Our farmhouse fixer kitchen plan, design ideas, and resources including using the original beadboard, adding in character, and creating a classic look along with functional spaces.
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We had three big goals when we first started working on remodeling our farmhouse fixer:
- Add a foundation to replace the 100-year old rock and boulder foundation. This was the most important thing, obviously. While it was still standing, it sloped in various places with one corner just in dirt.
- Expand the small back bedroom 8 feet to create a master on the main floor. Along with this, we'd grab a couple feet from the bedroom to enlarge the bathroom, create a walk-in closet, and a mudroom/laundry room.
- Reconfigure the kitchen by removing a wall.
We've completed the first two goals (well, we're still working on the finishing touches of #2, but it's mostly done), and are in the middle of seeing the kitchen looking like what I envisioned.
We are *this* close to finishing the kitchen - and being able to move in - so I thought I would share with you the whole plan for what we'd like this space to look like and how it will function.
My goals when designing this space where twofold:
- As far as the architecture, we wanted to open up the space, add windows for more light and views, create a more usable layout, and add old house character.
- For the decor, I knew I wanted to recreate some of our previous cottage's kitchen - the white cabinets, butcher block counters and glass cupboards. I did learn that I needed some counters that were lighter than the dark wood we had stained the counters for food photography, and I wanted to go with antique brass hardware and lighting to match the old hardware on the vintage doors we've added.
As you can see from the mood board above, we've kept the feeling light and airy, brought in some of my favorite farmhouse looks (schoolhouse lights!), and gone out of my white comfort zone to add some green.
I'm already excited to cook, take pictures, and shoot videos in this wonderful space!
Let's start at the beginning so you can get an idea of what we've been doing. Then I'll share some of what the kitchen looks like now and then list all the resources for the elements of the design board.
Farmhouse Fixer Kitchen Before
This is the first view of the kitchen that we saw as we walked in from the living-dining area. The people who had been living here had put a dining table in the center.
While not a small space, it was an awkward layout with minimal storage and counter space.
It had just the one window to the outside on the left - the window over the sink was leftover from a porch remodel.
That area beyond the window and door was being used as a laundry room-mudroom, so you can imagine your great view from the sink, lol.
I immediately saw the potential of opening up that wall to bring that square footage into the kitchen and allow for an island where the original sink was.
Also, there was a lot of space not being used well in the enclosed porch.
The dryer vent and plug was in this corner along with the furnace.
And the washer was on the other side of the door, directly opposite the sink on the other side of the wall. Beyond that white door was a windowless, moldy storage room, part of which became our laundry/mudroom. (Note how you can see the sloping floor in the right corner...)
Now, we're talking about the design here, so we won't get into all the plumbing issues, leaks, electrical hazards, and rock foundation, but if you've been following our progress, then you'll know why it's taken us so long to get to the point of being able to talk about - and show - the design and decor!
New Farmhouse Fixer Kitchen Plan
It's not hard for me to see things in my head - I've always got big ideas, lol. The realities of if it can be done and actually getting it done is a different story.
Below is a photo of the rough sketch I drew out in the first year, and thankfully it hasn't significantly changed much since:
We had to work around the furnace and stairs as well as the room being a passway to the bath, laundry, and bedroom.
I really wanted the space to flow and be able to hold family and friends without the person in the kitchen feeling cut off, so I kept my original island idea versus a peninsula which might have made better use of the wall with the built-in.
Brian and I went back and forth on adding the bar sink at the coffee station, because he had grown up in a house with a bar sink that he felt didn't get used that much.
In this case, though, we make coffee and tea every day - multiple times - and the main sink isn't all that close, so I think it will get a lot of use. Also, the bar sink will be on the path out to our future deck, making getting water much easier.
Bringing the New Plan to Life
After getting the permit we needed for taking out the load bearing kitchen-porch wall, we removed it and installed a laminated beam with 4x4's that went down into cement footings in the crawlspace.
We started building out the side walls that would help define the space and immediately we could see the kitchen taking shape!
