Posted in Uncategorized

Home Remodel – Stories and Pictures

In late 2013 we began an extensive remodel of the front half of our house.  This remodel included the Kitchen, Family Room, and Dining Room.  Now that the remodel is mostly complete (still have some trim/molding to do) I wanted to document everything and post some pictures for others to see our changes and hopefully get some ideas. Our house was built in 1981 and we have lived here since 2001.  During the first 12 years we made many changes but they were mostly cosmetic and non-structural.  In summer of 2013 we started thinking about a more extensive remodel to update and modernize our home.  Some of our main goals were:

  • Expand the kitchen and give it a better layout with more storage
  • Create a more Open Concept design
  • Create more storage in the dining area with built ins instead of random furniture pieces

Skip to:  Design  –  Family Room  –  Dining Room  –  Kitchen


We came up with an amateur design on our own with some of the ideas we had.  We then worked with my wife’s cousin, who happens to be a home builder, and she came up with an actual design that took from some of our general ideas but made it functional and something we could actually create.  The main issue with the house was the center section with the fireplace.  Behind it was a small buffet and a lot of wasted space.


In the existing layout of the home, the family room was what we use as the dining room and what we use as the family room was the living room/dining area combination.  That layout never worked for us so we flipped the rooms around as the living room/dining area was much larger and never got used.  Our family room worked but the layout just never seemed right due to the shape of the room.  It had a small, built in buffet that offered a small amount of storage but it ate up space that could be used for the room.

We ended up completely redoing the center section and rotating the focus of the room.  New flooring was put in as well.  We removed the half walls that were by the front door and replaced the front hall closet doors.

View from Front Entrance

Central Area

Focal Wall

View from Kitchen

Front Entrance


Our dining room was functional the way it was but didn’t have much for storage.  We had random furniture pieces acting as a buffet, table, etc and we didn’t have enough storage.  The Dining Room was also separated from the Kitchen by a half wall which made it feel more confined than it really was.

We changed quite a few things in the Dining Room.   The half wall between the Dining Room and Kitchen was removed as was the small half wall by the back door.  We put in a huge, built-in china cabinet and also added a built-in desk.  Both are made from Ikea kitchen cabinets.  The desk is made from standard base cabinets.  The china cabinet has two base cabinets in the middle and then wall cabinets on the side and top.  Both are topped with the Beech butcher-block counter-top that was sanded, stained, and sealed.  New flooring was continued throughout.  The wood-burning stove was replaced with a see-thru gas fireplace.


Fireplace (wider view)

Dining Area

View from Kitchen

China Cabinet area


As you can probably guess, our kitchen had the biggest makeover in the remodel.  The old kitchen had cabinets that were busting at the seams.  We had gone through a couple different islands to give us more counter space and storage.  We had a small pantry and some relatively old appliances.

Pretty much everything in the kitchen was replaced.  All the cabinets are from Ikea.  We removed the soffits and put in full height cabinets.  We have a permanent island that has tons more storage and a huge work/eating area.  Granite countertops were put in all around and we added all new appliances including a double oven, gas cooktop, french door fridge, etc.

View from Dining Room

View from Dining Room (angle 2)

View from Dining Room (angle 3)

Main Kitchen Area

Looking towards Family Room

View from Family Room

View from Family Room (angle 2)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s