Phase 1 Kitchen Update – The Plan

Haven’t written here in a few years, so quick update: We had another baby, moved to Connecticut and bought a 1947 Colonial fixer-upper. Good bones, bad wallpaper. Now on to the fun stuff:

The kitchen in this house is probably what sealed the deal for us. Now, it was not cute, by any means, but the space and vaulted ceilings felt huge in comparison to the other houses we were seeing in this area.

The cabinets were solid wood, and aside from the orange 90’s stain color, the layout of the kitchen was exactly what it should have been. Since this is our 4th house, we knew that not changing the layout would be a game-changer in how much money it would cost to renovate this kitchen and get to our liking.

However, although this kitchen had great bones, there was still a lot to be improved on. So we are setting out to do a Phase 1 Kitchen Update. What that means to us, is that we are not ready to invest $20K – $30K in to the kitchen yet, but how can we make it something we can enjoy and feels “like us” while keeping the budget lowwwww? Like under $2000 low…

We started planning. What were the major ticket items that make the kitchen and where can we save to update those?

Item #1: Cabinets

Like I said before, the cabinets were solid wood and in great shape. The layout was perfect, but not our color style. Overall, the kitchen felt very very orange. Below is the listing pic:

We planned to paint the cabinets, reconfigure the area to the right to include a TV (a must since this is our kids primary hang out area) and do something more drastic to the way-to-small island.

Item #2: Countertops

Ooff, this is a high ticket item. It’s tough because the countertops are granite right now. So do we just live with it, because granite is granite, even if its ugly granite? We went to the stone store to get some quotes on Quartz and the number was around $3600 for just the perimeter, not including the island. I feel like that’s not terrible, but we are also trying to work with a $2000 budget. So if we try to do countertops, we don’t get anything else on our wish list. It didn’t feel worth it.

After a ton of research we decided to try to paint the countertops. I have a full blog post coming on that, but we figured if it works we just potentially bought ourselves some time to save for the countertop of our dreams (while still getting a fully done kitchen). If it doesn’t work, we will just get the countertops done now and neglect making changes to the flooring, island or appliances this year. Not great, but not the worst case scenario.

Item #3: Floors

I hate these floors with a passion. Cannot express this enough in writing. They are basically white, which you can imagine with 2 kids and a dog look dirty 24/7. Also, they are shiny or glossy so they show literally everything. They look clean twice a month when the cleaning lady comes and for exactly 8 minutes before someone spills something. The kitchen door leads to the backyard so there is always dirt on them. Now, I understand changing the floors will not make my whole family stop being slobs, HOWEVER, I am ok with the idea that if I don’t have to see the dirt, then they are not dirty.

Item #4: Appliances

This is where we are choosing to hold off totally for now. All of our appliances are dated, but they all work perfectly. We will wait to replace them until something gives out, or we have saved up the money to get amazing appliances that I cannot live without. For now, they are fine.

Item #5: Details

This is where we can have fun. From handles and pulls to lighting and faucets. I am planning on going for it in the details to make this space special.

Our goal with this phase 1 reno is to get the kitchen to feel like us, and see how many projects we can do for under $2000. I am excited to take on this challenge and show people that you do not have to throw down $30,000 to get the kitchen you need today. You can build on, reconfigure and work with what you have to make changes that make you happier in your space now.

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