Our Kitchen Renovation Recap

By | May 19, 2016

Now that the kitchen has been done for awhile, I figure we should do a final recap post. So, get ready for a bunch of photos. I’ve also inserted links where I could, to round up all our project posts.

Thanks for sticking with us through this super long process. It’s been a frustrating process, but also super rewarding. I can barely remember what it looked like before, so to get us started, how about a few photos to remind us.


Tulips in Kitchen 9 Tulips in Kitchen 11 spring kitchen hutch

Table in Kitchen 3 Kitchen Light Fixture

The first step was to remove the soffit and the wall where the old pantry was. We also removed the door and added bracing in the attic, just in case.  We consulted a professional friend of ours to give us some engineering insight.

Removed Drywall in Kitchen 4 Empty Kitchen Cabinets 2

I had a little trouble visualizing how this corner was going to look so I had to set up some cabinets with cardboard and blankets. It stayed like that for longer than I’d care to admit.

Cardboard Kitchen Mock Up

Meanwhile, we ordered our cabinets and all our pantry and kitchen stuff was shoved in the corner. Fun times.

Messy Kitchen Makeshift Pantry

Then, we removed the upper cabinets.

Demo Kitchen Day 1

Then, at the last possible moment, the lower cabinets went away, which meant we also lost the sink. We moved some electrical boxes and plumbing vents. And, we rerouted some duct work and vented the duct for the new range hood out to through the attic.

Base cabinets Out of Kitchen 2 Gutted Kitchen 2

Gutted Kitchen

Then, it was time to start rebuilding.

In the nook, we had to build a frame for the countertop to sit on. And for the big drawer to fit into. Here’s more on why we did it this way.

Built in Kitchen Nook Structure

And, we hung drywall. That was one of the worst parts of the projects.

Adding Drywall to Kitchen

Or rather, mudding and sanding was the worst part.

Mudding Drywall in Kitchen Finished Drywall in Kitchen

To be specific, remudding the ceiling was the worst part of the entire kitchen.

Melissa Mudding Kitchen Drywall

But, when it was all done, we got it painted and the room started to look a lot better and brighter.

Painting Kitchen

We also removed the old wood flooring at this point so we could start installing the new cabinets.

Installing Kitchen Cabinets

And then, our glorious countertops finally arrived so we could install the farmhouse sink and stop having to wash dishes in the bathtub.

New Granite Kitchen Counter Top 4

New Granite Kitchen Counter Top 6 New Granite Kitchen Counter Top 3

Wyatt built a custom pantry cabinet and roll out drawers and a fridge enclosure. And, Wyatt customized the microwave cabinet to fit our new microwave. This is when things started to feel really real. It was finally coming together.

Fridge Built In Kitchen Cabinet Progress 2

Then we added a subway tile backsplash. It was our first time tiling and we learned several tips and tricks. Wyatt also learned how to use the tile saw. That was fun.

Prepping to Tile Kitchen Backsplash

It was a lot of effort, but we really like the tile. It adds something, for sure.

Finished Kitchen Subway Tile 4

We got the doors put on the pantry (we ordered those to match our cabinets), and added cabinet hardware.

Finished Kitchen Subway Tile 5  Finished Kitchen Subway Tile

We hung the range hood, which was a splurge, but so worth it!

Installed Range Hood in Kitchen 2

Then, it was time to install the new flooring.

Flooring Kitchen Dishwasher

Finally, we built the custom open shelves. And painted them white to match our cabinets and hung them (into studs) using brackets.

Building Kitchen Shelves 7 Painted Trash Can in Kitchen

Finally, we got the nook drawer all finished. Here’s a recap of that entire project.

Painted Trash Can in Kitchen Nook

Then, we built some custom shelves in the nook area.

Then, we put the trim up at the ceiling. It was especially tricky in the nook, which we detailed, here. It was a small detail but it made everything feel so much more finished.

Kitchen Cabinet Trim Done 3

We also hung the shelf above the door that Wyatt built for me when we first moved to this house.

Kitchen Decor After Remodel

And, we finally got the new pendant lights installed over the sink and then, several months later, got the matching lights installed in the dining area over the farmhouse table.

