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Upgrade your builder grade kitchen in 5 easy steps

February 11, 2020

I'm Caireen, Owner and Principal Designer at Shift Modern Home, lover of wallpaper, tiles, gin, Formula 1 Racing and potatoes. Who's with me?

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Are you saddled with a kitchen that although it may be functional, is uninspiring and not at all stylish with it’s builder grade finishes? You are not alone! It is often the case that a full kitchen renovation isn’t viable or even justified when the cabinets are in great shape and the layout works.

Case in point this kitchen we updated recently which we took from bland to luxe by changing 5 key elements – and it didn’t include painting or re-facing the cabinets.

1. Add a cornice moulding (sometimes called a crown moulding) to the top of the cabinetry that fills in the gap between the cabinetry and the ceiling. We opted for a modern profile in keeping with the overall style of the condo, and had our painter stain it to match the existing cabinetry. Not only does this elevate the entire look of the kitchen to something way more custom, it also negates the need to clean the top of those cabinets. That’s a win-win in my book!
Victoria Park Condo Cornice Moulding.jpg

2. Replace the backsplash. We were fortunate that the quartz counters were easy to work with, but the existing tile seemed heavy and dark, didn’t work well with the counters and no doubt would be difficult to clean. (Do you see a theme here!!!?) We chose an easy-to-clean sleek ceramic marble subway tile with a gloss finish to help reflect the light in this dark kitchen and provide a hint of pattern. It’s so much better!

3. We added modern cabinetry hardware to replace the lack lustre builder supplied pulls. These satin nickel pulls have a subtle linear detail that adds the perfect touch of modernism to this kitchen.

4. Select statement making modern pendant lighting that is not only functional but beautiful too. What’s not to love about these gorgeous pendants? We also added added pot lights, under cabinetry lighting, and put all the lights on dimmer switches for maximum flexibility in creating the right levels of light, for entertaining or prepping the cocktails.

5. Great styling always finishes a design off properly, and this modern kitchen is no exception. A few chopping boards in marble and wood, paired with a vase of fresh greens and a simple utensil pot brings a simple but modern aesthetic to the counter top. Play around with ceramic pots, containers and plants to achieve a similar look in your own kitchen.

Victoria Park Condo Tile.jpg

Victoria Park Condo Hardware.jpg


Victoria Park Condo Kitchen.jpg

And there you have it! One luxe kitchen without the hassle or expense of a huge renovation.

SMH Pinterest Graphic - 5 Ways Kitchen Wow Factor.png


Victoria Park Condo Kitchen.jpg

Thanks for stopping in!

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