COTE DE TEXAS: An Updated Kitchen

An Updated Kitchen

We starting building our house when our daughter wasn’t quite 3.  She’s almost 18 now.    We were young (well, not that young, we married late), and had just moved back to Houston after living a year and 1/2 in Ft. Worth for Ben’s job.  We bought a lot in West University to build our dream house on and in order to save money on architects, we drove around the neighborhood and found a house we liked and copied it.   We made a few changes – put in a bathroom where there was originally a laundry room, and added a bank of French doors to the back wall – where before there had been only one, along with a few windows and a bay for the breakfast room.  The bank of French doors really added value to our house and picked it up a notch, design wise.  The rest of the windows were aluminum – I begged Ben to let me put in wood windows – he said we couldn’t afford them, they cost $10,000 extra.  Now, I was naive back then, and didn’t think to figure out how little $10,000 over the life of a 30 year loan would have cost us.  He did promise me though, that once we moved in we would slowly replace them, one by one.  We actually did replace one – a year after we moved in we took out the aluminum windows in our dining room and installed a set of  French doors.  But the rest of the house, 15 years later, still has all the old windows!   I did hold my ground on the hardwood floors  and Ben actually agreed to put them in, both downstairs and up.   A baby, two cats and a dog were his incentives.


My kitchen 045

Before:  white tile countertops and a taupe & white tile backsplash.   When we moved in , our walls were taupe and perfectly matched the taupe backsplash color, but that has long since changed.  Even then, I wasn’t a granite girl for some reason.  I was going for an informal, country look with the tiles.


Most houses in our revitalized inner-city neighborhood are newly built, taking the place of the old house on the lot.  Today, they are building beautiful stuccos in West University, but back then, the typical new house was a red brick Georgian, with a living room and dining room flanking  a center hall with a staircase; the family room and kitchen made up the back and brass hardware was a must.  We prided ourselves that our house was different because our floor plan wasn’t like the Red Georgians.  The ceilings in our front room were quite tall and we had a large entry hall with a winding staircase.  The back wall off the entry hall is angled, which causes my kitchen to have an angled wall.  You can guess how much I like that angled wall today!   I look at it and wonder - what was I thinking?    Over the years I have decorated, God, have I decorated, and changed the furniture and paint and window coverings, to0 many times to count.    We’ve made other small changes, but we have never updated, our house always seemed new to us.   Until, that is, the hardwood floors’ stain started to go dull and white in paths around the house like a dog does to the grass outside.   Overnight, it seemed, our house became dated  and in need of a major overhaul.  Writing a blog and seeing everyone’s newly bought and remodeled houses didn’t help  much either. 


  My kitchen 053

Before:  back and white appliances mishmash.  Last year, we finally replaced all our brass hardware for iron.


The problem is we love our house, despite the fact that there is no storage and the bathrooms are terribly in need of a fix up and that Elisabeth’s room is about a foot bigger than a jail cell, and our backyard is actually a courtyard.  Poor thing – Lizzy never had a trampoline or a swing set, or even a place to chase her dogs around, instead she’s had a life of hiding from the neighbors’ prying eyes, a hazard of living on a town lot just 50 x 100.  Yet, we’ve been happy here, very, very happy and hopefully we’ll be happy here for quite a few more years, even though I am a different person than I was then.   I’ve changed dramatically in what I want in a house and what my design aesthetic is and sometimes that and my house don’t gel.  We aren’t poverty stricken anymore like we were back then when we begged my parents to buy our lot for us.  We could move now,  we could probably afford something a little bigger and something a little nicer and more Kurt Aichler-ish.  But, our house is like an engagement ring – today, you could afford to buy more carats than you could as a newly wed, but it’s your ring, and it means something deeply to you, more than just bling.  Like Ben says, in another one of his favorite sayings, the only way he’s leaving this house is in a big box.  It’s us. 


 My kitchen 054

Before:  the bar area.  The cabinets had to be painted after the marble went in. Though they were gray, they had too much of a yellow tone for the marble.  Love that checkerboard backsplash!!    When we moved in – I thought my backsplash was the coolest thing.


So, if we are going to stay here, I want marble in my kitchen and bathrooms.  I want nickel faucets and stainless appliances and I want a new window in my kitchen too, after all, it was promised to me 15 years ago.  Ben admits it’s time for a little remodeling and he agrees to let me update my no-straight-wall kitchen that really could use a total gut job.   We should gut it, I know in my heart.  We should add new cabinets and remove the island, close off the opening to the family room and put in a gorgeous range with a hood fashioned after a fireplace, but really, why?   We barely use the kitchen as it is and who wants to spend the money to fix up something that would be overkill for a house?   I mean, truthfully, I want that magazine-ready kitchen as much as the next person,  but with today’s economy, I feel grateful for a small makeover.   Very, very grateful.   So, that’s what we decide on, a minor remodeling.     A hunt for white Carrara marble began and began and began and lasted over six months.   I’ve written here before that quarries aren’t producing the crisply veined, white Carrara right now and in Houston there wasn’t a decent slab anywhere.    I was beginning to think the remodeling wasn’t going to happen until one day I was out and ran into the talented, interior designer Lisa Epley.   Telling her how much I loved her just published kitchen and it’s beautiful Calacutta slabs, she tells me that she had just seen a new shipment of  gorgeous slabs across town.    I sped off to go see them for myself and once at the stone yard, seriously  hyperventilating over excitement, I signed off on three slabs off Calacutta Ora that cost 3 times the price of the Carrara.   Yikes!   Over budget before we even begin.  Lisa also gave me the name of her fabricator and after six months of waiting to find the marble, her Jorge changed out my tiles for the Calacutta in just one day.  Even more amazing was that I ordered everything for the kitchen makeover online and never had to leave my house:  the appliances, the sink, the faucet and the window were all bought on the computer. 



