It’s done! I have a kitchen again! And it’s so pretty. Check out The Before post to see why the renovation needed to happen. The space is far more open and conducive to our family’s lifestyle. My toddler can ride his push bike up and down the kitchen while I cook, and someone can wash dishes while someone else cooks! It’s amazing.
Another huge improvement in the layout is the addition of a peninsula bar with 4 bar stools. (I know you can only see 3, but trust me, there’s another one to the left). Already this space has been a gathering place for friends and family. It also provides plenty of prep space right across from the stove, which is an amazing upgrade from the previous layout. It took 3 guys to lift the nearly 1,000 pound slab of granite into place. Lots of grunting that day…
We hired a contractor to do the work, but I did all of the designing. The layout (detailed in The Before post) was my most important concern. But I also wanted to update the overall look of the place, too. While we liked the rustic brick, we wanted to blend that element with a contemporary feel. The white shaker cabinets and the sleek glass tile backsplash did that for us. To add some color, I kept the space over the sink open with shelving so that I could display my cookbooks and my husband could have the Sonos speaker he wanted in the kitchen.
Basically the entire functioning kitchen ended up along one wall. If you look carefully, you’ll notice that the counter top juts in a little bit after the stove. This was so that the cabinets and counters would fit in line with the sliding door out to the deck. This was the best solution to avoid cutting into the door’s trim, replacing the sliding door, or doing something really weird that would diminish the counter space. A couple designers suggested that I stop the counters before the wall and angle the counter top to the corner to avoid weirdness at the wall. I like my solution the best.
The sink is a huge farm sink with two equal-sized bowls. This was key for me. In the previous kitchen, I had one really big bowl and a smaller side sink with the garbage disposal. I picked this specific farm sink also because it runs all the way to the backsplash wall behind it. There’s no weird space for water to collect and slowly eat away at the silicone, creating water damage. Instead, I have all this room for the soap, dish and bottle brushes, and even dishes that need to dry. And all the water runs right into the sink and down the drain. I have IKEA to thank for this not-so-little beauty. They are so popular that I had to wait for one to come in because my local store didn’t have any in stock.
In a somewhat controversial move, we put the microwave under the counter opposite the stove. I didn’t like the idea of putting it over the stove, and I never want a microwave on the counter top if I can help it–counter space real estate is valuable! The last lower cabinet on the end of the peninsula is actually a pullout trash and recycling center. Love having it away from the sink!
Another favorite feature is my magnetic wooden knife block. I found this one on Etsy. I like having my knives so accessible and out of a drawer. I purchased the cabinet pulls on Wayfair.com. I love the slightly rustic drawer pulls. I’m not sure what you call them, but they speak back to the rustic nature of the brick and help tie the whole kitchen together.
I have saved the best for last! This was one of the last pieces to be completed. I got this coffee rack from my future brother-in-law for Christmas last year and couldn’t wait to get it hung up. I eventually conned my contractor into hanging it for me, since I was a little nervous about hanging anything on a brick wall. This nook was the perfect space for my coffee corner. We replaced our broken coffee maker and hot water kettle with a beautiful and fancy espresso machine so that we could having really good coffee while we lived in the basement. And now we still get really good coffee and can display our favorite mugs!
Thanks for checking out my kitchen renovation!