interiors & styling

Our Kitchen One Year Later

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com We’ve officially lived in our renovated kitchen for an entire year now, which is double the amount of time we spent in our previous renovated kitchen prior to moving (crazy!). I feel like we’re truly enjoying it and I’m so happy we prioritized renovating that space quickly after moving into our house. I wanted to follow up with a “year later” post, sharing what we love about it, a few things we might do differently, how the space has evolved over the course of a year, and how we actually use the kitchen each day. Click through for an updated post, one year after the big reveal. I’m answering an FAQ section, too! Oh- and before you click through to read this “real life” styled post… you can find the beautiful, editorial styled reveal from last year right here. Enjoy!

*This post is sponsored by Lowe’s. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that allow us to create unique content while featuring products we actually use & enjoy!

One of my amazing friends on the Lowe’s team I work with asked me why Emmett & I always choose the DIY route, and one thing came to mind. I share a LOT of process posts and tutorials throughout our home renovations, but the real reward is living in a beautiful, functional, and finished space once the dust settles. It’s what happens after the DIY is finished- that’s where the magic is. It’s the drive that keeps us tackling project-after-project because the end result is always a gorgeous backdrop to make memories, and a home that fits our family (from an aesthetic and functional point-of-view). We DIY for ourselves… because it’s fun, it results in a home we absolutely love, and I enjoy sharing the process and educational tidbits with you (which is fulfilling for me).

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com Our kitchen is functional, full of storage, and totally feels like us- which I think is the most important. It just belongs with our home and family. It genuinely makes me happy to cook here, make my morning coffee, and spend time in this gorgeous space. It has been a year of bliss living with our finished kitchen! Who else remembers when our kitchen looked like the below image? You can catch all of the before images in this post (these were taken PRE kitchen and formal living room renovations, so the views are almost unrecognizable).

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com This is what it looks like today… well, if I’m being technical- this was the scene last Saturday morning. Regardless, it has come a longggg way since that before photo.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Our Favorite Features

Ready to dive in and see how our kitchen looks “a year after the after?” First up- our favorite features…

  • The professional gas range // We cook a LOT- especially this year, during the pandemic. This is definitely the nicest range we’ve ever owned and I love cooking on it… GE gas range for the win!
  • The knife cabinet // My favorite cabinet is our hidden knife block and utensil storage. I love having these items to the left of the range for easy access, yet they’re out-of-sight. Take a complete video tour and peek inside our cabinets here!

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

  • The spice drawers // The spice drawers are Emmett’s favorite storage component. We cook with a lot of spices and these two drawers house them all. Grab my tutorial for the organized jars here.
  • The giant sink // We’re team single basin sink over here, and our black Kohler sink is beautiful, functional, and fits EVERYTHING (including the dogs). We’ve definitely given them a bath in the sink before- even Crosby surprisingly fits (though he only gets a paw wash from time-to-time, to avoid a huge mess).
  • Tons of storage // We have more storage than we’ll ever need. I’m kind of embarrassed to admit, we even have empty cabinets… which I feel is unheard of. Everything has a place and we have room to grow and cabinets that can be filled if needed.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Updates Over the Past Year

I’d be lying if I said nothing has changed in this space during the past year. We’ve definitely made some updates during the months that followed our kitchen reveal

