243 Comments

  1. Madeline
    June 9, 2014 @ 5:39 pm

    I love this post. Let’s face it, kitchen design today is crazy. I have friends who bought homes with 2 or 3 year old designer kitchens and proceeded to gut them and put in restaurant quality appliances and they don’t cook! I just bought a tiny home near the beach with a bisque electric strove and refrigerator, black wall oven and dish washer, formica counter tops, and vinyl floors. Its not stylish, but it works did I say- its walking distance to the beach! A girl has got to have her priorities straight. Sure I could have had a brand new house and kitchen with appliances that cost more than a new car, but there is a Trader Joe’s on the way to the beach so I don’t ever have to cook nor will I have time.

    Reply

  2. Michelle
    June 11, 2014 @ 6:59 pm

    Honestly, my life was not complete until we installed a farm sink and oil rubbed bronze bridge faucet. At which point I informed my husband that the dining room ceiling was making the new kitchen sink and faucet look bad. Now the dining room is gutted to the studs and our home is a wreck. But the sink looks amazing!

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  3. classic•casual•home
    June 15, 2014 @ 12:07 pm

    We just left our brand new white kitchen that I designed for a job opportunity for my husband in San Francisco. In this rental, we have a tiny galley kitchen with peachy oak cabinets and a beige linoleum floor. But they let us paint the cabinets (BM Revere Pewter) and we have a view of the bay and Golden Gate Bridge…and my husband makes the most wonderful meals in that little room. So, do I miss our white, luxury kitchen?

    Heck yeah…wish I could have brought it with me 🙂

    Reply

  4. rebecca@midcenturymodernremodel
    July 29, 2014 @ 8:19 pm

    Great post. I have been trying to get up the energy to redo my kitchen for the 2nd time. Well someone redid it before me so the third time. I redid mine in the early 2000s so it is dated from then… oak cabinets and dark brown corian countertops and a really, really strange backsplsh… I want to take it back to its mid-century modern roots, how it looked in version one. Is that so wrong? Lately I just can’t get up the energy. We’ll see, maybe this to will pass.

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  5. Emma
    September 3, 2014 @ 10:27 am

    Saw this & thought of you! GOOOOOOOO Craigslist!

    http://toronto.craigslist.ca/mss/fuo/4634794405.html

    Reply

  6. Sheila
    September 9, 2014 @ 4:47 pm

    Victoria, I’ve been following you for over a year. We are a military family, and while the fiancé was deployed I drew plans for a new back-of-house. Existing needed to be torn down. The back housed the kitchen and bathroom, so as soon as fiancé came back, down came 400 plus square feet and 720 was put in its place. I LOVE my new kitchen, it’s almost done, but now I’m deploying for a year, so I’ll enjoy it when I get back. With that said, I WANTED oak cabinets and formica. I guess I like the 80s. Imagine my surprise that granite countertops are cheaper than formica with the rolled edge I fell in love with. Imagine my surprise that oak cabinets are considered ‘contractor’s grade’ and had none of the bells and whistles I wanted, namely the soft close feature. My pink granite (the salesperson called me ‘adventurous’) and cinnamon cabinets are a joy to behold.

    You will love your kitchen when it is done, and it will be a reflection of Paul and yourself. Christopher Peacock has nothing on you.

    Catching up on your blog today from my mobilization point immediately made me feel home, and I thank you for that.

    Keep up the great, great, great and entertaining blog!

    Reply

  7. Beth
    September 10, 2014 @ 10:25 am

    Bought a new house in March. Boyfriend and I thought we’d do a “quick total kitchen reno.” (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHANO.) We had a 7 year old and no sink or stove for 9 weeks. Fridge in the garage. Laundry room sink upstairs. Microwave, toaster oven and panini maker. Holes in the wall. Holes in the ceiling. Construction dust that seemed to multiply with vacuuming. Cabinets were delivered damaged, some the wrong size, counter slab ordered was the wrong one, fancy new refrigerator was backordered, we all got fat eating take out 3 meals a day. Now it’s SEPTEMBER and IT’S STILL NOT DONE. I will take the pink-ish white washed cabinets and formica that kind of looks like pink-ish granite in pictures and an excessively large soffit and white appliances from 1999, I will take them all back if it means I don’t have holes in my ceiling.

