Taking it from the ‘90s to Now

Katie and Carl bought a great house; it is well-built and suits their family, which includes a teenaged son and daughter and a mischievous dog. The house is in the perfect neighborhood, with perfect schools in a great part of town. It was exactly where they wanted their family to live. They loved everything except the kitchen. It was a throwback to the ‘90s with older appliances and dark oak cabinets. For Carl and Katie, the 1990s were a fabulous memory, but not an era they wanted to relive every day.

So, they bought the house with a plan to renovate the kitchen. The layout of the kitchen was just fine and Katie was reluctant to change it, which left a challenge. If she wanted to keep the cabinets and the kitchen layout, she needed to find appliances that would fit. The standard sizes for appliances have changed since the 1990s. This meant an all-out search for appliances that would fit the available space.

Katie’s first piece of advice is, “Don’t buy used from someone else who is renovating. Energy efficiency, if you are willing to do the research, will far outweigh the cost of new appliances.”

Katie, a woman who likes things to go her way, settled in to do the legwork and research to find appliances that would allow the kitchen footprint and flow to remain the same. Keeping the same footprint and appliance hookup locations meant the overall renovation would cost a bit less, so she had some wiggle room in their budget for appliances.

The two areas of her kitchen that were the biggest challenges for fit were the narrow double ovens, surrounded by cabinets and the area over the stove top where there was a microwave, ventilation and lights and the need to be able to see into a tall pot with everything in place.

Katie started her research in the obvious places: local appliance and big box stores. Finding appliances sized to fit her space proved a bit more challenging. She shifted the search to European brands which often come in smaller sizes than their American-made counterparts. This also meant shifting to online shopping for European manufacturers at various websites as well as America’s favorite European retailer, Ikea.

Katie’s research found that the European-made appliances sometimes had high shipping costs, but compared with creating a new footprint for the kitchen, it was still more cost-effective.

By researching and purchasing the appliances herself, Katie was able to find high-quality European brands that fit the existing space that she loved, allowing her to keep the original footprint and layout of the kitchen.

The finished result included a beautiful quartz countertop in white with lovely deep grey veining and a butcher block island. The dated dark oak cabinets were painted – the upper cabinets in white and the lower cabinets in a rich, deep grey color, and updated hardware was installed. Katie’s prize, the energy efficient appliances that fit the available space, allowed her to keep the best elements of the kitchen while staying on budget.

Now Katie says they have, “The perfect kitchen, in the perfect home, in the perfect neighborhood, with the perfect schools in a great part of town that we love.” Katie’s willingness to put in the work to get the renovation she wanted paid off and their home went from ‘90s to Now and from ‘90s to WOW!

If you are planning your perfect kitchen renovation, we invite you to come visit one of our showrooms in Haverhill or West Bridgewater to explore the beautiful natural stone, quartz and porcelain options for your kitchen countertop surface.

We look forward to seeing you soon.