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Kitchen makeover
Alicia Brown
December 1, 2012 in Design Dilemma
Our house was renovated some time ago (1990's) and it is all reproduction - no original features. The kitchen is outdated and not my style at all. Our initial thoughts were to replace the whole kitchen but it seems so wasteful. For environmental reasons I'm reluctant to throw everything away and start again. Also I've taken to asking myself, do we need this (a new kitchen) more than I need to retire early. Most days the answer is no!

I love many of the kitchens on houzz but really I don't NEED to have a beautiful new kitchen, I would just like to make a few changes that would make me feel more positive about the kitchen I have.

The things I really hate are the pattern on the floor tiles, the counter top, the patten on the splash-back tiles, the dark cupboard with the dark floor, the top shelves are too high to use without a step ladder, the pantry is not well set out, no dishwasher, poor lighting.

Some of the things that have been suggested already are: replace the bench top (it's currently pink), paint the cupboards, new splash back, take off some of the doors (but the insides are stark white), take off the top cornice. It would be nice to have a work list in priority order for when we have a bit of extra cash.

My style is eclectic vintage MCM. I love things like linoleum, laminex, cork tiles.

I'm really interested to hear your opinions and suggestions on this topic. I find the discussions here very useful.
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houssaon
The floor tiles are not going to be easy to change, but if you do marmoleum would be a good material to choose. I would not take off the molding on the top of the cabinets. I think I would change the counter tops and backsplash to somethin more vibrant and paint the walls.

You can get pendants on track lighting and put some lighting under the cabinets.

What high ceilings you have. Is this an old house?
December 1, 2012 at 11:51PM   
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Alicia Brown
I love marmoleum but I agree that the tiles will be hard to remove. I don't think they continue under the cabinets; perhaps that makes it easier to remove them. I hadn't thought of painting the walls but that might make a big difference.

The house was built around 1920 in Edwardian/Victorian style. The kitchen is in the extension which maintained the ceiling height.
December 1, 2012 at 11:56PM   
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charleee
I flipped your pic for you:
December 2, 2012 at 2:18AM     
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charleee
Are the floor tiles ceramic? I wonder if it would be possible to use a self-leveling compound to cover them and then marmoleum over the top. For the countertop, Rustoleum has a new DIY product to complete change the look of your countertop, I believe it's somewhere around $100.00 I painted my ugly countertops with Rustoleum Hammered Copper paint, it smelled horribly for two days but now it's great. Two clear coats later, it cost me about $20.00.

If you remove the doors to the upper cabinets, it's very easy to paint the insides, as I did mine:
December 2, 2012 at 2:24AM   
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bdennison
maybe new hardware, chrome or glass. you could paint the inside of the open shelving a light color. And as olldbob suggests, check out www.rustoleumtransformations.com for counter top restoration kits. They have a really good product, DIY in a weekend.
December 2, 2012 at 3:20AM     
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clau2002
I'm sure once you change the color of the cabinets the backsplash will look rather nicer. My kitchen was about the same, we installed cream kitchen cabinets and found that the the backsplash i used to loath worked nicely with it. Sorry for my english ¡¡
December 2, 2012 at 3:21AM   
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modernluv
Hey, olldbob--Do you have any pictures of your countertops painted in the hammered copper rustoleum paint? How hard was it to complete? I am interested in the hammered copper look and probably can't afford new countertops for several years. Your additional feedback would be helpful as you were pleased with your results. Thank you!
December 2, 2012 at 5:34AM   
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feeny
Here's a discussion post with a picture of olldbob's painted counters: http://www.houzz.com/discussions/191372/New-Old-Countertop
December 2, 2012 at 5:39AM   
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charleee
Thanks feeny! I appreciate that!

modernluv, I bought a quart of the Hammered Copper - $20, but only used half and I did two coats. It's very easy to do , just stir the paint (shaking didn't work as well), and I used a disposable brush and a 4" trim roller. Tape off everything you don't want painted. When dry (I think Rustoleum recommends you wait 3-4 days) add 2 coats of clear coat. Done. It's just like painting with regular paint.

It comes in many metallics, hammered copper is just one of the choices.

HOWEVER, it smells unbelievably bad ! Seriously. Please make sure your room is well ventilated !
December 2, 2012 at 6:55AM   
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PRO
www.newjerseyaccents.com
I'll just give you my two cents on a few of your dilemmas. First, there is no reason to go through the trouble of taking out that tile floor. You can cover the present floor with luan, a thin plywood material and put new flooring right over it. Research it some when you figure out what flooring you're going to use. If you really love MCM, I think replacing your cabinet doors would be a budget friendly option. Would love to see it when you're done!
December 2, 2012 at 7:35AM   
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Alicia Brown
So great to hear your responses. I had no idea such things were possible. Thankyou Olldbob for your suggestions and for the pic of how you painted the inside of your cupboards. They look really good. I also looked up your rustoleum transformation although it looks a bit scary for a non handy person like me. I also like the ideas of covering over the floors if I can. Bdenison, there is a similiar kitchen on houzz with silver hardwear which looks pretty good.
December 2, 2012 at 5:49PM     
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PRO
Renovate urban properties
I often will keep the existing cabinets and make new doors, paint or stain them and pour a concrete the countertops in place. Very cheap to do and definitely changes the look. With the money you save... you can rip out all the tiles on the floors and backsplash and start again with a fresh look.
December 2, 2012 at 8:32PM   
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PRO
Renovate urban properties
I often will keep the existing cabinets and make new doors, paint or stain them and pour a concrete the countertops in place. Very cheap to do and definitely changes the look. With the money you save... you can rip out all the tiles on the floors and backsplash and start again with a fresh look.
December 2, 2012 at 8:34PM   
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PRO
Susan Jablon Mosaics
Hi Alicia!
Mid century modern is all about clean lines. You could replace the cabinet doors with something sleeker, more simple with straight lines. As far as the backsplash is concerned, subway tiles would be a good idea, although that pink accent is very traditional. Also, the color of the tiles doesn't seem quite right, especially if you're changing the countertops. I think a subway tile in a nice bright white would be perfect, or even a mix of white and stainless! Below are images of tile from our website. Notice the tiles are arranged in a 'stacked' layout rather than the traditional 'running brick' layout. I think the stacked design has more of an mcm feel.
December 3, 2012 at 8:53AM   
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Alicia Brown
Thanks Susan. You're right on both accounts. The more I think about it the more I think I have to replace the doors. Also, the colour of the tiles is terrible. A kind of pinky off white.
I really like the look you have suggested for the tiles. What seems a simple thing would have a big impact.
December 3, 2012 at 12:36PM   
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nevadan
In your kitchen, nothing goes with anything. Everything is nice, but everything is at odds with everything else. I wonder - what is the style of you house, and what is the style of your furnishings? Are you a cook, or is the kitchen just for show and for resale value? if I knew more, I could tell you what to do.
December 3, 2012 at 12:56PM   
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PRO
Susan Jablon Mosaics
It's so true! I think you'll be surprised at how just a handful of fairly simple changes can really bring everything together and help you to love your kitchen! Here's a link to the white tiles: http://www.susanjablon.com/4598497.html, the white/stainless blend was made using our amazing tile designer, a fun and easy tool for creating your very own custom tile blend!
December 3, 2012 at 1:14PM   
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