Happy Friday!! Ahh, I love Fridays. so much.

You may remember that a few months ago I showed you that I loved white kitchens. Well, that dreamed died with this house. White did not paint well on oak cabinetry (it does with off white or other colors, but not strict white). I'm mildly still sad about this.

Here's a picture of the kitchen right after the flooring was torn up and before all of the cabinet doors were taken off :

Starting from the beginning:

We had to explore our options between what colors we liked for the cabinets, but also what looked best with our wood flooring. There was a small color range between the oak we already had, the wood flooring color and not having black cabinets.

Here's what the design table looked like when we played with all of the elements:

Kyle was pretty adamant about not going too dark, so that our house didn't "look like a dungeon". We ended up settling on a happy medium, going darker on the cabinets and contrasting it with a lighter kitchen island.

Once we chose the two colors, I ventured to the granite warehouse with the samples and picked out the countertops. (Thanks, Linda)

We had sent a sample to my brother to have him match the color and glaze. He worked on it prior to us starting renovations, so we could hit the ground running! It ended up being a multi-step process, taking about 5 days total between different coats, drying, and touch ups. Almost three months later, we still have some touch ups to do (gasp!!)

I stripped the polyurethane from the doors, then did one very light coat of brown. After that dried, we did a heavier coat to fully cover the oak. The next day, I used an ebony stain over each door, which helped to bring out the original grain of the wood.

While the cabinet doors were in between coats, we started on the cabinet frames. Hard to believe that the kitchen was in this much disarray!
(While I waited with my paintbrush in one hand and camera in the other, aka wasn't helping).

Skipping ahead quickly:

Over Christmas, we installed the lights, which was a huge project in itself. We had to rewire the electric from the attic and make two new outlets directly over the island. There's lots of lighting stories and changes that I can share later, but here's a picture of one pendant in with the old outlet.

See that square thing? It was screaming the 1980's, and made everything look purple! (Almost gave me a heart attack when I finished the cabinets and thought they turned out PURPLE!) 

And now:

(Aren't fresh flowers wonderful? They are essential to get through the winter months!)

The light fixtures are the Clear Globe Glass Pendant from Shades of Light. (I later discovered that Young House Love used the same feature in their kitchen, only in oil rubbed bronze finish. We went with brushed nickel since it was a "lighter" (as in less bulky/heavy) look with our cabinets)

(notice the lack of outlet covers- add that the 'open ended' list!)

It's hard for me to believe that it went from this:

 to this: 

We still haven't chosen hardware for the cabinets. We're also pulling a rather annoying move and painting the kitchen/dining room area another color. It proved to be a little too bland for us. Is it screamingly obvious that I am indecisive yet?

For the other posts that helped make up this renovation:
Lighting - coming up!
Appliances - coming soon!
Paint colors - coming up!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend & indulge in way too many unhealthy foods for the Superbowl!


  1. It looks like it's straight out of a magazine! Good job! :):):)

  2. Meredith- This is awesome, just awesome! BTW- I have the same little green cupboard in my kitchen!

    1. I love that little green piece, I had gotten it from Pier 1 back in college!

  3. I looove those lights, Meredith. Great job overall on the kitchen! It's fun to watch the transformation.

  4. Wow your kitchen looks fantastic! I just discovered your blog a minute ago and I'm so excited! I'm a fellow Michigan blogger who is also redoing parts on my home. I'm really excited to read through your other posts!

    Cup of Tea

    1. Hi Julia! So glad you commented, I just spent a half hour LOVING your blog, excited to follow along :) Hope you are staying warm in this weather :(

  5. You did an awesome job on your kitchen Meredith, it's beautiful! Also, where did you get the little green shelf? Did you guys build it? It's super cute!

    1. Sarah, knowing you - you could DEFINITELY build that piece. I've had it from years from Pier 1.

  6. Absolutely gorgeous! You did a great job, want to do mine next? Or maybe when you finish the bathroom? Very impressive.

  7. wow. just...WOW! That looks beautiful! I have severe kitchen envy right now!

  8. Fabulous! I love the light fixtures you have chosen - spectacular update!


    Ray Doc Wife

  9. OH MY! It looks like a magazine! Amazing!

  10. Wow. Love the light fixtures and the backsplash - and those cabinets!! What an amazing transformation. We started out with pretty much identical ones in our kitchen and actually painted them white last fall. I never want to do such a project again (sooooo time consuming!), but getting rid of that horrible honey oak is totally worth the work. I'm thrilled with them. And yours look great!

    1. Anne- so right, it's very time consuming. We are spending a few days next week just doing touch ups in order to put all the hardware on. SO glad when it will be 100% finished :)

  11. Oh my gosh! What a transformation! Absolutely lovely!! Adore the light fixtures! Yay you! Job well done!!!

  12. Oh it is beautiful! I hope every time you walk into your kitchen you just stop and sigh a happy, happy sigh! I've got kitchen envy... ;)

  13. it looks soo good! I'm with MJ on both counts -- the happy sigh and the envy!

  14. Thanks for all of the sweet comments! We definitely have a few loose ends but we're approaching a the finish line! Can't wait to show you what we did this weekend!!

  15. This is incredible! I love a good transformation. Maybe some motivation to get cooking?! ;)

  16. Wow! that looks amazing!!! We are about to put our house on the market, and I am so tempted to paint the kitchen cabinets. You have inspired me!! the transformation is beautiful!!! (visiting from the blog hop :)

  17. Wow! It looks great! Such a drastic transformation!


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