Before & After: Bright and Fun Kitchen

As promised, here is the story of the other room we've published from this whole home renovation. It was originally published in This Old House in July 2016 and was completed earlier that year. All after photos taken by Bethany Nauert.

This touching before and after involved a home with a lot of history and is one of my favorite transformations to date. The homeowner grew up in the home and valued all the memories she had with her late mother. The home itself needed a little love as it hadn't been updated since it was built in the 1980s. Our challenge was updating the space while also respecting the homeowner's request to not alter it unnecessarily. If I do say so myself, this transformation is amazing :) and, more importantly, the homeowner enjoys it and is creating new memories with her daughter.  

I like to start with the floorplans because that is where the magic happens. The original floorplan made the kitchen feel small and cramped and there were tons of open spaces with no real function.

We reconfigured the spatial layout of the home to allow more light from the windows to filter throughout the house. We created new wall openings, increased the size of existing openings, and removed those wall openings that were no longer needed. By changing the flow of the space (and not remove any walls), we were able to achieve a kitchen that functioned better and reflected the actual size of the space (it was over 350 square feet!).

Now let's get to the before and after pictures!!


Before: A Kitchen with good bones, but an outdated surface
Before: Looking towards the dining room

Looking from dining room to garage and laundry room.


With the new layout, the kitchen was expanded to include a large colorful kitchen island and additional seating areas that improved the overall flow of the space. Open, over the counter shelves were installed for storage and to visually open up the space, without having to tear down whole walls. The island cabinets were painted in a fresh coat of electric blue and gray cabinets grounded the exterior cabinets. Additionally, we were able to create a banquette area (I LOVE banquettes) and a wine fridge and additional pantry area.

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