In this post: Sometimes you have to do a kitchen remodel in stages. Here’s how we used white quartz countertops to finish our white kitchen makeover.⇒
When you really want something, and you’re willing to wait long enough, often you will get it.
Ok, admittedly, some things are out of our control. But when it comes to things that we just need to save money for, it’s amazing what time and patience will do.
Yes, you may have to give up some other things or do without for a while, but having a long term plan can pay off.
Such was the case with our kitchen.
After a renovation that was done in two separate stages, I finally have the room I’ve wanted.
From the start, it was never in the plans to gut the space and put in all brand new. We live in a townhouse that is relatively new, and ripping out a kitchen that I simply didn’t like aesthetically seemed a tad indulgent.
And yet I’ve always wanted a white kitchen.
This goes as far back as the renovation of our last kitchen, done 25 years ago, when I was told by the contractor that a white kitchen would soon look dated. Twenty years later, I moved into a home with cherry cabinets and black counters and still wanted that white kitchen.
This time I was determined to get it.
The first round of remodeling was done a few years back, in fact not long after moving in.
I found the dark kitchen terribly depressing and hubby and I discussed the renovation before buying the house because for me it was a condition of the purchase. We agreed to an update, but one that would maintain the current footprint and work with the existing cabinets.
You can check out the details of that makeover in my earlier post, but I assure you it was transformative.
We replaced the backsplash with white marble, painted the cabinets and added glass fronts, replaced the tile floor with faux wood tile and changed the island counter to white quartz.
The difference was staggering and I loved it!
Almost all of it.
But of all the posts I’ve since done of my kitchen, there was one view I never showed.
The side of the room where the sink is located was always missing from my posts.
I still hated the stainless steel sink, the utilitarian faucet, and most of all, the black granite counters.
When we’d replaced the island counter it had a big impact, but the perimeter counters were still dark. I wouldn’t have minded as much if it wasn’t for the sink and faucet, but as a package, it was truly not my favorite view. Add to that the fact that behind the sink counter we have a bar counter that overlooks the family room and it was way too much black stone.
But I knew all those counters would be a big expense, so I did my remodel, enjoyed what we’d done and tried not to think about the ugly sink area.
And I waited.
Meanwhile I started saving every penny I could.
And then one day, an opportunity presented itself.
For years our oven was threatening to quit. Every time we used it, we had to turn off the circuit breaker to get it to re-set because of an error message. This became part of our cooking routine. We knew it was on borrowed time, and sure enough one day, after we turned off the circuit breaker, it wouldn’t go back on.
Now, some people might view this as a bad thing, and truth be told, it wasn’t even attached to the counters, but I took it as my opening.
Our cooktop, the only other appliance we had not yet replaced, was pretty outdated although still functional. If we replaced the two appliances, it was the perfect time to get new counters, along with a sink and faucet.
I suppose the fact that we weren’t spending on travel this year helped make the final decision!
The double oven
I had been thinking about the aesthetic components for a long time, but when it came to the appliances I was pretty clueless.
There are ranges I really love, but our kitchen is set up for a cooktop and double oven, so a separate French range was out of the question. That severely limited my options.
This was also happening in the middle of a pandemic so I wasn’t shopping in person and stock was hard to get.
I was lucky to find a salesperson who completely understood what I was looking for and recommended an Italian brand I had never heard of that had chunky European style knobs and a professional look.
(See resources below.)
The coordinating cooktop from the same brand was exactly what I wanted with sleek lines, an industrial look and brass burners.
Honestly, I didn’t expect to find a cooktop that I liked so much!
Sink and faucet
With the appliances out of the way, I moved on to the fun part!
Sure, the broken oven was the catalyst for this update, but it had nothing to do with what I really wanted to change.
Step one was to pick a white sink. I did some research of the options for materials and decided on fireclay. I didn’t want to deal with the weight and complicated installation of cast iron but preferred a quality sink, so that pointed to fireclay. I also knew while I’d like a farmhouse sink, I didn’t want to re-do our under sink cabinets and lose storage space at the same time, so I went with an under mount. I absolutely love having a large sink with no divider!
Next came my absolute favorite thing. And I’ll say up front, this was one place I was not going to compromise or skimp on price.
I’m talking about the faucet and I knew, as I’ve known for years, that I wanted a warm-toned brass bridge faucet with lever handles and a side spray. It’s like jewelry for the kitchen and I’m crazy in love with the model I got!
White quartz countertops
While the sink and faucet are key accents that give the kitchen character, the biggest change came from the new countertops.
I was pretty sure I wanted marble, no matter how many people told me it wouldn’t wear well. I don’t mind the little imperfections that happen over time, as they mellow into a nice patina, and I’m not always thrilled with the forced look of quartz.
BUT when I went to the marble yard, it turns out the nicest slabs I found were in fact quartz. So quartz it is!
We wound up replacing the island, as well, even though it was already white quartz because it wasn’t the exact same pattern and we wanted it to match. The new piece is SO much nicer for the kitchen. And now I have the extra slab to use in a bathroom down the road. 🙌
I do not miss those black counters one bit!
Of course, with all the fresh new white counters, some of the accessories needed updating, as well.
The first thing to go was the black coffee maker. Thanks to a reader, I learned our Keurig comes in white, so that was an easy fix. I also replaced the vintage bread box with a newer one, as the chippy patina was looking a bit dingy against the clean white quartz.
My favorite thing about our new counters is that I can actually see and appreciate our decorative pieces. It’s also a wonderful backdrop for little pops of color in the way of flowers and fruit. Even our purple sponge looks pretty in this atmosphere!
This was one project that I derive pleasure from every day, as soon as I walk into my kitchen each morning. It’s so light and bright that even on dreary days I feel uplifted.
It may have taken 25 years, but I finally have an all white kitchen!
And we don’t have to turn the circuit breaker off after cooking, either.
White Kitchen Remodel Resource List
To get the look, click on the items below for direct links to the products. Where actual items were no longer available, I’ve provided similar options. If an item is out of stock but may be restocked, I left it on the list.
(This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.)
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