Kitchen Makeover - The Before and My Inspiration

25 June
I don't think I've mentioned it yet here but I have started a kitchen remodel/makeover! I have a lot of work ahead of me and it will definitely take some time but I thought I'd share the before pictures and some of my inspiration!

Kitchen remodel before pictures and inspiration

Here are some of the before pictures.

I had already torn off the backsplash tiles in these pictures.

These are the original 1960's plywood cabinets. My contractor tells me they were built in place back then unlike cabinets nowadays that you buy assembled and install on site.

There was a dishwasher here when I bought the house almost 3 years ago but it didn't work so this one was a Craigslist freebie that my dad and I installed. It was SO loud that I had to leave whenever I needed to wash dishes!

It was also in a weird spot and I could not stand at the sink and load dishes if the dishwasher door was open. I also could not get to the garbage with the dishwasher open!

This was my sink. The whole counter where this sat was not level so the water pooled in the right side of the sink and left water stains.

These drawers were oddly placed... you could not open both the left and right drawers at the same time!

I do have plenty of cabinet space though. Like I said, I've lived here almost 3 years and I still have empty cupboard space!!

So, I hired a contractor to level up all the cabinets, switch one bank of drawers with the dishwasher, and install a new farmhouse sink and countertops!

Here are some of the "during" shots:

Off with the old counters! The sink and dishwasher went bye-bye!

Then one bank of drawers was relocated to where the dishwasher was.

See? Now there is only one set of drawers here!

New wood was put down for the counters.

And my new farmhouse sink was installed!!! It was a little on the expensive side but I figured I am at the point in my life where I deserve nice things now and then!

Boy am I glad too! This sink is SO nice! I gave the dog a bath in here already, it was so nice to not have to lean over the bathtub anymore!

It's an Elkay that I ordered from Lowe's.

And the faucet is also from Lowe's.

I found my new dishwasher at a local appliance store in their scratch and dent section. It was originally priced at $1,200 and I got it for just over $500 with tax. The only thing wrong with it is a tiny scratch on the top of the door and a little piece of chipped plastic inside!

We ran into a bit of an issue after it was installed though... no one considered that the dishwasher might have a handle!!

So the drawers all had to be shortened up a bit so they would open!

I did try and get the contractor to pick up the dishwasher very early on but after asking about it over 8 times I started to feel like a nag! They waited until the last day to bring it and then this happened! Had it been here earlier maybe... just maybe... someone would have measured it?? Or seen that it had a handle??? Just sayin'!! MEN!

Here is a closeup of my new counters. I went with Formica for cost reasons.

I also had this three pendant light fixture installed above the bar.

Now, I'll share my inspiration for the rest of the plan for the kitchen!

I have ordered the tile and cabinet hardware in this collage.

Since I am keeping it neutral (because I know myself... I get bored easily and like to change things) I wanted some excitement. The tile will be used behind the stove as a dramatic pop. You can see kind of how it will look in the bottom right picture. It will ONLY go behind the stove though. I am thinking of beadboard for the rest of the backsplash.

The cup/bin pulls will go on the drawers and the mushroom knobs will go on the cabinets.

Take a look at the top left picture in the collage below... I will be painting the base cabinets gray and the upper cabinets white like this kitchen.

Speaking of cabinets... see the bottom left and right pictures? I will be adding trim to my cabinets like this before I paint them and I will be removing the doors on some of the uppers to create open shelving like this.

And I love the look of the mis-matched pendant lights!

Gray/White Painted Kitchen
Cabinets Turned Open Shelves
Elizabeth Burns Design - Kitchen Cabinet Makeover
Mismatched Pendant Lights
That's all for now! As soon as I get the tile I ordered I'll be able to get the paint to start painting!

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  1. Wow, you do have a lot of cupboard space! that sink is fabulous! I'm sure it will come in very handy. Love the idea of mismatched pendant lights. Bummer about the dishwasher handle, but at least a solution was found. I'm looking forward to following along with your makeover. I know it will be amazing!

  2. Love your inspiration boards. It will look fabulous!

  3. I love the wood grain on your cabinets. Over (too) many years, I've had every type of countertop--tile, granite, quartz. I find the most durable and user-friendly is Formica. What a bonus that it is also the cheapest! (I get tired of the "sheeple" sneering at Formica.) Your sink is so nice--I've had a single-bowl farmhouse sink in several homes for the past 30 years and wouldn't have anything else. Pots, pans, cookie sheets, large platters actually fit in it. (Dogs too.)

  4. Thanks Vikki! Trust me though, the cabinets look way better in pictures than they look in person! I had granite counters in my last house and I didn't like them. They have so many great new patterns in Formica now! They even had them that looked like concrete and reclaimed lumber but they were a little out of my price range :o) I'm really happy with the sink, I'm glad to hear someone's opinion who has actually had them!


  5. Thanks Linzey!!


  6. Nancy CarrollJune 26, 2017

    It's looking great! I think the paint scheme will be gorgeous but i sure don't envy you the job of painting them! Been there---done that! LOL!

  7. Thrifty Mom In BoiseJune 26, 2017

    OMGosh! This is so exciting! I love how you've chosen to do this. I put the trim on my flat plain birch cabinets and drawers and I love it. Now you have me wanting to redo my kitchen. It has been 10 years now. I think I'm due for a spruce up! :)

  8. Thanks! And yes, I think you are due after 10 years... maybe you'll get some different ideas as you follow along with my makeover! I'm really excited to get started... wish that tile I ordered would hurry up so I can match my paint colors!! lol!


  9. Oh... you mean you aren't helping?! LMAO! Kidding!


  10. Sharon Culpepper BrittJune 28, 2017

    The improvement you have already made make a big impact. I love the farmhouse sink and the hardware you picked. Can't wait to see the final result.

  11. Elizabeth BurnsJune 29, 2017

    I am so honored you are using our cabinet makeover tutorial! We really loved the transformation in our own kitchen. Your inspiration board is lovely - can't wait to see the finished project! :)

  12. Hi Elizabeth! I really loved the idea, I hope it works out as good for me as it did you!


  13. I can't wait to see your finished project. It looks wonderful and I love the neutral colors. You will be able to add any splash of color your heart desires.

  14. Thanks JoElle! That was my thought exactly, I change my mind so often and get bored so easily I don't want to be stuck with a color that doesn't work anymore later! But accessories... those are easy to change!


  15. Shirlee CarterJuly 10, 2017

    Kitchen makeovers/reno's are ambitious but so worth it in the end. We have one small section of plywood cabinets on the fridge wall and all the other cabs are fir. They are almost 70 years old and show their age but replacing them isn't an option so I painted them.

    So far everything looks great, looking forwards to seeing the end result.

  16. I'm looking forward to seeing mine all painted... not so much looking forward to actually doing the work though... as you can tell since I'm making pallet tables instead of painting! Ha Ha!!



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