Coffee Chat Episode 15 | in the new kitchen

Grab a cup of coffee and let’s chat!

Today we’re in our newly made-over kitchen.

I posted the full reveal with lots of before and after photos (read that here) and your comments were so fun to read through! Many questions were asked on repeat, so in today’s video, I thought it would be fun to answer them on video and talk through our answers.

Welcome to our kitchen! Let’s chat …


The most asked question by far was “Where is the microwave?“.

Answer: we moved it into the pantry.

Isn’t that a lovely photo?! It’s just a tiny pantry tucked under the stairs and we sacrificed some shelf space for the microwave. Ryan is on a mission to make this space more efficient, so I’ll keep you posted if/when he adds more storage.

Next question: “Do the open shelves really function as well as they look?” and sister-question: “Do they offer enough storage?

Answer: I love them, they function well and storage is not a problem for us.

I snapped a few photos to show you inside the cupboards. I am a big fan of editing and giving away anything that either I don’t use, like or need on a fairly regular basis. This reduces what we have and allows us to keep the less-lovely kitchen essentials in the lower cabinets.

If you love the look of open shelves but can’t give up all of your upper cabinet storage space, you could also try removing just one cabinet (in a spot that makes sense) to give you a space for display while still keeping some of the uppers for storage.

Or, just take them all down and whittle down your dish collection to only the ones you use and love and display them proudly :)

Many questions came in asking “How did you paint the cabinets?“.

Like I mention in the video, you will want to take your particular cabinets into account before following my instructions. Our cabinets are solid wood with a slight sheen and were very easy to paint. Other cabinets will need more of a sanding job or different paint formula in order for them to be durable. Just remove a door and take it into your local paint store to get an expert’s opinion.

Here are my steps: lightly sand with 120 grit sand paper. Wipe down to remove sanding dust. Paint two coats of latex semi-gloss paint (with a good quality brush). Let dry a few days to fully cure.

I took all of the drawers out and doors off to paint the cabinet bases and drawer fronts, then put the doors back on to paint the front and sides of those. We chose not to paint inside the cabinets, but if I were planning on keeping the cabinets for a longer time than we are, I would have at least done the inside of the doors.

If you are painting dark cabinets a lighter color, you may want to prime first, then do two or three coats of paint for a nice finish. Our dark paint color covered really well and made the job quite easy.

The shirt I’m wearing in the video is THIS COZY ONE.

Thanks for watching!

41 Responses to Coffee Chat Episode 15 | in the new kitchen

  1. Nataliya February 13, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

    Have you washed/degreased the cabinets before painting? If yes, what did you use fir that ? Thanks

  2. lora February 1, 2017 at 1:38 pm #

    Can we get the “But First Coffee” sign??

    • emily February 1, 2017 at 7:06 pm #

      That was a free download … I can’t remember where it came from! Try googling “but first coffee free printable” and hopefully it will come up!

  3. Lindsay January 17, 2017 at 10:14 pm #

    Hi Emily,

    Beautiful job!

    I tried to use the promo code “WINTER” several times but it wouldn’t work?



  4. Lynette January 17, 2017 at 9:03 am #

    me again….I got ahead of myself, so sorry. Just found the photo with the painting in it. :o) Love it all!!

  5. Lynette January 17, 2017 at 8:57 am #

    Oh wow! I’m so glad I ‘tuned in’ to your video! First timer, but about to tackle painting my kitchen cabinets. Your kitchen looks great – love the gold accents!

    Question – in the pantry photo, I can see a piece of artwork off to the right side…any chance you’d share the whole thing? I’d love to see it as those are the colors I’d like to incorporate and well, it just looks like a cool painting!

    Thanks so much!

  6. Carole January 17, 2017 at 8:19 am #

    I wanted to congratulate you on this superb kitchen!
    But I wanted to know how big it was. Suur some photos, the kitchen looks immense and on others less! I can not seem to realize. I dream of a kitchen like yours, but we are sometimes in smaller spaces! I wanted to ask you how much your home with the 3 levels and how much would the old house measure. I hope that my question is not indicative. The size of a part makes it possible to better realize.
    I can not account for it. At home, in France, the houses are smaller and smaller because the land is increasingly expensive!
    I am lucky to have a house but I do not have the chance to grow some walls! Too bad ! I’ll just make a new decoration!
    Thank you for sharing your ideas and beautiful décorations !

