Kitchen Remodel (on a budget!)...before and after!

Here she is! Our (almost) completed kitchen!

We must have looked at 40+ houses before we settled on this one.  I don't understand the fascination with honey oak cabinetry Texas builders have.  New homes, old homes, middle aged homes, all with oak cabinetry.  I understand it's a solid, hard wood, but does it need to be stained honey color?  Our homes in WA and Chicago had maple cabs and they held up quite nice, thank you.  Anyway, it was super dark, closed off from the rest of the main level, and had a Tuscany vibe going on, my least favorite style.  We considered doing much of the work ourselves, but decided against it after pricing out.

The cabs ahead are the ones we had removed to open up the wall.

One bonus: under and over cabinet lighting!

And the demo begins!  This awesome plumbing pipe you see was a surprise to the contractor.  It was a surprise to my checkbook as well, and forced us to stick with carpet (vs. hardwood) in our master bedroom.  #firstworldproblems!  I tried a ton of different blue/grays before I decided on a paint color and in the end, I combined all 11 sample size Bher containers, added white to it and made the paint color for my dining room!  

Plumbing pipe disaster fixed.  Pipes were moved over to the 12" wall to the right at the bargain price of $1,300.  Man I wish I had plumbing skills.

Framing in of the arch above.  I wanted the refrigerator to be flush with the upper cabinets (to appear 'built-in') which required our contractor to build a frame about 6" off the wall to mount the cabs to.  They accidentally covered up the electrical outlet for the lighting above and had to re-do the sheet rock.  That totally would have been something we would have done, and so again, I'm so happy we hired this out.  

Almost done!!  The first slab of my coveted carrera marble is here!  I actually had to sign a waiver from the granite/marble co. stating that I understand this marble will scratch, stain and do everything else a counter top shouldn't do.  But I don't care, it's adds character.   They've been using this stuff for hundreds of years in Europe and that's good enough for me.

And again, after!

This spot was originally home to the TV (I remember when growing up thinking my friend who had a TV in her kitchen was SO rich!).  I used thin piece of plywood and horizontally and vertically a thicker piece to make the shelf look more substantial.  

I made this cute pelmut box following the tutorial on the greatest blog I read, Little Green Notebook, except I used plywood because mine was longer, and heavier than what foam core would support.

I saw similar lights/lanterns at PB for $340, but found these babies for $149 at Overstock.  I suspect the quality isn't as great as the ones at PB, but they do the job and only get touched when it's time to clean them.  I bought the sink and bridge faucet (love) at Overstock as well, and am super happy with the quality/price.  

This corner is super cozy and the queen anne chairs have become a hot commodity.  I bought them off CL when we lived in Chicago and had slipcovers made.

Perfect spot for my goodwill antique silver collection.  My sweet neighbor in Chicago once brought me some kind of polish that she swore would 'restore the silver to what it once was'.  I didn't have the heart to tell her I prefer the 'old' look to the 'new'!

Vinyl equivalent measures - still used weekly!  We went with a 'pillow-edge' subway tile to mix things up a bit.  I love the look and you can't beat the price!  The hardware pulls are from Loew's and the bin pulls from the Pottery Barn Outlet.

The secretary desk was another CL find.  It was once dark brown with fake gold/tan specks until I stripped it with a citrus stripper and 6 hours of hard labor.  It's the perfect size for this spot and holds dining room linens and serving pieces.  

I couldn't believe the price of corbels (like $100-$200 bucks) and although they would have been a tad bit prettier, couldn't work it into the budget.  I picked these guys up at HD for less than $10 and added a piece of craft wood sold at Hobby Lobby with glue.