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November 02, 2012

The Kitchen | DIY Remodel | New Open Shelving & Beadboard Backsplash

This is the "Before" of our kitchen.
That is Mr. Darcy knocking over his bowl to request a refill...
I believe the previous owners had this kitchen done early-90's.  It is not terrible, but not very light and it is missing the utilitarian feel that I like kitchens to have.

At some point in the near (1-2 years) future, we plan to add an addition onto the house that will triple the size of the kitchen and include a cozy hearth room.  For the meantime, we planned a DIY (budget-friendly!) remodel to freshen up the space.

DIY Backsplash and Open Shelving Update :

-Remove Upper Cabinets from the Left side ($0)
-Add Pine Wainscoting Back Splash ($60)
-Add Open Shelving ($100)

Total Cost = $160.00

Other Projects (we've already completed, and will be sharing this week...) :

-Counter Tops
-Light Fixtures
-New Appliances
-Revive Wood Floor

I'll be posting the rest of the "Progress" and "After" photos throughout the day and over the next couple of days... so, stay tuned!

 Here is the Before of the Upper Cabinets.

And the After.  Much lighter and brighter, right?

Our first step was to remove the upper cabinets on the left side of the kitchen and to remove the dark tile.  We decided to keep the upper cabinets on the right side so we would have some covered storage.  They are visually blocked by the refrigerator, so removing them wouldn't have really opened up the space anymore. 

Now all of the tile has been removed.  Ick. 

Here, my Dad and Mike install the solid wood paneling that goes from the counter top to the ceiling.

They used construction adhesive on the back and finish nails to secure it.

Voila.  There is a part of me that wanted to keep the rustic, raw knotty pine.  Someday I'll have cozy cabin and I'll do the entire thing in this paneling!

Installing paneling was a great option because :

#1 - We didn't have to repair the walls from the tile or cabinets.
#2 - It was only $60 worth of paneling.
#3 - The project to this point took my Dad and Mike about 4 hours.
#4 - It gave the entire room a "fresh and new" feel for $60 in 4 hours.

Before priming and painting, I filled all of the holes with wood filler...

Then sanded.  Doesn't my manicure look lovely?

I painted it to match our trim : Benjamin Moore Navajo White in Satin

Here is the "After" photo of the paneling with the shelves installed.  I didn't take photos of the shelving installation... because... well, they went up so fast, I painted them and then they were finished before I knew it!  Sorry.

We got the birds beak brackets from Home Depot for about $10 each.  The shelves themselves are 1x12x8 pine boards with 1 x 2 1/2 trim pieces on the perimeter.  Mike secured 3 of 4 of the brackets into studs so the shelves are very sturdy.

I still haven't decided on an official display of my things on the shelves, but I'm working on it - probably an entire post in itself. 

As you can see, we also replaced the light fixtures - source links here :

Next up, the counter tops!

UPDATE : Here is the link to the completed kitchen!


  1. It looks lovely! What are you planning for the exhaust? I did not have one in a previous kitchen as it was an older house. Not an option I would want to deal with again.

  2. Fantastic DIY Jenny and I cannot wait for the next installments!

  3. so much better!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Incredible - what a fabulous transformation! You are an absolute genius at visualising the full potential of a space aren't you - and it's such a joy to see! Can't wait to see the rest.
    best wishes from England!

  5. Looks sooo pretty, Jenny! Such a difference! We recently removed our uppers and added open shelving and I LOVE it. I look forward to seeing the rest of your changes!
    PS. Emma was an a-d-o-r-a-b-l-e little lamb!

  6. Love how my move to MA came right on the heels of your move to KC. I too want to spruce up our kitchen a little before delving into a major re-haul in a few years so your posts are great to read/look at. I noticed in your kitchen and in your bedroom in an earlier post your window treatments but you didn't mention where they came from. I'm looking for some ideas for good curtains and rods without breaking the bank. Can I ask where you got yours?

  7. Nice work on the paneling Mike! Very pretty Jenny.

  8. So does this mean you'll be living without a microwave and stove hood vent?!? Looks very pretty. I love it but I'm not convinced my cabinet innards would make such a lovely open display...something to think about, I suppose

  9. Oh my gosh. Thank you for posting the 'in between' photos. We just moved into a historic home this weekend and are in the process of major demo. It's nice to have the reminder that it gets horrid before beautiful!

  10. Anonymous12:12 PM

    Waiting for the update.

  11. I love the clean look of open shelving done right. This looks amazing and perfect for a small budget. Can't wait to see what's next!

  12. What a great DIY! I love how much fresher, cleaner and modern the kitchen looks!

  13. Great look!! I want to know if those pine backssplash panels work well with water, since they are in the kitchen

  14. Brooke5:31 PM

    Looks great!! I live in the same neighborhood (similar size kitchen) and would love to brighten it up like this. My only question is what did you do with the microwave?

  15. Kitchen renovations are one of the toughest home renovations, but it’s also equally one of the best. First of all, it gives way to improvement in terms of cleanliness and design, which are important aspects in every home. The new backsplash and upper cabinets made your kitchen look brighter and definitely better. Just remember to keep the area clean to retain that distinctively bright charm! :)

    Alana Geikie

  16. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, do you think you could e-mail me?


  17. Anonymous4:00 PM


    We are in the process of picking brackets out for our open shelving. I love the brackets you went with from Home Depot; however, I cannot find them in the store or online. How did you purchase yours? Did you go to the store directly? Any help would be very much appreciated.

    Love your blog and have tried many of your recipes with great success!!

    I was going to email you this questions, but could not locate an email address for you.

    Thank you in advance!


  18. Nice. You did an awesome job in your kitchen remodeling!! I soooo love the transformation!

  19. I love the Wainscoting Back Splash and would love to use it in a small update of my kitchen. My concern is it will be on the same wall as my sink. How do you think the wainscot will hold up with water spotting or cooking splatters?

  20. Hello,
    I wondered about any electric conversion issues with the European stove? I have one ordered. Found that it does not come with power cord, so am wondering if I can possibly use cord from my old stove.
    Thanks, lovely kitchen.



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