The Kitchen is Definitely the Heart of this Home

The Kitchen After

For the last two years I have been working off and on in the kitchen. When we bought the house, the kitchen had basic oak cabinets with granite (which I was going to rip out but grew to love) and a terrible black tile backsplash. The gentleman we bought the house from had completely remodeled the home. Unfortunately, his choices didn’t match ours. But the views… the views out here are amazing and I decided to tackle the project of making this house our home. So off we went into the kitchen. Here is what we started with:

I had initially thought about doing black and white cabinets (with white uppers and black lowers) but in the end, I went with all black cabinets. I got to work sanding, priming and painting the cabinets. I have had black cabinets before and have always liked them. I mean, what’s not to love about black cabinets?

Painting the cabinets was extremely time consuming for me – mainly because I was being very, very AR about the whole process. I sanded them down and added a coat of primer to one side, let it dry overnight, and then added another coat of primer. After those two coats, I worked on the other side. Just in sanding and priming alone I had already invested 4 days.

Once the priming was finished, I painted them black. I followed the same process (Two coats. Over two days. Per side). When all was said and done, I ended up with this:

I don’t know if you can tell, but the backsplash was a white glass tile that turned green when I put it up (and yes, I used white mortar).That backsplash was one of FOUR that I’ve had. Yes… FOUR. There was the one above, the blue and white glass mosaic and even stainless steel. I could kill for myself for not keeping the photos I took of them, but I found photos with them in the background (you will have to really squint!)

You may wonder what possessed me to change my backsplash four times. The truth is, I knew there was something I didn’t like about the way the kitchen looked, but I didn’t know what it was. I kept thinking I didn’t like the backsplash or the counters or the door handles (I think I’ve had five types of those. Thank goodness for easy resale on Craigslist). I finally realized the problem wasn’t those things – it was the cabinets. They were too dark. This house is full of light but my kitchen was a dungeon. To the chagrin of the hubs, I decided to go with my original thought from two years prior and do white uppers and black lowers.

What I ended up with was this:

Black and White Kitchen
carrera marble backsplash with black and white cabinets

The kitchen remodel has been a long process. You will notice at the top of the pic above there is a recessed vent. That was a big change for us. We converted three huge drawers in the center island to built-in shelves, had an electrician move a plug, put in a sliding shelf and voila (I will post pics soon). No more ugly microwave over the stove. Sadly it came at a cost. The hubs accidentally broke the cooktop so only half of it works now. I would be lying if I said I was upset. I want a new range so it just expedited the process.

Giving the kitchen a facelift has been challenging but I’m so pleased with the results! One thing I learned is to go with your gut. I wanted black and white cabinets to begin with. I also wanted the marble backsplash but held off because of the cost. Ironically, the amount of money I threw away on the other backsplashes was more than the cost the marble. But hey! That is part of the fun being a DIY’er – all of the lessons you learn along the way.

*This project was on a link party at


. Check it out!