This Is What 7,000 Trips to Home Depot Looks Like

I am terrible at taking before pictures.  I think it’s because I get so depressed at what the before looks like.  Or I’m stressed about how much work it’s going to take to get from before to after.  Or because I lack faith that the after is going to be much of an improvement.

Which is just a fancy way of saying that these are the only before shots I have of the kitchen, but trust me, it was bad.  Another terrible paint job courtesy of the people who flipped our house, and calf shit brown paint everywhere, including the ceiling, and a giant boob ceiling fixture, and weird holes where we stuck the dishwasher in and ripped a cabinet out and of course, the builder grade oak finish cabinets that I haaaated.

There’s more shots on Flickr, but here are some afters.  My sainted husband spent all weekend working on this with me and I seriously don’t even know how to tell you how awesome he was.  Especially since he liked the kitchen before, and just worked his kiester off for no other reason than because I wanted something else.  Valentine’s Day indeed.

We primed and painted the cabinets, the walls, and the ceiling, added a new light fixture, and cabinet hardware.  The hot water heater got replaced with a tankless one that is on the back of our house before we moved in.  It sounds like way less work than it was.  And even though I didn’t like the oak I am SO grateful that the cabinets themselves were a perfectly nice style because it saved us tons of money to be able to just paint the suckers.  Also the next time I decide to prime something with oil based primer, kick me in the shins.  Hard.  Repeatedly.  Until I put that can of oil based primer back on the shelf.

I also decided to throw out about a third of the stuff that we had accumulated in the three ish years since we bought our house, because the kitchen just looked and felt so much better with less stuff in it.  And since I hadn’t used any of that stuff, I figured I wasn’t going to miss it.  Taking everything out of the cabinets and then thinking about whether I wanted to put it back in the kitchen was a good way to get rid of a lot of excess.

(PS. I would still like to tile, to raise some walls, to add new counters and an undermount sink and some crown molding and a french door and to take out some walls and to buy a new washer and dryer and to add shelving and raise the cabinets to the ceiling, but somehow after the amount of work this took and how much I love my kitchen now and in light of the state of the housing maket in California, those changes somehow seem a lot less…imperative.)

PPS  The rest of my house is in a state of total chaos and I haven’t done laundry in four days, but in case I haven’t mentioned it, I adore my “new” kitchen. It’s so bright and clean and it’s making me very happy.

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23 Responses

  1. It’s beautiful!

  2. Wow, I love it. You have such excellent taste.

  3. It looks fantastic! I think your flippers must have been the same as the folks who did the remodel on our house. If you go to Home Depot and then find the cheapest thing in any category, that is what is in our house. In fact, all the bedrooms had that SAME boob light fixture. Also the same cabinets. Our ceramic tile is the cheapest, ugliest thing in the store. I feel your pain! Or at least the pain you felt before you made your kitchen awesome! (I’m loving the rack for your pans! I was all set thinking I should copy that when I realized our cabinets go all the way to the low low kitchen ceiling. Filed for future reference!)

  4. this looks great! if you feel like, invest in a cute switch plate for the light switch. you have such a thought out color scheme that it would be a nice accessory touch.

  5. so so SO beautiful!!! You did a fabulous job!!

  6. You painted all those cabinets in only one weekend? You are my hero. We painted our cabinets – with oil-based primer, no less – during our kitchen remodel, and it took us weeks. Granted, we HAD weeks because we were waiting for the doors to come in, but still. Color me IMPRESSED.

    It looks fantastic!

  7. I’m with Maureen, I am BEYOND impressed that you painted all of those cabinets in one weekend. And really, if you primed them that means you painted them twice! TWICE!

    I love it. The white looks super classy.

  8. Great new look!

  9. OMG weirdness! I know your realtor! Dawn Rowe, right? She traveled on the same adoption trip of only 6 families with us. How weird is that!!!????!!

    Also, your kitchen looks awesome.

  10. I would like a better picture of the shelving where the water heater used to be, please. I love open shelving but I don’t know how to make it not look like a jumbled mess.

  11. the new kitchen is so CUTE! I love it, you and your husband make a good remodeling team!

    The door pulls look really good, where did you end up finding them?

  12. Lovely! If I attempted anything near this, I would predict the only results as cabinets painted in whitish streaks before I gave up and cried myself to sleep.

  13. Every time I see new house listings with anything-other-than-white-cabinets I want to scream. You know I love this!

  14. BEAUTIFUL!!

  15. It looks fab! And I meant to ask you about the herb containers you made…Were those Ball jars with chalkboard paint? LOVE.

    • yes! actually just ball jars with black spray paint and a chalkboard marker. but they chalkboard marker doesn’t wash off as well as it might have had I actually used chalkboard paint.

  16. It looks so great! I’m so impressed you did this all in a weekend.

  17. Amazeballs

  18. love it. feel free to come do the same to my kitchen!

  19. Thanks to your after photos, I know what kind of ceiling light I want to get for our kitchen. I love how it turned out!

    • Thank you! The fixture came from Lowe’s – but check it before you buy it! The first two were broken and missing lights.

  20. New to your blog, but had to say that I so envy your fridge!

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