got countertops installed yesterday, now i'm sooo overwhelmed!

frugalnotstingyJune 5, 2013

Looking at my kitchen last night after the countertops were installed left me feeling so overwhelmed. I really could use your advice and guidance. I don't have a very good sense of style and color.

1. The cabinets- don't compliment my granite. I was hoping just changing the hardware would do the trick but looking at it now, I don't think that's going to work. I read & read the posts about repainting cabinets here... can someone help direct me to what color to go with? They are solid & in very good condition and we can't really afford new ones.

2. The backsplash - I thought I had it pretty right on with the glass tile color but now it doesn't look like it really matches. I was planning on using glass tile as the field (the only sample they have for the color - emser's lucente morning fog came in that small ones but I will be using the 3x6 ) and the mosaic over the cooktop. The big sqaure one is a ceramic that also comes in a subway tile. What do you guys think?

3. Wall color - any suggestions?

I would really appreciate any advice & guidance. I think Advil will be my good friend till this all gets done



Oh, I think my husband is coming around to putting pendant lights over the peninsula. I am looking forward to saying goodbye to our popcorn ceiling! :-D

This post was edited by frugalnotstingy on Wed, Jun 5, 13 at 18:13

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debrak2008

Take a day or two before deciding that the granite doesn't work with the cabinets. Often when there is a drastic change such as a new floor, counters, etc. at first it doesn't feel right. Relax a little and then revisit. From what I see on my laptop it looks fine.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 4:54PM
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nobees

Are you leaving your walls that golden color? I'm no designer, but I think maybe if you change out that color things will blend better. It seems like a lot of gold with the golden oak cabinets plus the walls.
Oh, it does look like you plan on changing it, sorry! I had to re-read. I'm not sure what would go. I'm not good at color-choosing.
It's hard to tell what things look like with the lighting in the photos too. I don't like the ceramic that comes as a subway--I like the other shades better.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:09PM
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akl_vdb

I'm having the same problem, and your counter seems to look fine. I agree with debrak2008, take some time. I'm getting used to my backsplash that didn't agree with me for the first couple days.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:11PM
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akl_vdb

I'm having the same problem, and your counter seems to look fine. I agree with debrak2008, take some time. I'm getting used to my backsplash that didn't agree with me for the first couple days.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:12PM
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Sherrie Moore

Take some time. I think your cabinets go with your granite! First I would change the walls. Maybe something more neutral like SW Universal Khaki or BM Huntington Beige.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:15PM
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frugalnotstingy

Ok. I'll leave the cabinets for now.

But definitely need backsplash ideas and wall color. Painting the wall is the cheapest way to go. :-)

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:16PM
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melissaki5

I think the counters look fine. IF you still don't like them after a few weeks and want to paint them, I think white would look good or gel staining them a dark java color would also go. I have never painted cabinets nor gel stained cabinets but there are threads on the gel staining with very detailed instructions. I searched to try and fine the original celtic moon post to no avail but I did find another thread with the instructions inside. As for the backsplash I like both the gray glass tiles, I just can't decide which one I like better. I have the same granite and have been without a backsplash for almost a year now. I would love to say I am a member of the ABB club but I still have not picked out my cabinet handles either. (Dh curses me out everytime he opens a drawer) Anyway I have been worried about picking out a tile with more than one color in it for fear it would look to busy with the granite. So that makes me lean towards the plain gray glass tile for you. I have been mulling over a dark blue glass tile for myself so that is something else you can think about.

Here is a link that might be useful: Gel stain

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:41PM
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melissaki5

I also wanted to post this thread which has a few before and after gel stain pics -

Here is a link that might be useful: gel stain 2

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:46PM
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deedles

I think the counters look nice with the cabs. The gold wall is throwing me off, though. The tile seems to compete in busyness with the counter top, IMO. I might pick a larger format of something. But that's just me considering this for a couple minutes..

