Can You Say Kitchen?

I like to eat, a lot. Therefore I like kitchens, a lot. I also like kitchens since designing one, in my book, is a barrel of monkeys worth of fun. Sit me down with some graph paper and images of pinterest kitchens dancing in my head, I’ll have a layout down on paper in no time flat. I like designing a kitchen space in concept, but the long and short of it, is that when reality wakes you up from your dreaming and scheming you realize that kitchens cost ya top dollar my friend. With our last house’s renovation still fresh in my head, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what this next kitchen will set us back. That being said, there are some wrinkles and differences between the two houses, so we’ll have to see how the cookie crumbles at the end of the day.

We’re not quite to the price everything out phase yet (although we do know what our general budget will be), so I thought I’d start with the fun stuff first – i.e. the design for the space! 😀

This is what our kitchen looks like right now – from this angle – pretty vintage chic cute, right?

1940's White Kitchen

Upon closer inspection, there are a few issues though. Like this cabinet. It’s so close to the dishwasher that it actually doesn’t even open. #fail


Or the bundle of cabinet doors that don’t actually shut. All the doors are super tricky to open, too. You need an on demand Popeye hoisting the door open to grab your cereal spoon each morning. Fo realz.


When you’re actually able to get the cabinets open, it looks more like a rustic lodge camping kitchen, than the tres chic look I’m going for 😀


In all honesty, I’m pretty bummed that we’re not able to salvage the cabinets. When our realtor sent us the MLS listing she mentioned that the kitchen would need a complete gut and when I looked at the pictures I was all naaahhhh – I can work with that! But once we actually got into the house to see things up close, I could definitely tell where she was coming from. Although I love the traditional style (and I’ll definitely recreate the white shaker look when we start the reno), the kitchen as it is just really does not function.

We are going to try to be really careful when we remove them, so that we can find another home for them via craigslist, or perhaps for a workbench area in the basement. That being said, when we were looking at them up close last night, it’s hard to even tell if these are boxes (where you can unscrew them, and remove them) or if the cabinets are actually built right onto the wall.

The upside of our catastrophe of a kitchen, is that we’ll get to renovate it! After this vintage ensemble, I can tell you it’s going to feel a-mazinge to have all updated digs (soft close doors! Crisp and new!) As of right now, this is the general direction I think I’ll be going in for kitchen reno 2.0.

Kitchen Mood Board


If you were around for the last kitchen renovation last summer, you’ll definitely see a lot of the same finishes. What can I say – we liked it, and it worked! We’ll probably tweak things here and there, but for the most part, it’s going to have the same look and feel as the last house.

Although I really liked how things turned out last time, I do look forward to adding some subtle accents in, to keep everything from feeling too stark and white.

One of our all time favorite things about our last kitchen renovation, was the HUGE impact we had from taking out the wall between our tiny dining room and our tiny kitchen. Since we were amazed with how much this small change opened up the room and the flow of the space, we’re doing the exact same thing in this house. Yep, that walls down and things are looking so. much. better. in there! We’re still cleaning the room up a bit post demo, but I’m so excited to show y’all how things are looking tomorrow.

For reference, when we moved in this was the general layout for the kitchen/dining room space.

Changing Kitchen Layout

On the left side wall of the kitchen, the only thing that was positioned there when we bought the house was the fridge. In a smaller sized kitchen (11’6″ x 10′) – that is a just a waste of space! With the door opening location though, it was really the only thing you could put on that wall and not restrict traffic flow through the room. Here is a shot of that kitchen wall, as it looked on move-in day. Definitely not optimizing the space!

Removing Wall

Since we’re removing a wall, our game plan is to reconfigure that area with a much more functional peninsula, which will have our dishwasher and sink on it. We wanted to avoid the pitfalls of the current kitchen, where the only spot the dishwasher fit meant that you had a cabinet drawer that didn’t open …

Removing Wall Between Kitchen and Dining Room

The layout above is what we’re hoping to go for when we reinstall the cabinets. I’m super excited about adding this peninsula and think it will be great to have the sink and dishwasher loading area facing out toward the dining room, which allows you to chat with guests even if you’re rinsing off dishes.

Now, let me tell you, since we’ve always owned and renovated older homes, I literally never thought we’d have a house large enough to accommodate any type of island, so I’m so excited about putting together some ideas for this one. Here’s a basic sketch of what I think the peninsula will look like once we’re finished with it.

Custom Kitchen Island Plenty of room for storage, including a little built-in nook for our microwave to keep the counters clutter free! Squeeee!! (I think you can add that to my never thought I’d ever have this feature in my kitchen list, too!) 😉

Overall, we’re so excited about the transformations we have planned for this space. I’m pretty sure that once it’s done, it will be my favorite space in the house! Has anyone else undertaken a kitchen renovation lately? Any words of advice as we embark on this new adventure?