Kitchen Remodel: Before & After

Kitchen Remodel: Before & After

We’ve been in our house for exactly 1 year! And the while we’ve made a lot of progress, I would say the kitchen is one of the the rooms that is 99% done! Aside from  exchanging the hardware on the cabinets and adding a piece of art above the breakfast bar, it’s complete!

When we first moved in, the kitchen looked VERY different as you can see below. I immediately enlisted in my best friend Nora’s help, as she is an interior stylist. I had an overall picture of what I wanted the vibe in the kitchen to be (I’ve modeled our entire house with the concept of “modern farmhouse” in mind), but Nora really helped with the specifics. (PS. If you’re looking for someone to virtually help you style your house, or in-person if you live in NYC, highly recommend Nora! I’ll link her website here).


First things first, the (faux) island had to go. As much as I love an island, this one was not conducive for the space. It was so awkward, and totally interrupted the flow of the kitchen. Next step was to get rid of the blue paint and the backsplash. We painted the kitchen with Sherwin Williams “Drift of Mist” (which is the same color as the rest of the house), and replaced the black and white backsplash, with a large white subway tile. We opted for a white grout because we wanted to keep the space bright and clean.

The next step was the cabinets. I really wanted open shelves in general, but also knew by removing some of the cabinets it would help open up the space. Since the kitchen isn’t huge, finding ways to make the kitchen seem more open was key. So we ended up taking out the cabinets next to the microwave and stove, and the sink. The only remaining cabinets are those to the left of the fridge. Since we have the cabinets below and a pantry, we were able to get rid of the majority of the cabinets and still have enough storage.

We also had the idea to add a breakfast bar on the wall space by the sun-room doors. It wasn’t really big enough for a table, but it seemed like a waste of space to not put anything there. The same contractor that did our shelves, made and installed the breakfast bar. It’s the perfect little addition to the kitchen–doesn’t take up any extra space but gives people a place to sit!

All in all, I would say this entire “renovation” was right around $4K. When you take into account the removal of the cabinets, adding and staining the custom shelves, the new blacksplash, and adding the custom breakfast bar. We had almost everything done right before we moved in while they were painting the whole house. It didn’t make sense to repaint the kitchen when they were doing the rest of the house, and then to come back in several months later and take out the entire backsplash, the cabinets, repaint etc. For a while, we didn’t have the shelves or the breakfast bar installed because we were basically poor when we first moved in lol. But the new backsplash was in and the old cabinets were out, and everything that needed to be repainted was done. Then one weekend when we were out of town, they came in and installed the shelves and breakfast bar.

Below are the after photos! If you have any questions about the process feel free to leave them below! Have any of y’all remodeled your kitchen?






  1. Kassie
    July 18, 2019 / 12:20 am

    Oh my goodness! What a difference! I remember following along your stories at the time, but I think i blocked out those blue walls, lol. It looks great!

    • Claire Guentz
      August 8, 2019 / 5:16 pm

      LOL i don’t blame you, I blocked them out too haha

  2. July 18, 2019 / 8:33 pm

    The different is incredible! Looks amazing!

    • Claire Guentz
      August 8, 2019 / 5:15 pm

      thanks girl!!

  3. August 12, 2019 / 11:12 pm

    Thanks I needed this

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