As we removed wallboard from the walls and water-damaged ceiling, we discovered original 100+ year old beadboard in pretty good shape. There was an upstairs bath leak we had fixed that caused staining on the ceiling, but luckily it did not rot the beadboard!
We found a source for almost identical tongue and groove beadboard that we used to match this in the newly enclosed porch area which turned out SO good:
Doesn't it look like it could've always been this way? I'm LOVING how it's turning out - really beyond what I even imagined during those first walk throughs.
Now that we are finally close to finishing, I'm excited to share with you the mood board and design resources that have been guiding me through this process.
Hopefully this will be useful to you if you're planning any kitchen changes or remodels in your future!
Farmhouse Fixer Kitchen Design Mood Board & Resources
The walls and base cabinets along the walls are a shaker style painted in Benjamin Moore's Simply White.
The coffee station cabinets are slightly different than the main kitchen cabinets, which are being built by a local custom cabinet maker. I designed the coffee station with my carpenter stepfather to be like old step-back cupboards that sit directly on the counter. They will also be painted in Simply White.
The island and cabinets will be painted a lovely custom green paint I discovered on Miss Mustard Seed called 'Boxwood.' I painted the glass front cabinet with this color in the bathroom and it looks amazing against all the white, so I think I'm going to love it on the island.
Kitchen sconces over windows: Black Adjustable Arm Metal LED Wall Sconce – under $50
Kitchen island pendants: Antique Brass Mini Pendant – under $50 at Home Depot
Main ceiling light: Schoolhouse Semi-Flush in Oil Rubbed Bronze
Note: all the gold/bronze parts of the fixtures will be coordinated with the pendants with antique brass Rub n' Buff. Or European Gold - sometimes I go back and forth to get the look I'm after.
Oh, how I wanted a bridge faucet like our last kitchen! A few things eventually caused me to go with a clean lined single arch faucet:
- It did take extra time to clean all around the four openings for a bridge faucet (three for the faucet and one for the sprayer).
- The faucet and sink will be on the main island that will be seen from the living room and I want it to be a simple as possible
- The quartz for the island (more on that below) is expensive and I didn't want to put a lot of holes in it if I wasn't dead sure. Obviously, I wasn't, lol.
Main Sink Faucet: Single Handle Stainless Steel Brushed Nickel Faucet with Pull Out Sprayer Yep, just one hole to be made in the quartz - I'm not even doing a soap dispenser because I like to use foaming soap.
Bar Sink Faucet: Since I didn't need a sprayer here, I could go with a bridge-style single hole faucet.
This Vintage Black Striped Rug from Target will look great in front of the sink.
Seen behind the cabinet hardware: Essence Oak Solid Hardwood flooring (discontinued) - similar: Tiger's Eye French Oak (though ours is just 5" wide vs. 7.5")
Note: The knob included with the hardware is original from one of the doors we salvaged from another 100 year old house. It served as my guide to choosing finishes.
The original and reproduction beadboard is painted Benjamin Moore Simply White.
Two notes about the wood counters:
- I've researched wood counter finishes a LOT. I've used and lived with this combo in two different houses and just wasn't interested in the maintenance required of the other options, even the newer options.
- Our previous cottage's DIY counters we installed were from Ikea and were solid oak. Brian made a video about cutting them here and I talked about living with them in this video. Sadly, Ikea's "wood" counters now are not solid, but a veneer and there is only that one option. Both Home Depot and Lowes sells solid birch counters for good prices - Home Depot was out of stock so we went with Lowes which delivered them to us for free.
Cafe Matte White Electric Range I have all the heart eyes for this range. Also for the fridge, but it wouldn't fit in our space...and that's a whole other story!
Distressed Wood Bistro Counter Stool from World Market. I wanted something comfortable with a back, but easy to clean (no cloth anywhere) and this style is the one I kept coming back too. I think this light finish will look great with the floors and against the green island.
There you have it - what do you think? Have you used any of these same things? Are you surprised by any of my choices?
Stay tuned for the final reveal and our move in - I can't wait!!