Before & After: Adding Classic Character to an 80s Kitchen — Sweeten


Last week we looked at the overhaul of Claudia’s bathroom, which got a beautiful, classic update in keeping with the character of her 1929 apartment building on Manhattan’s Upper East side. Today, we’re diving into the renovation of her kitchen, which was similarly transformed. And the transformation wasn’t just aesthetic, but also practical: despite being quite generously sized for an NYC apartment kitchen, this kitchen was lacking in storage and prep space, thanks to an earlier renovation that replaced much of the cabinetry with an eat-in bar.

Claudia’s new kitchen is beautiful, bright, and classic, thanks to new white cabinets, with panel detailing on the doors, that replaced the old 80s ones. In place of the old, hated linoleum floor there’s a new one, made of small pearlescent stone tiles, that grounds the space and adds a bit of contrast. The countertop, and backsplash, are a smooth white Caesarstone.

The new renovation also maximizes the amount of cabinet space in the kitchen, replacing the old breakfast bar with a wall of cabinetry. On the opposite side of the room, two glass-door cabinets above the sink provide a space to display treasured items.

Contributing to the kitchen’s serene, uniform appearance are some elegant custom cabinetry details. The refrigerator is concealed behind custom cabinet doors, and another panel hides the range hood (a new and welcome addition to the kitchen). This keeps the focus on the Bertazzoni oven, another kitchen upgrade. In the tiny sliver of space between the kitchen and the refrigerator, a pull-out cabinet holds cooking oils and cutting boards — just another way that Claudia’s new kitchen is practical as well as beautiful.

Claudia found her contractor on Sweeten, a free service matching homeowners with local general contractors. You can read more about the project, see more photos, and find sources on the Sweeten blog.

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