Lisa Epley’s dressy kitchen with her beautiful Calacutta Ora countertops – a chance encounter with her led me to my marble slabs.


The entire process took just a few days and the only mess was the dust left in the cabinets.  It was amazingly easy going.   Sweet Erika from Urban Grace helped me immensely with the decision to hone the marble and I’m so glad I listened to her.  White honed marble is much easier to maintain as it doesn’t etch, or lose it’s polish, because there isn’t any!    Now that the kitchen is finished, we would like to update our bathrooms and put the white marble and nickel there too, but with the economy, the bathrooms are on the back burner until things turn around.   Ben is really happy with the kitchen and proudly shows it off to anyone who comes over.    I am thrilled too even though I still go over the debate of a total gut job vs. minor remodeling in my head.    In the end, I’ve moved on.  Now, I’m obsessed with our floors that are badly in need of refinishing.  There’s always something that needs to be fixed in an older house, because, after all, our house isn’t new anymore.  I start to think, maybe it would be easier to move.    I’m just not ready for that big box yet.



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My very favorite part of the kitchen – the  Shaw farm sink, the Perrin and Rowe polished nickel bridge faucet, and the new casement window – that I can actually open!!



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The wall with the sink.  My new dishwasher is extra quiet, which I love.  And we got a new, extra quiet food disposal too. 



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Looking from the island to the sink wall.


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And looking across the island towards the family room and bar area.  This was the major decision -  should we remove the island, close off the opening to the family room,  and create a range with a hood alcove where the bar area is.  It certainly would update the look of the kitchen.   The project would have been much larger if we did this though – the gas line would’ve had to have been moved and we would have lost much needed storage space, all while incurring high carpentry costs.   I go over this in my mind and seeing how easy our makeover was, I think maybe we should have done it after all.   But truthfully, not a lot of cooking goes on in this kitchen, so why bother?  Plus, it’s nice and open now, whereas it would be so much more closed off the other way.   Oh well – we’ll never know!    And yes, I hear you – what do you mean, not a lot of cooking goes on here?   Well – Ben likes, make that loves, to eat cereal every night for dinner.  So I eat a salad while he eats his cereal.   Writing this, I know I’ve just totally aggravated and disgusted my father – sorry Dad!!!!



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At dusk, looking towards the breakfast area. 


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At night, looking towards the appliances.


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My bar area.



The breakfast room.


Now that the kitchen is done, we’re facing the next big project.  The stain on our hardwood floors is gone, done, finished.  Something needs to be done about it and soon – we’ve put this job off for a while now and each day, the situation gets a little worse.   When we first stained our floors I never thought they were dark enough and for years and years I’ve dreamed of ebony stained floors.   But now that the reality is here, I want a change - I’m thinking that I want light floors, painted floors, to be exact.  Like this:



Suzanne Rheinstein painted these floors – I love this look but without the checkerboard pattern.    I  would paint my walls like this, a more creamy and less yellow tone to go with the floors.   I would steal this furniture too while I’m at it.  I love everything about this room!!



Another painted wood floor, also by Rheinstein, though I would paint mine without the stripe.  I like each color here – the gray and the cream.  That’s the big decision now, go with more gray or more cream?


So, the floors are the next  Cote de Texas project.  Oy!  The problem is – the hardwoods are downstairs and upstairs, so the job will be large, rather we paint or restain.  So, we procrastinate and live in denial.  We’ll have to move out for a week while the job is done.  We’re thinking we might rent a room at the hotel in the Galleria.  Can you imagine how much fun that would be for Elisabeth to just walk out the front door and be in the Galleria!!!  Maybe too much fun, on second thought.   I dread this project, and wish I could be Samantha and just twitch my nose and have it all finished in a second.  But the more I look at these pictures, the more excited I get!   The change would be so great, I think it would be like living in a new house – without having to leave in that big box!


  1. OMG, this kitchen did not disappoint!!!! I love all of it, especially the marble. Great job Joni, now go for the floors!!!!

  2. I love your new kitchen! I have recently begun to follow your blog and it is Addictive. Love your style in general.

  3. Joni,

    Your kitchen is absolutely beautiful. My husband and I had the kitchen inn our alsmot 70 year old house remodeled last summer and I love its look and functionality - it gets a pretty good work-out from my husband who loves to cook. In any event, we have carrara counters and asked that they be honed, but I'm wondering if from your comments about honed v. polished we didn't somehow end up with polished as ours have etched in places where acidic food has been left (good cook, lousy cleaner). Just wondering. Thinking about contacting Erika for her take. I can't say the etching bothers me a whole lot, but I do want to get what I paid for.


  4. Joni,
    How beautiful. I'm so glad Erika talked into the honed marble -- it's amazing!! I love the sink, the faucet and your new window....

