When I moved into my home four years ago, I didn’t like the kitchen. I knew a full renovation would be required but it wasn’t in the budget right then. Instead I gave the kitchen a facelift until I could really do what I wanted with it.
If you’re working on a budget and simply need to make a space livable you can try the steps I took. I painted the walls and the existing cabinets, changed the cabinet hardware and the faucet, and added in touches of warmth, like rugs and accessories. While it wasn’t my dream kitchen yet, it certain went a long way toward making the space more likable for me, and an area of my home I wouldn’t avoid.
Take a look at the before pictures and what I refer to as my “holdover” stage. Those relatively small changes made a huge impact. It’s hard to believe those are the same cabinets!
Now let’s fast forward to a few months ago, when I was finally ready to being the real reno my kitchen so desperately needed.
A renovation project is a big undertaking. It should not be entered into quickly – you need time to decide on a direction, find what inspires you and collect those images, consider some products/brands/features you would like; this will include (but not be limited to) everything you love from countertops to cabinets, lighting to seating…really anything you find that you would love to have in this room. Collect all this information in one place – make it your inspiration or reno file. You’ll be surprised by how often you’ll refer to this during the process, as you consider options and make decisions. Don’t be afraid to update what’s included but use this to keep sight of what you wanted in the first place.
My inspirational mood board, focus my direction.
After pulling together my inspirational look, the work began. A floor plan was created to scope out what I could actually do with the small space. Floor plans are important to any project as you can work out the kinks on paper and not in real life – definitely a bonus! This is the time to play around with a few layouts until you get to the one that works for you. Be sure to do this – don’t just go with what you already have, or follow someone else’s ideas; this is the time to get what you really want from your reno!
Once you’ve exhausted the options and decided on the floor plan, you’ll have in hand a blueprint for your dream reno, which will save you time and money. The bonus of this is that it allows contractors to quote more accurately since they know what they’re working toward, and not creating (and changing things) on the fly.
I needed a kitchen cabinet company, flooring company, countertops, appliances, blinds and more! All these companies needed to be sourced to find the right look, feel, and materials I wanted included in my dream kitchen. There was shopping and sourcing, meetings, paperwork and so much more. Once I knew what I wanted to include in the space, the next step was to find a contracting company that could bring my dream to life.
Hiring a general contracting company is the best way to go when you have a busy work/ lifestyle. They manage every moving part to the renovation so that you don’t have to organizing each trade at each phase. And the order of the trades being involved is very important. I chose to work with Make it Right Corp to do the job - they gutted the kitchen, removed the wall and organized all the trades for each stage, at the right time. They coordinated the kitchen cabinets, flooring, countertops, appliances, blinds and more.
While the renovation was happening, product orders were placed and items delivered. It was like a finely choreographed dance – items had to arrive in just the right order, for the trades to install before the next step in the process.
A true inspiration for me was the flooring. I lovingly selected beautiful marble Herrington bone tiles from Creekside Tile Toronto. These are a showpiece! And they pull everything else together! Take note: Flooring can take longer than expected to arrive so have that on order as quickly as possible or it can delay the entire job.
Next up in the process was a meeting with the kitchen company I chose, DV Kitchens and Bath. They came on site to finalize measurements and materials. I had my inspirational collage to show them my tastes, ideas and requirements; that made it easy for them to zero in on what would be ideal for me. They showed me their high gloss flat panel cabinets – perfect for my dream kitchen! Because I didn’t want handles distracting from the clean, sleek look of these cabinets.
As part of the design of my new kitchen, I struggled with having handles distracting from the clean and sleek look of my new kitchen cabinets. As I thought about how I was going to accomplish a handle free look but also incorporate some of the new technology available today, I turned to GRASS. GRASS is a company I have come to love over that past year for their innovations and sleek designs and amazingly great soft close hinges and slides. GRASS has been supplying the kitchen and furniture industry for over 70 years. GRASS hardware has everything for the home-owner with an attention to detail. They specialize in concealed soft-close furniture hinges, fully synchronised under mount soft-close drawer slides that are guaranteed to please, double-wall drawer box systems and, not to be forgotten, their own line of cabinet door lifters. A kitchen in my mind is not complete without these precious gems hidden behind closed doors & drawers. These are luxuries you want to have installed in your home and will come to regard as necessities; enjoy the silence of precision soft-close! This is an investment you will never regret!
It was an easy decision to keep the paint the same throughout the house. Using the colour I love in the rest of the house, Para Paint Jojo whitewash PF17, gives illusion of much more space and creates a consistent look throughout. In small spaces, keeping the paint the same will make the space seem bigger, and help to open it up.
The colour of the appliances directed me on faucet style. I selected a unit from Delta that was sleek, modern and the perfect jewelry piece for the sink area. This model is a single handle pull down kitchen faucet in Champagne Bronze finish, the Delta Trinsic model. I found simple, classic brass pendants that are not distracting or block the view from Artcraft Lighting. One of my pet peeves is having to look around pendant lights at an island to see the person on the other side. So these were the perfect solution.
Onto window treatments. I reached out to my friend Karen at @inspireddrapestoronto a Budget Blinds dealer. I was looking for something that gave me privacy but also let in a lot of light. 1TriLight is a unique combination of a sheer pleated shade on top and a honeycomb shade on the bottom, an item found exclusively at Budget Blinds. It is the perfect look … classy and soft but allowing me to have three different looks. I feel like I have a three in one shade!
I had to find a door for my little closet and knew I wanted something more elegant than a standard closet door in my now stunning kitchen. So I turned to Metrie to find a door that was 96”x24” and found a perfect one in their True Craft Finishing Collection to highlight the size and with just the right amount of drama! I then added a simple black lever handle and it finishes off that area just perfectly!
After all the main pieces were ordered and in place, it was time for some shopping! I order new stools and more on Wayfair.ca. Since I now have open shelves holding my everyday dishware, I ordered new glassware and dishware, pieces that were as stunning and perfect as everything else in my dream kitchen; it was ordering art for the shelves! The whole design direction of the space was to have everything calming, easy on the eye and white. With that direction, it was easier to shop for exactly what I needed … and wanted!
If you’d like to see details on all the steps in the renovation so far, watch the videos on Instagram and Facebook. And keep posted for the big reveal that will be happening soon. I love the look and function of the new kitchen – it was worth the wait and all the work that’s gone into it! I can’t wait to sharer the end result with you.
Stay tune for all the after photos . . .