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  8. Louise
    September 13, 2014 @ 7:26 pm

    Merci! Love your post. You’re right (and funny), internet (and TV) can be source of so much envy. When we redid our kitchen 10 years ago, I only wanted more space, more light and “nice enough”. Not the best, no 100$ pulls, just nice enough. Still love it. Light and space never go out of style.

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  9. Rachel
    September 30, 2014 @ 10:09 am

    Absolutely! I am so tired of all those sterile, white and marble kitchens on pinterest and every other site. We have marvelous alder wood cabinets that I love. Oh, and $2100 for a kitchen faucet! Are people out of their minds?!

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  10. nlbknitter
    October 12, 2014 @ 6:21 am

    It appears that I am an “anti trend” kind of person. We recently sold our house and the realtor was very pleased that we had such a fine kitchen that needed no updating. Well we had completely remodeled it 15 years ago. (Back then the cabinets looked, and worked, like someone’s first effort at shop and the kitchen layout just did not function.) I never followed what the magazines showed, I followed what made sense and looked timeless.

    So now we are about to embark on a new kitchen remodel. Current kitchen is 65 years old with some unfortunate “updates” in the 70s. THIS time I get to have my red countertops. Not because they’re trendy, but because I LIKE them! My cabinets will not be white, been there, done that. They will be a natural birch. My floor will NOT be wood!!! That’s nuts in a kitchen where actual cooking goes on! My backsplash will NOT be glass mosaic, not with all that grout, and it just looks too hectic! Most importantly, this is the LAST time I redo a kitchen! I want it to be practical and make sense so that we can age in place gracefully, but I don’t want it to be trendy, so that in 15 years it will look utterly dated.

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  11. MalibuChaCha
    October 12, 2014 @ 10:43 am

    Hilarious! A bit like skinny jeans and hem lengths….wait long enough and your kitchen will be back in style.

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  12. Amy
    October 12, 2014 @ 4:04 pm

    Oh how I love this post 🙂 made me laugh the whole time. So true! We’re getting ready to sell and going back and forth about what to do with our old kitchen, or do anything at all.

    Five of us lived in a 24 ft. 1974 RV for a month. It was an eye opener. We had everything we needed in that tiny space and lived better than most of the world’s population. Heck, we even had air conditioning.

    Reply

  13. colleen
    October 12, 2014 @ 6:52 pm

    Oak cabinets are out. I didn’t know!!! LOL I found really well built oak cabinets that were coming out of an expensive home and a kitchen remodel on Craigslist (as well as the appliances). The last house we built had granite and stainless appliances. I hated both. They were hard to keep clean looking. They always had hand prints and streaks. No more trendy stuff for me. I did use solid surface counter tops again after having followed that trend many years ago when Corian was the thing to have. I love it. Formica looks bad after a short time. My remodeled kitchen was less than $3000 and I just KNOW those cabinets are going to be back in style in no time.

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  14. Susan
    October 16, 2014 @ 1:09 pm

    This needed to be said and you said it so well. I despise people who misuse ‘Machiavellian.’

    Reply

  15. sonickay
    October 26, 2014 @ 5:12 pm

    I just found you today, and I’m binge-reading your blog. Also, oh man I needed to read this. My bf and I are closing on our first house on Wednesday, and my brain is in conflict between this terrible idea that if I decorate it JUST SO, I will be better/happier/calmer/more at peace/or some crap; and the knowledge that none of that will make me a happier person. Pinterest is simultaneously the best and the worst.

    Reply

  16. Chloe
    November 8, 2014 @ 2:02 pm

    OMG. I found a new historic material that is still being made the traditional way. It’s called Lincrusta. Do a google search in images for Lincrusta. Amazingly beautiful stuff. It will totally fit your big, beautiful, shiny criteria. Muah *luv VEB*