  5. Joni - I love what you did with your kitchen and I applaud you for not gutting it. Brand new is beautiful, but I am tired of opening every magazine just to see another brand new house. Maybe that is why so many are going under? People need to see what they can do with what they already HAVE! Your kitchen is beautiful. I, too, have been yearning for the Carrera marble. It is time for a counter re-do and maybe a repaint for me, too. Thank you so much for sharing your kitchen! Nancy

  6. Your counters are beautiful and I'm glad to hear you're thrilled with the honed finish --it's my personal favorite. Honed marble is downright sensuous, I can't walk past it without running my hands over it. Great job with the sink and fixtures too --beautiful job!

  7. Marla -polished is very shiny - reflective, honed is dull. there is an obvious difference. but i will say this - even honed, there are still issues with mine. I accidently left a glob of salad dressing overnight on my slab, and now, there is a small dark circle there. bleach will take it out I heard, but I'm scared to try it. email me if you want to talk!


  8. OMG, My jaw hit my desk as soon as I saw your first after picture. Your renovated kitchen is to.die.for!! I can NOT believe you said it was no big deal in a comment you left for me!! OF COURSE its a big deal, its amazing!! It looks like a whole new house with just that update, I love love love it!! Its right out of a magazine, its stunning!!

    I also love the fact that you said your house fits you and you're not interested in moving on to something bigger and better. It is like a ring, it means something and "just fits". I hope one day I get to have the same experience with a house (and a ring for that matter haha) actually I'm dreaming of that day. Till then my future is apartment living and trying to make it fit for the time being is sometimes easier said than done though.

    Bravo Joni, beautiful, beautiful job...although, seeing your gorgeous work before I never expected anything less!

  9. worth the wait? i'd say a definite yes!

  10. It's stunning Joni, simply stunning. I'm in awe, really. I never even know about Ora marble. Beautiful!

  11. Very pretty, Joni. Beautiful updates and I'm impressed that you chose to make changes that didn't require a total gut-job. It's easier to start over with an empty shell, but I love the creative challenge blending old with new presents. Oh, and I'm totally jealous of your casement window over the sink! Perfect.

  12. I think you made the right decision -the light remodel over the major. In the long run, the kitchen is NEARLY as good and 1/4 the price. Plus, there is something to be said for sentimental value of a house. I love that you went for the extra thick countertop- NICE - plus honed is way better than polished (which I hate!). Generally people go for a valance of marble to get the 'look' of thick but yours must be real, right? I see the veining running along the top and down the side on the island. Little details like that make a WORLD of difference.
    Floors are so tricky, I love your idea of painting them (ebony is hard to keep clean looking, and need to be refinished every few years to keep the dark color, anyway). It will go nicely with your grey cabinets as well.
    I'm so happy you're staying with your house and just improving it :-) I hope I get to see it next month when I visit!
    And I love Lisa's kitchen -she has the mirror backsplash I've been wanting for my little kitchen. Maybe after my tax rebate I'll finally go through with it.

  13. Beautiful kitchen! I love the marble countertops. Also, if you don't mind me asking, where did you get the vase on the island that looks like a piece of wood? I love that too! Deborah

  14. Timeless and so beautiful, just perfect. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Your kitchen is so beautiful. Of course, that's no surprise. I especially love the view to the bank of french doors. I bet that's lovely when the sun is pouring in. I also love the idea of painted wood floors. I think grey would be lovely with your marble. Just my 2 cents.

  16. gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! the marble alone gives me goosebumps; the picture of your shaws with that lovely faucet is almost too much to take. i can almost feel the gentle spring breeze coming through the window with a scent of roses.... i don't think i'd mind doing dishes!
    we have a shaws in our future, and seeing yours just fills me with increased excitement.
    also, i LOVE the thickness of your marble.. and the veining.... wow. just beautiful.

  17. Joni,
    It's beautiful! The marble is just gorgeous and makes the room although the sink, faucet, and net window ain't "half bad" either!

    What color are the cabinets?

    Congratulations on a job well done!
    Nancy W.

  18. On second thought, looking at it again. Maybe it would be too much grey. Cream would accent the white in the marble and contrast with your cabinets. This is why I can't make decisions! There are so many beautiful options!

  19. Minor remodel= MAJOR impact! Th marble looks stunning. The fawcet is lovely too. It was so worth the cliffhanger. Smiles,LC

  20. Spectacular transformation. It looks like a new kitchen! Good on you for staying put. I agree with the diamond ring analogy. It's a reminder of where you came from, treasured memories... it's who you are. Enjoy your beautiful new kitchen! A-M xx

  21. Joni,
    Your new kitchen is beautiful! You should feel very happy and proud.

    My husband and I also built our dream home (at the time!) 15 years ago in the Houston area near Richmond. Our son was 6 at the time and just turned 21. We just remodeled our kitchen last year. We are in the process of replacing some of the aluminum windows. I too begged for wood windows when we built, but it ultimately became an area where we cut costs.

    Everything you said about being attached to your house is exactly as we feel about our home. We love our house and the lot it sits on. We too could trade for a new house, but a new house would not have the lived in love and character that our home has.

    Next on our remodel list is the hall bathroom. I have gone back and forth on carrera marble. I love the honed look in your kitchen and am exicited to learn of Ora marble.

