In addition to my own remodeling initiatives, I just began providing design consultancy services. After finding me through the blog, Kassie sent me an email. It came out that she resides in my hometown and was asking if I might assist her with her kitchen.

Our first meeting was held in her 1980s kitchen in November. Kassie and her husband David were eager to get started because they detested their U-shaped kitchen so much and wanted to make it a place where they could cook and entertain.

Kassie desired a look that was airy, bright, and contemporary, and with time and effort, she achieved her goal! It took six months to complete the remodel, and I’m overjoyed to present the outcome to you today.

Here is a before and after photo of the kitchen’s range side. Take note of the outdated tile counters and wood cabinetry that were in desperate need of an upgrade! Such a noticeable improvement!

After the demolition, they started by putting in the new flooring. After deliberating over several possibilities, Kassie and David ultimately chose vinyl planks in a rich wood tone that ground the room—especially with all the white surfaces—a great choice!

Kassie and David ordered Kraftmaid shaker cabinets in White Dove and white quartz countertops after consulting with the kitchen cabinet designer at Home Depot.

The kitchen range was not centered if you scroll back to the previous image. It was awkward for anyone cooking and aesthetically unbalanced because it was too close to the kitchen entrance. I advised them to center the range on the wall as part of their new cabinet design. To provide the chef more privacy and to make this wall more aesthetically beautiful, it was necessary to have a plumber move the gas line over a foot.

David and Kassie settled on a curved, sleek stainless steel hood. When possible, it’s a good idea to incorporate rounded shapes into an environment where everything else is angular. Because it is made of tempered glass, this range hood appears to be less bulky. Take note that the microwave has been relocated to the peninsula (seen below), where it is concealed by a cabinet.

Since slide-in ranges follow the line of the countertops and highlight more of the tile than freestanding ones, I strongly recommend them over freestanding ones. They are more expensive, but well worth the extra cost for this reason.

Here is a picture of the window wall in the kitchen before it was renovated. Take note of where the sink is situated beneath the garden window and the dishwasher is to the right. I advised them to remove the infrequently used slider because the nearby garage provides access to the side yard (and full access to the rear yard through the family room). I proposed they reframe the wall with a rectangle window that was centered, larger, wider, and symmetrical on the wall to let in more light. After that, place the dishwasher on the opposite side of the sink and center it.

Following our discussion, Kassie texted me this image of painters tape indicating the location of a new window in the renovated kitchen. True, true!

Reframing a new window required completely re-framing the wall and removing the strange upper cabinet and sliding door, but they were totally on board and they accomplished it, and the difference is astounding!

When it makes sense, as it did in this case, I’m a firm believer in tiling the ceiling.

You can see a glimpse of the refrigerator next to the pantry in the photograph below. In the original kitchen, it was located next to the pantry and visually separated the cooking area from the dining room. They had also considered moving the refrigerator to the empty wall and framing it there when I suggested it as a better location.


In order to create a small hallway as you enter the kitchen, Kassie and David chose a model with a shallower counter depth. Wow, what a difference.


Any cabinet design plan should take into consideration the necessity for space for the doors to fully swing open wherever a refrigerator is placed. There is plenty of space on both sides in this kitchen.


The refrigerator was relocated to make place for a lovely peninsula that overlooks the neighboring dining area. The huge quartz countertop conceals the microwave and has enough for two individuals to sit comfortably on stools on the opposite side.


I suggested adding little amounts of black to their kitchen with a black light fixture above the sink and matte black handles because the cabinets and counters were white. The right amount of contrast is added by both.



The black granite sink, which they added as even another dark contrast element, startled me. They originally intended to keep their original stainless sink, but they decided to switch to this granite one instead. Excellent decision! Don’t you just adore this two tone single hole faucet ? The sink is the ideal fit for the cinder gray touch.


I told Kassie to go for it since she had her heart set on a hexagonal marble backsplash. Classic marble hexagons are the perfect backsplash for a kitchen this size because of their smaller scale.

The old fluorescent box was replaced with six 4-inch recessed lights since the smaller-sized recessed light is preferable with low ceilings.


The fact that David and David’s brother completed the majority of the work themselves really impressed me. The flooring and cabinetry were installed with patience and great attention to detail! The backsplash installation was assisted by hired fabricators, but the rest of the job was outstanding do-it-yourself!

Kudos to Kassie and David for their modern, luminous kitchen remodel!

It was a pleasure working with you, and I’m so grateful that you hired me as your design consultant!

I now provide kitchen and bathroom design consulting services for folks in Northern California; see my portfolio page for information on setting up an initial meeting.






Enter your email address below to

subscribe to my newsletter