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 5:51PM
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ginny20

I agree with deedles. I like the granite with the cabs, and I like the gray glass, but the small tiles are too busy for me. Maybe a larger format gray glass.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 6:22PM
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Holly- Kay

I think the granite looks quite lovely with your cabinets. I loved everything that I chose but upon installation I have hated everything so far until the next morning or the day after that as my mind started to see not the change but how nice the actual things looked on their own. The only thing that I have been over the moon about so far is my Whitehaven sink. That is so much prettier IRL than any picture could convey.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 6:27PM
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tbo123

I think the countertops are beautiful. The cabinets are old and worn out. and, they are oak. I hate oak.

I would paint them or refinish/reface them. That is, IF they are wood. If they are particleboard or MDF, I wouldn't bother. Whichever way, it would be a good idea to get rid of the exposed hinges also.

The orange paint is kind of ugly.

The tile ideas are nice but, you're still going to have the cabinets. The new counter and tile will just add to the misery of the cabs. I would think it prudent to just work with paint and forget the tile.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 6:33PM
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debrak2008

Frugalnotstingy, I can honestly say that I do not have any issues with your cabinets. If you haven't already clean them well (they don't look dirty) touch up with stain any spots that need it, and change the hardware. Paint colors and BS I'm not good with. You kitchen will look great when its done.

This post was edited by debrak2008 on Thu, Jun 6, 13 at 7:03

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 7:04PM
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tbo123

Sorry. didn't mean to be offensive. Just sayin what I see.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 7:07PM
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Holly- Kay

Your cabinets do not look old or worn out and your granite looks just lovely. You will find just the right bs to pull it all together. I can't wait to see more pics of your lovely kitchen!!!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 8:34PM
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cookingofjoy

I think the granite looks great with the cabinets and flooring. It looks very warm!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:01PM
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valinsv

I also agree that the cabinets and new granite look very pretty together; however, I would suggest that you stick to warmer (or neutral) colors for your backsplash and wall paint. Greys can make a warm colored wood appear more orange that it really is and that may be what is throwing you off. Also, the type of lighting you use can make a tremendous difference so try out some warm and cool lighting to see if one of the other is more preferable.

One of the things I love about your granite choice is that it looks like it could go with either a warm or cool color scheme. If you want to work more greys into your space, then I do think you may want to consider painting your cabinets white or a java gel stain.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:24PM
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ashef

I think your cabinets, counters & floor are beautiful together, and I think your cabinets look fine. I don't like the orange paint or any of the tiles you've shown, though. The wall over the counters in the first picture you posted looks like a beautiful blue/aqua color on my computer and I love it with the other elements in your kitchen. But then the color is just yuk grey in the other pictures, so the blue/aqua is apparently a lighting quirk. The blue/aqua looks so fabulous -- why don't you try a color like that , such as BM Palladian Blue, Scenic Drive or Smokestack Gray for the room? Then you can start over looking for backsplash tiles.

Allie

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:27PM
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blfenton

I think that the counters and cabinets are a great combination. I, however, think that there is a better backsplash choice out there. Your choices are simply ok with the counter but I think you need something to tie the cabinets to the counter.

The large tile needs to be a little warmer and the smaller tiles are too fussy. Oak cabinets have a very definitive and very strong pattern in them with the grain and the small-patterned tiles scream at the oak grain.

I would probably keep the backsplash very simple and let the patterns of the counter and cabinets take center stage. They look good together.The floor looks good with your look as well.

If you like the glass what about a glass subway tile. Something with a more linear line to it might work better. I'm also wondering if the rectangular field tile might conflict shape-wise with the floor tile. Just a suggestion to try.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:39PM
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oldbat2be

Like the countertops a lot. You will have counter stools I think, in front, which will do a lot to hide the cabinets about which you are not so crazy.

Once the light is up, please take a few pictures from straight on and I will try to photoshop a few options for you.

Debrak - yikes!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:45PM
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islanddevil

Tbo you don't mean to be offensive? Jeez, hate to hear you when it is intended!

I don't think your cabs look worn out either and I think the countertops go well with the cabs. That granite is beautiful, what is it?

To me it's the BS that doesn't coordinate. Too modern for the more traditional cabs and I don't think painting them will change that.

I too would recommend living with the cabs and countertops and take your time deciding on a BS.

Agree about the wall colors, especially the gold. Try something more neutral while you decide. Don't want too many elements and colors competing for attention.

Please keep us posted!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 10:12PM
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teachertile

I would paint the walls a light gray with a greenish undertone. If you redid your cabinets I would refinish them with a darker stain. I would not paint them, even though that seems to be the thing to do on here.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 10:18PM
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miss_kenda

I don't have much advice but wanted to say I think your granite is lovely.

I personally prefer painted cabinets however I see you have other trim work that is stained the same color as your cabinets so I'm not sure painting is the best option in your house. I think we would need to see other pictures of the adjoining areas.

Just painting the gold walls will help a lot and I love all the natural light you get from the window over the sink.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 10:54PM
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frugalnotstingy

Thanks everyone for the input!

melissaki5 - thanks a lot for the link!

Debrak - The cabinets have not been cleaned once since we moved in 6years ago :-o

Tbo- the wall color is inherited.

Allie - the blue/green walls are just unpainted green board. :-)

Oldbat2be - yes, I would be getting counter stools.

Island - the granite is Bianco Romano

Can you guys give me an example of warm or neutral tiles? I work better with examples. :-)

The backsplash tile used in the picture is the same as the small square tiles in my original post. Is it too modern for my kitchen?

I am attracted to the transitional style kitchens whenever I browse for ideas.

This post was edited by frugalnotstingy on Thu, Jun 6, 13 at 0:21

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 11:07PM
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CKGM

I have very similiar countertops and although I thought I really wanted Grey, I ended up staying in the warm family. I did ceramic hand glazed subways in a color called butter and although I initially hated my backsplash, I adore it now and it's my favorite detail in my kitchen. Glad I didn't do glass- our kitchen was transitional but that would have been too modern.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 11:46PM
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frugalnotstingy

ckgm, would you pls post a pic? Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 12:14AM
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doctheokie

Is there grey in the countertop if so you could paint your cabinets a mid to dark range grey which would be considered a neutral. Just learned that from my KD today.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 1:20AM
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ellendi

Bianco Romano is more in the taupe family, so I can see where there is a disconnect with your oak cabinets. I add my vote to gel staining them. Then, add a simple cream backsplash and I think you will love your kitchen.
Many people have painted their oak kitchens. It is not easy, You want to fill in the grain and it is a lot of work.
If you go this route, I would instead suggest replacing the doors and drawer fronts and then you just have to paint the frame. Look at linelle's kitchen, this is what she did and it looks great.
You are not alone in this. My Giallo granite (turned out much browner than I thought when installed) clashed with my white cabinets. It took me two backsplashes to get it right. So, I think you are right in thinking that the oak color does not compliment the granite.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 6:40AM
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Linelle

Another thumbs up for your granite. It's got movement without being too busy and it's got warm and cool elements.

(Thank you ellendi for the nice compliment! Much appreciated.) Even though I painted my golden oak cabinets white, I still like stained wood. It may be just the time of day or the particular camera shot, but your kitchen looks like it doesn't get a whole lot of light. If that's the case, I'd be wary of staining the cabinets darker, even if it is the easier route to take.

I didn't actually paint my cabs myself. I bought new doors and drawer fronts and had the boxes painted in place. The grain wasn't filled first, but very little of the original oak shows, mostly just the frames when you open doors (now full overlay). I must say, the paint and new door styles make a huge transformation. Professional painting isn't cheap, but things may be more expensive in my area (SF Bay Area).