    I love your blog. I discovered your blog and through yours, others I now follow when your house was featured in Houston House & Home. I have vowed to create my own blog this year. Thanks for all you great posts!

  22. It's just beautiful. I told my husband last night that I am going to start buying what I need to update our old kitchen, piece by piece, month by month. A friend just put in white marble counter tops made from salvaged walls of an old hospital ...and it is lovely.

  23. Wow!!! I am green with envy!! It makes me sick to read that quarries are not providing carrera any more. I won't have a kitchen to redo for another couple of years at least and I NEED(!!!) those counters!
    Congrats on a beautiful new kitchen. I can't wait to see what you do with your floors!


  24. Joni, this is just too gorgeous for words. I'm sure you spend many enjoyable hours here. Oh sighhhhhh my countertops are going to look quite sad and unviting when I get home.. :-( I'll just have to redo some of the vignettes and call it good for now..hugs ~lynne~

  25. Joni,I love the fact that you always keep it real.You are practical but not at the cost of beauty,Love that about you.We had the same dilema,not ready for a whole re-do but needed to freshen up the 1970s look.I am with you I have always loved white tile and carrara marble.I kept my existing whitle tile in hopes of someday having marble but a little leary of stains in the marble.I have a couple of questions.Do you have any staining problems,Is your slab that thick or did you add the squared edge.I have Carrara in my entry and my guest bath and I love it but the Calcutta looks whiter and I like that look.Would love your opinion now that you have actually lived with it.Love the idea of the painted floors.How fun to see your process, thank you for sharing, Kathysue/

  26. lovely!

    I have an "interim" kitchen. meaning the one we had when we moved in made me want to cry, but we can't afford to gut it yet, so i am making it better with cheap fixes (paint!!!)

    and you gave me the confidence to say, heck with it, let's go pink! so, cream and gray and touches of shocking pink!!! i will post pictures when it is done.

    cross your fingers for me everyone!!!!

  27. Love, love, love your new kitchen and your attitude about the whole thing. Your home has your personality written all over it and it's all good. Congratulation on a job well done!

  28. Oh, oh, oh! I'm gasping and commenting before I've even read the entire article! I love what I see. The sink and the polished nickel P&R!!!! Oh, I must calm down! I just think it's great! Way to go Joni!!!!!

  29. I love your new kitchen, LOVE IT! So beautiful and serene. I also love the tone and feeling of this post. It has a gracious and grateful feel to it...a thankfulness for what you have, not a focus on yearning for what you don't.

    Your pictures look professionally done! They are beautiful and crisp.

    I know how hard it is to put yourself out there and show your kitchen - after all, we all have you on a pedestal! You are even higher on that pedestal now that I have seen your kitchen.

    PS - I adore my light floors. They were out of style for so long, but I am so glad I kept them. They add a lightness to the house that would not be achieved if I had dark or honey colored floors. I had hardwoods installed upstairs last year, and it was so interesting to see the process - I had no idea that they mixed white paint into the finish to make it look like that!

  30. Beautiful kitchen update. Thanks for sharing your thought process, as always. Your creativity comes through in an inspiring way, and we all benefit. You're the best!

  31. I've been reading your blog for some time now but just needed to comment today for some reason!! Your kitchen was the perfect remodel for you. I almost always opt for open rooms (as they relate to kitchen and family rooms) rather than closed ones. Also, by your own admission, you don't cook a lot so why invest in costly appliances that won't get a workout?
    In addition to my college degree I have a degree from a culinary school so my kitchen gets intense workouts and I feel entitled to spend money on getting my kitchen just exactly how I want it, given the amount of time I spend in there! ;-) However, whenever I see a "trophy kitchen" in someone's house I just think "what a waste".
    We built our dream home in CT a few years ago right before the movie "Somethings Gotta Give" came out. I can't tell you how many phone calls I got saying I just saw your house in a movie!! Not really my house but very similar in many ways with the exception of the much heralded kitchen!!!! Oh well, no one's perfect. ;-)
    We now find ourselves in CA working with an architect to begin a major remodeling effort involving gutting, adding on, digging basement and other various adventures. Yesterday I was at the design center in San Francisco doing some initial reconnaissance for the project! I can't wait to get started and love all the ideas and resources that I garner from your website! I'm sorry to run on so long in such boring splendor but I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your site and to thank you for all the help and ideas you give me!

  32. Joni, Joni - please hire your cook. What a joy to be in your kitchen. The window/sink are my favorite - dreamy, to be able to open a window!!!! And, the marble: aahhhhhhhh. I know what you mean - I'm not a granite girl either, couldn't tell you exactly why. Thrilled you had show & tell. Amazing post!!!

  33. Kathy - email me with your questions, ok?

  34. Hi everyone - thanks so much for all the positive feedback! This was hard to post and talk about - I'm glad you all liked it!!! seriously, I was worried about that.

    Thanks for all your love and support. Y'all are the best ever!!


  35. Joni - it looks great. Truly. This is just what the dream house needs but there is no budget even for a face lift. I'll live through you for a while!

  36. Joni, your kitchen is wonderful! I can't imagine that you would think it would disappoint us. What you did is perfect as usual. My favorite thing to make for dinner is resevations (quote borrowed from someone else on the internet, but so true in my case, too)!

    In another house we had back in the 1980's, I had a black and taupe backsplash! :-) Taupe has always been one of my favorite colors.

