Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Another phase in the kitchen re-do...

Hello there,
Hope you all had a fantastic weekend!
I was hoping to get this post out on Sunday night, but we were blessed with a nice chilly evening, and so, after a day spent in the garden, we decided to drag the fire pit out and chill with a cuppa on the patio. The evening would have suited a nice Rioja perfectly, but, as it was a school night, tea had to suffice.
Anyhoo, before our impromptu garden campfire, I grabbed a few minutes away from the kiddies to take some shots of the kitchen.

Now, I have to say, I felt a bit silly taking pictures of our run-down, haphazard kitchen... I mean, yes, it has just had a lick of paint, but it's hardly Homes and Gardens... I spend an inordinate amount of time drooling over lip-smackingly gorgeous kitchens (you should see the stack of my well-thumbed issues of Country Living and the likes), and so, when faced with my kitchen through the lens, I saw it with a critical eye, and it appeared exactly what is was: a tiny, old kitchen with a new paint job and a lot of stuff packed in!

Now, I'm not going to downplay my own personal pleasure as to what I have achieved. As for me, it was a pain-staking job... I did the prep-work and painted between the hours of 8pm until 11pm most weeknights. I asked a contractor friend for tips and the best way to complete this daunting task, and I followed his advice to the letter...

... and I am ecstatic with the finish. To be honest, I don't think I could have paid and gotten better...

...but, I imagine for many out there, you look at this little space and say, 'Now, there's a place in need of an update' and you'd be right... but we all have to make the best of what we've got!
So, the cabinets are still old, but have now been refreshed and given a new lease on life. My kitchen is still tiny, but the bright colour opens it up....

I used to refer this room as Dracula's Coffin, because of the red walls and overbearing wood... The picture below makes it look much nicer than it actually was (and even this looks bad...)
Picture from original house specification.
But, now, the macabre look has all but gone... and replaced by a much lighter cottage kitchen... not one worthy of Country Living, granted, but for me, the difference is immense...
Picture from original house specification.
We've still a way to go... the counter tops have yet to be replaced with butcher block...

... all the appliances need replacing...

... I dream of a farmhouse sink some day... subway tile back-splash...

... new light fittings... Oh, and a new ceiling...

... and much, much more.

But for now, I'll take it... I'm happy... happy to have finished painting. Happy to have a space I want to spend time in!

If you would like to read some more kitchen posts, check out why red features so heavily here or read about my conundrum with distressing chairs here!
Take care all and thanks for popping by.


  1. i really like it ... white, fresh and bright. the table has a really nice family feel to it - i perfect place to sit and enjoy a cup of tea and a home cooked muffin. well done on a beautiful job! x

  2. I adore your kitchen! If I could pick it up and drop it into my house I would! Love all the red accents and homely touches.

  3. Well Laura, I think you should give yourself a very resounding pat on the back, your kitchen is lovely, you deserve that glass of wine, its bright, countryfied, and very chic, clever you I think your new space is delightful. Have a lovely week, at least your evenings are free for other things now!

  4. Well I love it Laura the dinning room area too with the spotty tablecloth and I really love your shutters, all the little touches are lovely and the grey and red gives it a real cosy feel x

  5. I LOVE it!! It has so much character, which you never get from brand spanking new kitchens - AND so much style. I LOVE the touches of red. I have that in our kitchen too and it just warms the whole place up, doesn't it? Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!


  6. What a transformation!
    It looks really lovely,light and inviting.
    Now put the kettle on and I'll be round in five..........

  7. Oh I agree! You have done such a wonderful job with it. It really does look lovely - a place that I would quite happily want to spend time in, and have a coffee and a nice slice of cake! Well done. It really does look good - lovely and fresh.

  8. Oh Laura, I think it's stunning! And the paintwork looks flawless. Well done you!

  9. I think it looks fabulous - well worth a mag feature! It really shows that you took such care with the prep and painting - I'm so lazy with that sort of thing! You've made great use of the space; some lovely touches. WELL DONE!! Abby x

  10. I think you did a great job with the kitchen. It is such a transformation. Also it has a lot more satisfaction as you did most of the work yourself.