  • Adding a mobile kitchen cart // As you’ve probably noticed, I tackled a little DIY kitchen cart project and it currently lives in the center of the room. This is mostly for aesthetic and styling purposes, as we don’t have room for a full kitchen island. I just enjoy plopping plants, greenery, and produce onto the cart.
  • A new garbage disposal // I’m ashamed to admit this, but I burnt up our new garbage disposal shortly after we finished the kitchen. How, you might ask? Well, it’s SO quiet (seriously)… I forgot that I turned it on, and I let it run all day and night. We bought the exact same model, Emmett replaced it, and that hasn’t happened since. You can hardly hear it running, so I feel like this was an easy mistake. Emmett has accidentally left it on, too. We did find out it has a “safety” feature where you can adjust the disposal to shut off after a certain amount of time, so now it’s set to that and we’re better at remembering to turn it off. I’m telling you- it’s THAT quiet.
  • Just more stuff, in general // We’ve accumulated “more stuff”… functional items, decor items, cookbooks, utensils, serveware… you name it. The space isn’t quite as minimal as it looked during the initial reveal last year.
  • Hanging our pizza peel // While social distancing, we became very into pizza making. We bought a long pizza paddle and it’s so beautiful (and big), I wanted to display it in our kitchen. It hangs on the paneled side of the fridge, to the right of range… almost like artwork. We use it once a week (pizza Fridays!), so it’s convenient and looks pretty.
  • Styling a countertop lamp // I’ve always wanted a countertop lamp, and our kitchen definitely has room and the counter space for one (check out my thoughts on counter space in this post). It’s on a remote, so there is no cord in the way, and I love the warm glow it adds to our kitchen in the evening hours.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Frequently Asked Kitchen Questions

Would you install dark cabinetry again?

Without a doubt! I love our moody kitchen and the dark color palette. The cabinets are really a chameleon color… they change throughout the day and with the weather (you probably notice that in my images). Sometimes they look more navy, and sometimes they look like a deep teal. I love the color and that is actually my most asked question, “What color are your kitchen cabinets?!” You can find my paint swatch matches to our cabinetry in this post. White kitchens are nice and wood cabinetry is beautiful, but we been there before… I wanted something different, and I’m very happy I pushed myself creatively to go for dark cabinetry. It feels right for us and this house! It never feels cave-like or gloomy in our kitchen, either. If you’re also planning to purchase your cabinetry from Lowe’s, like we did, I shared my favorite readymade cabinet colors they offer in this post.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Do your cabinets get dirty easily, since they’re so dark?

I usually deep clean the kitchen and wipe the cabinetry down once a month, but they hide dirt pretty well. I don’t really notice dirt, smudges, or spots (unless I spill something). They’re wearing very well and look just like they did the day we installed them!

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Why did you not incorporate a kitchen island? Will you add one? Why the kitchen cart?

Photos probably make our kitchen appear larger than it actually is in person. We really don’t have room for an island. We would need something very slender, long, and narrow to fit the space, providing an adequate traffic path. The kitchen cart was a project I wanted to tackle for a sponsored post. I thought it would be useful for entertaining and would give me a tiny surface to style a plant, greenery, flowers, or produce in our kitchen. It really is functional and I like having it! Is it my dream kitchen cart? No, but I don’t want to rush into buying something that doesn’t perfectly fit the space. If a vintage French kitchen cart comes along that is long and narrow, I would definitely snag it… but for now- our budget-friendly little cart is awesome (so I’m not actively searching for a replacement). It’s more for styling than anything.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

How are your countertops holding up?

Soapstone just gets better with time! As you might imagine, it’s look better now than it did when we installed it. The veining is really coming out, speckles are coming to the surface, and it’s getting a nice patina in certain areas. I have LOVED watching it change over the course of the year. You can find out more about our soapstone here and here.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Do you still love your appliances?

Our appliances are amazing! The dishwasher is super quiet, our fridge is the best (I recently re-organized it), the hidden microwave is great, and the gas range is wonderful. I will say, our oven igniter went out a couple months ago, which was a bummer- given the oven is just a year old. The timing wasn’t great because Emmett’s dad was here visiting, but we ordered the part, Emmett replaced it, and it’s working like new again. I’m guessing this isn’t the norm and it was just a fluke, based on the thousands of positive reviews. Most people I know who have the GE Cafe Collection range, haven’t had any issues whatsoever. Who knows. Bottom line- our appliances are my favorite, especially the dishwasher. As a reminder, our appliances before we renovated were functional, but pretty basic… I don’t miss them.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com That same view today, pictured below, looks pretty different! We definitely make our appliances work hard and put them to good use.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

Sources

I’m linking all of the big items and appliances in the mood board below (everything came from Lowe’s, excluding the countertops). You can find the accessories and small objects in a shopping slider below!