    I like your marble a lot, and I like the casement windows above that great sink and neat faucet. We had casements in our previous house, too. It was a Mediterranean Revival residence. We replaced something like 30 windows (as I recall) with true divided light wood casements. The house had been built in the 1920's, and someone had "updated" in the 1950's with aluminum jalousies. So we had no choice. It was either replace or live in a house with the drapes closed! LOL!

    Aluminum casements wouldn't bother me (they were in an addition when we bought the previously mentioned house), but the jalousies we had were old and drafty and bore a striking resemblance to a back brace. They had no redeeming qualities. ;-)

    Your house = perfection.



  37. Marla - email me if you need to!!!

  38. Joni, your kitchen is gorgeous! I you hadn't given us the back story I would have never guessed it was only a minor remodel. Love the look of honed marble so great choice there and your faucet is beautiful! Amazing job!

  39. Joni! Your kitchen is absolutely gorgeous! I think this is my favorite post of yours, ever. I love hearing the thoughts on your process and of your own home, and the kitchen is wonderful. I love the shot of the sink (that faucet is divine!!) and that sweet window! I love how the marble goes right up into the window sill! I might have to borrow that idea. Yoink!

    I see a lot of creamy painted floors in the beach cottages and they are so summery and fresh and gorgeous! I am sure they would dress up nicely for your elegant home! I can't wait to see what you choose.

    I have some kitchen questions for you, do you mind if I email you?

    I'm bookmarking this so I can peek in at will. You must be so, so happy with everything! YAY!

    xo Isa

  40. SALLY - email me - I would love to chat with you about your SGG kitchen!

  41. wow- waht a difference changing the countertops made! great job!

    and i so understand about the floors- never a job to be taken lightly. you'll get to them when and if you are ready! in the meantime, what a difference you've made! congrats!

  42. Joni! What a treat to see this post, after a verrrry long Friday! I am so glad you are enjoying your kitchen. Your counters, your casement window, all of it looks awesome! I know you are enjoying it... it's so peaceful and beautiful! As far as that "salad dressing glob"... don't hold me to it, but I heard once that if you mix a small paste of Oxy Clean (powder) and a little water and set it on the "glob stain" it'll pull the stain out... ? Worth a try? Have a wonderful weekend... thanks for a wonderful Friday 5:00 read!

  43. Deborah - that vase is from Oly Studios = its faux bois! thanks for the comment!

  44. Fantastic job Joni.

    The marble and new appliances made such a dramatic impact. Your choices were perfect. The view looking out the pane windows is beautiful.

  45. Joni, may I sign up to be your personal cook and dishwasher?!?!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your kitchen sink, marble, faucet and casement window!!!!! Be still my beating heart!!!!!

  46. joni, it looks so great. honestly. I love the cream and barely discernable taupe stripe.

    Honed marble is the only way to go. absolutely. no more of that shiny shiny.

  47. Thanks for sharing your home with us! These are my favorite posts of yours-- what does Joni do with all her information she gathers. You've created a beautiful, warm home! Love it! Can't wait to see more. Gorgeous faucet!

  48. Joni- your kitchen is GORGEOUS!! I love everything you did! Love the marble! Perfect timing as just this afternoon we were at the stone fabricator! I'm looking at a sample of soapstone and honed carrera as I type!!
    Splendid job!! You & Ben should be oh, so proud!!

  49. Joni, I cannot believe how you've downplayed this; it's beyond gorgeous.

    I am so proud of you for not caving to peer pressure and ripping out the entire thing when you didn't need to. This is exactly what I've been wanting to do to my own kitchen (gray cabinets and everything!). So, so beautiful. You have amazing taste.

  50. oh WOW!!! The honed is beyond gorgeous and so "oh just look at me over here looking all pretty without needing to be flashy"

    Your kitchen is fabulous! And the sink - I die for!

  51. Ditto!!!! and Ditto and Ditto ..times the 52 comments before me!

  52. Love the kitchen. And i love the box house idea. That is a great way to think about it. I am going to tell my hubby that. Very sentimental. mishelle

  53. Joni, wow!! You did a beautiful job. I would be very happy in your kitchen. Enjoy, enjoy!

    Don't go with ebony floors. We have them in our master bedroom and while gorgeous, they show every speck of dust and pet hair.

  54. Oh, my goodness, Joni! Your kitchen is absolutely beautiful. It has such a charm about it, too! I know what you mean about older homes, ours was built in 1970 and our kitchen is pretty small. We were going for a remodel last year and chickened out and worked on our entry instead. I wanted to ask you a question, I see you have your cooktop in the island. Is your exaust fan in the middle of your cooktop? We have an electric cooktop with the vent in the center. I hate it, but don't think there's much I can do about it. Someone told me you don't need an exaust vent, but I think he was crazy!
    Go for the floors. I so enjoy it when you show your own home.
    Have a beautiful weekend and
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia :)

  55. I love your kitchen and your blog! It is one of my few "daily reads". Thanks for sharing all your expertise. Christy

  56. Such a GORGEOUS kitchen!!! You lucky LUCKY gal! So elegant! MY poor little kitchen still looks like YOUR "Before" kitchen! I still have white tile counters and backsplash, white appliances and no hardware AND aluminum windows. Sigh. Slinking back under my rock ... with my decor magazines ... and slurping my martini ...

