Warm Modern

This is the kitchen remodel I've been working on in Lee's Summit, MO for a while.  The design process started about a year ago and now it's finally finished!  Click HERE to see the post about us tiling the backsplash.

A quick sketch I did when we were trying to figure out what the new layout should be:

[The before photo below shows how the old kitchen connected to the office/used-to-be dining room and had an octagonal-like shape.  It didn't wok well and created strange shaped corner cabinets that didn't efficiently store dishes, etc...  We pulled the back wall forward actually shrinking the size of the kitchen, but opened up the walls to the family room and created a walk-in pantry and mudroom space that previously didn't exist behind that back wall!]

preliminary sketch:

The whole living room/kitchen space is much more opened up now and makes for easier entertaining!

The old fireplace was mosaiced by my mom and I at one point to update the old green marble and white trim surround in the living room, but we all agreed to make everything more cohesive- the whole fireplace wall shaft had to go and be updated so it looked similar on both sides.  To add some architectural interest, without the cost of tiling or adding stone to the entire fireplace wall, we inserted drywall channels that run horizontal grooves around all 3 sides to break it up a bit.

before:                                                                  during:

detail shot of the walnut wood flooring wrapping around the fireplace next to the red oak flooring in the rest of the kitchen:

before:                                                           after:

All of the trimwork around the windows and baseboard were replaced with simple 4" wide stained wood instead of the old traditionally routed golden oak


The lighting was all replaced with LED energy efficient lighting and smart controls that link to your phone and ipad remotely.  We also built a floating plane over the island [with dimmable rope lighting] to add interest to the 6th wall in the room that most people forget about: the ceiling!

[4 vertical walls + the floor = 5 walls + the ceiling = 6... all equally important]


plenty of space to house tupperware, food, small appliances, and bakeware!

The previous space did not have the mudroom area and was arranged a little tighter around the washer/dryer.  Now it has more space to throw coats and shoes so they are out of the path from garage to kitchen.  This space also includes a charging dock on the wall for the family's phones and an ipad dock with lighting controls as well.

modernization complete right in time for Christmas!


Floating Media Cabinets

One of Matt and my latest projects we had to get done before Greta arrived... 

I drew the cabinets on SketchUp first to make sure I had all the measurements and joint details figured out first.  Here is a front view of the linear floating media part and the vertical coffee station that sits on top of the left side by the kitchen:

Here's a back view that I used to figure out how we were attaching them to the wall.  I knew french cleats would be more stable for the weight than screwing through the cabinets into studs.  Plus this way- you don't see any screws or hardware.  It was trickier to figure out the boxes though and allow for the back details with all of our cuts.  The only thing that changed is the square holes shown on here- became round circles in slightly different spots for the chords to go through:

We designed and built these media cabinets for our living room since I couldn't find anything out there that was what I wanted for the price I wanted to pay.

 We started with cabinet-grade birch plywood sheets we cut to size, and bought a small router to cut each of the grooves and joints so each piece fit together perfectly.

I got 1/4" thick plexiglass from our local hardware store and did a paint test-patch to decide if I wanted the sliding doors to be back-painted white, grey, or sanded for a frosted look...

We decided on one sanded and one white:

The smaller media cabinet put together and dry-fit to make sure it all works the way we hoped!

I stained each piece and then we glued each joint together and used a nail gun with small nails just to hold the corners so the glue would dry where we wanted it.

[after many months of weekends and nights used to work on this monster!]

 We also added hooks on the coffee station top shelf to hang mugs from and attached power strips below the cabinets for the chords to plug in and be more hidden:

Also shown against the stenciled wall I posted about a while back: