58 Comments

  1. Juanita Behm
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:08 am

    It’s going to look beautiful. I was planning on remolding my kitchen befire I lost my home due to illness. Keep up the good work. Your an inspiration.

    Reply

  2. Dianne
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:13 am

    No built-in microwave over the stove? I think you’ll regret giving up valuable counter space.

    Reply

    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      September 24, 2015 @ 10:23 am

      that’s in the uncertain-details-column… you can see it in the first two perspectives if you really look for it.

      Reply

      • Beubook
        September 24, 2015 @ 10:33 am

        You are tall. put the microwave in the cabinet above the fridge. I hate hate hate my microwave/exhaust vent/stove setup. It’s ugly and gross (always splattered with cooking oil) but it came with the house. I think my next kitchen purchase will be a lovely proper stand-alone exhaust hood. My other microwave lives in the pantry where it is currently serving as a cabinet for the toaster…oh what a tangled web we weave… Once I tear the hideous microwave contraption off the wall, I will put the pantry microwave into use, but until then, it seems redundant and pointless.

        Reply

        • Louise
          November 23, 2015 @ 11:14 pm

          Yes and then lift a full bowl of liquid into it and heat it up and then get it down and out without spilling it all over yourself….

          Reply

      • MAH
        September 24, 2015 @ 1:39 pm

        Please, please don’t put the microwave over the stove! Believe me you will regret it. That is one thing that will ruin any class or vintage feel to your kitchen. I know it is hard to keep a new kitchen in an old house from looking new, and putting a microwave over the stove will write NEW all over the place.

        Reply

  3. tammigirl
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:14 am

    I am glad you are sane enough (?) to realize you want some kind of doors on the pantry area. Photos like the one above, where a person has 48 unopened bottles of Pelligrino and 24 bottles of unspecified juice or soda upset me because, come on… this isn’t how people use storage space. I know you will triumph over all of this kitchen stuff and manage to throw in a disco ball or seven, when we aren’t looking.

    xo

    Reply

    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      September 24, 2015 @ 10:25 am

      the pelligrino people are planning a really high-end apocalypse.

      Reply

      • phyllis
        September 26, 2015 @ 1:40 pm

        ha!! 😀

        Reply

      • AP
        October 7, 2015 @ 10:38 am

        Don’t EVEN consider that. So so so wrong for any home except a tiny tract home in the suburbs with NO other venting options.

        Reply

    • julie frontera
      September 24, 2015 @ 12:21 pm

      How about a microwave drawer? I love mine and it fits great into a cabinet base or retrofitted furniture piece. I only use it to warm things up or melt gooey stuff but the teenager uses it a lot.

      Reply

      • Laurinda
        September 29, 2015 @ 10:57 pm

        I would LOVE to see a photo of this idea- it sounds so intriguing! I just can’t picture it 🙁

        Reply

  4. Beubook
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:27 am

    I think this looks like a much more reasonable solution. When you see the kitchens with every inch some unique salvaged/customized detail…it can be a bit much. In a Victorian home, kitchens were simple and utilitarian because they were spaces for staff, not the lady of the house. There is something gentile about that… Not that we want coal stoves and water cisterns. I think you are achieving a lovely compromise. You want the kitchen to FUNCTION as a space to prepare meals, first and foremost. And I absolutely agree with leaving one wall “blank.” I did the same thing, covering it in a fabulous anthropologie wallpaper. It is enough of a statement for me, and I also don’t feel trapped by cabinets closing in on me.

    Reply

  5. Vikki
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:28 am

    This plan will look so amazing! I agree with Dianne that you need to do the built in microwave. When do the pre-divorce proceedings begin, i.e., construction work. 🙂

    Reply

    • Mia
      September 24, 2015 @ 1:06 pm

      You don’t know Paul…! He’s come too far to turn back now..! LOL He’s a SAINT..!! They make beautiful music together..!! (you should SEE them DANCE..!!) ????? BTW… microwave?? Put it in a place like the ‘regular’ oven… You’ll HATE it over the stove..!! LOOKS good, but useless..! Especially, if the ‘Kitchen Police’ get involved and you have to have it 32″ ABOVE the stove top..! NOT..!! (If you USE IT, put it waist height, or lower!)

      Reply

  6. Angela
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:46 am

    I have a small kitchen and love having the microwave mounted over the stove.

    Kisses to Elvis!

    Reply

  7. Rhonda
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:48 am

    I see a light at the end of the tunnel! I’m sure you don’t though — such a long to-do list! Your plan looks great, and is a wee bit similar to my remodeled kitchen. We worked long and hard to try to figure out each detail perfectly and came close. But to forewarn you (and hopefully not burst your bubble), there is no such thing as perfection. And even if you do get it perfect, someone will come along and accidentally nick the marble or scratch the wood. Sigh!

    Reply

  8. Pattie C
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:49 am

    Picture 3 with the glass front storage makes me swoon. That is so beautiful and the drawers will hide all the less beautiful things that live in a kitchen. Your to do list makes me feel like there is hope for my house too. Sometimes I look at my list and want to stick a for sale sign in the yard and move on.

    Reply

  9. Rebekah
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:51 am

    Fun to see all of that. Where are the photos of the island you’ll be using? We NEED to see it.

    Reply

    • Mia
      September 24, 2015 @ 1:15 pm

      OMG.. If you haven’t seen it, (the island) go looking at the older posts..!! It’s a gorgeous piano case with beautiful legs.. It’s retro-fitted (by Paul, as I recall!!) with large drawers..!! WHO KNEW..!!?? (except for Elizabeth.!!) To die for..!! Can’t wait to see the whole thing, myself.. I’ve been missing you.!! Absolutely LOVE the pantry in the second pic.. (right door open)..!! LOVE the color, too… (any names of the paint?) you’re inspiring me again..!! Keep up the good work..!!

      Reply

  10. SilvanaJoanne
    September 24, 2015 @ 10:55 am

    I think it’s going to look great! The inspiration photo I prefer is number 3. I can’t wait to see the finished kitchen 🙂

    Reply

  11. Kathryn
    September 24, 2015 @ 11:43 am

    We just moved our stairs and instead of drywalling the new wall, put floor to ceiling shelves between the studs on the side that faces our kitchen. We used 2×6 studs instead of 2×4 and I’m using mason jars (making me the ultimate hipster). So much storage without messing with my space. I’m sure it could be made fancier fairly easily too.

    Reply

  12. Lisa
    September 24, 2015 @ 11:51 am

    You should seriously consider making ALL of the lower cabinets drawers. I know you’ve been to the place of TKO (totally kitchen obsessed) and drawers are the bomb!

    The rest is amazing!

    Reply

    • Suzanne Melton
      September 24, 2015 @ 2:32 pm

      YES! We now have 24 drawers of various sizes under the counters! ALL of them are in use and NO ONE gets on his/her knees to find something!

      The only not-drawers are under the sink (but we installed two pull-outs so we still don’t use our knees) and the corner carousel.

      Years after we’re gone, people who buy this house will thank us!

      Reply

  13. Amy B.
    September 24, 2015 @ 11:52 am

    Your plans look great. It looks very functional and still nice. Have you considered staggered height/depth upper cabinets? I have them in my kitchen and it adds a nice bit of fanciness, especially with crown mouldings around the top. The staggered height means I get more crown moulding. Also, my over the fridge cabinet is 24″ deep which means its’ actually usable.

    Reply

  14. Marta
    September 24, 2015 @ 11:53 am

    I really appreciate the time and thought and effort you are putting into your kitchen. I want to you to rest in the imperfection that will be your gorgeous kitchen. There will be things you wish you had thought of but didn’t. There will be limitations of time, space, and budget that force you to compromise. There will be choices you later question. Your creative voices will want to re-think the whole project after the last dish is in place. And yet, you will have a FABULOUS kitchen.

    Reply

  15. nancy rafi
    September 24, 2015 @ 12:22 pm

    I just love your entire esthetic. As someone who grew up in Newport and worked in many of the Gilded Age mansions, I completely “get” the allure of hand carved, big, dust gathering furnishings. My house is filled with them (even though I live in a beach community 15 mins from Newport my house does not lend itself to the large and blingy I’m still making it work). Keep going – can’t wait to see how it all turns out!

    Reply

  16. julie frontera
    September 24, 2015 @ 12:26 pm

    It’s going to be beautiful!!!! If you can just feel confident in the cabinet choices, your incredible design eye for detail will be the magic that will be seen.
    I do this for builders all the time, so excuse the redundancy if you’re already aware…. make sure to put a filler or leave a small slice of space to the left of the refrigerator to allow door opening better and to pull out if needed. Staggered height on some of the cabinets looks really great if you want to add more specialness. Any consideration of a corner sink to take advantage of the window so you’re not staring at a wall in front of you? I hated that in one of my houses, but I know some people are just fine with it.
    (Do you mind if I ask which program for layout you’re using?)

    Reply

    • Yvonne Angus
      September 24, 2015 @ 2:28 pm

      I was thinking the same thing about the sink and window. I would hate the idea of not having the window to gaze dreamily out of while sudsing up some pots and pans, or washing vegetables.

      Reply

      • Mare BB
        September 25, 2015 @ 12:42 pm

        Me too, on the window over the sink! I would miss a view, not to mention the daylight.