In any event, I concur with those who say to paint your walls in some lighter neutral color and then sit back and reconsider. Set your backsplash decision aside until you figure out what you want to do about your cabinets. Even if you have to repaint the walls, you need to eliminate the current color because it's really throwing things off.

As for blue/greens for the b/s, they *will* make the gold in your current cabinets pop like crazy.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 10:53AM
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frugalnotstingy

Linelle, when you replaced the cabinet doors did u still get oak?

Unfortunately, I have to decide on my backsplash because my undercabinet plugs & lights is Adorne & it sits on top of the backsplash. I do not have a working garbage disposal because power is turned off & it is a big pain not having that 2 toddlers. I already had to fish everything out one time because I forgot - NOT fun. Ugh!

I am going to SW today & get some paint samples for my wall.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 11:16AM
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rosie

So much good advice, and I like what you're working with too, Frugal. I have painted drywall for a backsplash, and I definitely agree that painting for now would both look good and give you some time to take in and muse. A neutral that harmonizes and blends--instead of making the gold in the cabinets pop by complementing and contrasting with it.

I also agree with Blfenton and others that, because of the strong grain in your wood and the beautiful pattern in your stone, a very simple backsplash would likely be the way to go. No patterning beyond quiet grout lines that blend with the tile. A painted backsplash, which is of course as simple as you can get, should also help you decide if you need more detail there.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 11:19AM
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Linelle

Frugal, my new shaker doors are paint-grade maple with MDF insets. After being painted, there isn't any visible grain, perfectly smooth. Even with small bits of the original oak boxes being visible, it's just a peek here and there and truly you can't discern any grain unless you get in close and look for it. It isn't anything to me.

Like you, I have a peninsula (love it!) and the end and side facing out are now covered with panels (doors that don't open), further mitigating the prominent oak grain.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 12:11PM
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cathy725

Paint your walls. Even if you paint them white, it will be a huge difference and you will like your granite. Your granite goes great with your cabinets. Your wall color is really distracting you. Seriously, if you can't find a nice light beige to paint the walls, paint them white or off white and then you will have an easier time picking the backsplash. It will be easier to pick the final wall color too. That wall color will really be hard to ignore while you try to choose colors.

Paint is inexpensive and easy to change--do it and you will be much happier as you try to pick your final colors.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 1:12PM
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nosoccermom

I really like your granite --- and quite, frankly, I think that oak is making a comeback. Perhaps not the honey oak but rather a darker stain. If you want to change the color of your cabinets, I highly recommend gel staining. It's actually fun and very satisfying, even without much experience. It's a lot harder to paint oak with a more or less professional result (the grain will still show through).
This is actually growing on me:

For the backsplash, I'd pick something very neutral, not the glass mosaic. And if you can't decide now, there's nothing wrong with a painted backsplash.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 1:49PM
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Pipdog

I wouldn't gel stain the cabs a darker color because the space already seems a bit dark and I think going darker would intensify that. I'd brighten up the space with some white paint for those cabs - they look like they are in great shape. The counters are a great start, and I like the idea of a gray transitional backsplash and a greenish/gray (Gray Owl?) paint color.

Here's a before/after of a kitchen with oak (?) cabs that were painted white - the space feels larger and lighter.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 2:10PM
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nosoccermom

I agree that the white looks great and so much brighter. I love white kitchens. However, I have to say that none of the three painted oak kitchens I have seen over the last 6 months or so, look what I would call acceptable. The grain showed through, they were not smooth, and they had paint drips. On the pictures they looked great, but IRL, they looked like a botched DIY job.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 2:44PM
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deedles

For some reason I can't get cocoa for the back splash out of my head. Creamy ivory walls...cocoa bs with the cabs and counter?

You could try the bs with paint and see which color is awesome. OR, you can do the photocopy tiles and stick the paper to the wall trick... wasn't that Bee?

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 3:04PM
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nosoccermom

Here's a pic of a nicely painted oak cabinet. And even that I personally don't particularly like.