  11. I LOVE your kitchen!! It's just adorable. I love how fresh and airy it is. You did a great job on the cabinets! Now the hard work is over, and you can enjoy.

    Best wishes!

  12. Laura, like you, I am always looking at Country Living kitchens, and so I dunno why you say you feel silly taking photos of your kitchen when it's oh-so pretty! it looks so inviting and together, and the red touches just give an extra ounce of cheer. Congrats, you did an amazing job.

  13. I really like it. My kind of kitchen. I'm not a fan of the totaly modern kitchen. This one says comfort and that's what you want.

  14. Oh my goodness what a difference! Your kitchen looks great well done on all the hard work!

  15. I love your kitchen Laura!! Well done and decorated. A farmhouse sink would be perfect!!
    Very homey and inviting. I would love to share a cup of tea here!!

  16. GORGEOUS!!!! You have done a great job!

  17. I think it is FABULOUS, they look like new cabinets. It is just my style, the whole room looks so fresh and airy. We've got old wood cabinets and I feel too daunted to paint them! Lovely to find your blog, I'm British too and living away from Blighty in Belgium. Catherine x

  18. It's beautiful and in my book not tiny - my kitchen is really tiny compared to yours. I love the cream and red and think it would grace the pages of CL very nicely indeed. Well done you.

  19. What a difference! I have been hesitating about painting our old kitchen; also because, well, could just a bit of paint really make a change... but now I see it can! Thanks for showing us this. Now, all I have to do is find the time and get some tips/instructions on how on earth to start such a project...

  20. Fantastic job on the cabinets, Laura! I just love white cabinets . . . I think it makes a kitchen look so fresh. We have white cabinets. But I love your red accents! It looks French countryside. I too dream of a farmhouse sink, a tile backsplash, and updated appliances. Well, the way I look at is: what do people with everything have left to imagine or dream about?

  21. I think it looks great. I love the white cabinets, it really does brighten up the room. We did our kitchen up date little by little, too. It took about 8 yrs to paint the cabinets and put in new countertops and we just put up a backsplash a few months ago - and we've been here 12 yrs! I love the print in your dining area.

  22. I think it's very cozy and adorable!

  23. I think your kitchen looks lovely - you've worked hard & it shows..


  24. I love it, Laura! You have changed it around in a huge way! It looks very cozy and loved!


  25. I love it! It's so refreshing to see a cozy kitchen that didn't cost $80,000. to remodel. This has a bit of a Cottage and Rose look to it.

  26. Well the other comments say it all really, but I have to have my two minutes worth...
    You have a gorgeous kitchen!
    Isn't is funny how one has such a critical eye for their own things yet everyone else sees it differently. It doesn't look 'haphazard' or 'run down' and the colours are fabulous. What a transformation from the original?
    I adore the splashes of red and the darker colour in your dining area. I think you should be extremely proud of your achievements Laura.

  27. Your kitchen looks great, who needs new when you have a lived in space where all those wonderful meals have been cooked and story's shared. Enjoy what you have.

  28. You've done a lovely job Laura...it looks amazing...the cupboards look like they have been done by a professional! The red must have been awfully depressing to work in...not to mention how many coats it must have taken to cover those walls. I remember when my kids were little and I would madly paint whilst they were napping or after dinner in the evening...I had so much energy or was it just determination. Enjoy. Robx

  29. Thanks for your everso lovley comment on my blog. Your blog is gorgeous! It has been awhile since I have made a recent post, now that I have someone coming by I better do something about that!
    Your kitchen is perfect it seems to have an English/French chic vibe!

