My friend Tara and I met on the bus when we were 7 years old and we have been friends ever since. I think if I added up the hours I may have even been at her house more than my own growing up. We have tackled some pretty crazy things together: braces, glasses, permed hair, the 80’s in general (oh the blackmail pics of me she could put out there if I didn’t have equally horrifying ones of her), boyfriends, weddings, babies the list goes on and on…but our craziest endeavor to date is making over her kitchen with the “help” of our combined 6 kids under 10. Yeah, it was an adventure…
Tara and I have been trying to convince her husband that we should paint their cabinets for years and he finally gave us the green light.
Here’s the BEFORE –
and AFTER –
What a difference paint makes right?
There are a million great tutorials on Pinterest on how to paint your cabinets, so I won’t bore you with the details. Besides, most of our tips would involve how to stop kids from running through the kitchen touching wet cabinets (snacks, in case you are wondering the answer is always snacks). We did use my paint sprayer for this massive job. We even managed to keep most of the paint on the cabinets thanks to this little tent we set up. Don’t mind my fashion blogger outfit and no makeup hotness.
Tara’s 2 year old did manage to paint a large section of the wood flooring when we had our backs turned, thankfully we caught her before she reached the carpet.
After we tackled all the cabinets (basically a week long process working around carpool, nap times and wrangling kids), it was time to get rid of the old formica counters and backsplash. We wanted to get the most bang for our buck on this kitchen, so Tara’s dad did a great job installing these dark laminate countertops. They are a dark grey and the contrast is so pretty.
Next up we tiled our butts off. You can check out our super professional tiling situation below – notice the pink baking spatula in my hand. Whatever, sometimes you need to improvise! The important thing is we got the job done albeit with lots of cringing over our technique from Tara’s dad, who manned the wet saw. Although in all fairness he has witnessed plenty of our hijinx and shenanigans over the last 25 years, so he shouldn’t have been too surprised with our less than professional techniques ;)
Let’s just say we won’t be offering our painting and tiling services anytime soon (unless you pay in wine and free childcare), but I love how her kitchen turned out. It’s so much brighter and airy feeling.
I feel like you didn’t even notice this gorgeous glass cabinet before with the dark wood and now it’s such a pretty feature in the room. Here check out the before again –
and after –
Tara shares my love of vintage stuff and has the best collection of pretty blue glass jars and bottles.
We just spray painted her existing hardware black and removed the ornate backplates.
Tara also got a new oven at Christmas and painted her refrigerator black to match her other appliances.
Before we got started painting the cabinets, they removed the big corner cabinet (the cabinets used to run across the peninsula area as well), and Tara’s husband made these cool shelves to replace the large cabinet. Tara lives out in the country and has dogs, cats, chickens, etc, so it was fun to work with more of a farmhouse style that fits her house.
While we were taking a break from the paint fumes in the garage (or maybe because of the paint fumes in the garage), we got the idea to paint the base of her table and chairs too. So, we hauled all of that outside and sprayed it. Tara recovered the seats with black and white buffalo check oilcloth that not only looks cute, but is also super practical with her 4 kids eating here every night.
One good tip – painting the soffit the same color as the cabinets vs the same color as the walls made the ceilings feel so much taller and it made the soffit kind of disappear to the eye.
Oh, also major bonus points to her husband, who turned this back closet into a mudroom space. It turned out so cute and got a coat of the same cabinet paint.
I meant to end this post with a super cute pic of Tara and I as proof that we aren’t always wearing paint splattered jeans from high school, but as busy mom’s our selfie game is lacking and we never got around to it. We had a lot of fun tackling this together, and I’m so thankful for our friendship over the years. Here’s hoping we can convince our 5 year olds to carry on with their plan to get married since clearly we would make excellent wedding planners! :)