    • emily January 17, 2017 at 11:55 am #

      Great question! We do have the luxury of bigger houses in the areas where we have chosen to live. We are not in the city and are surrounded by lots of open land. I know that is not always the case in more urban areas.

      Our old house was 3,100 sq ft, on a tiny 6000 sq ft lot. This one is just a little over 3,200 in the main house with about 600 sq ft in the studio above the garage. The kitchen is a good size – probably 500 sq ft? Hope this helps you get a feel for the size of the house!

  7. Sharon E. January 16, 2017 at 5:24 pm #

    We have painted cabinets/shelves with Benjamin Moore Advance paint. It is a latex paint with properties of an oil-based paint, so it cleans up like latex but behaves like oil – brush strokes level out and it dries super hard. You can also paint it over an existing oil-based paint without a primer. It’s expensive, but worth every penny!

  8. Diana January 16, 2017 at 11:10 am #

    Your kitchen certainly doesn’t look like you only spent $1500. You made some amazing updates on such a feasible budget. I’m a lot like you, I don’t always have to do it just right as long as it suits our needs.

    We just remodeled our kitchen last summer, and I’ve been posting a kitchen series of all of our projects. Budget was a big factor for us as well, and I’ve been trying to convey that you don’t always have to get the high-end features to make your kitchen look and feel like a a million bucks! Your kitchen is a prime example of that.

    Nice job, as always! :)


  9. Cara January 16, 2017 at 7:20 am #

    Just beautiful! Could you tell me where the big pear picture is from? Thanks so much.

    • emily January 16, 2017 at 10:41 am #

      Thank you! I painted the pear and will have it available as a canvas soon!

  10. Terrell January 16, 2017 at 7:04 am #

    I always enjoy your coffee chats so so much!! You’re super inspiring!! I would have done the exact same adjustments to the kitchen and I feel it’s a HUGE impact and looks super up to date until you can do your major overhaul. Enjoy your new space and thank you for sharing these fun updates of your new gorgeous home! :)

  11. mary beth at MBZ interiors January 14, 2017 at 5:49 pm #

    So true! If you don’t use it, toss or donate it. Why hang onto the fondue set you received for your wedding shower years and years ago and never used. Lovely kitchen, very pretty.

  12. Kathy January 14, 2017 at 12:24 pm #

    Thanks for the video. Its great how you encourage to do a little for now and wait for the big change later.

  13. Karen Bissell January 14, 2017 at 12:02 pm #

    Not a great spot for a heavy Kitchen Aid mixer on the floor break your back picking it up

  14. Lisa January 14, 2017 at 11:47 am #

    Hi Emily! I have been crushing on your kitchen makeover since your last post! So inspiring & such a great transformation! You did a great job! We moved into an older house that had an updated kitchen but it’s not 100% my style. I’m trying to figure out what small improvements we can do to make it more our style & taste! Thanks for the inspiration! Any suggestions on how to update an all brown cabinet kitchen with dark floors & black marble countertops? Also, did you use the same colour on your trim? Tia xo

  15. Nora January 14, 2017 at 11:00 am #

    Hi Emily,
    You told me the rug in front of the sink was from home goods. Could you possibly tell me the manufacturer? Maybe I can find it on the internet. Thanks

    • emily January 14, 2017 at 12:42 pm #

      I haven’t’ been able to find it online. I believe it was Kathy Ireland.

  16. Jillian January 14, 2017 at 10:50 am #

    Have you thought of mounting woven wood blinds above the windows to add texture and more of the warm wood tones. Home Depot has some good premade ones that would work perfect. Love the makeover!!!!!

  17. Tiffani January 14, 2017 at 7:48 am #

    We are in need of new white dishes. Can you tell me where you got yours?

    • emily January 14, 2017 at 12:41 pm #

      We use Crate & Barrel Aspen collection: http://www.crateandbarrel.com/dinnerware-collections/aspen-dinnerware/

  18. Kara January 13, 2017 at 11:09 pm #

    What are your everyday white dishes that you have on your open shelving?

