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5 Ways to Get Your Kitchen from Basic to Beautiful


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There were quite a few things that we went back and forth on, and that we were specific about when it came to the design and layout. Right now it might sound like a bunch of mumbo-jumbo without pictures to explain, but seeing that it’s going to be a few weeks on that I’ll just list them and show you what we did later. They will really transform the overall look from your basic, quick kitchen (like we have in our apartment now) to a well-thought-out design.

  1. Appropriate Finished End Panels

We made sure that there were finished end panels in all the appropriate spots throughout the space (in between the cabinets in the wet bar where they are exposed for shelving, either side of the fridge, where the normal cabinets are exposed etc.)

2. Island Decoration

Instead of the normal overhang for an island, we wanted end panels that went to the edge of the stone. This gives it a more square solid look with decorative features on either side. Very expensive but this in itself will change the look of the whole kitchen.

3. Hide the Microwave (as much as possible)

We went back and forth on where to put the microwave but decided to keep it hidden in the base cabinet all the way to the right where you will barely see it upon entering the house. I hate the look of microwaves, especially above the stove.

4. Decorative Hood Over the Range

This is a given, it’s obvious, but oh boy is it not cheap. It’s worth it because it becomes an eye-catcher. Is it rustic? Industrial? French Country?  It sets the tone and the aesthetic of the kitchen itself. We are talking about adding a wood element to it but we’ll decide that when it comes in. Otherwise, it will come in all white to match the cabinets.

5. Tile / Backsplash

Rather than subway tile just behind the stove, we are planning to do the herringbone pattern up the entire wall. Not only will it keep everything clean (and easy to clean) but it now transforms that wall to be somewhat of a feature wall.

Below is my process from mood board to finishes. Next will be the light fixtures and decor. But I can’t wait to see this kitchen come together!


Kitchen from Basic to Beautiful


The last two weeks have been major for the house! Electrical and plumbing are done, framing set, our HVAC units are waiting to be put in, and now they are getting ready for drywall. We finalized the kitchen layout down to the inch, and above is the mood board for the finishes I made. Going through the whole process, it helped to have a clear vision of what the end result would be. We actually kept to it for the most part, which isn’t hard when it’s mostly just white. I just couldn’t resist the countertops we chose (which are different from above) I mean look at those veins!! A few other things changed, and I won’t bore you with the specifics because a lot of it had to do with measuring this and fitting that… but regardless what I envisioned is actually coming to be, which is so crazy and so exciting!!


Kitchen from Basic to Beautiful

What do you guys think? Not enough color? Too much white? I think it’s going to be so pretty but I’m interested to hear what you all think! The tiled wall is 90% set with beveled XL subway tile in a herringbone pattern. Or should we do something else? List your ideas in the comments below, I truly want to know!



Leave a Comment


  1. Chris Quinlan wrote:

    You can always add pops of color, right? Towels, bowls etc.

    Posted 5.30.18 Reply
    • oliviaquinlan1 wrote:

      Yes Momma, that’s what I was thinking 🙂

      Posted 5.30.18 Reply
  2. Joe wrote:

    I love you man

    Posted 6.9.18 Reply
    • oliviaquinlan1 wrote:

      I love you!!!!!!!!

      Posted 6.9.18 Reply