    Jan at Rosemary Cottage

  57. Wonderful job, Joni! Like you, I've never been a fan of granite and try my best to steer my clients elsewhere. There are so many gorgeous surfaces today, your honed marble being a perfect example! And I love the angles in your kitchen. It has the personality that so many newer homes lack!!

  58. Wow - I've always liked marble but never drooled over it. Your marble is so crisp and beautiful. The whole part w/the farm sink, the bridge faucet and the casement window - just gorgeous!

  59. Loved reading the thought processes leading to your decisions and design. Best part was hearing how much your home means to you; that's what it's really all about. Beautiful kitchen and blog post!

  60. Joni, Joni, Joni, your kitchen is amazing! I love the marble and especially how the edges of your countertops are so thick. Just gorgeous. I wouldn't change a thing.

  61. Joni, your kitchen is STUNNING! But I wouldn't have expected less. Thank you so much for sharing it. laurie

  62. JONI: BRAVO!
    I missed this one. I'd been wanting to see your redo.
    I want everything you did. Love the edge treatment...that sink SOOOOO rocks. I must have it. I'm printing this post and taking it to bed to pore over before I go to sleep. Your kitchen: exactly what I want! We need to talk!!!
    You did a great job. I love everything.

  63. Oh, Joni, your kitchen is every bit as beautiful as I knew it would be! Your granite is exquisite - well worth the wait. Your sink and faucet and casement windows are so visually appealing. Bravo!

  64. Oh Joni - your kitchen looks beautiful and just perfect to me! I love that you are totally honest and also totally sensible with your renovations. I cannot understand how many can justify (or afford) the massive renovations to create showhome quality houses that just aren't needed. I am with you - with this economy, it makes so much sense to make reasonable improvements that you can honestly afford and that will suffice. It is so hard to look at people's incredible homes and not feel utter envy - I do! But I am starting late and would rather PAY for my home before I go too far in the hole making it perfect.

    What you've done so far is gorgeous. I love the marble and it's exactly the look I covet too! I also love your bank of glass doors - wish we had a warmer climate!! Your house is gorgeous and I love how you've styled the new kitchen!

    I love all the flowers and colourful elements with all that perfect white!

  65. Hi Joni,

    You have done an amazing job on your kitchen, really lovely! The Shaw Farm Sink is to die for, and the little bar area so charming.

    Sorry to hear about you spot on your Marble, please be careful using bleach. Honed Stone is very porous so their is some extra care. I believe their is a product that may help lift the stain. Good Luck


  66. the changes are just gorgeous. good job. I LOVE the marble.

  67. Joni,
    Marvelous, just marvelous! and I vote for the grayish floors with creamy walls...I'd love for you to see my black granite sink!

  68. Joni,

    Your kitchen remodel is absolutely stunning! I love the photo of your beautiful new Shaw farmhouse sink, the gorgeous fixtures and the beautiful new window. I would be standing there every morning drinking my cuppa joe! The whole remodel is simply divine. It is absolutely what I love -- quiet elegance that doesn't scream cookie cutter like so many of the new homes do these days. You and Ben are very wise and have inspired me greatly regarding thoughts I keep having of moving on up! There is something very special and even sacred about keeping the home that you built together to last forever. Something about our society these days loves throwing those important elements to the side for what's new and trendy. Sometimes we have more than we realize. Thanks for continuing to share your stunning and original home with us.

    ~~ Victoria

  69. After 70 comments...what can I say that is original? Hmmm......Your Dad will get over it. Does your husband like Lucky Charms? And finally...what type of salad dressing do you like? (and yes my friend, the kitchen is to die for)

  70. Kimberly: thank you so much for all your great comments - you never leave your email address, but I wanted to thank you so for all your support!!!

    Jan - Teacats - ditto - never an email and you always leave the best comments, thank you!!!!!!

  71. Joni, it is just perfect. I love your sense of style and the classic look you attain.

  72. Joni, I loved reading the history of your home and your great love for it - that is what a home is all about isn't it. Your renovation is so clever and completely transforming, I think you made all the right decisions. xv

  73. Sharing your thought process is the best thing about the remodel!
    The marble is perfect. Don't worry about the stains. Try the Oxy or a little bleach. The more weathered the marble looks the better it gets. It's just hard to see those first few spots ha ha.
    I love the flowers in the copper pot on the stove!
    And change the yellow paint ha ha. That you can do before the floors.
    xo xo

  74. Beautiful!!!
    Gorgeous photos too..
    And I want your kitchen sink!! ;-)

  75. Looks fabulous, Joni, congratulations! Be well, The Hostess

  76. OH MY...your kitchen is awsome..If my kitchen looked like that,I think I would sleep in there..

  77. Samashing as always. Love the sterling stick turned into an accent light by the bar. Great touch.

  78. What a great and honest post! Loved hearing the story of your forever home...That window is splendicious...and to open it, swoon! Love the extra thick marble...and I so agree with VV...the more stains the more soul (think of real french working kitchens...those marble counters are AMAZING!) Those first stains are so hard though.

    We were in the same boat...complete gut and re-do or just a fix. We chose the smallish fix. It just makes sense.Although your smallish fix beats ours by miles!!

