Before & After: An 80s Contemporary Kitchen Gets an Update

This kitchen was originally built in 1989, and after 20 plus years of daily use, it was falling apart. While it may not look too bad on the surface, behind the before photograph were broken cabinets, a cooktop that barely worked, and granite countertop edges that were falling off.

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The kitchen had a contemporary feel for 1989, but for 2013 the owner was hoping for a softer, more family friendly feel. Creamy colors and deep granite were swapped for crisp shades of white and grey mixed with Carrara marble.

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The Old:

  • The stainless steel Sub-Zero fridge was only a couple of years old and fit in with the new style planned for the renovation, so the homeowners decided to keep it.
  • The wood butcher block was re-stained to a dark walnut tone, and the stainless steel sink in the island remained, with an updated faucet.
  • The art piece of giant utensils and the cow head have become a defining pieces for this family's kitchen, and hold sentimental value for the space.
  • Keeping the basic layout made for an easier renovation that was essentially a swap out of old for new.
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The New:

  • Shaker style cabinets painted in Benjamin Moore's Chelsea Gray and fitted with polished chrome knobs and pulls from Restoration Hardware.
  • The original granite countertops were innovative for 1989, but the edges of the countertop were coming unglued. The old countertops were replaced by honed Carrara marble countertops with a beveled Carrara marble subway tile backsplash.
  • Viking double ovens in gloss white and a white Viking cooktop and downdraft.
  • A new Bosch dishwasher with a stainless steel front.
  • New white Ceco sink and faucets in polished chrome.
  • New pantry door with a chalkboard front.
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While you might be tapped out financially after fitting a new kitchen, something that is a really nice addition is new tableware to complement the kitchen style. For this kitchen, the owner invested in Juliska Pewter Stoneware. The metallic tones of these dishes are set off beautifully by the dark grey of the cabinets. It's a lovely finishing touch.

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(Image credits: Claire Bock)

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