My Kitchen Updates – Part 2

Kitchen Window

Last year I did a post about our kitchen updates. We painted the oak cabinets in our kitchen white and that generated a lot of hits. Apparently lots of people are contemplating the same things we were and do not like their ugly orange oak cabinets.

I love the look of our new kitchen and I am very proud of how everything turned out. I love spending time in here and I feel like everything pulled together wonderfully. Since my first post we have had hand scraped hickory hardwood floors installed.  We also added hardware to the cabinets and purchased a new refrigerator.

Kitchen Window

This is a picture of our old kitchen when we first moved into our house. Bleck!!

Old Kitchen

We bought an LG Refrigerator (this one I think) and I love it…its huge and my absolute favorite part is the freezer. There are so many drawers and compartments in that thing I swear I can get as much in there as I can in my freezer in the garage. On top of the two compartments on the bottom there are two drawers that slide so there is no wasted space.

The smart cooling technology also keeps food fresher longer. I have definitely noticed that food is indeed kept fresher. Veggies and fruit don’t spoil as quickly which is a huge deal to me. I always felt like we were throwing produce away and we just don’t have to as often (if at all) with this fridge.

My only complaint is the ice maker doesn’t hold much ice. You can store extra ice in the bucket in the freezer, but I just kind of like to have it come out of the dispenser.

Kitchen Fridge Area

A kind of funny note on the subway tiles….I have always loved the look of a subway tile backsplash, especially with the white cabinets and black granite. Well, subway tile is actually pretty cheap as far as tile goes and my tile guy was trying to talk me out of it because he thought I was just trying to go the cheap route. He wanted me to buy some nicer Italian looking tile and do a fancy backsplash design. While that might also be a nice option I had to convince him that the subway tile was actually part of my overall design and not just a cost savings. I whipped out my Southern Living magazines and Pinterest boards full of white countertops, black granite and subway tiled kitchens just to prove my point. I don’t know if I completely sold him but so what – its my kitchen:-).

Just a quick note on the floor. We bought engineered hardwood and it has held up pretty well. I love the look, but it does show every speck of dirt since it is a dark wood. Just something to consider if you are thinking about dark floors. We have a dog and lots of kids running in and out of the house so it gets dirty quickly.

If you want some info on painting your cabinets I gave some more detail on my first post.

I hope you have enjoyed taking a look at my kitchen. I think the biggest takeaway from this post is that you don’t always have to completely gut your kitchen to get what you want. By painting the cabinets (vs. buying new) we were able to spend a bit more on the floor that I have always wanted. We also got a great deal on our backsplash and granite. We were able to negotiate a great price on both and I think that companies are still very willing to negotiate to get your business. It doesn’t hurt to have a husband in sales, either:-). There are still a few things we need to finish up and if we do anything else significant I will let you all know!

My newly painted white kitchen cabinets

**Update:  to see my more recent post on our updated kitchen, please take a look at this post.  I hope you enjoy (we are!)

Before we moved down south we had completely remodeled our kitchen in our 1920’s colonial home. I loved the maple cabinets, deep sinks, silestone countertop and new floors. Nine months later we sold our house and moved down south.  Leaving that kitchen was kind of sad and this was the kitchen in our new house.  I didn’t trade up in the kitchen that’s for sure.  The appliances were actually white and black when we bought the house.  We brought the stove and purchased the dishwasher and microwave when we got down here.  I like the layout of this new kitchen but I am not a fan of this type of oak.  The countertops in the picture are a light gray – not real pretty.

The cabinets in this new house were actually in decent shape so we didn’t really feel that we needed to replace them.  However, I had read about people painting their oak cabinets white with much success.  There are forums after forums talking about the steps for this big  job and many different ways to get the job done.  So when we decided it was time to paint we had our steps figured out and it took a weekend to get the job done.  It really wasn’t too bad at all – and I love the results!

So here is a picture of my inspiration and dream kitchen.  It’s actually the kitchen from the movie “Something’s Gotta Give,” and if you google white kitchen/black counter tops this picture is sure to come up.

Ok, so I don’t have a viking range or an island the size of New York City, but I just love the black countertop,white cabinets, stainless steel appliances with the white subway tile.  I also really like the pendant lights over the window and the beadboard behind the hutch on the right there.  The dark floors are my other love and that is our next little (big) project.  I am hoping for handscraped hickory or something darker, but we will see if we can swing that.  I just love everything about this kitchen.  I think this would be considered modern country – which is definitely my style.

So here is the kitchen painted.  We still need to put on the hardware.  The drawers will be the brushed nickel pulls like you see on all the drawers in the inspiration picture and the doors will be knob pulls.  I also want to put some trim up on top of the cabinets to finish things off.  There are some cabinets on the other side of the room along with my fridge that just aren’t in this picture.  I am not sure if you can see it in this photo, but the backsplash is white subway tile and the counter top is a black granite that has some flecks of brown in it.  I really love how it has turned out so far.  I just love my white kitchen.  It is so bright and airy and it really reminds me of a country farmhouse kitchen from the 1920’s with a modern twist.  I always imagine my grandmother cooking in here and it makes me happy:-).

I will post more updates as we have them.  The hardware should be on sometime in September and the floors will probably be a couple more months.

If you would like some information on painting your cabinets white you can go here or here, but here are the basics of what we did.  The color we used was Sherwin Williams Basic White and we used their latex semi-gloss.  Jim removed the drawers and doors from the cabinets and set up some saw horses in the kitchen to do the painting on.  It was too humid and hot outside otherwise we probably would have done this out in the garage.  After lightly sanding them, we used a product to degrease the wood.  We then primed with an oil based primer with one coat.  We used a small roller to paint the doors and then went over that with an angled high quality brush.  Jim did all the trim with a smaller angled brush.  We did two coats of the paint and that was plenty.  We also emptied all the cabinets before painting because there was some dust flying around.

When I was in Sherwin Williams I asked the girl working there what she recommended and she was a great help in determining what products to buy all the way from the brushes and rollers to the paint and primer.  So don’t be afraid to ask the people at your paint store for opinions or advice.

If you are one of those people who cringe at the idea of painting cabinets let me just say this.  I probably wouldn’t paint cherry cabinets or nice maple, but the orange-oak is not nice wood – sorry.  There is some oak that is nice, but the cabinets up top were not those.  Don’t be a hater of the white cabinets!!!  Embrace the white.

Has anyone ever painted their kitchen cabinets before?  How did they turn out?