you need to gut a kitchen in order to breathe new life into it. But it’s just plain wrong. Not only is it super-expensive, it’s also super-time consuming. A few tweaks in the right spots can resonate every bit as much as a built-from-scratch kitchen—and for, like, a fraction of the cost. Not buying it? Scroll through our gallery and decide for yourself.
A Modern Makeover
The clients were interested in contemporizing their traditional-looking kitchen. (Read: Making it feel less stuffy.) They selected a new backsplash and cabinetry hardware on their own before turning to us refinish their existing cabinetry. We also hooked them up with someone to install the backsplash. (Yes. We do that, too.)
An update was in order here, but the clients were also interested in resolving a few nagging issues, like closing the gap between the ceiling and cabinetry, turning the island into a true centerpiece, and having everything look less piecemeal. So we added customized soffit moldings to the cabinetry and panels to both the cabinetry and islands. We also incorporated ornate posts and a furniture base into the island. And we finished everything in a customized glaze that plays off the existing backsplash and granite countertop.
Yup, It’s the Same Kitchen
We expanded the island to incorporate a microwave. In the process, we also added a bit more storage in a central location and made the island seating more comfortable. The new light rail beneath the upper cabinets is a subtle feature, but always a crowd-pleaser. The custom hood became an instant conversation-starter. And the fresh finish promptly shaved off about 20 years.
The Power of the Tweak
Much as the clients loved their new home, the kitchen needed some help. It felt a little unfinished in spots and outdated in others. So we added custom panels and a furniture base to the island, built glass doors for a display cabinet that perfectly matched the existing doors, installed cove molding to the top of the cabinets and a light rail beneath them, updated all of the hardware, and refinished everything. Who says you need to bring down a wall to renovate a kitchen?
From Time Capsule to Magazine Spread
Straighten out the island without shifting the plumbing: Check. Replace the desk with a wine fridge: Check. Replace the microwave above the stove with a decorative hood and vent: Check. (We incorporated the microwave in the rebuilt island.) Coordinate with the vendors who were already hired to replace the counters, backsplash, and floor: Check. And make it all look seamless and oh-so modern: Check!
Change is Funny Like That
An interior designer introduced us to this kitchen after they redesigned the home’s entire first floor only to realize that the new gray and taupe tones clashed with the kitchen’s original orange maple cabinets. So we refinished them in a more complementary color, updated the hardware, and added a simple design element to the island. Just like that: A clean, seamless living space.
Pining for Modern Farmhouse
This couple had a very specific vision for their kitchen: modern farmhouse. Trouble was, their actual kitchen was nowhere near it. We were able to utilize much of the existing cabinetry and simply swap in new shaker-style doors and drawer-fronts. From there, we designed a new decorative oven hood (with a working vent fan, of course) true-to-style moldings & decorative hardware. We also renovated the refrigerator wall and pantry to give the kitchen what all modern-farmhouse kitchens share in common: room to move. It also made the layout way more functional. (Straightening out the island helped on that front, too.) We helped the homeowners select the countertop and backsplash and coordinated the install on their behalf. We rounded out the design advice by selecting the sink, faucet, light fixtures - even the two styles of bar stools! It’ll hold its own on Pinterest now.