Before & After · DIY · DIY Refined · repurpose & renew

Our Tract Home Remodel: The Surprise: The Kitchen: Part 2

On Monday, I shared with you the “before” found here of our tract home kitchen remodel. You can see the inspiration photo I had in mind here.  A girl can dream big, can’t she? Well, much to our surprise we were able to have a company create custom cabinetry for much less than semi -custom cabinets from both the home improvement stores! It pays to explore all your options instead of rule out what you think may be out of the question. You never know until you try!

Before the company, working on my cabinets, went any further, they decided to bring the sink cabinet over for approval. I’m not sure who was more shocked the guy who carried the cabinet into my kitchen or me.



He wasn’t sure if my look was one of approval or not. Yes, I was pleased and shocked all at the same time! Was it overkill for a tract home in our neighborhood? Yes! Did it mean that we would need to DIY more of the house to bring it up in design to the kitchen? Yes!  Was I going to tell him to take it back? No! That said, it did take them months and months to finish and install them.

I equate remodeling to somewhat like giving birth. It’s long, painful, and the unexpected can happen. But afterwards when it’s all said and done you sort of forget the pain and anguish for the overwhelming joy of your new addition.

However, I don’t put inanimate objects on the same level as people! Things are just things and can never replace the beauty of human life. In fact, over the years, I have learned (through a series of events…like when our home was in the way of a major forest fire and we were ordered to evacuate)  to place a light touch on the things that are temporal. My motto is: enjoy them, use them to bless others, and keep a very light touch on the things of this Earth. That said, I love our new kitchen, but if we were called to sell our home tomorrow, I’d be fine with that. Besides a home is truly the people and the memories you make, not the flooring, cabinets, or paint colors.

Back to the reno…

Here are a few ways we saved money on this project:

  • Did all the demolition ourselves
  • DIYed the painting, electrical, plumbing, flooring, and appliance installation
  • Kept the sink and appliances in the same location
  • Asked the contractor for a discount on the cabinets, countertops, and backsplash since they were doing them all at the same time.
  • We bought our appliances from AJ Madison and had them shipped for free
  • Patience, patience, patience…
  • Repurposed the old kitchen cabinets into the garage.

Speaking of the old kitchen cabinets, here they are below repurposed as a garage work area for My Sweetheart. We were able to use almost all the cabinetry creating three different banks of work space along the back wall. The few cabinets we couldn’t use we gave away to others.

I painted them in Annie Sloan {ASCP} Chalk Paint in the Color Graphite. I heavily distressed them and finished with ASCP Clear wax. We used these two different knobs from the Home Depot Martha Stewart Collection. The counters are concrete.



  And as for the old kitchen, we extended to the left of the sink to accommodate a wall microwave and added storage. We also increased the size of the island. Though you can’t see in the pictures, we replaced the broken sliding door with French doors.

And here is our European/French kitchen…



 {photo courtesy of a friend}


{photo courtesy of a friend}

Once again, here is the original tract home kitchen…


the kitchen before remodeling

And the after…..


{photo courtesy of a friend}

  • ASCP, Home Depot, Martha Stewart, or AJ Madison, has not paid me to endorse their products.

2 thoughts on “Our Tract Home Remodel: The Surprise: The Kitchen: Part 2

  1. i anticipated beautiful and was duly rewarded … !
    oh my gracious this is lovely, dear friend. what a labor
    of love and patience. i imagine all sorts of memories
    being made in such a welcoming room. excellent. 🙂

    question.. the ascp graphite used on the original cabinets
    now in the garage .. looks very light. did you mix it with
    another shade or use a white wash dry brush over the graphite?
    maybe my monitor is wonky.


    1. Thank you, Sherry! Yes, we pretty much live in that room since the living area is at the end on the other side.

      Your monitor is not wonky, though it may have been dropped 😉 .

      Yes, when I received the can of ASCP graphite via a mail shipment, I did think it looked a lot more blue than the darkish blue/nearly black results I had seen online. I did give it two coats of the paint and distressed it using a heavy grit sandpaper going one direction on the face of the cabinets. I also did not use dark wax ( only ASCP clear), which I am sure would have given more of a black appearance. We like the way they came out. They look more like a denim finish if that makes sense. It may have been the wood and the original finish as to how the paint was received. Crafting is always an adventure!

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