Hi friends! It’s taken me a little while to put this post together because there were so many elements involved, but I’m excited to finally give you an update on our kitchen renovation, along with information on sources and our kitchen remodel cost breakdown.

Once I began sharing our kitchen project over on Instagram, I started receiving lots of questions about sources, so I wanted to share what we chose, why we chose what we did, what we would have done differently, and some tips for those of you who are planning your own kitchen renovation.

For background info on how this project came to pass, the kitchens that inspired me, and what my vision for this space was, make sure to check out this post.

Here are a few photos showing what our kitchen looked like just a few weeks ago, with cherry cabinets, granite countertops, stone backsplash, stainless steel sink, and brushed nickel hardware.





And here’s the after:




Every time I walk in the room I’m filled with so much gratitude.  I can’t believe how much brighter and happier this space feels now.

Kitchen Renovation Process:

To stay within our budget, we kept our old layout, cabinets, dishwasher and refrigerator, so we considered this more of a kitchen “refresh” than a full-on kitchen remodel. Here’s our kitchen renovation timeline:

1. Decide on a basic look/feeling/color scheme for the space.

Here’s my original design board for this space.  This step was the most important, because it’s when I defined my vision for our kitchen.  Honestly, I don’t think this kitchen update would have happened if I hadn’t taken this step, which took place a few months before renovating even became a possibility.


Amazingly, our final look is ending up pretty close to what I had in mind! I guess that shows the value in putting one of these vision boards together before you embark on any big project–even if it’s just magazine clippings glued to poster board. 

I haven’t replaced the bamboo shade over the sink with a fabric version–still debating on whether I’m going to do that since the rest of the shades in our kitchen area are bamboo.

2. Install a new microwave.

Part of my plan was to remove the microwave that was hanging over our old electric range.  Since Dave uses the microwave a lot, he wasn’t ready to let it go, so we compromised on the idea of an under-the-counter model. 

Dave was able to install the new microwave in an existing 24″ lower cabinet of our island by removing three drawers.


I kind of struggled with losing those drawers, but by shifting things around and organizing my kitchen a little better I was able to give them up with very little inconvenience.  And we love our new microwave–it’s so nice to be able to remove hot things without having to reach over my head!

Initially, I also wanted to remove the cabinet over the stove and add a big, wooden vent hood over our new gas range, but in the end it was much easier and less expensive to add a stainless steel under-the-cabinet vent hood (this one’s no longer available), and I’m happy with the look. Plus, we were able to retain some of the storage in the upper cabinet.


3. Remove the old backsplash.

Dave tackled this project himself, and it was by far his least-favorite part of the entire process! Our old backsplash tile was firmly glued to the wall board, which meant that no matter what he tried (including heating the tiles and trying to pry them off one by one) huge chunks of wall board came off along with the tile.

Ultimately, he just cut out all the old wall board and replaced it, which meant taping, mudding, sanding, patching, etc.  In short, this ended up being a huge job, so you might want to think about hiring someone to do it.

4. Choose and purchase countertops.

I knew from the start I wanted quartz countertops for ease of care, but it took about two months of debating and shopping before I finally landed on “Lagoon” by Silestone.  At first, I thought I wanted something with more distinct veining, but since quartz countertops are manufactured and the pattern repeats, I didn’t want to take a chance on ending up with a stripey look on the island.  Lagoon is simple, classic, and goes with everything, which I love.


5.  Choose and purchase sink and faucet.

We also had to have the sink and faucet purchased and ready to go before the countertops were delivered because they all needed to be installed at the same time. Figuring out the timing of removing the old countertops, etc. was a little bit tricky, but thankfully we sold our old countertops/sink/faucet just a few days before the new countertops were installed.

That meant we only had to wash our dishes in the bathroom for 3 or 4 days! 😉Thankfully, Dave is super handy, so he was able to connect the new faucet and re-connect the garbage disposal once the new countertops, sink and faucet were installed.


My new single-bowl sink might be my favorite thing about this entire project (with the gold faucet a close second). I love being able to pile big pans in the sink–and the white color seems so much cleaner and fresher than our old stainless steel sink!

6. Paint cabinets.

Hands-down one of the best decisions we made during our kitchen renovation was to pay someone to paint our cabinets.  The small local company we used was wonderful and did a much better job than we ever could have!

They came in, taped off everything, removed the old hardware, cleaned all the cabinets, did a light sanding, primed, painted, and poly-coated all the frames, took our cabinet doors and drawer fronts to their shop to spray paint and poly-coat, and then installed them, along with our new pulls, just a few days later. I also had them paint the cabinets in our adjoining laundry room while they were at it.

By the way, we tried painting one of our brushed nickel cabinet pulls with gold/brass spray paint, since the old pulls were still in great condition, but it just didn’t look right. 

Thankfully, we ended up finding brass/brushed gold pulls in the size we needed (no patching or drilling new holes!) at an amazing price. The new pulls aren’t quite as heavy as our old ones, but once they were installed we couldn’t tell a bit of difference–and we love the updated look!


I knew from the beginning that I wanted to use Benjamin Moore White Dove for the cabinets. White Dove appears on almost all the “recommended kitchen cabinet paint colors” lists I found over on Pinterest.  Plus, that’s the color our kitchen/hearth room/breakfast nook walls are painted, and I didn’t want to clash with that shade.



