Before & After: Melissa's Country-Meets-City Kitchen Makeover

Before & After: Melissa's Country-Meets-City Kitchen Makeover

The Kitchn
Jul 17, 2014

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Chicago, IL
United States
About my kitchen reveal:
My kitchen makeover focused on improving the cosmetics and functionality of the kitchen without requiring a complete overhaul (my budget was a tight $3000). When I purchased my condo, the kitchen screamed of stone-age-meets-1990s. I updated the look by ripping out the stone tile floors and installing a plywood plank floor, which I painted white (my favorite mistake since it looks great but requires vigilant and constant cleaning). I removed all the concrete countertops (which were porous, stained, and mucked with bits of food from who knows when) and replaced them with Ikea butcher block that I stained and sealed with Waterlox. I also painted the existing cabinetry, replaced the cabinetry hardware, added a subway tile backsplash, and painted the entire kitchen a bright white. I absolutely love the modern country-meets-city look of my new kitchen!

Click through to see more After photos!

My best tip for a successful kitchen makeover::
There are a few big tips that I learned in the process: 1) If you plan to renovate on your own (like I did), be sure you don't bite off more than you can chew; 2) If you see black mastic after pulling up your existing tile floor, get it checked for asbestos before doing anything to it as you will be saved from freaking out, running to your friends for shelter, and constantly worrying that you will die in 20 years from mesothelioma (note: after doing all these things, I learned that the mastic present in my kitchen did not contain asbestos--yay!), and 3) Measure, measure, measure before tiling.
My favorite meal to cook in my kitchen::
I love cooking just about anything in my new kitchen, especially Thomas Keller's recipes for roast chicken (which is simply the best) and sausage with green lentils.
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