Its been sooooo long since i have posted anything about my house!  My husband has been deployed again (Army) for basically the last 2.5 years with just a few months home last summer before leaving again – so ive been working on projects of course, but not as much as i would have liked.  My milk paint business has been busy busy so that’s taken a lot of my time.  But i need to do projects – they make me happy and feel refreshed!  There’s nothing like having a freshly done space – even if its only a few small changes :)

Recently ive made some small changes in my kitchen and family room – i will show ya the kitchen ones today.  Honestly, i cant even remember the last time ive posted about this room, so here’s some past pics…

This was my kitchen way back when….2011

Then this was after painting my cabinets to a lighter cream and painting the walls.

Then i painted my table white and painted my walls a light gray (Repose Gray).

Then i changed out the table to my farm style table i made – see post here.  I was happy with this – much better than the counter height table which i hated.  I loved the look of it, but hated the tall table.  But – i still wasn’t satisfied with the back splash and the empty space of painted wall above the cabinets.  Oh!  As you can see, i also planked the back wall between this pic and the last one!  You can see my post on how i plank my walls here.  You cant see in this pic, but the wall on the right is also planked so the kitchen looked a little un cohesive.  I loved the tin back splash when it went all the way around the kitchen, but since removing the cabinets on the left and adding the open shelves (Oh!  i also did that to from this pic to last pic!!) the back splash didn’t look good anymore.  It was just this small little section of tin left and it made the space look choppy.

So i decided my plan and got to work.  I started by ripping out the tin – it was just glued on so it wasn’t too bad.

I decided that while i was taking out the tin – i would get rid of that horrible 6 in granite back splash the builder put in.  I always hated that thing.  I just scored along the edges were there was caulk and silicone holding it in.

Then i just used a small crow bar and gently pulled it out.  It all came out pretty easy – there were a few spaces where it broke, but of course that didn’t matter.

After getting the back splash all off, i just used a putty knife to scrape the silicone from the counters (and the glue from the walls!).  Easy as that!  So happy that thing is out of there.  It made such a difference in the look of my kitchen – much more updated.

Part of my reason for doing this kitchen update was also to get rid of my microwave that went over the stove.  I always felt that it made my kitchen look cheaper and i wanted more of a custom look.  Luckily for me, we have a large walk in pantry and i was able to put the microwave in there.  After getting rid of the granite and the tin back splash and the microwave, i had some corbels from another project which didn’t work out, so i decided to use them in the kitchen.  I’ve always loved the way corbels look under cabinets so i was glad to be able to use them.  Me and my daughter were deciding here which direction to hang them – long ways or short ways.  It was quite the debate on my FB page – i think there were over 700-800 comments with opinions!

After all the demo was done and the kitchen cleaned up, we got to planking the walls!  I was originally thinking i wanted to tile the back splash but i ended up going with plank walls to tie in with the rest of my kitchen and i’m so glad i did!

I used the same materials i have used in my other planking projects – you can see them here.

I don’t prime my planks – i just use 3 coats of Valspar Ultra White in their signature series and i apply with a regular roller.  I used a semi gloss so the planks would be easy to clean behind the stove.

Now – i was working quick on this next part and i completely forgot to take pics.  I was just excited to get this part done!  I basically just used a high quality pine in 1″ thick pieces.  I cut a shelf and nailed/glued that to my upper cabinet and then i cut the face using the same material.  I then just used an old oval frame i had that was the perfect shape and traced the oval out on my wood and cut that out.  I didn’t notice until later – but the oval over the stove top actually is the same as my cabinets :)

I wanted to support the shelf with corbels and make it look more custom, so i found these ones from lowes.  They ended up being a little too big – both long wise and width wise, so i had to do a little surgery on them to cut them down.

I just used my table saw and chop saw to trim them down a little.  It ended up working out perfectly.

After getting the shelf all in and caulked and the corbels attached to the walls and cabinets – i painted everything.  This was my 1st time using this paint and it was amazing!  I was a little worried because my cabinets were sprayed and i didn’t want to do all the prep work for spraying just the one small section.  So i used a good brush and this paint and did 3 coats and it looks perfect – no brush marks and its perfectly smooth.

And that’s it!  A couple fairly simple projects and it made a huge difference in my kitchen.  Its so light and bright – even more than before.  And i love that its all planked now so it all ties in together – it no longer feels choppy and disconnected.

How cute is that enamel utensil holder!  I found it on ebay and bought it right away because the color is perfection!  You can see from the pic that she shelf is big enough to put things on – but i didn’t make it too wide.  I originally thought it would be fun to put up some vintage cutting boards so i made it wide enough for them – but for right now i’m just liking it plain.

Closer look at my shelves i put up.  I’m going to have to look through my pics to see if i can find progress pics of those and then i will post them – they were super easy to make and i’m so glad i did it.  They are painted with Sweet Pickins Milk Paint in Pantry Door.

I still need to add something above my window.  I actually ordered a sign a couple months ago – i’m just waiting for it to get here.

I got a ton of questions on my Facebook page about cleaning the planks behind the stove.  They have been in now for a couple months and its been super easy.  I just used a good quality paint and they wipe up perfect – no stains from splashing sauces or anything.

Gah!  I need to get those barstools painted!

To attach the corbels – i just nailed and glued them to the wall and then put in a filler piece of wood between the cabinet and the top of the corbel that i also nailed and glued.  Then everything was caulked.  They aren’t supporting anything of course and are just decorative – so this way was just fine.

So many things in this pic that i haven’t shown or talked about!  Changing out the doors in this hallway to old doors and my big amazing cabinet!  I will be back with a separate post on those two items :)

So here’s how the space looks now – isn’t it so much brighter and cohesive looking than before?!  I love it and am so happy i made these small updates in my kitchen.

I’m still deciding on one more change and if i want to make it or not.  You can see that my island, when i updated that years ago, that i added molding to cover the toe kick.  I’m trying to decide if i want to do that or not and haven’t made up my mind.  You cant see a lot of my cabinet bottoms from my main area because of how the kitchen is set up – so i’m trying to decide if its worth it or not.  There are a couple obstacles i have to work around – like the heat vent under the sink – so its not as easy as just throwing up some trim.

I’m also trying to decide if i want to cover the island top with wood.  Its something ive always wanted to do and just need to make my decision if i’m going to do it or not – i’m hesitant now because my dining table top is close to my island and i worry maybe its too much wood…i will decide later :)


Plank/Shiplap wall tutorial:  here

Plank/Shiplap wall color : Valspar Ultra White

Cabinet color:  Ben Moore Mascarpone

Dining table tutorial:  here

Floors:  3/4 solid oak, coffee stain (no longer manufactured)

Open shelf color:  Sweet Pickins Milk Paint in Pantry Door

Couches:  Couches are from RC Willey but custom slip covers made by Slipcovers by Shelley

Microwave removed and went in walk in pantry.  Will add a ventless hood to replace the one on the microwave as well as a light.

Be back soon!!