Monday, September 9, 2013

Costs & Sources for Our Kitchen Reno

Hi Everyone!

Warning: This is a long post!!! Thought I would share with you all the details of our kitchen re-do.  Although not truly a budget project per se, it was done with cost in mind.  The biggest hurdle in all this was convincing Mr. Bluebird that painting our out of date oak cabinets was a good thing! You know, the age-old man mindset that wood should never be painted.  I had been longing for a white kitchen for years & years, but to no avail. When the time came to re-do our kitchen, I mentioned that I would be happy keeping our old cabinets if they were painted - his eyes glazed over at saving all that money new cabs would cost and he said "go for it!"  In the end, he is more over the moon for the look of these cabinets than me - and I am pretty happy about them!

And now - with no further ado, here is how we spent our money:

Cabinet painting:  $2,100

done by our painting contractor

Benjamin Moore - Subtle

2 coats oil-based primer
2 coats BM Impervo oil paint
*the process took 5 days to complete

I spent months and months buying little sample pots of every imaginable white.  This was our toughest decision by far, but worth the time and effort.  I am so happy with this color.  My suggestion to you is that if you are planning on painting your cabinets white is to buy those sample pots and make large posters with the paint to hang around your room.  So many that I thought would be perfect were either too yellow, too green, too gray, too blue, etc., etc. - yet on the paint strip it looked fantastic.  Once I narrowed down to a few, I painted on scrap oak to see what it would look like on the surface that would be painted.


Flooring:  $3,164

installed by our flooring contractor

Mannington Revolutions Tile Oasis Laminate - Palermo Firestone

Granite:  $3,440.00

installed by our granite contractor

Black Pearl

3 Drawer Cabinet, 2 Appliance Garages:  $462/$140

installed by Mr. Bluebird

Merrillat Essentials Millbridge II -

BD303D  30" 3- Drawer Base Cabinet
Appliance Garage Tambour Straight 30"
Appliance Garage Tambour Straight 18"

Wine Rack:  $109

custom made locally
installed by Mr. Bluebird

Preparation/Glass Install in Cabinet Doors:  $126.00/$44.00

removal of inner wood panel & prepare 4 doors to accept glass - locally done
installation of Winterlake decorative glass - locally done (yes! only $44.00 for all - a steal!)

Lighting Over Sink:  $58.00

Allen & Roth Edison Mission Bronze Mini Pendant/Lowes

Lighting Over Kitchen Table:  $159.00

Portfolio 2-Light Antique Bronze Hanging Pot Rack/Lowes

Interior Cabinet Lighting & Rope Lighting Above Upper Cabinets:  $112.00

Mr. Bluebird did all the electrical installation

Beadboard Panels (added to exposed sides of all cabinets):  $75.00

Mr. Bluebird did the installation - cost of materials only

Additional Cabinet Hardware & Supplies:  $40.00

Since I still loved our original cabinet hardware, we simply purchased the additional drawer pulls we needed (6), and I spray painted everything (actually, my painting contractor did this while he was waiting for some material to be delivered! Smiles!)
Wall Paint:  $68.00
Behr Premium Plus Ultra in Merlot, 2 gallons & 4 coats! (dark shades, I have found, need multiple coats to achieve their true color - especially anything red based)
Not gray, not greige, not blue - what can I say? I like what I like and had to stay true to me! Love those colors in others homes - gorgeous - but just not me and I know I would not be happy with them for long. So, merlot we go!
We did the painting ourselves.
Spice Drawer Organizer:  $30.00
Container Store Expand A Drawer #221090
*The best $30 I've ever spent - I love this thing!!!
Along the way, we had other, incidental costs, but these are the big items that made up our kitchen renovation.  Also, we had just purchased a new sink & faucet several months before we decided to take on this project, so I did not include that cost - which would have added on another $300 or so.  We purchased our stainless steel appliances about 18 months prior to the remodel which also would have added another $3,000 to the bottom line.  While we did a lot of work ourselves, we hired out the cabinet painting, granite install, and flooring install.  Mr. Bluebird was in recovery from back surgery at the time, and while he could have done the flooring install himself, he was not in any condition to do so. Had we done the cabinet painting and flooring installation ourselves, the cost would have probably been reduced by 40 to 50%.

Total Cost:  $10,127.00

We spent a lot of time getting multiple estimates from contractors, looking for products, etc.  That was time well spent as we are thrilled with the end result.  We feel we got the most our money could buy.  While not a designer kitchen, it is perfect for us.  Had we gone with a complete gut job, we would have far exceeded $35,000, we had contemplated this option and even had a few estimates on doing so.  Although we had the budget to do this, here are few things that kept us from doing so:
1.  The basic layout of the kitchen could not be changed without adding on to the house
2.  The kitchen layout worked for us with the exception of the desk area.  With a little research and
      less than $500, we were able to remedy that.  The original cabinet style by Merillatt was still
      available so we replaced the space wasting desk with a roomy 3 drawer unit, that also
      increased our usable counter space by 30 inches!  We also installed the appliance garages
      to camouflage some of the counter clutter which was always annoying to me! :)
3.  The cabinets themselves were wood and in perfect condition.  With a few added details that
      we were able to do ourselves before painting such as adding beadboard and molding, their
      entire look was changed for little $$$.  Adding the glass to some of the doors, along with
      interior lighting further upgraded our kitchen for little money.
So with these minimal changes with maximum impact, we decided to save ourselves some mega dough and go with the changes we did.  Happy! Happy!
Hope you found some of this info and insight useful!  Have a great day!
Thanks for stopping by,






  1. OMGosh Jane it is just gorgeous...nothing more clean and fresh than white cupboards...our grandparents always had white cupboard - I love how your entire kitchen came out.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. Great remodel! It all looks very nice! Thank you for joining Home Sweet Home!