Midway through last August, we moved back into our newly remodeled kitchen after four months of living in a construction zone. One of the most telling things about the success of any design project is not whether you love it right away but whether you still love it over time. When you actively live within a space, tangibly experiencing all of its elements, you recognize new things about it that might not have been noticeable during the design process.

Today I’m revisiting our kitchen remodel project and sharing my thoughts on it now, twelve months later.

01

What’s your overall consensus one year later?


All in all, I love the kitchen remodel so much. I still love the design decisions I made. And I’m so glad we kept the wood paneling. 

Keeping the wood paneling required a contractor who was willing to do it when I know some would have tried to talk me out of it. Looking back, I’m even more grateful that ours was up for the challenge (thank you, Kyle!). The process required that the paneling be removed from certain areas and reinstalled in others. It wasn’t the easy way but I think it was so worth it. 

I also love the storage space we implemented into the design. I’m never going to be a person who insists everything be “just so” but I still value organization and tidiness to some level. Everything here has a spot, which makes every task from setting the table to cleaning up easier than ever. This kind of organization and functionality is a dream.

Was Our Kitchen Remodel Worth It? Here's What I Really Think, One Year Later | Wit & Delight
Peek inside our fridge in this blog post!

02

Is there anything that surprised you?


Some of the design decisions I worried about ended up turning out even better than I could have imagined. I worried about the pink cabinets being “too pink” and it turns out I like the pink color even more than the navy.

03

How do you feel about the layout?


The issues we decided not to solve by keeping the existing footprint of the kitchen definitely continue to be there. This mainly has to do with the traffic flow between the kitchen, guest room, and garage. (If you want a better sense of the layout and how these spaces relate to one another, you can view the floor plan in this blog post.) Having one of the main entrances to our house (from the garage) go directly into the kitchen isn’t ideal in terms of functionality. However, I still know that any changes we might have made in terms of layout would have created a domino effect of other things to change. I try to remind myself that we decided to live with these kinds of inconveniences for the sake of doing a more sustainable kitchen remodel. 

One layout change we’re considering in the not-so-distant future is in the dining area of the kitchen. The large section of windows here is showing a lot of wear and tear and will need to be replaced. We’re considering the option of replacing the windows with French doors that would lead out to the back patio.

04

How has everything in the kitchen held up over time?


Most things have held up so well. One thing that has shown wear is the paint on the cabinets, which is chipping in some areas. My hunch is that this is because we opted for a paintable cabinet prototype.

One thing that has held up extremely well is the flooring. There is a ton of foot traffic through the kitchen and it’s the place where the dogs spend the most time since they sleep here at night. We chose a bright, white grout for the flooring and I’m amazed at how easy it is to clean. I use this brush and some OxiClean and any grime is removed in a flash.

05

What are some of your favorite memories in the kitchen throughout the past year?


While I share it as a design project, first and foremost, this kitchen is a place where we live. And boy have we lived this past year. Looking back, there are so many experiences I’ve loved in this space. Here are a few that come to mind:

  • The coziness of the cooking space makes for a really therapeutic, lovely place to cook things. I love that it feels tucked away, with easy access to all of my cooking tools and a really wonderful view.
  • The kitchen island has become the heart of our home. I love having breakfast with my kids here, eating and watching the happenings outside. I love drawing and creating with them. When we have people over, the island is where everyone gathers. We had neighbors over for donuts and coffee on a rainy weekend morning recently. The adults gathered around the island and the kids ran around and played. Even though the kitchen is closed-concept and a little tight in certain areas, it still feels so welcoming.

Having a space that’s beautiful and personal, where my whole family feels comfortable moving through life together is so meaningful to me. There’s a peaceful kind of chaos in this kitchen, which is the best I could ever hope for.

Having a space that’s beautiful and personal, where my whole family feels comfortable moving through life together is so meaningful to me. There’s a peaceful kind of chaos in this kitchen, which is the best I could ever hope for.

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