One Room Challenge!!! Week 1

one room challenge.jpg

SO I decided last minute to hop on the One Room Challenge bandwagon. We moved into a new (to us) home a couple of months ago, and our kitchen has been stuck in a rut ever since. I figured this was a way to give us a good kick in the pants!

Once again, I thought I got before before pictures, and it turns out my “before” is actually once we started demo. So I dug a little, and found real estate pictures online from when the home was sold to the previous owners. This is what the kitchen/dining looked like:


It was not in this good of condition when we closed, but the problem is what I like to call the domino effect in renovation…you start doing one thing, and then it affects everything else. Because of some issues with the house that needed to be addressed immediately, we ended up painting the whole thing and laying new carpet and wood flooring. The domino in this situation was the wood floors. I know there is no right or wrong, but I always prefer when floors are laid under cabinetry so if the layout is ever changed, you at least have the option of keeping the floors the same. I knew the flow and openness of the kitchen could be so much better, and I knew eventually I would want to scrap the peninsula in favor of an island (ironically there was an island in the original house plans but the owners must have decided to change it). So if we were to lay the floors around the cabinets as they were set up, that would make changing the kitchen layout down the road a pain and add more time and money.

As you can see, there was a decent amount of space around the dining table, but because of the peninsula, the counter stools and dining chairs would have been back to back…a major blockage in traffic flow out the patio door if people were actually seated. So after we ripped out the laminate floors and decided that yes, we were going to lay the new floors under the cabinetry, we just thought we might as well make the layout we wanted while everything was already a mess! That brought us to this point:

IMG_5660 demo.jpg

The plan was:
-remove peninsula
-remove corner pantry
-remove upper cabinetry
-install new flooring
-rearrange lower cabinetry
-center the range in the pitch
-build range hood
-install new 48” gas range
-move microwave to new location
-new countertops
-reface and paint lower cabinetry
-install open shelving
-install backsplash
-build wood island
-update lighting

We got some of this list done, and then got stuck, which is really another way of saying burned out :) We demo’d the pantry, patched the walls, removed the uppers, laid the new floor, rearranged the lowers, moved the microwave to under the counter, and got a new countertop (because living with a plywood countertop for a month was my limit). Here are some progress photos of the demo:


Every surface in this house was painted a tannish brown (walls, ceilings, doors, trim). I can’t even tell you how much painting the ceiling white changed the space.


The pretty matte finished wood floors being installed.


At this point we still need to reface and paint cabinetry, install hardware, build the range hood/wire and vent the blower outside, install open shelving, install backsplash, build the island, install new range, and install lighting. Six weeks sounds like a lot, but I have a feeling that between our jobs, life with 5 kids, and the fact that we are doing it all ourselves, it’s gonna be a close one.

So follow along as we get this thing DONE! Be sure to check back every Thursday as I post progress. Next week I’ll be sharing the plan and finish selections! Until then here’s an inspo teaser…

Design by Mary Jo Bochner via  House Beautiful

Design by Mary Jo Bochner via House Beautiful


Whitney Filimoeatu