Before & After: Our Kitchen

It’s finally here! The BIG kitchen reveal!! A few blown electrical outlets, a bad case of bronchitis and a few arguments over wainscoting measurements…and it’s finally all complete!!! Maybe I should pinch myself….or maybe I should just show you guys the photos…

I must really like you guys because I can’t believe I’m showing you these horrible before snapshots of our kitchen…with grocery bags on the floor, mail on the table and little dogs running around! Ain’t no “staging” goin’ on in these photos!


Anyone hungry for tomato soup? That’s what this color reminds me of!

Here’s another view of the opposite end of the kitchen…


Follow the yellow brick road, follow the yellow brick road…right to the laundry room!

And here’s the photo from when the kitchen was painted and the room was cleared in preparation for the old vinyl floors to be removed. Wow! I can already breathe easier with all the clutter gone!

What a soothing color!

Ah…much better! What a soothing color!

When the old vinyl flooring was removed we ended up having to build a new sub-floor. That ensured that the new tile floor went in nice and even…and I think it turned out beautifully!


Whoa! What a difference! The wainscoting and new floors really add that extra architectural interest that this room lacked.

This room now holds many of my favorite antique items in our home, including this beautiful pie safe from Sweet Briar, VA. It’s dated around 1840 and came out of a plantation that was being renovated. It even has it’s original locks and key…that still functions. This was the last piece of furniture that my mother-in-law purchased before she passed away last year. She didn’t even get to bring it home from the shop and enjoy it.  After she passed, I was able to purchase it and bring it here, to our home…where I can admire it daily and always think of her and our antiquing adventures together.

This key and lock are 173 years old! Imagine the things that they have safely held in this pie safe...

This key and lock are 173 years old! Imagine the things that they have safely held in this pie safe…

The baseboard heaters, door trim and all of the cabinets are painted white with Benjamin Moore’s Impervo (oil based). The Mr. used to be a painting contractor and swears by the quality and long lasting wear of this paint. This oak farm table was purchased at the Raleigh, NC flea market when I was 20 years old. It was the first piece of antique furniture that I ever purchased and has traveled with me to many different homes. The antique mission chairs were purchased at an estate sale a few years ago for a whoppin’ $30. The antique tool tray was purchased last year in Bucks County, PA.


Originally, I thought I wanted either a large checkerboard pattern tile or a large grey tile floor…but when the Mr. and I walked into Best Tile, we spotted this immediately and knew it was the one (If you go to Best Tile, make sure you work with Mary Thurman…that woman knows her stuff!). We both loved the wood-grain like texture (which you can’t see that well here)…reminiscent of old barn wood.


A better view…wish you could see the beautiful detail in this ceramic tile. It looks just like old barn wood!

Here’s the opposite end of the kitchen. The screen door leads you to a tiny laundry room that also holds our brand new electrical box and hot water heater. Both were 30 years old and decided to die at the same time (perhaps the Romeo and Juliet story of electrical appliances??). We can’t place a solid door here, because the room needs to ventilate, so this was our creative solution.


And here’s a snap shot of one of my other pie safe. If I could have an entire house full of antique pie safes, I’d be a very happy girl…I LOVE these functional, yet beautiful pieces of furniture. Each one is so unique…whether it’s been painted or stained…due to its shape and intricate design punched into the tin doors.

One of the last things we did in this room was to paint the pantry door black. I felt that it by going darker, it offered some nice contrast from the white wainscoting and cabinets.


Can you tell I love furniture and objects that have a folk art feel to them?

Last but not least, I have to give a special shout out to the Mr. for doing such an AMAZING job doing all of the carpentry work and installing all of the beautiful wainscoting that now surrounds this large room. All of the lumber was purchased at Siewers Lumber and Millwork.

I’d also like to thank Randy Hedstrom of Hedstrom Paint & Tile, who did a wonderful and impeccable job putting in the new floor and installing our tile. If you have an upcoming project and need some expert help…he’s your man!

Don't you love the rusty patina on this old tire sign?

Don’t you love the rusty patina on this old tire sign?

So that’s our big renovation project for the year! Now we can sit back and relax and enjoy our lovely new space. Oh…and speaking of enjoying something new…I wanted show you this awesome antique sign we found this past weekend at a wonderful shop in Toano, VA called Everything Vintage Co. It was going to hang on our shed, but once we brought it home, we loved it so much…we decided to hang it in our family room!

What projects do you have planned for this spring? What do you think of our kitchen renovation? Tell us…we’d love to hear from you!

Copyright 2013. The Savvy Seeker blog by Erin Hurley-Brown. All Rights Reserved.

6 thoughts on “Before & After: Our Kitchen

  1. Gorgeous transformation, kiddo! The wainscoting does a great job of “disguising” the baseboard heat (which we have a lot of in our 50s house. hmmmm….). And that wall color really is scrumptious. HUGE kudos. But. When are you gonna reveal what you did with the cheese boxes?

  2. What a lovely room. I, too, love pie safes and got one without the doors at the last Fisherville show from two lovely ladies from Envy Antiques. They have a booth at Greenwood Antiques if you ever go up that way they are worth checking out!

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