    The floors...In a previous home we painted some of the old wood floors. After time it scatched and scuffed pretty badly (and bugged me way worse than an oil glob on a marble counter would) Just sayin'.

    Love the copper mauviel pot with the Joni, if I don't cook I am sure as He#! going to put that beauty to good use!

    Enjoy every second in it...The whole thing is luscious!

  79. The kitchen looks so beautiful! Perfect choice on the countertops.

  80. Joni, I've been reading your blog for a while and I blame it for the reason that I never get anything done around here. I'm so busy studying your great posts!

    Your kitchen made me gasp. It is beautiful. I know you are an advocate of painted cabinetry, but I have a question. We have cherry cabinets that are only 7 years old. Although they function fien, I'm tired of them and would love painted cabinets. I'm concerned about chipping. What paint type/technique would you recommend. And how much chipping occurs?

    Thanks for your great blog.


  81. oh joni,
    it came out so great !

    what is it about us designers and calcutta.???
    it's the ONLY MARBLE for me !

    but in all honesty, i most identified with the tray next to your sink that read; BUTTER.

    my daughter just gave me the book 'Skinny Bitch' to read.
    She lost 20 lbs.
    ( but she is only 21 yrs old )

    big hug

  82. Love, love, love it! Brava, Joni!!!!!
    This is my very favorite type of post- a real life re-do.
    ps happy New Year!

  83. Hi Joni,

    I always like to think about the evolution of houses. They are a bit like people in how they change and grow.
    Your kitchen is spectactular! The marble is just beautiful.
    There are a few things that I would LOVE to change in our house but the truth is we will be moving in the next 2-3 years either overseas or a little across town so it is really not worth it as it would not add to the price of the home. Sigh. As decorators I don't believe our homes are ever finished. :)
    Thanks for your support. It's kind of like why am whining? Joni has like 100 commentors a day.

  84. Joni-

    I don't know how this happened I have you on my blog roll and almost missed this post!! I love what you did with your kitchen! It is very inviting and simply beautiful!I'm really would love to dip into your sink!!
    Thanks for sharing your heart of the home with us!

  85. I wish I could think of a clever way to express what finding this blog has done for me!! I am a 57 year old grandmother living in Glendale Az and feel like I have a young soulmate in Texas-I have been struggling with a kitchen redue verses complete tear out-you just helped me decide what to do-it is so comforting to know someone that lives in the style you do, struggles with the same thoughts as I do-thank you for putting your thoughts in

  86. Wow Joni! I love your new kitchen. How fortuitous for you to find that beautiful marble! It is absolutely gorgeous in your kitchen and I'm extremely jealous... I think you also were extremely insightful to add the bank of french doors when you moved into your home. It really makes the whole space much more open and absolutely beautiful!

  87. Perfect.

    That's it. That's all I can think of when I look at your after shots.

    Just perfect.

    You are so talented.


  88. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing. I'm trying to convince my mom to get marble for her kitchen redo. What is your favorite cabinet paint color for marble counters?

  89. Oh my, oh my, Joni. I love your kitchen. I just had a marble fainting spell.

  90. ok, now I am looking at my own kitchen's time...I have planstic lam. countertops from 1977 in a pretty yellow.

    I'm calling the countertop guy next week because of your inspiring post!

  91. ***Casement windows, here I come***

    Joni, are you aware that you have a following in Mexico? We just returned from a vacation in San Miguel de Allende (sigh). While sitting in the beautiful Jardine that faces one of the most glorious cathedrals in the world, an expat and I struck up a conversation. Turned out, we are both Houstonians, artists, and frustrated interior designers. She asked if I was familiar with the wonderful COTE DE TEXAS! We even compared our favorite posts.
    You are justifiably famous, my dear.

  92. Joni,
    What a fabulously outstanding job you did on your redesign! It is so bright and cheery. I love your idea of the painted floors...beautiful.
    You have scrumptious taste!
    For the stain on your beautiful about taking a remnant and put the same stain on it...then try different remedies to see how each take out the stain and what it does to the marble?
    When I come to Houston, I'm looking you up!
    Blessings to ya!

  93. Joni
    THank you so much for your post on Jan 10 and this one! I have paint chips everywhere here looking for the perfect white paint to use for my kitchen redo.
    Am also researching cararra vs. a lighter granite... can't decide.
    The dark honed granite that was so popular and my first choice is no longer something I want. So these whites are driving me nuts.
    Your kitchen redo and the sink... love it so much.My house is a 40 yr old split level, with stained dark kitchen cabinets.. so we are configuring them, and painting and doing new back splash, counters. THe wood floors stay. We are doing it the budget way instead of a complete kitchen remodel.
    Once again thanks for making this a"kitchen week".

  94. Joni, what a treat to see your kitchen redo. I think it's perfect & hope you'll be content with it now without the total gut job. I don't blame you a bit for stopping at this part. It really looks amazing with the new counters & I love your island, so I'm glad you kept it. I'd love to have room for one.

    I'm itching for new countertops & with my white-white laminate cabinets, trying to decide which direction to go. I think I'll probably do a dark countertop to play off those white cabs. since I love that combo so much & it's a classic look. I've already got a golden toned tumbled marble backsplash that I'd just as soon keep. I want to keep my redo at a minimum.

    Your's is PERFECT! You have every reason to be very proud of that one.

