Transformation Inspiration: How a Couple Turned a Boring Rental Kitchen into a Highlight of their Home

Transformation Inspiration: How a Couple Turned a Boring Rental Kitchen into a Highlight of their Home

4c122e5a3b81633ed0864117e03a100d52797a05?w=240&h=240&fit=crop
Esteban Cortez
Jan 6, 2017
(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

Joe and Kim's Chicago apartment is a beautiful example of what patience and collaboration can do for an apartment. If there's one room that demonstrates the effort they've put into their home, it's the kitchen. By organizing kitchen necessities out in the open, filling the space with plants, and displaying meaningful pieces, they've created a room where they can watch the sunset as they cook dinner or enjoy their morning coffee. Here are some of the things they've done to make the kitchen the highlight of their Logan Square home.

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

"Immediately after we moved in, we were in awe of the sunlight that streamed through the window throughout the day and even more so in the evening. Because of this, we knew we wanted the kitchen to be a place to spend a lot our time together."


(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

They customized their lighting and covered unsightly fixtures

Joe and Kim weren't fans of the kitchen's overhead lighting, so they purchased pendant lights from CB2 and covered the built in light fixture using items they found in their apartment. More specifically, Joe mounted a chicken wire panel and draped long plant vines through it to cover the built-in light. Now, the couple has a view of a beautiful, thriving plant when they look up.

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

They added lots and lots of plants

Joe and Kim add plants to every room in their apartment, but the kitchen takes it to another level. "Plants were an absolute must and are by far our favorite element in our kitchen," they say. "We have a crazy addiction to buying plants and have more than 20 (and counting) in just our kitchen alone!"

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

They leave kitchen necessities out in the open

Joe and Kim love to cook meals together almost every day, so leaving kitchen utensils and accessories out in the open helps streamline their daily routines. "We spend many weekend mornings drinking coffee and making breakfast hashes and in the evening cooking dinner while watching the sun set," they say. "The space we have in the kitchen has allowed us to be more elaborate with our cooking and has inspired us to try new recipes."

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

They display meaningful items

It's common to keep meaningful items in the living room or bedroom, but Joe and Kim make it a goal to hang significant items on their kitchen walls. In their kitchen, Joe and Kim display framed records that acted as their wedding guestbook (pictured above) and magnets that mark every state they've visited together as a couple. These items spark memories, act as art and encourage conversation among each other or when entertaining guests.

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

They added bright colors

Joe and Kim keep a neutral palette throughout their apartment and wanted to continue that in their kitchen to keep a unified theme. But to avoid a sterile look, they added color by incorporating bright yellow stools from Target.


"We spend many weekend mornings drinking coffee and making breakfast hashes and in the evening cooking dinner while watching the sun set. The space we have in the kitchen has allowed us to be more elaborate with our cooking and has inspired us to try new recipes."


(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

See more of Joe and Kim's Logan Square apartment in their house tour

Created with Sketch.