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May 3, 2021
Ahhhh! It’s finally done! Well, almost. From dark espresso cabinets and brushed nickel hardware to this beautiful bright white kitchen is a transformation I’ve been dreaming of for months. When I first purchased my home, I knew there were a few minor tweaks I wanted to make and the kitchen was at the top of my list. Don’t get me wrong, the darker cabinets were beautiful and actually did grow on me, but they just weren’t me. Here’s what I did:
Painted the Cabinets White
Obviously. I was definitely worried about this step. I wasn’t even sure I’d be able to paint the cabinets. And if so, did I need a special kind of paint? I started my research and concluded that it was worth a shot. I hired a local painter who handled all of the paint purchasing for me. Benjamin Moore Simply White was recommended to me so we went with that. My painter got the Advanced Waterborne Interior Alkyd in a satin finish. It’s a thinner paint which means it dries more evenly, but the downside is it takes forever to dry. My painter told me she had to wait 24 hours between each coat – it ended up taking a week longer than expected because of this! It’s better in the long run because like I said, it dries more evenly and will be very solid once it has completely cured (it takes 30 days!), but it is a bit more of a process. I’m very happy with how it turned out!
We decided to do a pop of navy for the island. I’m all about a white kitchen, but I think the blue adds some interest and dimension. We went with Benjamin Moore Old Navy and I think it looks great against the barstools! Speaking of…
New Bar Stools
I struggled a lot when it came to the bar stools. There are so many options out there and I loved a lot of them! We knew we wanted bar stools with a back for comfort, but we also didn’t want something too tall and bulky, making the space seem too crowded. I originally had some gorgeous white leather bar stools, but they ended up feeling too large. Then I almost bought some white ones with gold legs, but at the last minute changed my mind. I felt the gold was too feminine, especially since they’d be right next to my pink couch. I finally settled on these wood and linen bar stools and I couldn’t be happier. I think they are the perfect balance of masculine and feminine. They feel luxurious, yet give a slight farmhouse element to the room. I think they’re perfect for my white kitchen!
Gold Pendant Lights
I really did not like the pendant lights the builders picked for this kitchen. Ryan kept calling them an upsidedown trashcan! So replacing these was fun. I knew it would really change the overall feel of the space. Originally I thought a big round pendant would be nice, but I came across these when I was shopping online one day and I thought they’d work well. I wanted something that didn’t take up too much space, but also wasn’t too small. These fit the bill. Plus they were so affordable that I wouldn’t feel bad about replacing them down the line. It was important to me that they flow with the living room and dining room since we have an open concept space. I guess we’ll see once I’m done decorating the other two rooms!
Gold Cabinet Pulls
I actually had a blast picking out cabinet pulls. Before owning a home, I had no idea there were so many choices. But at the same time, I feel like everyone I know has those bar-style pulls. Ryan and I wanted something different, but not too over the top. We wanted something with style, but also something very sleek and beautiful. The second I saw the San Marco collection from Schaub and Company, I knew I had found the ones! I’m obsessed with how modern and timeless these are. I struggled a bit deciding which way to put them on (thanks to everyone on Instagram stories who helped me by voting!), but ultimately I knew I couldn’t go wrong. These pulls are so fun, gorgeous, and high quality. I’m in love!
Antique Brass Outlet Covers
Another thing that bothered me about the way the builders designed the kitchen was the outlets on the island. I was thrilled to have outlets on the island–especially since they include USB plugins–but who in their right mind thought it was a great ideas to put white plastic outlet covers on a dark espresso island? Such an eyesore. I never thought I’d be shopping for outlet covers, but here I am. In order to add a little special surprise, I went with these pretty antique brass outlet covers. Everything else just felt too basic and boring. Plus, the darker tones in these make it stand out just the right amount.
To add some pretty decor to the kitchen, I went big with a gorgeous white vase featuring faux cherry blossom branches and a snake plant in a gold pot. I let my wood cutting boards and serving trays stay out to incorporate that lived-in farmhouse feel. My goal is always to create a warm and welcoming space so hopefully I’ve done that here! Now to get a gold faucet and some white & gold Cafe appliances and my bright white kitchen will be complete!
Next up: my living room and dining room designs. I’m feeling midcentury modern vibes since Ryan and I have been watching Mad Men for the past couple months. So inspired!
Are you a fan of bright white kitchens?
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Photos by Ryan Carpenter.