Today I am sharing the small but mighty kitchen in our fixer upper. For those of you new here, we sold our long-time family home and moved into one of our rentals, It had a lot of character but needed some love after being a rental for over 25 years. Let’s take a look at how to remodel an old kitchen and retain its charm.
I am all for creating a modern workable space. However, I am not a fan of what I call “bastardizing” (for lack of a better word) the original space. I think it is important to retain as much of the original character as you can in an older home without making it look dated.
How To Remodel an Old Kitchen and Retain Its Charm
Here is how we did it:
Matched the Existing Cabinetry
Kept the Design Simple
Neutral Color Scheme
Make it Practical and Workable
I don’t have the original photos of what it looked like before we purchased it, but this is how we updated it 26 years ago. Steve had to bring the bottom cabinets out from the wall to accommodate a dishwasher. We thought we were oh so clever with the tile design.
KITCHEN SINK WALL BEFORE
KITCHEN SINK WALL AFTER
The walls now are painted white dove. The cabinets are original to the house and painted Benjamin Moore Manchester Tan cut in half. Unfortunately, before we purchased the home 25 years ago some of the wood windows were replaced with aluminum. If we were staying here we would replace them.
The tile is Lanka Riva in Barley. The floors are original but were covered with linoleum when we purchased the house over 25 years ago. The counters are quartz arctic white in a matte finish. I really like the countertops and would use them again if I were building a home from scratch.
The light fixture and shades are from Pottery Barn. Everything including the sink and fixtures will be linked at the bottom of the post. We switched out the frosted glass panels in the cabinets for more of a clear vintage-looking glass.
KITCHEN APPLIANCE WALL BEFORE
We all put our heads together to come up with a more appealing arrangement than this. As you can see there was a small range with original cabinetry above a tiny counter space, the refrigerator, and then a rather large cupboard and pantry. I will explain how we had to rob Peter to pay Paul in another post. Beyond the large cupboard was a small back porch with some open shelving on one side and basically a small toilet room on the other. We needed the pantry space you can’t see and that “toilet room” to carve out a tiny master bath which now resides on the other side of that wall.
APPLIANCE WALL AFTER
We tore out the upper cabinets and the tiny middle one. The former large pantry became a built-in for the new refrigerator. We put the new range in the middle so we would have a little more working counter space. We purchased the Thor Range (it is made in China) to save money and I actually really like it. The range hood is a little louder than some, but I have gotten used to it.
Our cabinet maker Shoreline Woodworks matched the existing original cabinets with large drawers on either side of the range, as well as the built-in around the refrigerator which is also Thor. I really like it as well. There is a tiny area right inside the back door where we were able to squeeze in a washer and dryer. They were originally in the garage.
I always like to add some vintage accessories to take the edge off all the newness. I have linked everything that is available at the end of the post. You can find the Italian pot that holds my utensils at Tancredi and Morgen.
SHOP OUR REMODELED KITCHEN
We are very happy about how this kitchen turned out. It is very functional and retains much of its charm. Thanks for reading How to Remodel an Old Kitchen and Retain Its Charm. You might also enjoy reading about our Master Bedroom Reveal here, and, the Living Room Before and After here If you have any questions about any of the rooms please leave a question in the comment section.