Kitchen Remodel Before & After Reveal – Part 2: Design

Picking up where we left off in Part 1: Before… (if you missed the before photos, check them out here first!)

The Barber’s existing kitchen floor plan had several issues that were working against proper traffic flow and space clearances. Take the breakfast peninsula, for example, that divided the room in half.

The first step with any design is to think through the functionality goals, storage, and traffic needs of the users in the space. Notice the changes from the existing plan above (and before pictures) to the new design drawings below:

Much more open and aetheticly pleasing already, even in black and white, yes? If you’re curious about the details of the big changes we made, I’ve included them below! (If not, keep scrolling for details on the next part of the design.)


1. Shrunk the island – by designing a custom, smaller scale island, we were able to allow the minimum clearance of 36″ on each side of the island while still keeping it a functional size, big enough to store the trashcan inside.

2. Swapped the peninsula for a windowseat – the space really opened up by omitting the large breakfast peninsula and replacing it with a built-in storage window seat and rustic farm table. Much prettier, too!

3. Relocated pantry space – the original location of the pantry closet closed in around you upon entering, the door swung into the traffic path, and the “walk-in” feature wasn’t even usable with items overflowing from shelves onto the floor. Instead, we reallocated the pantry storage space in two new built-in cabinets flanking the beverage station that have track system gliding shelves for easy item visibility and better organization!

4.  Utilized unused space in bonus room – the room at the north end of the kitchen was previously empty and cluttered all at the same time. One wall was virtually empty, while another housed an overstuffed bookcase and desk space. The new design took advantage of every inch of space, wrapping all three walls in custom cabinetry to include a desk with office storage, pantry space, a beverage station complete with ice maker and extra sink, as well as a china cabinet with a pass through. We packed alot of much needed functions into this tiny space that allowed us to do much more with the rest of the kitchen!

5. Opened up east walls, adding a pass through and bar – we created two openings in this wall that serve multiple functions. The first is the pass through in china cabinet to the dining room, and the second is creating a two-seater bar area under an arched opening created where the oven and microwave wall once stood. Not only do these openings allow visibility into the next rooms, creating the feel of a more open floor plan, but it allows light to flow through from room to room, which makes the kitchen feel bigger as well.

6. Added additional lighting – LOTS of additional lighting! In the before images, you’ll see the only lighting came from the pot rack/light fixture, a small chandelier, and a can light over the sink area. Combined with the sage green wall color that acted as a light sponge rather than reflector, it was a dark kitchen. We added about 8 can lights, pendants over the island, bar, sink, desk, beverage sink, as well as a chandelier over the breakfast table, as well as under cabinet lighting. The new illumination reflects beautifully off of the fresh white walls and dreamy-creamy cabinets.

Once the space plan and cabinet details were set, we could really jump into the “fun stuff” such as finishes, fixtures, and fabrics. When it came to creating the color scheme and overall aesthetic for the kitchen, we took cues from Tuscan and southwest inspired spaces and details.

The base of the color scheme started with wanting creamy cabinets with a cocoa glaze to contrast with warm wood floors, stained beams and stained island. The accent colors were inspired by Jessica’s favorite hue, turquoise. Selecting oranges as the other accent color followed suit as being the natural complimentary color to blues, as well as playing off of some inspiration pieces of pottery!

The print fabric for the pillows did a wonderful job of tying all of the colors in the room together – cream, espresso, turquoise, rust – as well as adding interest with hints of butter yellow and a splash of sage green!

What do you think about the new design? I’d love to hear your thoughts or answer any questions about it in the comments below!

Thanks for joining me today. Stay tuned for “Part 3: After” which I’ll be sharing a week from today!

Happy Mother’s Day weekend to all you mother’s out there!

Stay inspired,



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