Kitchen Remodel Extordinaire

It IS the heart of the home and it IS where everyone gathers.  No matter how hard you try to corral them some place else, they keep ending up back in the kitchen, right?

This kitchen started out not so bad, but it was small and tough when more than one person was cooking.  It does have sooo many good things about it though.  Beautiful hard woods, loads of natural light and a fabulous eating area and built-in bookshelves and window seat.

While I usually do the work myself, this remodel was waaaaaaaay over my pay grade so my fav contractor Bane of Bane’s Impressions (224-625-0554)  did 89% of the work.  And he is fab-u-lous!

kitchen 1

eating area

But, alas too small and not the open concept so many are wanting.  What to do, what to do….

Right next door is the dining room.

dining room

What if we ……..

  1. Knock out the wall between the two
  2. Make the living room into a dining room, who uses a living room anyway? Besides, it literally is right next to the family room.
  3. Make the kitchen massive by combining the current kitchen and current dining room

LOVE IT!!!!  What do you think??

A few details: perimeter cabinets are Home Depot Martha Stewart in cream.  The Island Cabinets are a pewter grey also from Home Depot.  The island countertops are ceramic tile in a wood grain pattern.  The kind that looks like hardwood but is really tile.  I can set hot pans on it, no problem.  Won’t stain.  Went with drawers everywhere, only cabinet doors on top and the pantry.  WHY did we not think of this sooner.  If you’re redoing the kitchen don’t even consider doors on the bottom cabinets, for any reason what-so-ever!

There are 2 islands — one for cooking and the other for eating, a desk, buffet for the food spread, whatever I need it for. Say hi Joey!

IMG_1466 (1)

Found the hutch and buffet at a scratch and dent store.  All for $149. Kid you not!  Which will remain nameless because I don’t want everyone going there.  xxoo.  Sorry.  Can we still be friends? Bane did an awesome job of making them look like custom cabinetry.


Went with a downdraft instead of a hood for the exhaust system.  Check out the ‘wood’ tile and stainless trim.  All from Floor & Decor.



LUV the open shelving and tile all the way to the ceiling.  Nice big stainless farm sink.  We put the faucet over to the side so it wouldn’t affect the view out to the backyard.  This style is higher than standard faucets and the window isn’t that big.  Good move!
The counter on the perimeter is again, flooring.  This time its the new waterproof vinyl flooring and looks like marble.  Haha.  Looks like I had some caulking to do as a caulking gun is not usually something you use as kitchen decor. :-/.  And yes, we have changed that rug that actually works with the grey.  🙂


The eating area is light bright and inviting.  Great place to display a collection of white pottery.  I really think everyone should collect something and display in their home.  It can be such a part of who they are.


So there you have it!  Everyone is thrilled with the outcome.  A kitchen remodel is NEVER easy and ALWAYS costs more than you think it will.  But you WILL get your investment back and in the meantime the family enjoys the heck out if it!  Bon appetit!

Author: Jennifer Stambek-Stephens

I am one of those people that has spent their adult life saying "How hard can it be????". If you combine that with a frugalness, that is exceeded only by my younger daughter, you have a combination that is often very successful but not without its 'ooops' moments. ;-) I've never wanted to spend the money to hire a professional so I learned how to do things myself. I wanted crown molding, too expensive, so I learned how to do it. Same thing with building, landscaping, painting, lighting, sewing, yada yada -- you get where I'm going with this I'm sure. :-) I have the tools and the experience for so many projects. Through this site I am sharing my skills and lessons learned to help others develop that "How hard can it be??" spirit in your home. If you want it, have been dreaming about, lusting after your friends version, posted a million posts of it to your Pinterest board --let's make it happen and within your budget. I'm a decorator AND the creator -- no middleman markup. I'm running out of projects in my house, (short of building an addition!) so lets get to work on yours! Whether it's slipcovers, new window treatments, making that dining room table look like it DID come from RH or helping you develop your own style I would be thrilled and honored to assist!

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