Hey y’all! We have a guest post today from Cassandra, a client of ours who recently did a major kitchen remodel. She has “before” pictures on her blog, guttingwiththegeurins.blogspot.com, as well as a lot of fun blog posts about the process. For today, though, she wrote us a fabulous post about how to tackle a kitchen remodel and how to make sure you end up with your dream kitchen afterwards. She is right on! Read along!
Naming Your Kitchen, The Renovation Thesis
by: Cassandra Geurin
Since I finished my kitchen renovation in November, countless people have reached out to “pick my brain” on their own kitchen projects. While I certainly welcome a free cup of coffee [or wine for those that really know me], I am far from an expert on the subject. The most common thing I hear is, “where do I even start?” It’s true, there are hundreds [thousands?] of options that must be considered and infinite ways your kitchen could ultimately be pulled together. Finding numerous options you like is actually as [or more!] stressful than not finding any at all.
So where to start? Name your kitchen.
Now this felt natural to me because I’m one of those people that name everything. My car, each bug my son picks up, and even my childhood trashcan has been personified. Now I do not mean name it Kim or Donna, but name it a combination of your style and how it will fit into your life. A few names that have been sent back my way are: French Country Organized, Transitional Elegant and Modern-mom Functional. All strong descriptions that do not box you in, but rather focus where your energy should be applied. Mine was Unique Classic Entertainment. I wanted a classic kitchen set-up for entertainment with unique details. I like to think in some ways that describes myself. Don’t rush this step, as it isn’t just something fun to get the wheels turning, you are essentially writing the thesis statement for your renovation project.
Naming your kitchen does 3 major things:
1) It gets your head around what you really want.
Do you want the most modern, up-to-date trendy space that will sell your house fast? Easy. Do you still dream of your grandmother’s country kitchen where she made apple pies? A kitchen with throwback details could easily be made beautiful. Maybe basic functionality is important to you and staying under a certain budget is non-negotiable. Own it.
Knowing that I wanted a classic kitchen, Holly Thompson Homes was able to structure a cabinet design that I could then turn into my own creation.
2) It will help quickly communicate what you truly want and who you really are.
I used unique in my kitchen’s name very deliberately. Unique literally means “being the only one of its kind; unlike anything else.” This word alone opened up the doors for designers and the contracting team to brainstorm ideas they might not have mentioned if I simply had said “classic;” like retaining the original unique crown molding and making it part of my Starmark shaker cabinets.
3) It will focus your budget.
Now this one might sound like bit of a stretch, but while renovations are stressful, they are also really exciting!
You will be made aware of options you did not even know existed. My budget spreadsheet was over 80 lines long. Where do you splurge and where do you save? Weighing each decision against your thesis statement will help you determine if the decision you are making is in overall support of what you set out to accomplish. The function of my kitchen was for entertainment. I want to be the home where friends and family love to gather. Double oven, check. Extra tall cabinets for tons of storage, check. Eleven-foot island with seating, check.
Custom leather couches…oh I loved them so much but I had to pass. After weighing the difference in cost between those and a set of [still very comfortable] Ashley couches that cost less than half, my thesis was met either way.
Whether you want “rustic relaxed” or “cozy contemporary,” your kitchen really only has to do two things, fit you and fit your home. Don’t be scared to make it show the un-filtered side of you, because let’s be honest, that’s the best part.