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com 01: rohl country kitchen faucet // 02: bedrosians cloe grey tile (with mapei grout in color pewter) // 03: rohl country kitchen pot filler // 04: amerock cabinetry pull // 05: amerock cabinetry knob // 06: kohler whitehaven kitchen sink // 07: cafe 6-burner gas range // 08: bruce hardwood flooring (in spice color… herringbone tutorial here) // 09: ge profile microwave // 10: diamond cabinets (door style: lisette | color: maritime) // 11: garbage disposal // 12: polished nickel sconce // 13: legrand outlet covers // 14: ge profile dishwasher (ours is the panel ready version) // 15: kitchenaid side-by-side refrigerator

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com

A Few Small Things We Would Change

I honestly wouldn’t change much about our kitchen. It feels pretty perfect for us and I love the way it looks! However, there are a few things we might do differently if given the chance… ironically, all of our knit picking items have to do with plumbing.

  • Extra pot filler over the espresso machine // In our previous kitchen, I designed a pot filler to live over the espresso machine. I loved the convenience and wish I would’ve spent the extra time and money to do that in our current kitchen. It sounds silly, but refilling tank in the sink annoys me. It’s definitely not as convenient, based on how often I drink coffee and refill the tank. During the renovation, we were pressed for time and trying to save room in the budget, so we passed on plumbing in a pot filler. Wrong move on our part! I really miss having that.
  • Fridge with a water filter // Our refrigerator is amazing, panel-ready (so it looks integrated with our cabinetry), and super nice… but there is one thing we can’t believe it doesn’t have: a water filtration system. Somehow we didn’t realize this until after the renovation was completed. This was our budget-friendly remedy for that, but now we have to figure out how to hide our water dispenser in the dining room somewhere. It would’ve been far more convenient to get water straight from the fridge and not have to deal with an exterior filtration unit… or install an osmosis system at the sink.
  • Different side spray // The side spray that matches our kitchen faucet is not my favorite. It’s not very ergonomic, is super heavy, and the cord tends to kink, stopping mid spray. It also takes a lot of pressure to push the spray button and hurts my thumb. It’s a bit of workout when using it. The faucet itself is perfect and beautiful… it’s just the side spray I have major complaints about.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com Our kitchen looks nothing like it did the day we moved into our house, and it’s honestly difficult to remember the way it looked before. The current version just seems to belong, and I feel like that is a testament to the design- a year later we still absolutely love it! Sure, it changes seasonally, I swap out accessories and style it to my heart’s content, but that’s the beauty of having a functional backdrop you really love… it’s a fun space to be in and work with.

Our Kitchen One Year Later - roomfortuesday.com I’m happy to answer any kitchen questions you may have in the comment section below! How has a year passed already, since revealing this space? Time is flying. One thing is for sure- I’m very happy to have this incredible finished kitchen… this year, more than ever.

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  • Reply
    Peggi
    August 13, 2020 at 5:43 am

    Empty cabinets?! I’m aghast. How nice to have room to grow, though. I confess that I laughed out loud at your disposal story; I cannot imagine one so quiet. I love that you have so few changes that you would make after a year of seeing how your kitchen functions. That’s certainly a testament to your design. Your pot-filler story reminds me of a choice in my kitchen that I regret. I opted not to do pull-out shelves in a tall pantry cabinet we installed; the cost difference seemed huge! Ha. Guess how many times a day I say a little curse word over this decision? Budget is so important, but those conveniences that impact us multiple times a day can be priceless. Speaking of, I will anxiously await your water filter/dining room solution! Our fridge is purposely not plumbed (flood phobia), but I would love an attractive water situation. (Actually, I’m excited to see your entire dining room design…eventually.) Scrolling through these images, it’s easy to see why you love your kitchen!
    Well, I’m off to school this morning. Not sure I remember how to wear pants…🤣