        Reply

  17. kathie
    September 24, 2015 @ 12:27 pm

    “like this, but fancier” – Victoria, you’re so funny! 🙂 why NOT have your room off the kitchen look like something out of a palace! I think it would look great ! 🙂

    Reply

  18. julie frontera
    September 24, 2015 @ 12:28 pm

    Ok, sorry, ADD gal here…. one more thing: have you checked out the under cabinet base drawers that can be built into the toe kick area? I like to use these as they’re great for storing flat items like placements and linens or a pull out pet bowl, and that space is just wasted.

    Reply

  19. Dawn
    September 24, 2015 @ 12:47 pm

    I love the look of pantry storage number 4. It is elegant, clean, neat, and will be relatively dust free. You are doing an amazing job Elizabeth. Keep up the good work. I am looking forward to the after photos.

    Reply

  20. Jan
    September 24, 2015 @ 1:02 pm

    I agree with Lisa. Just finished a new kitchen, cottage style. There’s not one lower cabinet door. They’re all drawers. I’m tall and old. My knees do not like to rest on the floor while looking for something. A friend, even older than I, gave me this advise and I’m still reminding her how grateful I am.
    I don’t know what your heating system is like, but you might think about toe kick heaters, installed with timers for the kitchen. It ‘s very nice, on a cold morning, to have your toes warmed while the tea pot is heating.
    I know you’ll do a beautiful job. Can hardly wait to see it.

    Reply

  21. Laura
    September 24, 2015 @ 1:03 pm

    Yeah!! Serious kitchen progress. Can’t wait to see how it goes. I have two questions: Did you think of leaving the little space to the right of the upper stove cabinets empty? If the side of that upper were finished it might look more like furniture, no? Also, how many hours have you spent obsessing about using open shelving between the windows over the sink wall? I LOVE that you’re leaving your windows alone. Some sort of blind that starts at the ceiling would mask the difference in their heights a little. Good luck with everything!!!

    Reply

  22. Ann
    September 24, 2015 @ 1:09 pm

    The best oven arrangement I’ve ever seen, which I’d have for myself if my space could accommodate it, was a microwave installed over a double oven. EVERYTHING was at the right height! The microwave at chest level, the top oven at waist level, the lower oven at knee level. Could easily be varied to replace one oven with a warming drawer, or a microwave drawer (which didn’t exist at the time this kitchen was remodeled).

    Reply

  23. Toni
    September 24, 2015 @ 1:52 pm

    Why not move one of your ‘Kingdom” mirrors to that blank wall space? Or find another one on Craigs list! The kitchen will be beautiful. Can’t wait to see the end product…..you too no doubt!

    Reply

  24. Liz Thomas
    September 24, 2015 @ 2:11 pm

    I love the idea of glass fronted cabinets, with just 6 or 8 inch shelves and put mirrors on the back wall which would double the light and keep the kitchen having an open feeling to it.

    Reply

  25. judy
    September 24, 2015 @ 2:17 pm

    I am so happy to see you have donned your commandant garb again and marching with courage and your usual fortitude into the Fray. Obtain copious quantities of mind altering liquids,call a complete truce with the Magician Paul as to decisions- work orders -ETA of completion and maintaining friendly relations until first party /dinner babtizing

    Reply

  26. judy
    September 24, 2015 @ 2:22 pm

    I am so happy to see you have donned your commander in chief garb again and marching with courage and your usual fortitude into the Fray. Obtain copious quantities of mind altering liquids,call a complete truce with the Magician Paul as to decisions- work orders -ETA of completion and maintaining friendly relations until first party /dinner baptism of beautiful kitchen. Good Luck and excuse the first attempt at comment. My keyboard and mouse have go Nuts?

    Reply

  27. Lisa Mercado-Fernandez
    September 24, 2015 @ 2:47 pm

    Hi Victoria,
    I have emailed you a couple of times. I have two friends who do kitchens. So let me know if you want their info. My friend Kristen is amazing. She did my kitchen. view my kitchen on my blog.
    http://www.leeshideaway.blogspot.com just do a kitchen search in the search box.
    Let me know okay.
    Lisa
    Love your ideas.

    Reply

    • judy
      September 27, 2015 @ 11:01 am

      Lisa I checked your site…beautiful home and grounds ,however if you have a search block for your kitchen I couldn’t find it-looked at every page and where is it? Very curious to see what your designer came up with although I do think that the design genius and intuition of someone like Victoria & Paul surpasses someone trained in the formal mechanics of design. The kitchens I see created by designers all seem sterile- with a concentration on money spent whereas I love the kitchens developed out of someones personal whimsy and inventiveness.

