Spring has sprung—and does anything make you happier? I can’t think of anything better than getting out our cute clothes (I mean, have you seen Hazel in a sunhat?), dusting off our patio furniture,...
California Casual Kitchen Tour – HELP! I Wrecked My House Season 2
It feels like I blinked, and a whole new season of HELP! I Wrecked My House came and went. Not only was it Season 2 of HIWMH, but the fourth full season I’ve done my own show with HGTV. That’s a lot of completed house projects piling up! So I want to take some time to really reflect on the rooms of each house we did this season. Let’s kick things off by touring the kitchen of Season 2, Episode 1, shall we? This California Casual kitchen tour is from the home of Sarah, Matt and their three young daughters. They wanted a BIG kitchen that could keep up with their busy schedules. But when I got my hands on this project, the kitchen was already gutted. It had nothing in it at all.
When I tell you this kitchen had nothing in it, I mean it. Matt and Sarah had already taken down a wall that was making the previous kitchen feel small. We brought in an inspector to make sure the framing was done to code (and that the house wouldn’t fall down!), and once we cleared that hurdle it was time to get to work.
Matt and Sarah had already bought their appliances without drafting up a kitchen plan, so we had to configure the new kitchen to fit around those measurements. All they really had planned on before I got there was installing a huge kitchen island that they could all eat at together. I allocated $65,000 of the $75,000 budget for the kitchen alone. It needed literally everything!
We gave Matt and Sarah the huge kitchen island they wanted and topped it with a beautiful porcelain countertop that’s printed to look just like marble. Porcelain is one of my go-to materials for countertops because it’s basically indestructible – you can cut on it, place hot pans on it, and so on. This island is 10 feet long – probably one of the longest islands I’ve ever done! On the face, we installed a round matte porcelain mosaic tile in a beautiful blue tone. We added a brass touch to the toe kick on the island by taking brass strips I purchased for $200 and glueing them on. We roughed up the brass just a bit by taking a 120 grit sandpaper to it and distressing the finish. The result feels like super custom brushed brass, but it was affordable and easy to do.
As for the lighting, the matte black can lights become an architectural detail on their own. I love how modern they make this kitchen feel.
One of the interesting but tricky aspects of the kitchen before was the large passthrough window above the sink looking down into the sunken den. I didn’t want to leave the space completely open in case someone was in the sunken den in need of quiet time while someone else was banging around with pots and pans in the kitchen. But since this family has three young children, I didn’t want to close it off either because it allows for sight lines into the den.
So I brought in someone special to help me with a solution… To solve the passthrough issue, I brought in my friend John Moss, an industrial artist and metal designer. He made what we called this custom “new vintage” factory window for $1,500, and I love the charm that it adds to the space (on BOTH sides!).
Matt, Sarah and their girls are always on the go and grabbing their water bottles on their way out the door. To make things a little easier and more organized for them, I thought it would be fun to give them a custom water bottle cabinet. My carpenter Micah Girelli was able to incorporate this functional storage for the family on the end of their kitchen island. Now I want one of these cabinets in my own home!
We also installed a custom coffee bar for the family in the kitchen. It was such a cool component of this space that I actually wrote an entire blog post just about the coffee bar.
Thanks for taking this walk down memory lane with me! I hope you liked it. If you want to see this entire home project, check out the Season 2 Episode 1 Sourcebook!