Hi Girls -
I have the best time with my mom. She's fun and creative and hard working, and she's got great taste. This spring she brought me along for the ride as she remodeled her kitchen. I was right by her side as she picked out almost everything from counter tops to paint colors. We agreed on almost everything (floors, paint, window treatments, accessories, counters, cabinets) and bickered like, well, mother and daughter about some things (like cabinet hardware). In the end it turned out AMAZING! Here's the most impressive part...she did it all for under $7,000 (fun fact: the average kitchen remodel is $26,000). Keep reading and I'll tell you all about it.
Here's the before. The cabinets are a funky maroon red that she painted about eight years ago. The floor tiles are cheap and were barely glued down by the time the remodel began. Check out the faux-wood laminate counter top. Overall, it just felt really dark, right?
|Note the microwave on the counter and the Lazy Susan cupboard that never stayed closed.|
Now, before I get into all the details and the cost saving tricks, here's the after. Crazy beautiful and bright!
Here's the breakdown of the process, materials, and costs:
Details: Granite -Icarai Yellow
Cost: $2100 (including back splash, installation and sink)
How she saved money: My mom never planned on getting granite. However, it turned out to be one of the less expensive choices. The salesman at Lowe's explained that since it's a natural material and more readily available, it's much cheaper than manufactured materials. Also, even though she thought she wanted a higher gauge stainless steel for the sink, it turned out to be a silly expense for not a huge difference. So, to save money she scrapped that idea. Finally, she opted for a granite 4 inch back splash rather than tiling the entire back splash.
|The old counter tops come off.|
|So shiny. So pretty. So much better!|
|Faucet is installed thanks to a really nice plumber.|
Details: Kitchen Walls - Rope by Eddie Bauer from Lowes (EB48-3)
Kitchen Cabinets and Trim - Creamy by Sherwin Williams (SW 7012)
Dining Area Walls - Wicker by Eddie Bauer from Lowes (EB11-2)
Cost: Around $300
How she saved money: She called us and we helped her paint. We meticulously painted the cupboard boxes, since she saved them (more on that soon). The walls got two coats of paint and the cupboards got at least five thin coats with foam rollers.
|Just your average Saturday, painting with the family.|
|It looks better already, even without cupboard doors.|
Source: Our Local Handyman
Details: Not too many since he measured the cabinets, went away for a bit, and came back and installed them.
How she saved money: First of all, my mom decided to save the cabinet boxes for lots of reasons:
1. She wasn't going to change the layout of the kitchen.
2. She didn't want to spend a ton of money on new cabinets that would make her condo too expensive for resale.
3. The cabinets were in fine shape.
4. She's smart.
So, after contacting a handyman that I had previously worked with, he came out and measured all her cabinet doors. Then, he came back a month later and installed them. My mom and I totally bickered about this one because I insisted she see a sample cupboard door first. She said she had complete faith in our handyman. I was doubtful. She was right. They're awesome.
|Check out the two different door pulls on the cupboards above the stove. I voted for the one on the left. She voted for the one on the right.|
|Cupboard door close-up so that you can see the finish.|
Details: Walnut 3 1/4" pre-finished engineered hardwood
Cost: $2400 (materials, toe molding, and installation)
How she saved money: Well, the floors were kind of expensive, but keep in mind that they extend into her dining area too. Also, they're exactly what she wanted. She went into the hardwood supply store wanting walnut and she exited with an invoice for walnut. In addition, I encouraged her to use a specific hardwood floor installer, not because he was cheap, but because he's really good. To save a bit of money, we removed the existing floor and prepped the floors for hardwood installation.
|The floors are getting installed.|
Floors in the dining area.
|I love the walnut floors. Love. Love. Love.|
All the Other Stuff
Cabinet Hardware: All from Lowes (around $100)
Faucet: Moen ($250 - she read that you shouldn't skimp on faucets)
Window Treatment: Roller Shade from Budget Blinds ($150 for custom size)
Mirror: Pier One ($100)
Microwave Move: The microwave got moved to the pantry closet thanks to my mom's friend's brother's electrical skills (free)
Dining Table Refinished: Family friend (free - a good friend to have, right?)
Wanna see the before one more time?
And here's a side by side:
My mom and I had the best time remodeling her kitchen. It's truly a dream realized for her. I can't wait to take her along for my ride when we finally get to realize our kitchen dreams at our house. Until then, we'll just eat at her house!
Let me know what you think,
Mrs. Kelly Comment: What I think is that I need the number of your handyman. That kitchen is gorgeous. Does your mom cook just to spend time in there? Because I would. And then I'd read in there, and entertain and practice old Gene Kelly dance routines...possibilities are endless. Nice work.