Cool Kitchen Renovation

kit other direction

From a reader: “Where the fridge is there used to be a doorway. where the high up window is there used to also be a doorway leading out to a entry/exit area to the backyard ( that space is now a 1/2 bath) Wall between kitchen and dining room knocked out completely (former owners had knocked it out partially, leaving a “peninsula” and part of the wall coming down from the ceiling.)

This was a regular galley kitchen before the redo…sorry can’t find the before pictures. The place where I ordered the cabinets thought I was insane, but I am really happy with the skyline effect, which was what I wanted.

Cabinets: solid cherry with sage stain, Dynasty, where most of the cost went, ordered through The Great Indoors
Counter: zodiac.

Tiles: bisazza, custom configuration, but installed by me island: made from upper cabinets (dining room side), and drawer base units (kitchen side), topped with an Ikea thick oak counter…way way cheaper than any other butcher block counter i found…actually a bargain.

Total cost is really hard to say, i had trouble with contractors ( this was done during the “boom” when contractors could screw customers and not care! argh!)…but definitely between 15 and 20K.”

The submitter is happy to answer specific questions anyone may have just post questions in the comments section. If you have any renovation photos you’d like to submit just email photos and a bit of commentary to princeofpetworth (at) gmail (dot) com

Another photo with a different angle after the jump.

kit 1

28 Comment

  • oh my gosh it’s awful!

    You should have sought professional advice! Fugtastic!

  • I like it.

  • The blue color is horrific. If this house is ever put on the market, the blue will have to go. Where is the world did they find a blue mircowave?

  • Someone spent way to much money on this renovation.

  • I think it’s cool and different and pretty. Yeah, you have to think about “the market” but “the market” isn’t living in that house right now, and if the owner loves blue appliances, more power to him or her.

  • I hope they do something about it before they resell it…
    blue appliances?

  • i think it’s funky-cool. who lives in their house with the attitude of “when i sell….”

    i guess it’s all those oklahoma folks that are biding their time in dc, but realize they’ll need to return to the hinterland at one point. those are the folks that i hope move sooner, rather than later – for all our sake!

  • wow, i love it… i want to eat dinner around tht island with my friends… and kudos poo poo… what sort of people do actually think about ‘when i sell’ while refinishing their home? obviously these arent people who consider it home, but rather a temporary house

  • i like it. if you’re going to design and live in your house and only consider what will make it sell, then you’re living a sad life. try enjoying things for yourself for once, you’ll find it refreshing.

  • I’m loving the “skyline” effect of the cabinets… well done. And the mosaic 1×1 tiles… excellent choice.

    The blue appliances will make a challenging sell, but if they’re just vinyl coatings, they can easily be restored to their former stainless or white selves.

  • will probably be regretted when you decide to move (much as I regret the bizarro choices I made on my master bath) but who gives a damn. i like it, obviously you like it, well done.

    also, $15K for a complete rip and replace kitchen fix with structural changes is not overpaying. i’m guessing people who think it is haven’t actually done much home remodeling.

  • I love it! Who wants to live in a house that looks like a show room?? It has personality, I love the cabinets/counter top, and the blue appliances can be changed easily.

  • they must be rich if they can spend 20k on a renovation with no regard to resale–i’m sure they don’t mind that their house will be less attractive to buyers.

  • I could totally picture myself getting my hair braided in this room…

  • Solid cherry cabinets cost $20k themselves! Just last year, I spent $70k on my kitchen renovation in the exact same space and have half the cabinets made of MDF and wood laminate! I knew I got ripped off, but I didn’t imagine it was by that much. Should never have had a contractor, should have hired the electrician, plumber and builder individually. Wow, $15-20k…

  • haha poor Herb is afraid of DCer’s wrath if they get their hair braided, god forbid, outdoors in public! lol. Nice one Herb!

  • Where does one acquire appliances like that? The blue is a little much for me…but it would be nice to be able to differ from the usual stainless, black and white.

  • I’d have an easier time with the blue appliances if they complemented the cabinet color better.

