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This once-cramped kitchen underwent an amazing transformation, for just over $5,000. The budget was kept low, thanks to the innovative homeowners who exercised their DIY muscles and looked for creative budget-friendly solutions. For example, the homeowners were inspired by a high-end, modern chandelier and created a custom fixture at a fraction of the cost. Outdoor rope lights amp up an inexpensive base fixture, while a vintage-style ceiling medallion balances its contemporary flair.
The owners of this 1950s Cape Cod home wanted a family-friendly kitchen with an open layout. They started by gutting the space (only 11x9-1/2 square feet), removing the wall between the kitchen and dining room, and claiming 27-1/2 square feet from the dining area for the kitchen.
The unique kitchen island design is a combination of stock cabinetry and a countertop fashioned from concrete slab. A miscalculation in the amount of concrete mix led to the kitchen’s best amenity: a butcher-block center on the island. The substitution, referred to by the homeowners as “a very lucky accident,” resulted in a perfect food-prep area.
In addition to constructing a functional kitchen, the owners wanted one that had a fun, spirited personality, too. They mixed modern elements such as stainless-steel appliances, hardware, and shelving with quaint, traditional ones, such as this apron-front sink. Inspired by the sink’s glossy sheen, they covered the range wall in shiny white subway tile.
Stainless-steel shelves from a restaurant supplier take the place of traditional upper cabinets, keeping the kitchen bright and open. Two undercounter refrigerators were chosen in lieu of a standard-height refrigerator to free up floor space and allow the kids easy access.
Without upper cabinets, the kitchen needed a pantry to store food and cooking supplies. The homeowners’ creative solution? Lockers found on Craigslist and retrofitted with shelves. The lockers, which are recessed into the wall for a custom look, bring a touch of whimsy to the eclectic kitchen.
Exposed ductwork is now the kitchen’s command center, covered in magnets and memos and flanked by office organizers.