Saturday, May 11, 2013

Kitchen Reno: The Design Process

I'd like to take some time here to tell you about the design process we have gone through over the last few weeks.  
It actually started a lot earlier with me daydreaming about the kitchen, thinking about what I liked about the kitchen (not a lot) and what drove me crazy.  Also, I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted my new kitchen to look like and finding inspiration on Pinterest and other blogs.  
Things that made me crazy:
  • Placement of the fridge.  It was right up against a wall which meant that the fridge side of the appliance wouldn't fully open.  In truth, it annoyed me to no end so it HAD to change. 
  • Trash out in the open.  I don't want to see a trash can.  Ever.
  • Cookie Sheets.  I bake and need a good vertical storage space for my stuff!  
How I want my kitchen to look:
Light & Airy 
Check out a few of my "Inspiration Kitchens":
Young House Love's kitchen:

And I have to mention the Bower Power Blog kitchen:

With these ideas in mind we started perusing cabinet options at places like Home Depot and Ikea.  And really, it's tough to get a good sense of cost from these places without really sitting down and talking to someone.  Ikea has a ton of options, but there were a few things I though we absolutely needed for our layout and they weren't options there, so Ikea was quickly eliminated.  Home Depot was a contender until I got a recommendation for a local kitchen/bath place.  

I made an appointment there to spend an hour or so with a real kitchen designer, Melissa.  Armed with measurements for our space and a few "must haves" she quickly clicked in a design for our kitchen.  It was amazing.  Our kitchen is a small space, but Melissa's years of experience helped her come up with a functional design that maximized work space, fixed our fridge problem, and included a pantry cabinet.  

We're set on the design now (hardware & counter top are still up in the air), and I couldn't be happier.  I can't say for sure that we wouldn't have been happy with a HD kitchen design (honestly we'd probably end up with something very similar), but I know that Melissa has a degree in interior design, 7 years of experience at this company, and has designed literally HUNDREDS of kitchens.  Throughout the whole process she asked me questions and made suggestions on how to save money, consider different options, and that really helped me feel more confident in the choices we made.  I'm sure that we paid more this way, but worth it in the long run, I think.


  1. AHHHH! That sounds like so much fun!! Do you have to commit to buy with their company before they will do the kitchen design and estimate with you? I wish we could reno our kitchen. I can't wait to see progress pics. I'm really enjoying living vicariously through you. :)

    1. The design was free before any commitment to buy. They give you print-outs for the design before you buy as well, but you don't get specifics on the cabinet sizes until you put down a deposit.

      We will have some progress pics soon, although these aren't the exciting kind - just some behind-the-scenes stuff.



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