Choosing a blue paint color for the kitchen island was a bit trickier.  I searched Pinterest and Instagram for ideas, writing down all the shades I loved.  Then I went to Lowe’s and had them mix up small jars of those colors and painted them on pieces of white poster board, which I then hung on the island so I could see how they looked during different times of the day.

Ultimately, though, I ended up going with “Distance,” by Sherwin Williams, recommended by our cabinet painter.  She’d used it in several other kitchens and brought over a sample for me. I immediately knew it would be just right for our kitchen.

Hard to tell here, but it has a hint of grey in certain light. It’s a nice, classic blue–not too dark and not too light–so I know I’ll be happy with it for a long time to come.


I debated quite a while on whether to paint all the lower cabinets blue as well. And, honestly, sometimes I wish I’d just gone for it! But I’ve always wanted a white kitchen, and we’ve lived with dark cabinets for the last several years, so white was an easy choice. Perhaps I’ll try a totally different look in our next kitchen!

7. Install subway tile backsplash.

For the backsplash, we went with classic white subway tile, another easy decision. I did choose a longer, 12″ version for a slightly different look.  Choosing a grout color was much trickier, though.  I went back and forth between Mapei “Frost” vs. “Warm Gray.” Eventually, Dave helped me out by making a test board on a piece of cardboard, attaching a few extra tiles and grouting them with both colors. That helped a ton and I ended up choosing Frost, a light gray.


8. Remove two upper cabinets and install floating shelves.

Finding shelves that weren’t overly rustic-looking was a bit of a challenge! After searching for a long time, I found these alder shelves in the 10″ x 42″ size.  (Here’s another source for the same shelves.) They came unfinished, so we finished them with a crystal clear satin polycoat, so we could stack dishes and glassware on them without worrying about water rings or warping. Here’s what the alder looked like before we added the poly:


Even though we used water-based crystal clear polyurethane, it did darken the shelves a bit, as you can see in the photo below.  I’m happy with the look, but be aware that apparently any polyurethane, even water-based, will darken the wood.


Each shelf holds at least 50 lb. of weight, so I actually weighed the dishes and things I wanted to stack on the shelves just to make sure I wasn’t overdoing it!  Here’s another source for beautiful floating shelves.

9. Our Kitchen Renovation Costs

Since I always appreciate knowing how much it costs to renovate or remodel a space, I thought I’d break down the numbers for you.  Our kitchen is actually pretty small, which helped keep our kitchen renovation costs down when it came to countertops and cabinet painting (which was priced per door, drawer, and panel). And, of course, prices will vary depending on where you live. 


Here is our kitchen remodel cost breakdown: (source details below)

Cabinet Painting: $4100 (this included our laundry room cabinets)
Cabinet Hardware:  $100
Gas Stove (purchased during Black Friday Sale!): $1500
Range Hood:  $350
Under-Counter Microwave: $750
Sink : $350
Faucet: $500
Countertops: $3100
Tile Backsplash/Grout: $200
Floating Shelves: $300
Gas line installation: $550

Total Kitchen Renovation Costs: $11,800

We were able to sell our old countertops, sink, faucet, stove, microwave and lighting through Facebook Marketplace for $1000, so our total kitchen remodel cost came in just under $11,000.

We could have saved quite a bit of money on our kitchen renovation by painting the cabinets ourselves, and we did think long and hard about taking that route. But, ultimately, I think we made the right decision, because by hiring it out the cabinets were painted within a week, so we were able to keep moving along with the project. 

If we’d tried painting them ourselves, who knows how long our kitchen renovations would have taken? I also have a feeling that the beautiful, smooth finish on the kitchen cabinets is much more professional-looking than our results would have been!

However, if you’re thinking about a kitchen remodel and are pretty handy with a paint brush/roller/sprayer, there’s a good chance you could keep your kitchen renovation costs well under $10k.​

10. Kitchen updates still to come:

I’d love to replace our tile flooring, but I want to update our master and guest bathrooms soon, so a flooring upgrade might have to wait a while.

Kitchen island lighting–we only have one outlet in the ceiling over our island so a linear-type light fixture would be ideal. Update: our island pendant lighting has now been installed, as you can see above. For more on that, check out my post on choosing pendant lighting for your kitchen.

I’m also on the hunt for new counter stools, perhaps a sconce for over the open shelving, and a new kitchen table and chairs. Update:  check out my spring kitchen refresh with Serena & Lily for more info on the counter stools I chose. 

And here’s what our breakfast nook looks like now, after adding a new table, chairs, pendant light and rug:



This project was a labor of love from start to finish, and I’m so grateful for my husband’s support and help during every step of this process.  After years of dreaming and weeks of planning and praying that all the details would somehow come together, I’m so happy with how it turned out!

I love that we were able to give our kitchen the face lift it needed, while also sticking to our budget.

If you have any questions regarding our kitchen remodel, send me a message or leave a note in the comments!


Subway Tile // Cabinet Pulls  // Turkish Rug (similar) //  Woven Lighting
Rug  //  Faucet  //  Sink  // Countertops
Shelving (same) // Shelving (same) // Shelving (similar)  //  Polycoat
Gas Range  // Range Hood  //  Microwave 


For more kitchen inspiration, come follow me on Pinterest, where I have an entire board dedicated to beautiful kitchens, as well as boards for the dining roombedroombath, living room, home office, outdoors and more!

xo jane

For additional kitchen ideas and inspiration, check out these posts:

Affordable Oushak Runners – Perfect for the Kitchen
Beautiful kitchen backsplash ideas
Blue kitchens I love
Beautiful kitchen inspiration