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A designer’s perspective on her own kitchen (mini-) remodel

Well, after helping several clients remodel their own dream kitchens, I can now say I feel your pain.

We are in the beginning stages of our own kitchen mini-remodel.

At a glance, the kitchen looks good as it is!  Structurally, nothing is changing.  While our home is not that old (built in 2005), we designed our kitchen with future granite countertops in mind in order to save some money at the time.  We did not, however, anticipate needing to do something about the cabinets.  Aside from not being happy with the stain color…which was redder, lighter and a little too close to the floor color for me, within a couple of years the stain began to wear off, leaving raw wood exposed and bringing damage to nearly all the drawers and doors.

So, the time came for an update.  And, on the day before a major winter storm (aka: welcome to the first delay), we began tearing off the countertops and started the interruption of the most heavily used room in our home.

Here’s the plan:


  • Replace the laminate countertops with quartz (Cambria’s Bradshaw)
  • Paint the cabinets (Valspar’s Safari Brown)
  • Add a stone veneer backsplash (Eastwest Stone in Honey Gold)
  • Replace the pulls (I found the bar pulls at a closeout distributor for only $2 each! Score!)
  • Replace the under-cabinet lighting with LED strips (more about that later…the product will be special!)
The other colors: those are for when we get around to painting the adjoining rooms someday.


(And yes, there are samples of three different color greens on the wall…and have been for six months!  Sometimes designers hit a wall when it comes to their own homes.)

Remodeling a kitchen is a big investment in time and in money!  While it provides great returns on that investment in satisfaction, resale value and can set the tone for your home’s overall aesthetic, the process can be taxing on a household while you wait for the transformation!

Next, I’ll share several things you can do to have a successful kitchen remodel and keep your sanity!


Want to see behind the scenes?  

This is how we’re cooking through this process, and where my kitchen contents went.


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