      Reply

  28. Garden, Home and Party
    September 24, 2015 @ 4:07 pm

    Drawers are the best…like one of your other readers mentioned. When our kitchen designer said this is what she would install I thought she was nuts. Now that I have them they are so much easier to organize and to see what you have when you can pull out a drawer. I’m looking forward to hearing about the cabinet selection process. So this kitchen may be finished…?
    xo,
    Karen

    Reply

  29. Just Me
    September 24, 2015 @ 4:09 pm

    Great ideas, as usual I love it when you get it worked out to suit you. You are so clever and talented and adorable. I have tired of almost all the others blogs. Not yours though Unique.

    entertaining.

    Reply

  30. Just Me
    September 24, 2015 @ 4:21 pm

    Oops. I posted before finished typing. Your blog has staying power,dearie.

    Reply

  31. Daphne
    September 24, 2015 @ 5:42 pm

    Giant fanciness and rice cooker married togheter behind a piano altar? I’m sure you’ll succeed it & I can’t wait to follow your kitchen adventure. When I built my house I remember kitchen design was the most time consuming part of my plans…kitchen has to be my glamorous but yet practical own snail shell.

    Reply

  32. Patricia
    September 24, 2015 @ 7:55 pm

    We ONLY have drawers below the countertops. Even under the sink we have two pull out drawers. I designed our kitchen in 1986 and love it still. We do have an over the stove microwave but it’s framed in its own box. This predated built in fan microwaves. I had to have a downdraft range because it was an interior wall. Okay if I could magically change anything, it would be to have an exterior wall for the range…
    Looking forward to seeing the finished island.

    Reply

  33. Jae
    September 24, 2015 @ 7:57 pm

    I have a microwave/convection oven. Perfect, can use as second oven at holiday time, or for smaller items not requiring entire big oven space, or as a microwave. One thing to consider with over stove microwaves…..it can sometimes be difficult, and potentially dangerous, to stretch up and remove big, heavy, hot items! I find countertop height or slightly higher safer and convenient for everyone. Just a thought. Love your sense of humor through your remodel.

    Reply

  34. Darling Lily
    September 25, 2015 @ 12:37 am

    It is going to be marvelous, and I don’t know how I will be able to wait til it’s done!

    Reply

  35. Katrina @ hurricane sandwich and the casita
    September 25, 2015 @ 12:41 am

    Your blog is fantastic! I just want to get on whatever train you’re riding to the real-life, non-fairy tale remodel world. I appreciate that! We are in the beginnings of a kitchen remodel too, and it’s fun to see new perspectives.

    Reply

  36. Laurie
    September 25, 2015 @ 2:10 pm

    People with fancy kitchens sure do drink a lot of Pelligrino. I don’t think I could ever have open shelving like that since it would just feature my 2 liter bottles of diet shasta, wadded up bags of brown sugar, and ancient boxes of almonds from Christmas gift baskets of years past.

    I need the hidden vault for my messiness. Although I do covet all that gorgeousness. Why can’t my life be more stylized?

    Reply

  37. Barb
    September 25, 2015 @ 3:40 pm

    My grandmother ( in the house I later grew up in) insisted that on the one short wall of her kitchen the builders give her custom cabinets that were “one can deep”. There were 4 sets of double door cabinets, 2 high and 2 low. It was the best storage “pantry” I have ever seen and if I ever build a custom home I will insist on duplicating it. The house was a California mid-century modern built in 1960, but with the right cabinets it would work in any style kitchen.

    Reply

  38. mary
    September 26, 2015 @ 2:15 pm

    Victoria,
    I have remodeled/built about five houses and would never consider anything but drawers or pullouts for the lower cabinets. You will love them and not lose track of where that mixer/casserole/wok went. Also, SUPER important – do not do a silly over the range microwave that supposedly is a vent fan – they don’t work well at all. Looks like your range is on an outside wall – direct vent to the outside is the way to go. Otherwise your house will always be scented by what you last cooked! Good luck!

    Reply

  39. Kim
    September 27, 2015 @ 6:31 pm

    Looking at the first layout…consider where your electrical plugs are going to be & local codes. Here, electric outlets must be at least 15″ from water. With your sink in the middle of the wall, you may be messing up the working counter space. And turning to the island everytime will be a pain, even if Paul does run electric to it. I would bump the sink & dishwasher one way or the other

    Reply

  40. Laura
    September 28, 2015 @ 6:18 pm

    May I ask what software application you are using to generate the kitchen layouts? They’re so clean and immediate. We’re struggling to find something that 1) is easy to grasp and 2) we can use to draw a layout that doesn’t look we used crayons. Thanks!

    Reply

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