I would first deal with the paint color and the bs and then re-evaluate. Check out the link on updating oak cabinets without painting or staining them.

Here is a link that might be useful: updating oak cabinets

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 3:08PM
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joaniepoanie

I think it's the wall color throwing you off because it is too close to the cabinet color....perhaps a pale gray with warm tones to match your BS tiles and counter. Cheapest thing to try first....try a few samples and live with them for a few days. If you still hate it..then think about redoing cabs..but that is a big job so know what you are getting yourself into. I like the BS tiles---not the little square ones--I think they would be too busy---but the rectangular ones or even a solid soft gray subway. My kitchen is similar--I have natural maple cabs, counters very much like yours with gray and honey/gold tones and a gray floor. I don't have much wall space, but they are painted a a much deeper tone of gold than my cabinets so there is a contrast...but a color expert said they should be gray...just havent done them yet.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 3:15PM
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ginny20

pipdog's pictures are good examples to look at, but for me, they don't have the desired effect. I like the "after." It is very bright, crisp, and airy looking. But I prefer the "before." I find it warm and elegant. I would probably have changed the BS, maybe the wall color. Just as you're considering in yours.

I don't think those were oak that got painted in that picture. I think they might be cherry, unless they were just stained to look like cherry. I think cherry would be easier to paint because it has a finer grain.

In my Cape Cod, I did a transitional kitchen with stained cherry cabs, and it flows with the decor in the rest of the house. The OTK, pretty as it is, would have looked out of place. So before you go to the trouble and expense of painting the cabs, think about whether it will fit with your house.

I agree with those who have suggested just painting and living without a BS for a while so you can take your time making a decision.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2013 at 4:19PM
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frugalnotstingy

Thanks for all the advice! Will be quiet for a few days - prepping the wall.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 2:11AM
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lilymila

Here is a thread about light or dark cabinets with bianco romano granite.

http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/kitchbath/msg0515581228707.html

http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/kitchbath/msg1014010517239.html

Personally I don't like oak cabinets because the busy grains. This means you have to use a plain counter and plain backsplash to not have the different patterns clash with each other. The picture nosoccermom posted have neutral counter and neutral backsplash with oak cabinets, the grains are also a little less noticeable with darker stain.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 3:12AM
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psyohe

Frugal, I have an enormous 20" tablet that I use like a laptop. That orange-yellow-goldish paint dominates my screen. It is powerful. When I cover the screen on the left side, everything on the right looks so much better.

Do you have any old light colored paint or primer you could cover it with temporarily? Maybe you could use a sheet. Then live with it before making any more decisions. Cabinets are too nice to paint when trying to make time and money stretch. I live in the country on a lake. I could never have white cabinets even though they are lovely.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 9:30AM
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navi_jen

I think of these changes like hairstyles...a week of 'settling in time' for a minor change, couple of weeks for a major one.

I agree with changing the paint and making the tiles larger. Small tiles are too busy with all the other colors. I like the idea of larger grey tiles...but you need something to pull these colors together. Perhaps have an accent strip (the 3x3 glass) that pulls in the oaky & gray colors together? (I would go with a smaller pattern than below, but I think you get the idea).

http://www.overstock.com/Home-Garden/Somertile-Reflections-Square-1-inch-Nassau-Stone-and-Glass-Mosaic-Tiles-Pack-of-10/5787912/product.html?cid=202290&kid=9553000357392&track=pspla&ef_id=UbIajAAAARK27xCM:20130607173820:s

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 1:43PM
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frugalnotstingy

Thanks, lilymila!

Peke - wiping down the walls now, getting ready to prime.

Navi-jen, thanks for that link! I saw this there too....

http://www.overstock.com/Home-Garden/SomerTile-11.75x11.75-in-Reflections-Piano-York-Glass-Stone-Mosaic-Tile-Pack-of-5/5862694/product.html

does this look too busy?

Here is a link that might be useful: Somertile piano-york

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 4:07PM
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frugalnotstingy

Kinda related...

