Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Kitchen Timeline and Updates

I've been eager to show you the paint update in our kitchen. A few weeks ago we decided to have the entire first floor of our home repainted: living room, dining room, and kitchen. I want to start with the kitchen because it has the most dramatic change.

But first, here is where we started when we bought our house in November 2008:

Pretty sweet, huh? Laminate everywhere: cabinets, countertops, backsplash, and ceiling. This photo was actually taken on the day of settlement, so we hadn't done a thing at this point. What stayed: the floor (oak floors that had just been installed a year prior), the awesome Caloric stainless steel wall oven that you can see a tiny bit of in this photo to the very left, the stainless cooktop and hood to the right of this photo, and the fridge also to the right side of this photo. We were also going to be creating a half wall between the kitchen and dining area.

We started to do some of the easy demo ourselves, but left the rest of the job to the professionals. That wall above left is the one that would become a half wall with countertop and stepped up counter for eating. The electrical got fished up and around to the other side to accommodate the removal of this wall.

Oh my gosh, look how this opened it up. I was thrilled beyond belief the day this happened. I can remember just standing at the wall on the dining room side grinning from ear to ear. Progress.

Ok, now brace yourselves...and this is where we made a rookie mistake. When deciding what color to paint the walls, we didn't really consider much other than the new cabinets were going to be off white and we liked the color orange. Easy. Yikes is all I have to say.

But once the cabinets got installed, we really did love it. It was ours and we had a say in everything and that felt really good. And what a difference our new and improved kitchen:

Fast forward 3 years later, and I'm ready for a change. We love our kitchen but I was sick of the orange and I've learned a thing or two about color as well. Can you see how our wood floors in the kitchen have an orangey/red undertone? The color of the walls basically matched the floors and it was driving me crazy.

So a change we made...enter our new paint color, Benjamin Moore Wythe Blue (it's really tough to get good lighting since we're in a twin but you'll be able to see the big change this made):

I know lighting is tough but anyone know why these particular photos are so grainy? 

I love the new color - it looks great in our kitchen. It's a pretty blue/green and looks awesome with our cabinets and floors. And as you can see I had styled it in the hopes of being able to use these as part of the house tour I'm starting to get together for my portfolio, but I think I'm going to try again at a different time of day.

I was eager to give a sneak peek. And next time I'll photograph the rest of the kitchen too.

Have any of you made any paint mistakes and updates that have made a huge difference?


  1. Oh my goodness- this looks amazing! You guys really added such value to your house with the changes you made in the past. Now, this wall color looks beautiful in this space. Well done! And yes, I have definitely made paint mistakes in my day! I remember walking into our first apartment and laughing at the horrible paint color I chose. It turned out neon blue! It wasn't supposed to. :)

  2. It's amazing the difference a little paint can make. Such fun progress, Holly! I like your hardware, too.

  3. Wythe Blue is one of my all time favorite colors and it looks outstanding in your delightful kitchen Holly. A perfect update, love your cafe curtain as well. It goes without saying that the whole kitchen transformation is divine!

  4. Oh Holly, I'm speechless and so excited for you! It's perfect, I'm dying to see a photo with your bar stools! Love your styling and fabric on the cafe curtains, it looks like they're softly blowing for your photo! :) Sorry no help with the grainy photos.

  5. Oh what a change! That blue just looks gorgeous against the white cabinets!
    As for the grain in your photos, it's definitely the lack of light. Your camera had to adjust to let in more light, which added the extra grain or "noise." Yes, try a different time of day and see if that helps. It looks fab and thanks for sharing!

  6. This is great! I hadn't seen your original kitchen before, and I love a good kitchen before and after :) I really like that you kept that Caloric wall oven--so great to have vintage pieces in a newer kitchen if you can make it work (which you did). The new blue color looks wonderful with your white cabinets, and I'm sure you're loving the lighter, brighter feel. I have made so many paint mistakes in my house.....I think I've painted every room twice because I didn't like the "tone" of the first color. You made the right choice this time though--looks wonderful, and thanks for sharing this great transformation!

  7. What a great update! I've never seen this color, but I am in LOVE. And, I hadn't seen the original photos of your kitchen, but WOW. Your remodel and half wall made such a huge difference!

    Remind me -- are you using a manual camera? I only get grainy photos when I set my ISO too high, to counter a low light situation. So maybe ... ?

  8. Oh wow, Holly!!! What a transformation from when you moved in!! What you guys did was amazing, and the orange walls plus your changes were a million times better. But now the blue/green walls (love that color!) totally elevate the room to another level. So pretty!!! Love the green patterned curtain and the cute floral dish towel too:)

  9. I love that you went orange with your kitchen - it looked great but I can see that over time it would be too much for the eye with the floors, too. Wythe Blue has been a favorite of mine for a long time and I have a couple of clients who have used it - although not in a kitchen - with phenomenal results. Great choice, Holly! I love the kitchen.

  10. Great transformation! I kinda loved the orange. But it's an intense color and will wear you down over the years. My office was orange for years and I switched to a light grey two years ago. Different vibe completely.

  11. Hey Holly!

    I LOVE the Whythe blue!! (Almost used that on the twins' room ceiling!) It is such a pretty color. And it looks fab with the color of the floors too. One of the things I've been thinking constantly about lately is balancing cool and warm tones in a room, and you've done that here perfectly. What a huge transformation you've made in the kitchen all told.

    The grain in the photos comes from the camera trying to let in more light in a darker room which means the shutter speed slows. Combine that with any camera movement and you'll get grainy photos. I know, I have plenty on my blog! One way to fix this is to use a tripod when shooting a room with low light -- even with a point-and-shoot!

  12. I saw this when you first posted it on my iPAD and couldn't comment (I was out of town) ... It is lovely - Whythe Blue is one of my favorite colors - it just seems to look great everywhere. I liked the orange too but agree with your comments about the floor with it. This look is much more soothing to the eye. Beautiful job!

  13. Wow! That's an amazing before and after! What a vision you had for your kitchen. The new blue is beautiful. It's amazing how just one thing the the color of the walls can change the entire look and feel of a room. Looking great, Holly!

  14. Hi Holly! I am so behind in my blog reading and I was just catching up with yours. What a transformation! I can't believe the difference and the Wythe Blue is so pretty. I just added that to my client color boards yesterday and it's one of my favorites. And I love it with your floors. It's so hard to photograph rooms with no light, especially when you are facing the only light source! You did a great job. Looking forward to more of your house tour...


  15. Hi Holly, Popping over to say hello because Pam from Simple Details told me how much she enjoys your blog. I can see why! I'm enjoying my visit. This kitchen transformation is amazing. Cutting out the wall was such a brilliant idea! Love both the orange and the blue! Great to "meet" you!

    Warmly, Michelle
    ps - I'm hosting a linky party if you want to stop by & link up a couple of your favorite blogs. :D