Our Favorite Kitchen Renovations To Date

We’ll be getting into the Porch House kitchen renovation here on the blog soon, but before we do, I wanted to take a trip down memory lane. Garrett and I have renovated 7 kitchens to date – 5 of which we’ve lived in – and we’ve each liked and disliked different things about them. Functionality, finishes, memories…it all plays a role in the impression we’re left with. So today I thought it would be fun to share which of our previous kitchen renovations Garrett and I liked best and why.

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Cathy’s Pick // Bryant House

subway tile, antique hutch, butcher block, kitchen

It’s really hard for me to pick favorites between our homes (because I love them all for different reasons), but the Bryant House kitchen definitely sticks out. I love the simple white and wood color palette, the antique hutch in the corner, and the attached dining nook. But best of all, this kitchen gets the best natural daylight. We tore down an interior wall and aded two sliding doors and now you get light from three sides in here so even when the weather is dreary (which is a quite frequently in Seattle), this space shines.

Favorite memory: We had our first baby, Wilder, in this house and the kid could not be set down. He would just cry and cry so he spent most his time in my arms. I would spend hours sitting in here drinking coffee at the table, catching up on blogs (before this one existed), and just holding my baby. I feel like I really became a mom in this kitchen and I’ll never forget it.

See more: The Bryant kitchen // budget // reveal

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Garrett’s Pick: Dexter House

When I asked Garrett why Dexter? He said: “Well, it starts with the Blue Star range and ends with the Blue Star range!” We’ve had 7 different cooking surfaces  including an induction range top and the open, star-pattern burner on the Blue Star is the runaway favorite. “I also like the layout and natural light from the skylights.” We actually shrank the kitchen down during the remodel but that made it so much more efficient. The kitchen is wide and even though it doesn’t have an island, there are a few nice stretches of counter for prep.

Garrett’s favorite memory: walking down to the farmers market for fresh ingredients and then cooking summer dinner with a glass of wine.

See more: kitchen reveal / resources / construction

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Those are our favorites to date. Are you surprised?

Related posts

Ravenna kitchen / 6 Day Kitchen / 6 Day Kitchen Resources /

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Adding vintage charm to a kitchen // Takeaways from the Porch House Reno

There are few things I love more in a home than a beautiful kitchen with vintage appeal. And I’ll let you in on a little secret, adding vintage charm into your kitchen isn’t as hard as it seems.  Even if your kitchen is brand new and your budget is stretched super thin, vintage charm is possible!

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Shelves and Cabs 3.2 CROPPED

our Porch House kitchen renovation (via Instagram)

Six takeaways from the Porch House renovation on how to add vintage charm to a new, old, or something-in-between kitchen. psst: these are great tips to review before starting on a kitchen renovation, especially in a vintage home!

Natural elements // wood, marble, stone and other natural materials feel old because they are old. These are also the materials that were used in kitchens at the turn of the last century – back before the advent of quartz and mdf – so these materials lend a timeless appeal to any kitchen. If you’re renovating, think about marble, soapstone, or honed black granite countertops. And if not, prop some old wood or marble boards against your backsplash. Natural materials tend to get better with age, so you can argue that they are great investments too!  That brings me to number two…

Aged Brass // in the oldest of old homes, you usually find brass hardware on the original cabinets and doors, and it’s aged to perfection. To get that feel in a new kitchen, try swapping out your hardware for unlacquerd brass (which will patina) or aged brass hardware in a classic style such as a bin pull, cabinet latch, and knob. For budget hardware options, like what we used in the Porch House kitchen, look here.

Vintage accessories // if a remodel is not in your immediate future, bring in some vintage accents. Pieces with a little patina like old bread boards, vintage cotton towels, hand-carved utensils, vintage art and rugs, your grandmother’s cookbooks, and old baskets add instant character. Place them on your countertops (in low traffic areas), on open shelves, in glass-fronted cabinets, or prop them against your backsplash. These pieces don’t need to cost a fortune, either. Try hitting up yard sales, antique shops, estate sales, or peek through your parent’s garage.

Dried herbs // growing food and making spices is a bit of a lost art these days, but hanging herbs in your kitchen (even if they’re from your grocery store’s produce section), gives your space automatic vintage appeal. I like wrapping up a few stems of thyme, sage, or lavender with a little twine and then hanging them from a peg or a small hook mounted to the underside of a cabinet. Bonus: your kitchen will smell like a five-star restaurant!

Keep the color palette simple // whether you’re renovating anew or dealing with an existing kitchen, sticking with two or three hues in your kitchen lets vintage accents shine through. At the Porch House, we painted all the walls and shelves a basic white, selected a soft neutral for the cabinetry, and topped everything with carrara marble. This simple color palette allows the eye to notice the elements we layered over top: vintage artwork, wood utensils, and brass hardware. And if you happen to have a dark kitchen or it’s wood heavy, I’d look for white stoneware and other light vintage accents to achieve a similar focal point.

Hide the hood // this tip is for folks looking to renovate or do a large DIY project. Built-in range hoods that hide all or part of the hood and vent, feel much older than their modern counterparts. At the Porch House, we drywalled the built-in hood, and in our Ravenna renovation, we built a cabinet to hide the vent.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Large HoodThe Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen HoodThe Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Shelf 2.1

our Porch House kitchen renovation (vintage utensils from, crockhardware, pegspot filler c/o)

Those are a few takeaways from our Porch House renovation, but I’d love to hear if you have any others. Let us know in the comments!

If you’re itching to find a few vintage (or vintage-inspired) accessories for your kitchen, here are a few items that have caught my eye as of late:

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Related: 

our favorite hardware under $7 / tips for buying vintage rugs (from Room for Tuesday) / how to age brass (from In My Own Style)

And in case you want to Pin this one for later…

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Shelves and Cabs 3.2 TEXT

xoxo

-Cathy

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