    • emily January 14, 2017 at 12:42 pm #

      We have the Aspen collection from Crate & Barrel: http://www.crateandbarrel.com/dinnerware-collections/aspen-dinnerware/

  19. Karri January 13, 2017 at 10:56 pm #

    Hmmm. Would love to tear down some cabinets. Where did You purchase your shelves?

  20. katherine spence January 13, 2017 at 9:30 pm #

    love…love what you have done. Could you please share the cabinet latex paint color and brand
    you used from home depot? my best…

  21. katherine spence January 13, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

    love your kitchen remodel. thank you for sharing.
    what is the name of the paint color and brand you used for the cabinets?

    • emily January 14, 2017 at 12:04 am #

      We used Sherwin Williams Iron Ore and had it color matched in Behr Marquee semi gloss.

  22. Lynda Ramage January 13, 2017 at 8:09 pm #

    You got me to try the Grove Collaborative and I’m waiting on my first order now. Love how your kitchen is coming together. I’m much older than you so I enjoy seeing how “younger” families live these days and what is important to you as far as your home goes and what you keep, etc. I got tickled when you mentioned casserole dishes. I live in S.C. and making casseroles for funerals, those who are sick and so forth, requires “us” to have many on hand. Right now I think I’ve got 14! But, I tell people to keep them when I deliver food in them. Enjoy your family. Some of the best times are had in the kitchen!

  23. Sharlene January 13, 2017 at 8:05 pm #

    If anyone wants to try open shelving, you e the could take the cabinet doors off as a trial run. I have a vintage kitchen, built in the 40’s. I did this on my upper cabinets and love them. I use some vintage inspired baskets to hide a few items that I didn’t want to see.

  24. Kristin January 13, 2017 at 7:40 pm #

    The painted cabinets do wonders for the counter tops! I had to look hard at the “before” pictures to verify that you hadn’t replaced them! :-) Such a better color combination!

  25. Brenda January 13, 2017 at 5:32 pm #

    You always inspire me to make a few changes in my home. I love reading your blog and seeing all the beautiful things you are doing in your new home. Have a great weekend!

  26. Stephanie January 13, 2017 at 4:23 pm #

    You’ve totally inspired me to knock down our cabinets! My one question is our counter and backsplash is one piece of brown marbled laminate and I’m afraid it will look weird! What would you suggest??

  27. emi January 13, 2017 at 4:03 pm #

    Thank you for your coffee chats. I so enjoy them. Also for sharing about your microwave. I wondered if you used one when I didn’t see it in the photos. I love your kitchen mini makeover. It is so beautiful. Thanks for letting us in “your home”. Have a great weekend!

  28. Ardith January 13, 2017 at 3:45 pm #

    Very nice video, Emily, thank you for sharing the realistic philosophy behind your lovely kitchen’s refresh. It looks like an excellent space to spend time with your family and friends. Cheers, Ardith

  29. Krystal Wight Armstrong January 13, 2017 at 3:22 pm #

    Thanks for answering all those questions, and sharing so much about your details and process.
    I always really admired your glass jars of decanted sundries…I only saw a couple in these pics, so I’m really curious where they ended up now, if you don’t mind sharing what happened to them.
    Thanks; and you and that kitchen look so pretty today! : )

    • emily January 13, 2017 at 4:57 pm #

      I have a whole bunch of clear glass jars in crates in my studio :) Not sure what we’ll do with them …

      • Krystal Wight Armstrong January 13, 2017 at 8:29 pm #

        Ah, got it. I just assumed you’d still need them filled with all the kitchen food stuffs from before, but had them hid away somewhere else that fit better out of sight!

  30. Jennifer K January 13, 2017 at 3:09 pm #

    I’m more of a bright-white trim kind of girl, so I would never in a million years have thought of dark trim, but it looks fantastic! Eye-catching without overpowering. I have a long list of things I’d like to do in the house we moved into a few years ago, and you’re inspiring me to tackle some of them. Thanks, Emily.

  31. Dena January 13, 2017 at 3:08 pm #

    I love Coffee Chats, thanks for sharing your adorable self with us all the time.

  32. Tami January 13, 2017 at 2:59 pm #

    Oh My Gosh…I want to paint my cabinets so bad. You have inspired me to JUST DO IT!!! Kitchen looks great. Have a great weekend!

    p.s. I joined the Grove Collaborative and I am Obsessed with my Mrs. Meyer’s products!!! Yay.

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