Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Reno's-Where to Start # 7 Kitchen Renovation Review

AFTER 

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I came across an interesting article this week from Today.com that inspired me to follow up on our latest post, 10 Tips to Kitchen Lighting. The article is about a beautiful renovation of a 1960's ranch style kitchen and dining room. It in fact resembles my very own kitchen in many ways (style and age). This beautiful renovation was the handy work of Erin @ Lovebergs at Home
BEFORE 

What can we take away from this beautiful renovation and apply to your potential renovation?
  1. Don't kid yourself. This was a major overhaul. This is not a little face lift. Major electrical, plumbing and structural changes. BUT often to get this level of improvement you are going to have go to this extent.
    • TAKE AWAY: Big improvement may require big change (depending on your current situation)
  2. The Island - The addition of an island based oven/stove top creates a more efficient kitchen work triangle (stove/oven, sink and refrigerator). In the old design the layout created a very elongated work area. Now the majority of the tasks are focused in a much more efficient layout making prep work more enjoyable and effortless.
    Image source
    • TAKE AWAY: Ensure to improve or at the very least do not take away from the kitchen work triangle. 
  3. Addition of the Bar Stools - This may seem like a minor addition but now the kitchen is a social area. While preparing a meal, the chef no longer has to be cooped up in the kitchen and can now have the benefit of company without their back to their guests.
    • TAKE AWAY: Multi-purpose. On a budget or if you have limited space, a few extra $$$ could increase the functional space by creating multiple purposes for said space. This ties into #7.
  4. High Contrast design style - White doors/light colored counter tops with dark base cabinets/flooring creates a sense depth to the room, creating form and purpose for a small location.
    • TAKE AWAY: Play with your color choices. Consider what will still hold value in 10 years. Remember the pink bathroom fixtures ;(
  5. Light in the Room - This new design is much brighter for multiple reasons.
    1. Lighter cabinet color/material choice.
    2. Pulling the cabinets away from the sink window, allowed the incoming light to fill the space. The previous design created a mini cave around the window (see previous photo).
    3. Working with the window, white tiled back splash ensures to push the light into the room.
    4. A large light counter top on the island - a huge reflective surface to increase the light in the room.
    • TAKE AWAY: Effective lighting is not just about light fixtures. Colors, textures and layout has a significant impact. 
  6. Layered Lighting - there is not just a single new lighting fixture in the room. Layers, it's all about the layer's. There are a mixture of lighting options:
    1. Strategically placed recessed lights allowed a more even lighting of the key areas. The prior design most likely had a single fixture in the center. 6 new pot lights distributes the same light where it is needed and creates highly effective ambient lighting which will double for task lighting at the island.
    2. Adding in the vent hood will provide task lighting over the stove top.
    3. Addition of a mini pendant for task lighting over the sink.
    4. Cabinet lighting and under cabinet lighting in the dining area.
    5. New pendant over the dining table. The shades on this beautiful pendant fixture will cast light downwards to the table top while still creating ambient light, much like a table lamp.
    • TAKE AWAY: Create a layered lighting strategy. Make use of multiple lighting sources so the room has greater flexibility and usability. 
  7. Re-purpose Underutilized Space - While they removed an entire section of cabinets and moved the fridge to open up the wall into the seating area, they re-purposed unused space. The dining room before and after:
    • Given that most homes don't have a formula dining room, creating spaces that can be dual purposed is key to living efficiently. Here they created effective storage space by utilizing essentially a vacant wall.
    • The mixture of solid doors, glass doors and wine racks breaks up the wall creating a sense of style and elegance.
    • The openness created by removing the wall between the kitchen and dining room, combined with the two windows means the space didn't feel more cramped as it would have if they tried to add the cabinets in the old dining room.
    • TAKE AWAY: What areas are underutilized in your home/room? Empty wall space, the upper 1-2 ft of wall space around a bathroom, mudroom and laundry room can be underutilized storage space. In this case floor to ceiling cabinets. 
In conclusion, while planning a future renovation, consider what you are ultimately looking to achieve with this new space and keep that in the forefront of your decision making.

For more information on this kitchen redesign, Erin walks you through the entire renovation HERE, complete final budget breakdown and all.

What are your thoughts on Erin's new kitchen? Do you prefer open concept designs? Comment in comments section below!

Thanks for stopping by!

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