Today we’re revealing another kitchen remodel. Our client, who has lived in this 70-year-old home for almost 50 years, decided that her original dark kitchen needed an update. The main goal was to open up the space by removing part of the wall between the kitchen and dining room. Doing this will add more light throughout the space and be more inviting for every day living and for entertaining, as she frequently has family and friends that visit. When doing this remodel we also wanted to respect the integrity and personality of the original architecture and design of the home.

The Before

The existing kitchen had poor storage primarily because of the two blind corners created by the U-shaped kitchen. We also wanted to address the lighting situation in the kitchen. Before, there was only one central light fixture. The client also wanted more work space, as her current situation wasn’t giving her that.


Floor Plan Before


kitchen before photo

kitchen before photo

kitchen before photo

Our Design Plan

Proposed Floor Plan

With the removal of part of a wall, we were able to create a peninsula. This peninsula will serve multiple purposes for our client. She could serve a buffet meal, sit with a friend over coffee, or just enjoy time catching up with family on her laptop while sitting there.

A corner sink was the perfect solution for this kitchen. It eliminated the blind corner issue because we were able to install a corner lazy Susan near the range for great storage. It also created a long straightway of countertop. Great for food prep and working while enjoying the view out the window.

As you can see from the following 3D renderings, we also addressed the poor lighting situation. We recommended to our client that she add recessed can lighting in the ceiling as well as LED tape lighting under the upper cabinetry to serve as task lighting.


The Reveal

Traditional Kitchen

Traditional Kitchen

Originally, our client had a table and chairs in the area where the new pantry and refrigerator are placed now. We removed the existing pantry that was built to conceal the chimney and installed new, built-in cabinetry along that wall. The built in cabinetry conceals the chimney nicely with a shallow pantry to the left, more storage in the center, and space for the refrigerator. The upper cabinet in the center has space for the microwave to get it off the countertop. Plus there is more counterspace to conveniently set things when reheating and defrosting items out of the nearby refrigerator.

Traditional Kitchen

Traditional Kitchen

Soffits were typically used in this age of home and the goal was to remove them so the cabinetry could go to the ceiling. In two story homes, like this one, it was also common practice to run plumbing in these soffits for second floor bathrooms. Sure enough, after cutting some holes in the soffits BEFORE ordering cabinetry, pipes were found that couldn’t be moved. To address this issue, we had our custom cabinet manufacturer fabricate the upper cabinets on the range wall with increased rails behind the doors.  With this solution, we were able to fulfil our clients request to take all cabinetry to the ceiling.

Extended Rails to Disguise Existing Soffits

We also utilized an 18” dishwasher in this space as it was the perfect size for the client’s lifestyle and needs. We often used this size dishwasher in secondary kitchenettes or lower-level bars.

paneled dishwasher

traditional kitchen faucet

Let’s talk about storage. Good storage at that!! Adequate storage is what everyone wants and needs. We used a pull-out rack to the left of the range for easier access to the items our client wanted to keep in this small space. Independent rotating lazy Susan shelves were used in the corner cabinets for efficiency. Deep drawers worked great for the pots & pans, plasticware, food storage. Drawers are actually being used more often than roll outs these days. This is because items are less likely to fall off and stay contained in the drawer box. Above the refrigerator we used vertical storage for her non-breakable items.

cabinet roll-outs

A clean, uncluttered, full height quartz backsplash was an important element that the client wanted. We used angled task strips under the upper cabinetry that are ergonomically friendly to use. See picture below. We worked with the electrician on the placement of the switches so they would not interrupt the beautiful end result.

Angled Task Strips

Angled Task Strips & Full Height Quartz Backsplash

The Designer

Mary Grunow

With over 25 years of experience, our certified kitchen and bath designer worked with the client over several meetings to achieve the end result. By focusing on educating the client, the attention to details, her creativity and passion makes every project a success. Her natural ability to establish deep, long-lasting relationships makes our clients know their concerns are heard and being cared for.



Project Sources

Cabinetry: Plato Woodwork, Alder with Briar stain, Shaker style door

Countertop: Wilsonart’s Desert Wind

Hardware: Top Knobs


If you’d like to know how we can help with your future project or home renovation, contact us here to schedule a consultation. If you’d like to see more from us, check out our portfolio, other blog posts, and our social media pages!


Recommended Posts

215 Pine Street
Sheboygan Falls, WI 53085
Countertops 101