Lauren's Before Photos: Dated, Bare-Bones Kitchen

Liveblogging the Style Cure

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When we moved into our house, we regretfully didn't take any before photos, but  we did manage to save the MLS photos. Above is the photo that the realtor took of our kitchen with the seller's belongings/decor. It's the closest thing to a true before photo that we have. Although we still haven't done much to the space, we did declutter and add a fresh coat of paint. Here is where we are at now:

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I honestly didn't even need to hang out in my space for a while to know exactly what needs to be done. Being the kitchen - one of the hardest-used rooms in the house, I'm constantly thinking about what I dislike and want to change.

Things I immediately want to rip out:

  • The plastic pendant light and absolutely hideous dust-ridden ceiling fan
  • The dated "fence" above the cabinets
  • The in-the-way paper towel holder
  • The gingerbread trim above the sink
  • The black plastic pulls
  • The ugly faucet

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(Sorry, I know the lighting in the above photo is not ideal, but it was the time of day that both of my children were napping - sometimes you've got to strike while the iron is hot!)

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To make the space a little more functional, I'd like to:
  • Add a small prep space next to the stove (where the trash can currently is)

  • Add more storage next to the refrigerator with an old hand-me-down IKEA bookcase that we inherited (similar to the BILLY)

  • Add more shelves to the teeny tiny storage closet
And for the fun part (decorating!), the plan is to:
  • Paint the cabinets white - the wood tone is too orange for my taste, plus the cabinet doors have an ugly black recessed line that I'd like to cover up.

  • Repaint the walls. The creamy yellow isn't bad, but I'd like to neutralize a bit so that I can easily add in color with the accessories. While I love a white kitchen  I think that would be a little much with white cabinets and white appliances. I'm thinking a light gray similar to the color in our family room might do the trick.

  • Replace the current light and ceiling fan with matching pendant lights. Something classic like a schoolhouse pendant or perhaps something a little bit more industrial? I'd also like to center the new pendants with the windows if it's possible.

  • Add art. There isn't a ton of wall space, but I'm planning to make the most of what I have. I'm not sure if I want to do a bunch of small pieces grouped together or one large statement piece.

  • Add fun accessories - I don't want the space to look cluttered, but I want to add in some personality and color.

  • Replace the cabinet and drawer pulls - again, I'm leaning toward a classic look for our little 1930's casa.

  • Find a shiny new faucet to dress up our sink. I'd love to eventually replace it with a farmhouse sink but I'm afraid right now it's just not in the budget.

  • New window treatments. I'm hunting for some cute, inexpensive roman shades, but I kind of don't think they exist. Maybe a DIY project is in my future?

  • Down the road we want to replace the existing laminate flooring with the same hardwood that we installed throughout the rest of our first floor, install new countertops, and add a white subway tile backsplash. I'd love to tackle these things right away, but with an infant I just don't have the time or energy - maybe next summer?

  • While I'd love to replace the microwave with a hood, I'm not sure how practical it would be considering that we don't have much storage space to begin with, and venting it would probably mean losing our two upper cabinets. I also would prefer stainless steel appliances, but these are fairly new so we'll just try our best to make them work.
So there's the plan - whew! I love making a list, but the best part comes next - crossing it off, line by line. 


(Images: Lauren Hufnagl)


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Lauren is a writer, DIYer, and Etsy addict living with her family in her tiny work-in-progress home in Pennsylvania. When not blogging, she can usually be found chasing around one very spirited little three-year-old and snuggling her new baby girl.