  • First, I love the appliances. I was thinking of getting red ones myself but couldn’t find them for a reasonable price. Then I fell in love with the brushed bronze ones that are on the market now after I purchased stainless steel ones. Although those are more expensive than the red ones. I agree that the appliances would work better with a different color cabinent–maybe a blond wood, but I think they are great. I don’t think I like the positioning of the cabinets. I also have mine at different heights but they are staggered and go from tall to short to tall to short etc. Someday I will have to send in my own renovation pictures (x2, had a fire awhile back and had to redo my newly renovated kitchen).

  • I was trying to find the AFTER photos when I got the part about there being no BEFORE photos LOL! As long as you like it, who cares what others think.

  • Cool!

    OK, I couldn’t live with it, as it is completely not my style. But I am SO sick of seeing the same things over and over in the gut/flip jobs around the neighborhood, and I am SO happy to see someone do a room in a way that makes the owner happy rather than in a way the owner thinks some future buyer might like.

    So I repeat – COOL!!

  • Hey, the blue appliances may not be my thing, but I think the total effect is striking. (But I grew up with a pink oven and two entirely bathrooms – toilets, baths, sinks – so what do I know?).

    Also, love the butcher block island thingy! I’m getting a little tired of granite everywhere, especially in smaller spaces where it can look a little overly grandiose.

  • Beautiful! The excellent skyline effect, the butcher-block island, the blue appliances (reminds me of the Karmann Ghia “Navaho blue”, ca. 1970), the contrast between the dark cherry wood and the blue app’s — it all comes together very nicely. I love it!

  • hey all, thanks for all the comments!

    of course the blue isn’t for everyone, but to those that only see their house as something to resell, as opposed to something to live in and enjoy, well, i think the comments covered that already….thanks for so much support!

    i also knew that if i did want to resell, (its been almost 5 years already and I have no plans to hightail it any time soon), getting new appliances would be an easy upgrade.
    I looked at SO many houses when i was looking to buy, and got so bored with the same kitchen redo’s, all the stainless appliances, all the granite counters…every one looked the same. blah.

    good call John 8:55 on the karmann ghia reference…it is car paint…done at an auto body shop…(hell, i could have gotten sparkley metal flake, imagine the comments;-)

  • Funny the gasping at the concept someone might sell their house one day. Does it mean you’re some kind of traitor to traditional living if you choose to move to a different D.C. neighborhood or upgrade to a bigger place once you have a family? Or are inexplicably able to view the place as both your home, where you love to live, and yet also an investment you may be able to use one day? Crazy, the thought.

    That being said, I’m totally down with the concept of doing what you want, as long as you’ve thought about the future. Clearly the homeowner has and plans to stay, so great! Blue it the heck up and enjoy it.

    My question is about the countertops — I love, love butcher block, but I’m really concerned about the care they take. How did that factor into your choice — have you had to repair it? I’m faced with buying some now, and am probably going to end up with granite just because I don’t want to freak out every time I spill some red wine (oh, and I will). But if the care isn’t as bad as I fear, I’d definitely reconsider…


  • I think your renovation was cool 🙂 since you love your own design, who cares what others might say about it as long as you love it! 🙂 Good luck!

  • hate to state the obvious, but of course if this person loves their kitchen then who cares if others don’t. the point is that they volunteered to put pictures of it on this blog so then they are obviously interested in what others think. personally, i think that the cabinetry and island are great. i also really like the blue backsplash too. but the blue appliances are appalling. i don’t think that they look artsy or even vintage – they look like plastic appliances that belong in some kindergartner’s box of toys.

  • to heather, about the butcher block counter,

    the butcher block has not been hard to take care of…when i got my pice at Ikea I also bought their sealer, and applied it following the directions. when i have had something stain, i lightly sand it and then reapply the sealer….and if it is sealed properly and you wipe things up right away, there is no staining, even red wine….it only happens when something sits for a while

    I wouldn’t recommend it for your entire counter surface though….it is obviously not heat proof, and will show more wear ( like if someone chops directly on it ).

    i love the other counter surface i got: zodiac quartz…same durability as granite, but I wanted white, and could not do it with a natural stone surface.

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