    Reply

  17. Kay
    November 12, 2014 @ 1:27 pm

    Love your blog, love this post, even though I’m guilty of spending a lot of money on a kitchen redo last year. Yes, white cabinets, cararra marble counters, some glass front cabs, some open shelves. But I am ecstatic with the results, happy every time I walk into my beautiful kitchen. Although I lived with my 1964 kitchen for nearly 25 years, it made me unhappy all the time, even before all the glorious pictures on the internet when I started paying attention to decorating a few years ago. I used to sit amidst the brown maple cabs (LOTS of them, so that painting them felt like an utter impossibility), the brown linoleum floor, and the beige formica countertops, feeling like the ceiling was coming down on my head, and dream of a kitchen with colors in it that actually liked. When an inheritance made a new kitchen possible and I began planning for it, I followed my husband’s advice and looked at houses for six months, thinking that moving house might bring us a kitchen I liked without having to do it over. HA! What an idea. All the kitchens in all the houses were varying degrees of horrid, even the new ones, with their dark cabs and microwaves over the stoves. So we decided to stay put in our little house, committing to it until they have to carry us out, and make that little house a lovely gem. Which we did. I never could have done it without the money from my father. When you get to be my age (mid-60s) and have never had a pretty house or a kitchen you like, sometimes you just want to go for it. I loved white cabs and marble counters way before they were popular and will go on loving them when the decorating world moves on (as I think it already has). Once the children are gone (as long as you have no dogs), keeping a white kitchen clean is a piece of cake. Most of our old cabs are now living happily in the basement, giving us storage we never had. I deeply admire people with DIY skills and energy and would have gone that route had it been possible, but I’m just not the kind of person who can do that. So I am very grateful that an unexpected windfall made it possible for my aesthetic desires to finally be satisfied in my own home.

    Reply

  18. Coco
    January 22, 2015 @ 12:01 am

    Hello Elizabeth, Happy New Year!! I wish you the best in all your searches, hunts and glorious finds in 2015!! I live vicariously through your blog, you have so much fun getting the things you love and I’m always giggling or lol or cheering loudly for you.
    So what’s happening with the kitchen Reno? Have you taken a break? Do keep us updated with your accomplishments, your post on each step you take is informative and encouraging and beautiful. Conversely, still waiting to see pictures of your other bathroom;) yes It seems as though I am demanding but I’m not, I’m really just a big fan!!
    Looking forward to reading more about your house journey in 2015.

    Coco

    Reply

  19. Kris
    February 15, 2015 @ 1:48 pm

    I came to your site via thistlewoodfarm.com and you had me smirking with your manifesto. We redid our kitchen a year ago and yes, it’s antique white (with a glaze on the cabinetry) with glass-front cupboards. Funny thing is, I wasn’t setting out to be trendy. I wanted a style that I would be happy with 20 years from now, cuz I’m pretty sure this is the last kitchen redo we will ever attempt. I was disappointed to realize that white was “it” in kitchens. Boo. I wanted to be unique. But white makes sense in my kitchen–I have a ranch house built in 1960 and our kitchen was original to the house, complete with boxy, dark orange-brown wood cabinets. It’s a 10 x 12 kitchen so I wanted it to feel more expansive, as well as making it more functional. We did a number of things that made the space more pleasant to work in and I love love love it. Converted an old closet to a pantry with pull-out shelves … under-cabinet lighting … deep sink … because, see I actually COOK in my kitchen. I have a theory that the more glamorous the kitchen, the less baking and cooking that actually occurs there–cuz these glamorous-kitchen-types can afford to eat at posh restaurants all the time whereas my family … can’t. And so, while my cabinetry is semi-custom, I went with higher-end laminate countertops (because granite or whatever IS a trend and replacing laminate countertops is do-able for an update, but I would hesitate to spend a small fortune on granite and replace it when it looks “tired”) and bead-board backsplash because, again, tile backsplashes are more expensive and look dated within 5 years–if I’m going to look dated, anyway, I’d rather do it on a more affordable budget. All to say to you … do what your heart tells you with your kitchen. Look through old magazines–you will notice themes in what you like that aren’t influenced by today’s latest on Pinterest or Houzz or whatever–I found that was a better way for me to work through the glut of information for designing my kitchen.

    Reply

  20. Kate
    February 15, 2015 @ 8:09 pm

    Ha, what a riot! I grew up with the olive appliances and ugly oak cabinets. And the fake brick tile floors. And still not my favorite. But if I had my own house Id recreate my grandma kitchen. Pale yellow walls, white woodwork. Big cast iron stove to heat the room. 1920-40’s big enamel white counter sink combo, big white enamel and wood Hoosier cabinet. Far wall all built in white hutch type cupboards below, open shelves above covered with Blue Willow china. Big walnut trestle table down the middle that doubles as work space and seats 12 of the family. My dad built it in the 60’s. So the open shelves thing is just fashion come round again, white has never gone out of style and what matters is that you have enough room to cook and have family around. And that faucet is obscene, $2200 for that!? If I had a spare $2200 I wouldn’t use it for that.

    Reply

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