One of my favorite things to do as I wrap up a project is to go back and look at where we started. When you are going through a renovation, often for months, it’s easy to forget what was once there in the first place. These clients had been living in the home for 20 years! They actually had the home built for them and helped select the original finishes. I’m sure it would still be a shock for them to look at the difference of their new kitchen in comparison to the old…I love having a record of the progression!
This kitchen was twenty-years old with builders-grade style finishes and fixtures. While the clients initially struggled to define their style, we did some digging by having them take the style quiz as well as the in-depth style assessment offered with our design services. The results pointed us in the very prominent direction of a traditional style with farmhouse touches. This was perfect considering the home was located on some dreamy acreage north of town.
A CABINETRY CONUNDRUM
What started as a plan to refinish the cabinets, we did quote comparisons of refinishing the cabinets versus ordering new. Sure enough, like others who have gone through this process, we decided it was a small upgrade to going with new cabinets. This was good for many reasons…1) the style of the cabinet doors was outdated. 2) there were many gaps and fillers or homemade components to their existing cabinets. 3) it was only a matter of time before the age of these cabinets started to show and break down. So, cabinets got torn out for reuse somewhere else.
PLANNING FOR FIXTURES & FINISHES
The original counters were laminate, which definitely needed to be upgraded. The plumbing and lighting fixtures were old, worn, and outdated as well. For budget reasons, we kept the existing fluorescent lighting. However, a little cleaning and replacing of bulbs helped freshen them up. Part of the way through planning, the clients decided to get new appliances, too!
The flooring throughout the first level also needed to be replaced. It was Pergo flooring and had started to pop and gap in areas. Later, in the lower living room, we noticed a large sink hole in the corner by the stairs. This gave us all a big scare, but was fixed with a bit of concrete and leveling. Instead of putting the old carpet back down, we decided to use the same flooring we selected for the kitchen.This, in addition to painting the whole level the same color, really helped the home feel cohesive.
A FORMAL DINING SPACE
The layout of this home is incredibly common for spec homes in our area. But the homeowners didn’t need two living rooms! What they really needed was a dining room that could fit more than four people. We decided to take over the formal living room and turn it into a dining room. The client had a beautiful extra long and live-edge table that was made by her dad using exotic wood. It would fit in the space perfectly and allow them to entertain and host gatherings during the holidays. This space also had a fireplace, although it was small in scale for the size of the room. It needed some finish updates as well, which was the perfect opportunity to enhance the whole space.
Overall, this first floor of the home expanded into a bigger project than we initially planned. But every decision ended up making sense! Homes with these large, open floor plans are hard to “cut off” when renovating. This is because some materials continue to the next room (wall colors, flooring, trim, etc.). However, take a peek at the progress photos for how we achieved a cohesive feel in the wide open space!