Heart of the home-before & after

As we approach 3 years in this home we are wrapping up our kitchen remodel. Although it was only really 2 months without a functioning kitchen there were probably more like 3 years of day dreaming and planning that went in to it. Now that it’s done I can honestly it’s say that I have the kitchen of my dreams.

Isn’t it funny how quickly we forget how something used to look?  The kitchen has only been done for a few weeks, and I’ve already forgotten how dark and narrow it was. One of the biggest thorns in my side was the massive refrigerator we had in our narrow kitchen. I am not kidding more than a few people commented on it’s size the first time they saw the kitchen.  I had tears of joy when that fridge left our house! In it’s place now sits a wet bar that we LOVE!!!!! It is not only functional, but it has turned in to a focal point in our kitchen.  2013-06-22 23.06.17.jpg


Our kitchen was really broken up in three parts when we bought this house. The main or working part with the appliances,  the drive by area (with the massive fridge), and then a tiny sitting room/nook area. The very first remodel project we attacked was to expand the space and make in to a nook and family room. We removed a wall and pushed it in to the old master bed room.


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After phase 1


So when it came time to do the kitchen remodel I had always envisioned a desk and built-ins in the nook area. My husband and I didn’t agree on this point, he thought it would be better to leave it open, and didn’t think we needed more storage (what?!!). I mean come on, unless you live in a McMansion who doesn’t need more storage? However, after seeing the walnut shelves above the wet bar he quickly changed his tune, and as a last minute add on we had our cabinet maker build this desk out of walnut.DSC_6396.jpgOne of the biggest moves we made in this remodel was to bump two feet in to the garage. That two feet allowed us to put in an island which was something we desperately wanted. Over the years we went back and forth between a peninsula and an island. However if we had done the peninsula and not expanded in to the garage, it would have still felt narrow and broken up. Now with the island and wider footprint it completely changes the space. It now feels like one continuous space where as before it always felt like my kitchen was really just the small narrow area that was the working part of the kitchen.


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While we truly labored over every decision, the one that we probably went back and forth on the most was on whether or not to open up the wall between the kitchen and the dining room. I have mixed emotions on the whole “open concept” deal. I think the idea that we need to have one big room is having it’s “moment” right now, and I believe it will  go out of style someday. I also think while it’s right for many homes (like our old one), it’s not right for this one. It’s an old colonial that was not built to be this wide open space. That being said, the house needed to open up and have a better flow.  So in the end we decided to compromise and  do a large cased opening from the dining room and kitchen. There is still a feeling of separate spaces, but it opens up the whole front of our house, changing the entire feeling when you walk in to our home.

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I have to take a moment to recognize our cabinet maker Cabinets by Steve,  http://www.cabinetsbysteve.com. They were simply the best to work with, and we LOVE the way the cabinets turned out. We had several bids and theirs was the most reasonable, and Steve actually visited our kitchen for our first meeting rather than making me go to them. From the beginning his whole team was terrific to work with-they didn’t ever make me feel like I was being annoying or high maintenance, and with every change they sent me an updated rendering, and kept us informed of any price increases or timeline issues. I can’t say enough about their professionalism and attention to detail, and to no surprise when install day came I was blown away by the finished product. If you are looking to do a kitchen or bathroom remodel, or just need a new cabinet I would highly recommend them-I promise you will not be disappointed!!

In the end-the kitchen remodel- has completely transformed our house in a way that no other room remodel has. It’s truly the heart of the home now, and although it was a labor of love it was worth every moment!








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