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 12:02 pm

      Hope you’re having a good first day of school, Peggi! Oooh yes- Emmett was not happy with me about the disposal, BUT then he did it too and realized how easy it was. Haha! It’s honestly too quiet (something I never thought I’d say in regards to a garbage disposal, ha). Hindsight is 20/20 I suppose. So much for my pot filler. I’ll keep you posted about the water filler situation when we move to the dining room (hopefully soon). It’s an eyesore right now. Happy Thursday :) xo

  • Reply
    Amanda
    August 13, 2020 at 6:51 am

    I honestly CANNOT believe this renovation was a year ago! I followed along for the whole thing – so to think that a year+ has passed since this happened – I just can’t wrap my mind around it! Gorgeous space then and now! (and cute pj’s!)

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 11:57 am

      Right?! It feels like yesterday. Time is flying! Thanks so much for your kind words, Amanda! :)

  • Reply
    Julie
    August 13, 2020 at 7:06 am

    Sarah, I adore your kitchen, and I always love to see how people use their spaces in real life, versus styled out for shoots. I find it so refreshing. And, I love reading that you’re both still so happy with it! That’s the best. What kept distracting me, though, was your ADORABLE pajamas! Do you mind sharing where you found them? :)

    Have a great weekend!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 11:57 am

      Thank you, Julie! It has been a lot of fun putting the kitchen to good use this year. I’ve loved every minute! My pajamas are a few years old, but they came from Nordstrom Rack: https://bit.ly/2PLWslo … I’ve found they have the best (comfortable) sets for women at great prices.

      • Reply
        Julie
        August 13, 2020 at 7:14 pm

        That’s awesome to know – thank you!

  • Reply
    Lauren
    August 13, 2020 at 7:57 am

    Your kitchen is beyond beautiful: it’s breathtaking! I see kitchens I like everyday, but ultimately what I love about yours is all the functionality. When you’ve taken the time to make a space completely your own from the studs, and added features to make the space work for you and with you, it definitely feels effortless to work in it, doesn’t it? Our previous kitchen was the same. I miss that kitchen daily still. I often think about why I miss it so much, and I think it comes down to that…functionality. My current kitchen is much larger and most family members comment how wonderful it is when they’re over. It may be larger, but it doesn’t pack even half the functionality of our previous kitchen. For me it’s the little things: we had a pull out next to the oven for baking sheets and large flat items; now I can only fit my baking sheets in one single cabinet, away from the range, because of depth restrictions elsewhere. My kitchen appears to have a ton of storage, but most of it isn’t functional- none of the shelves are move-able (I think I miss that the most), so there is a ton of wasted space. Some very large cabinets don’t have shelves at all (more wasted space), and the drawers aren’t standard length or depth…try buying 15 different drawer organizers just to realize none of them will work! Lol. Living in this kitchen though, and working in it everyday, definitely gives me the best knowledge for what it begs to have when renovation time comes, and I can’t wait for that day. Your kitchen has brought a ton of inspiration in the past year. Every time you show it, I notice something different I love. You and Emmett did a fantastic job with the space. Congrats on one year with your renovation! It’s gorgeous as ever!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 11:48 am

      Thank you so much, Lauren! I definitely love how functional it is. Everything has a place and a use. It’s just easy to work in. Such great points you make on where things are location and how that relates to functionality! I totally agree. Thanks again for your kind words. Happy first day of school!! xo

  • Reply
    Danielle
    August 13, 2020 at 9:25 am

    When you were describing what type of island you would need, I pictured something similar to the island in Jessica Helgerson’s Neely House project!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 11:47 am

      YES! That is exactly what I would snag if I could find a vintage one. Love the idea of the white marble top too… would be beautiful paired with our dark soapstone. Maybe someday the right size will come along :) You get me, Danielle!

