Both my husband and I grew up in Barrington, a small town nestled along the picturesque coast of Rhode Island. We lived in the same neighborhood, went to the same schools, and ran down the same docks at the Barrington Yacht Club. Our nostalgia, and our nearing kindergarten-aged daughter, eventually drew us back to town, but finding the right property to call home was not an easy task. Our biggest challenge in finding our dream home in Barrington was the fact that we already lived in our dream home – it just happened to be in Common Fence Point, Portsmouth. We had put our blood, sweat, and tears…and a good amount of money into transforming our Portsmouth house into its full “seaside cottage” potential. The property had a sliver of water view, a wrap around farmer’s porch and more than enough square footage. If I could have put that house on the back of a flat bed truck and plopped it on a lot in Barrington, I would have. But clearly, that idea was out of the question, which left us with the overwhelming task of finding a home that we liked just as much. Our checklist was long and our expectations high. It took almost two years to find the right house, a house that I fell in love with immediately, but I won’t hide the fact that leaving my Portsmouth home behind was incredibly bittersweet.
So as much as we loved the new house, both my husband and I agreed that it needed some upgrading. When we shared with family and friends that we wanted to do some minor kitchen remodeling, they flat out told us we were nuts. To most people, it was a totally livable space – granite countertops, glass backsplash, white cabinets. I definitely could appreciate these features, however, I saw beyond first impressions. The black granite counters seemed both blah and busy to me at the same time and just happened to be the exact same color as our last house. I had lived with it for years already and really needed a change. I wanted light and bright. The grey glass backsplash was nice but looked liked it belonged in a master bathroom and the cabinets…well, let’s just say that painting kitchen cabinets yourself is very rarely a good idea, especially with a brush. The positive, however, is that the cabinet bases (everything except the doors and drawer faces) were in great condition and were high-end custom cabinetry. So we didn’t have to replace the entire cabinet, we could just have them refaced at a much cheaper price tag. New recessed panel cabinet faces (also known as Shaker style) were also added to the list. In addition to cabinet re-facing, new countertops, and a new backsplash, the to do list also included shiplap details on the island, adding glass doors to some of the cabinetry, a custom built wine rack, new cabinet hardware, and a new sink and faucet. Hmm, perhaps our “minor” kitchen remodel was not so minor after all.
As with most home renovations, we thought we had it planned perfectly. Our timeline was closing…renovations…move in. Ha! That didn’t happen. Our contractor got stuck in another project and as fate would have it, he couldn’t start our kitchen renovation until the day AFTER we moved in. Not ideal. Renovations took about 4 weeks and there were days without a refrigerator, days without a sink, and days without countertops. And there were days upon days of workers in and out of our house. This just happened to coincide with the beginning weeks of being pregnant with our second child...which was not ideal timing. But we got through it and in the end, we get to enjoy a kitchen that we love.
Countertops - Quartzite (King White), Luxus Marble & Granite, Cranston RI
Cabinetry – Meridian Products
Backsplash – Lunada Bay Tile, Glass Agate, Asolo, 1x4 brick
Hardware – Restoration Hardware Lugarno Pull
Counter Stools - Houzz, Milton fabric counter stools
Contractor - B. Hughes Builders