  30. hey sweet....here i am waaay down at the bottom here...

    i think all the comments above summed it up...you have done an amazing job!!

    i cannot believe the transformation from the Vampire kitchen to your gorgeous country kitchen...for me it's all the england that i have grown to love so much...with a bit of the american prairie look that i would love to incorporate somehow in my days....

    those blooming cupboards are perfectly painted- i'm more a lick & a quick flick as i'm heading towards something else kinda gal- so i am well impressed by these!!!

    have you thought about an ikea farmhouse french looking sink??
    i saw some fab ones yesterday for a much happier price :)

    lovely to have you back blogging for us all...melissa xxx

  31. Oh, Laura, I agree with Melissa - what a stunning job! Good for you, Lovely. I am seriously impressed. J x

  32. Dracula's coffin no more! You guys did a fabulous job of transforming your space to creat a light, bright and cheery feeling! Love it. *Becca* (your newest follower)


  33. Wow what a gorgeous kitchen, you have done a wanderful job!! Your kitchen could be easily be published on one of those design magazines :D
    I'll keep your pictures in mind for my future when I'll be able to have a kitchen on my own.
    Have a nice day

  34. You have a beautiful kitchen and did a wonderful job with it. Looks so much brighter and larger because of the new paint. Thanks for liking this up at Beach Cottage Good Life Wednesdays.

  35. Hi just wanted to say how much I like your kitchen. We are doing ours soon and yours is just the sort of look we are going for. I think you have done a great job with what you have and ended up with something much nicer then what you could get brand new! Erica x

  36. I love your space and i rather liked the curtain from the before is it Waverly?

  37. I also have stacks of Country Living magazines, and your kitchen is more than worthy of being featured! You have captured the essence of a country kitchen in every detail, and unlike some "magazine" kitchens, it looks like a real family kitchen where people actually cook and eat! I don't have "Dracula's Coffin," but my kitchen is in sorry need of a transformation. Your photos will be included in my "inspiration pics." Thanks for sharing!

  38. Outstanding job!!!!!! Its wonderful and you've created a kitchen with a labor of love for your family and that speaks volumns. I'd love to sit and share a cup of tea with you at your kitchen table!!!

  39. Hi Laura!
    Well, what can I add to all these lovely words above? That I honestly know how it must feel to have your kitchen brightened up, see, we moved in here and the kitchen is small, stretch your arms and you will touch both walls, and it was brown.... think 70's brown...But unlike you, I had a sweet painter who did it for a soft price and now it's white, thank goodness. So reading about you painting your evenings away, I truly applaud you because it's a hell of a job... And look, your kitchen looks fab! Love your color choice, much richer than what we have, it looks like a county home kitchen, with the dining table and dresser, I love what you did with it! And for that farm sink, Ikea has got them too. And since we are renting this place, a lick of paint is all I was allowed to do, so you go and replace the sink and I will drool over your photo's ok?
    Glad you are back blogging, gotta go to sleep now, hugs, Maureen x

  40. You must be
    SO happy with
    this, Laura.
    I love the pine
    piece with the
    open shelving
    unit above. A
    very cozy, very
    country kitchen
    that would be fun
    to sit in with a
    pot of tea! Love it.
    xx Suzanne

  41. Your kitchen is wonderful! Congratulations on making it look so beautiful. I love the colour you painted the cabinets and the pops of red are perfect. I especially love your kitchen aid...we have the same one! I wish I could fly on over there right now and have a cuppa with you!

    Best wishes always,

  42. Laura. I LOVE your kitchen!! The colour scheme and vibe is so warm, groovy and homey at the same time. Hard to achieve. It really looks so clean and organised.
    Congratulations on your painting efforts; it's a different kitchen althogether. Very inspiring.

  43. Hi Laura, I have stumbled across your blog and I just love your photographs. Your kitchen is the most beautiful I have seen, your home, recipes, flowers etc are just lovely.

  44. You did a fantastic job redoing your kitchen. The old kitchen is nothing like the new one. You shouldn't be so hard on yourself your kitchen is so beautiful. I'd love to have a kitchen like yours.

    -Zane of ontario honey

  45. what a difference! Your kitchen looks great well done on all the hard work.UK Cheapest Online Beds Store

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