To back up a bit, we also moved a couple of the can lights.

dining table pendant lights 3 (2)

And other than a few other details I’ve almost certainly missed in this recap, we officially had a finished kitchen on our hands! It only took us months and months and months. About 18 to be exact.

In all seriousness, we started the very first bit of demo at the end of March 2014 but we’d been planning long before that. We had all the big stuff done by the end of 2014, but just hung the last lights over the table in November of 2015…

So, now I get to share the pretty after photos!

Finished White Kitchen Renovation 2

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with stainless steal range hood-custom open shelves 3 Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom cabinetry nook

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY Farmhouse Table

I think one of the most amazing parts is just how custom everything is. We had to work around a lot of issues and we’re so proud we took the time to do it correctly and completely. From rerouting the duct work out of the soffit and into the attic to building the giant appliance drawer in the nook and the giant custom pantry, this kitchen is exactly what we needed.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom open shelves 3 Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom cabinetry and appliance drawer nook

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with custom DIY pantry and built in fridge and microwave

Plus, we saved a lot of money by doing it ourselves. Building the pantry cabinet saved us over $1000, just for that one project. Not to mention, we reused a lot of our existing items and appliances, from big stuff like the fridge to small stuff like the mixer and decor.

White Kitchen Gray Granite Yellow KitchenAid Turquoise Blue Toaster Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom open shelves 4

But, we did buy some new things, like our farmhouse sink and the range hood.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with stainless steal range hood-custom open shelves

Of course, the table is one of my favorite parts of the room. I love that we designed and built it together after salvaging the wood from a place we both have a lot of memories.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY Farmhouse Table 2

The open shelves work really well for us, even if it’s a little odd that we have champagne glasses right next to the baby bottles. We also have a mixture of every day dishes, food, spices, and dishes we rarely use, all coexisting together, out in the open. It helps me find things quickly, and I like seeing what we have so I’m not tempted to keep things we don’t need.

(I actually need to cull a few more things to make room for Will’s stuff. Sippy cups and cheerios may take over for awhile.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom open shelves 5 Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom open shelves 2

The nook shelves hold cookbooks, coffee mugs, tea, and wine. Or tequila. Whatever we happen to have on hand.

I still need to organize the cabinets, and these are the worst if you could see behind the closed doors, but for now, this is working well for us.

The nook really turned out well considering if was all custom built and designed to fit around a few weird angles and boxes we couldn’t change. Although replacing that old garage door is on the list for this year. Ick.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with DIY custom cabinetry nook 2

I’m just to pleased we went through the trouble to open this side of the room up. It was just a tiny wall that we took out, but it made such a huge difference in the space. That little hallway was so dark and closed off. The whole room feels bigger and brighter and more open.

Just to compare our progress one more time:

IMG_2469 Empty Kitchen Cabinets 2

Finished Drywall in Kitchen Finished White Kitchen Renovation with stainless steal range hood-blue trashcan-custom open shelves 2

I sometimes walk into this room and just want to sing. Seriously, I like it that much.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation with custom DIY pantry and built in fridge and microwave 2

Totally worth the 18+ months we worked on this room.

Finished White Kitchen Renovation

Feel free to ask any sourcing or DIY questions in a comment below and we’ll do our best to help.  And be sure to click through the links above for more details on each step of this process.

And if you don’t have a questions, feel free to tell us the longest it’s taken you to complete a project, or even your favorite part of the kitchen now that we’re no longer talking about it all the time.

Or, just join my in a song of appreciation for how awesome Wyatt is for sticking with me and being the master craftsman and contractor on this job. Three cheers to my handy husband for making my dreams a reality!

And thank you, readers, for sticking around to follow along. We may not be the fastest workers or the best or the brightest, but we’re very grateful to share our adventures with all of you!

To see every kitchen-related post we have on the site, click here

To see other projects we’ve tackled, organized by room, type, or popularity, click here

4 thoughts on “Our Kitchen Renovation Recap

  1. grandma donita

    You both did an amazing job with the kitchen. It is so bright and cheerful.

  2. Pam

    Just beautiful! This will hep so many others who want to do a remodel!!!


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