  • Reply
    Iga
    August 13, 2020 at 2:57 pm

    I love your kitchen so much, Sarah. The color of the cabinets and the dark countertops are so beautiful. And I’m team little island cart on wheels… It looks so chic!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 3:54 pm

      Thank you so much! Really appreciate that :)

  • Reply
    Laura
    August 13, 2020 at 4:22 pm

    I have used rooms of your home as inspiration for my own a few times now – thank you for your creative lead!! Would you still choose Diamond cabinetry for a future renovation? Do you have any concerns about durability?

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 13, 2020 at 5:48 pm

      I love hearing that, Laura! I would absolutely install Diamond Cabinets again. They have exceeded our expectations this year and we’ve had no issues at all. A+ for durability… dovetail joints, solid wood construction, no scratching or chipping, very impressed.

  • Reply
    Diane
    August 14, 2020 at 4:46 am

    Your kitchen is absolutely beautiful. You said you wash down your cabinets monthly. Wondering what you use on your cabinets. Thanks.

  • Reply
    Kelly K
    August 14, 2020 at 7:02 am

    This is pinned as one of my inspiration kitchens! I love the moody colors and cozy touches, like the lamp. I put a lamp on our counter and love it and the glow it gives off; my husband however is like, “A lamp? In the kitchen?” I loved the kitchen in your last home as well—also pinned for the incredible backsplash tile-cabinet-countertop combo. Thank you for sharing your home and ideas!

  • Reply
    Jess
    August 14, 2020 at 12:41 pm

    I adore your whole style and I am so inspired by it! We copied your fireplace and built-ins from your last home (still haven’t had the guts to do an accent color in the center though!). Finally, I am about a year away from a massive kitchen gut job. Yours is so inspiring to me! I love everything! I also followed it in progress a year ago. We currently have an awkward, small island. It doesn’t work at all and I am content with eliminating it completely. I love your cart and it’s exactly what we will do. I also loathe looking at our microwave that is boldly on display in the center of the kitchen- I cannot wait to hide it forever!

  • Reply
    Rebecca
    August 14, 2020 at 7:11 pm

    Your kitchen is perfection! I am curious how your oven bakes and otherwise cooks things. I have a gas oven needing to be replaced which I HATE! I’m considering a dual fuel range with electric oven but would consider gas if I can find one that reliably comes to temperature and can cook evenly on all racks. Thanks for any insight on how the Cafe bakes. It’s a contender.

  • Reply
    Erin
    August 14, 2020 at 8:17 pm

    This kitchen remodel taught me how to scale cabinet pulls! I am moving into a kitchen with out all of your lovely light. Are you team lazy Susan or team rev a shelf for blind corners?

  • Reply
    Michele M. (Finch Rest)
    August 15, 2020 at 12:12 pm

    Your kitchen is so wow I have no words: just wow.

    Soon as I read it today (visiting from over at Karianne’s Thistlewood Farm’s Thistlekeeping post) my hubs went out and bought your garbage disposal. It’s so funny but we cook a lot and dispose use a lot and this will be our 3rd one in 17 years. This one is so stinking loud that it actually makes me jump if I hit the switch and it goes on accidentally- just yesterday I dropped a handful of things I was putting away from our dying rack when I bumped it on. Reading your “accidentally” leaving yours on- seriously I cannot even imagine that till now. Thanks for that mistake – or I’d never have found such a quiet one. I thought they all were stupid loud!!!!

  • Reply
    Paula
    August 19, 2020 at 6:04 am

    Love your kitchen! I am dying to add a countertop lamp but the outlet situation is a no-go. Curious where you have your lamp plugged in – I don’t see a cord!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      August 19, 2020 at 8:55 am

      No cord! I actually cut the cord out and use a puck light inside the lamp (on a remote).

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