Does it make sense to paint trims and baseboards in my kitchen & breakfast nook area white?

It opens to the family room which has a lot of wood too. Kindly ignore the mess. :-)

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 4:41PM
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frugalnotstingy

Kinda related...

Does it make sense to paint trims and baseboards in my kitchen & breakfast nook area white?

It opens to the family room which has a lot of wood too.
I really like the wood beams and was thinking of staining it to a different color. And kindly ignore the mess. :-)

This post was edited by frugalnotstingy on Fri, Jun 7, 13 at 16:47

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 4:42PM
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navi_jen

Frugal,

It could work. I'm not a big fan of the the oblong tiles (again, I think they are busy), but that's me. Would you use this as an accent strip and pair this with a grey glass for the bulk of the backsplash?

I am a visual person and was struggling with a simple subway tile backsplash on my previous condo's kitchen. Something I did to help visualize my condo kitchen is buy a small subset of tile and did a mockup on a small portion the wall (I used double sided tape). It really helped make sure I had the right proportions.

Maybe you could order a sample of tiles (backsplash & accent) and do the same? Would that help?

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 6:31PM
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andreak100

I agree that it's the orangy-gold-yellowy paint that seems to be throwing everything off. I wonder what a warm blue might do for the room? It may be a bit tricky to get the right shade - you need enough warmth for the cabinets, but your counter reads slightly cooler. With the garnets that are in your counter, you could pick up the reddish-wine color and use that as an accent...that can work well with a blue. Usually with colors it seems like it's more about getting the right undertones rather than the right color family.

You've got oak cabinets - I'm assuming they aren't going anywhere for a while, so you need to make peace with them. I think that with the right paint color, you can make the cabinets and the granite work. There is always the gel-stain option and if changing them I'd probably look that route. I don't think that painting the oak is a good idea since it tends to look like...painted oak. And that's a look that I really don't care for.

You mentioned that the ceiling is changing - does that mean that you're putting in some can lighting as well as the pendants?

I like the linear tiles...but not with your cabinets. Their style is more contemporary/transitional than what I think your cabinets can muster...the cabinets have a much more traditional look so you might do better with something a bit more classic in the tile line.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2013 at 10:49AM
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kailuamom

It's not the oak per se that is bothering me, but the movement of the grain on the back and end of the peninsula (also at the open shelves) combined with the movement in the granite and the pattern of the tile floor.

From what I can see, the doors and what is showing of the frames seem ok, but I'm not liking the expanse of orangy movement against the other elements. I wonder if there is a way to cover those expanses, and them with the wall paint changes, I think you'd be fine.

Of course, I have no great ideas for covering it up!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2013 at 5:07PM
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nosoccermom

I was wondering if gel staining the back of the island or perhaps painting it would be a good idea.
Oh, and I like the color of the bigger tile a lot better with your granite, but then, of course, we all know how monitors distort color.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2013 at 9:17PM
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psyohe

Frugal, inquiring eyes want to see pictures! How does it look now with the orange gold painted over?

I am living through your remodel...mine is on hold. ð peke

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 7:25PM
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Holly- Kay

Yes Frugal, please post pics. I think your kitchen is lovely and I bet new paint really makes it shine!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 7:59PM
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Cuisinart Mandoline Slicer - 086279039965
$79.99 | Hayneedle
Carlton Carbon Oak Saddle Stained Wood Shaker Kitchen Cabinet Sample
CliqStudios Cabinets
Avanity Westwood 24" Bathroom Vanity - White Washed
Modern Bathroom
Virtu USA Caroline Avenue 72.8 in. Double Vanity in Grey with Marble Vanity Top
Home Depot
Avanity Westwood 30" Bathroom Vanity - White Washed
Modern Bathroom
CounterTop Bathroom Sink in Black Mat Finish
maestrobath
61" Granite Vanity Top for Double Semi-Recessed Sinks
Signature Hardware
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