Updating a Family Kitchen Stuck in the ’80s

Open shelving in a kitchen
Look at blank walls in your kitchen as opportunities for storage.

Install Floating Shelves

Our shelf brackets are made from ordinary galvanized pipe screwed into a floor flange. While we install those on the wall, Chelsea and Beth create shelf boards from 2-by-12 lumber.

After the shelf stain dries and we put the boards in place, we install new Kichler light fixtures, mount some modern cabinet hardware and hang the cabinet doors so we can pull this kitchen back together.

Get the Look: Here are the light fixtures we purchased:

Samural Pendant Light
Linear Ceiling Light


Chelsea Lipford Wolf and Danny Lipford visit with homeowners Jason and Beth Quave
Chelsea and Danny visit with homeowners Jason and Beth Quave.

Post-Production Thoughts

Jason and Beth’s kitchen has tall ceilings and gets lots of natural light, but because of the dark stained woodwork and the low hanging cabinets, it felt small, dark and dated.

Plus, the heat and smell of cooking always lingered, thanks to the recycling range hood.

Now, their kitchen has a completely different feel. The removal of those dark overhead cabinets makes the room feel twice the size it did before and the natural light that’s being shared between the rooms makes both areas brighter.

Of course, painting the cabinets a lighter shade and adding new light fixtures didn’t hurt, either. The range hood also adds light as it makes a bold visual statement and quietly removes the heat and fumes of daily cooking.

That 80’s feel is gone too, thanks to more modern cabinet hardware and the homemade floating shelves that Beth wanted.

And, at only about $1,200 for materials, we didn’t spend a fortune to freshen up this kitchen.


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