Saturday, August 31, 2013

A complete Kitchen Redo on a Budget

The kitchen update was one of the most dramatic in the Goodwood full townhouse redo. See our other posts for more details on the complete redo.

The Plan

The master plan for the kitchen really helped us with envisioning the final look.  We tried to make it as realistic as possible, by keeping the drawing as close to scale as possible, and by using approximately the same colors that would eventually be installed.  Using this approach, we could see just how much clearance the coffered ceilings would have over the cabinets, what exact sizes the order-over-the-internet cabinets would have to be, and approximately how much granite we'd have to purchase.

One key addition to the drawings was lighting.  We actually drew in the cones of light that would be created by the pot lights.  This helped a lot with understanding if there would be enough light, and in ensuring the light was evenly spread.

Believe it or not, we used Powerpoint to do the drawings below.  We looked around for better drawing software that was low price (zero), and as flexible as Powerpoint, but we couldn't find anything.  To this day, we're still using Powerpoint for some of our planning.

Making the Budget Sing

In the kitchen, we tried to make the budget sing. Espresso maple shaker cabinets focused on ergonomics - the majority of the bottoms were full extension drawers. $1900 purchased online. St. Cecelia Granite from a local supplier including 60/40 stainless sink. $1950. Stainless appliances from Sears scratch & dent (usually they're not really) $2000. Can lights and above- and below-cabinet lights. $150. Floor Tile. $600 including install. Shelving in pantry & trim including coffer ceiling. $500. Faucet. $90 from Amazon. Total $ 7190. Not bad at all for a total kitchen redo.

Lighting is the Key

We found the highest impact item was the lighting. Above-cabinet lights are so worth it. The coffered ceilings also have a great effect in the space, defining the kitchen, while uniting it with the adjoining dining area. The granite was much easier to do than we thought it would be. Our local granite folks were really helpful. Going with a base level granite really made a huge difference in terms of price. 
Finally, the cabinets were such a great deal. They are real wood, no particle anything. Just watch out for the ready to assemble companies on the internet. They are not all made equal.

Pantry Update

We didn't change the arrangement of the pantry much, finding that the original design with floor to ceiling shelves along the back wall was optimal in the narrow space.  We upgraded the space by extending the porcelain spa tile floor into the pantry, where it was once linoleum.  We then replaced the white wire shelves with ready-made black shelves from home depot that we beefed up with espresso-stained 1 x 2 on the front and sides.  The shelves are supported by contrasting white-wire brackets. 

Before and Afters

Lessons Learned

Bringing a full kitchen in with significant upgrades in trim and finishes for just around $7200 was tough.  The key was to have a plan, where we sketched out to scale the cabinets, granite, coffers, everything.  Being able to see the kitchen before it was built helped us to make some really critical decisions about how to lay out the coffers, where to place electrical outlets, which cabinets to buy, and so on.

Happy renovating!

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