Before and After: HGTV’s “Renovation Goldmine” Gives a Classic Tudor Home Functional Updates (and More Cabinet Space)

published Jun 1, 2022
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Credit: HGTV

Erin and Pete Connor spent seven years in their Tudor-style home waiting for their kids to get a bit older so that they could “make it nice.” When the time came, they enlisted Meg and Joe Piercy to help give the living space — including the kitchen, dining room, and office — some much needed updates. In the latest episode of HGTV’s “Renovation Goldmine,” the Piercys helped modernize the Oak Park, Illinois home and make it more functional for a busy family of five.

Before the renovation, the layout of the house was tight, consisting of several small rooms that were loosely connected. The kitchen was cramped (especially in proportion to the rest of the house) and had no cabinet space. The pots and pans were hung awkwardly over the small wood and marble island and all of the dishes had to be kept in the dining room, which was situated in a small dining area off to the side of the kitchen. The cramped dining room extended into a large catch-all back room space, which the family once used as a playroom for the kids and had since turned into an office space.

Credit: HGTV

With a $75,000 budget, the Piercys kicked off the renovation. They began by tearing down one of the kitchen walls and opening up the entire space. They also gutted all of the original counters so that they could rebuild the kitchen from scratch. With the new square footage, they installed dark wood (upper) and green (lower) cabinets along an entire wall. Erin picked out an understated gray backsplash, which added warm tones to the cabinet colors. 

Meg and Joe got rid of the original small island and instead brought in a “massive” island that extended along the majority of the room. To help with the sizing, the couple and their crew “waterfalled” the island so that the white counter dropped off to a walnut wood tabletop at a slightly lower height. The variation in height helped make “it feel like it’s not quite so long,” according to Meg. They also added chairs to the tabletop for casual dining experiences.

Credit: HGTV

The Piercys decided to swap the office and old dining area. In the new dining room (the back room), the Piercys ripped up the carpeting and added black and white “checkerboard” tile for a vintage (but still updated) look. They also painted the trim and walls “off black,” because it was balanced out by the abundance of natural light that came in through the windows.

Credit: HGTV

The new office space (the old dining room) received the most colorful update in the house. The room started out as a blank canvas, with white-gray walls, white window trim, and white built-in corner cabinets. The Piercys removed the old dining table and placed a classic wooden desk and chair in the center of the room. They painted the trim and cabinets blue and brought in floral wallpaper (with a light blue background) to help pull the space together. The wallpaper had a very traditional look, which gave the appearance that it had been a part of the house’s original build.

“This was a budget-saving room,” Meg explained to the homeowners. “We really just wall-papered, painted, and everything else was already here.”

“Renovation Goldmine” airs Saturdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on HGTV.