Affordable Compromise Kitchen On A Budget

Tada! I am happy to report that FINALLY we are finished with our kitchen remodel of the beach home kitchen and I'm giving us a woo hoo and some back pats! It's been difficult to do a basically DIY remodel long distance and not sure that I'd want to take that on again. We recently spent almost 2 weeks enjoying the place, being out on that beach and not working for a change (and didn't hate it;-).


It's nothing super fancy, but a huge improvement and looks so nice and fresh. When you do a remodel I feel like you need to do it for yourself and make yourself happy and not the internet. After all...YOU live there and not everyone else.
Our initial budget for this remodel was low at $10K, considering the fact that it had to include all new appliances and countertops. How did we stay within budget? We did a lot of compromising and here is what we saved on and what is new.


We kept the cabinets that are builder grade and now approaching 15 years old. We were fortunate to purchase this place pre-construction and select colors and I always opt for white. They still work and are in perfect shape, but truth be told if budget were higher I might take them out and reconfigure a few things. They are Thermofoil and my issue is that it would be difficult to switch out the knobs to handles and repair the holes. We were able to save a ton of money by keeping them and they are white as they were back then and being Thermofoil don't need to be painted.

If you aren't familiar-
Thermofoil: Often used for making kitchen cabinet doors, this reasonably priced and commonly available synthetic material is a thin, tight, heat-sealed plastic wrap used to mold over an MDF substrate.


We may change the cabinet hardware still, I'm really not sure. We go back and forth on that and will bring picking up a few samples to try, but it's been hard to agree. When you have a designing wife and contracting husband you sometimes have a clash of the titans so to speak.

hansgrohe faucet white kitchen

Some other keepers...the HansGrohe faucet that we installed a couple of years ago and I absolutely love. You know me, I just love curved lines and circular features! We are fortunate as builders in Miami to work with some companies that are pretty good to us and we received a gorgeous Blanco sink that I'll show in another post. Previously we had a double bowl sink and I wanted one BIG sink, so we went with a large stainless steel undermount. I'll source everything out for you soon, but feel free to ask in the meantime.


We kept the barstools and I painted them white (no surprise;-) with my Wagner Flexio Sprayer and they are keepers. With the natural stone Brazilian Quartzite being heavy, we decided to get creative and instead of installing decorative corbels we cut into the drywall and used L-brackets. Then we made panels to hide it all.


The panels were not expensive to make and not that difficult for a DIYer. You can kind of get the concept here and I'd be happy to give you a tutorial if anyone is interested?



We removed one upper cabinet and the microwave that was attached and hung underneath. For befores...check out THIS POST


My husband installed the subway tile and it was really easy to do. He went all the way up to the soffit, even though we would be installing a new vented hood fan and is standing where the oven would be placed. We decided to leave the soffit because of the electrical that was inside and may change the track lights out for something gooseneck and more decorative soon.


I'm so happy that we chose the Brazilian Quartzite with it's subtle veining of the pales grey and green! It's really swoonworthy in person and different from the marble or quartz that you see in most of today's kitchen updates. I talked about it more HERE and why we did.


In a bold contrast to all of the white I decided on somewhat industrial looking appliances with the Frigidaire Professional Line. The restaurant quality is appealing and it's a huge upgrade for our kitchen that I'm so happy to have!


View into the breakfast nook that has a few sweet updates with ARTWORK and LIGHTING.


The hood fan is from Zline and completes the look much more eloquently I think than a hanging microwave that we only use to heat up coffee.


I have free CAD plans for our microwave station coffee bar in THIS POST and will be updating here soon with more info.

Have a great week ahead!