  95. Just wonderful Joni! These two kitchen posts are my absolute favorites...though I love reading all of them.

    So happy to see marble counters. I was over granite before it started. Just not practical for residential kitchen counters, I don't think. But that marble - so classy. It is just stunning.

  96. Joni-

    This is absolutely phenomenal. If this doesn't get you to stop eating Wendy's salads every night, then..lawdy mercy, there's no hope for you. I would be a cooking machine in that kitchen!! And bravo on the casement windows....of of my fave details in a house!!!! Love every bit of it :) Congrats on treating yourself, you certainly deserve it :)



  97. Hi Joni~

    Your before pictures are nice and your afters are SPECTACULAR!!! I love the marble up the backsplash, tres magnifique!! And your faucet! Wonderful!

    Waking up to your kitchen is what dreams are made of. Thank you so much for taking the chance and sharing with us.

    Lovely ~Miss Kris~

  98. Joni,
    Again I love your kitchen and your whole house for that matter. I am a designer too, and I hope in the future you might address how you go about working with your clients. How do get them to let you work in your preferred style? Thanks in advance, Carol

  99. Great job! That marble was worth the extra cost...your kitchen is beautifulin every way!

  100. Absolutely beautiful!!! That faucet is to die for. And the marble?! Gorgeous!

    I'm thinking of getting a slab of honed marble to top a table that we are using for an island. Our floors are badly in need of restoration, too. So I know how you feel -- it is such an enormous job!

    Congratulations on your beautiful kitchen, Joni -- may you have many happy years there!

  101. Dear Joni,

    What can I say! You did a fantastic job. Remodeling is always a delicate balance. How much should you do?
    I really think you achieved the perfect balance...and you're still married!
    Your slabs are stunning. Here in L.A., there is no Calcutta to be found that is that white and beautifully veined.
    The shaw sink and the perrin and rowe faucet are stunning in front of your window.
    Did you change the color of your cabinets? They look like a light grey now, which looks wonderful with your creamy walls.
    I think light grey painted floors may be in your future!


  102. Absolutely divine!!! Your sink is TDF and those countertops have me green with is amazing!!!! I think you made a wise decision by not gutting the space and starting over. I'm sure you can think of much better ways to spend all of that money you just saved ;o)

  103. It turned out gorgeous! The honed marble just made your kitchen fabulous! I'm in the long process of kitchen redo...can't wait until it's finished. We've lived in our English Tudor home for almost 17 years and feel the same way you do about our home. This home has so much of us into this house it would be so sad to leave it! Thanks for the post..I can totally relate!!

  104. Joni,
    What a gorgeous makeover... the new kitchen is simply divine! The piece de la resistance is clearly that marble surround sink... I've printed out pics of your new kitchen and added them to my "someday decorating" file. Merci for sharing and congrats on your new kitchen!
    The Antiques Diva

  105. love love love your counters!
    i know you have been asked this a million times, but did you buy the marble slabs extra thick or add an extra edge? how thick are they now? thanks!

  106. love,love,love it... my idea of the perfect kitchen... forget about the big stove... you will be empty nesters soon. ya did great... never a disappointment at Cote de Texas !

  107. Hi Joni,
    I'm delurking after many months of reading your gorgeous blog to tell you how inspirational it was to read about your thought process and see the beautiful finished results!

    Could you reply in this thread to tell us all more about the counters? Is the marble really that thick or did your fabricator just do a phenomenal job of adding a front valance? i don"t see any seams.

  108. Joni,
    I can't believe how utterly beautiful your kitchen is with just the countertops (and sink right?) being changed. A whole new Kitchen! I had a client over the other day who is working on putting together a 'look book' for a beach house in Hawaii and I said, 'well you better read this post on Kitchens 101'. She started asking me what her kitchen here in Vancouver would look like painted (her's is currently from the 90's).
    Thank you for the wealth of information you ongoingly share with us!

  109. I would be thrilled to eat cereal everynight if it was in your kitchen! It's perfect, the marble, the sink..down to the roses in the glass vase on the windowsil. I'm so glad you didn't gut...this is just so much better!

  110. Who says you have to cook to have a nice kitchen? It's the heart of the home nowadays and everyone gathers there first when you have folks over, even if it's not a dinner but something to drink and snacks. I for one would miss the dark floors but being the Anglophile that I am, I don't have the appreciation for "light and bright" that you do with French style. I just like the contrast. We have painted cabinets and I love the juxtaposition of dark mahogany stained oak floors with the Kilim Beige paint - but my polish pottery drove that color scheme in the first place since Kilim is an almost exact match in color as the base clay of the polish pottery. You gotta do what makes your heart sing when you see it!

    I too have a Rowe fireclay sink - the same style as yours (the better to bathe grandbabies in, my dear!). And I love it too - it's so gorgeous AND practical. Who knew? Blonde AND brains! :) (the sink, not me...)

    I have marble in my baths but am too chicken to put in the kitchen - I AM a cook and a "stainer" so it would have been foolhardy for me to have done that but it looks fantabulous in your kitchen.

    I think it's the "curse of the decorator" to constantly be reworking things in our mind. I'm constantly thinking about "continuous improvement" on a project completed and have to scold myself to move on. So I understand where you're coming from on that front. What's REALLY bad is when I'm in someone else's house and I'm mentally rearranging their furniture and putting their wall art in the RIGHT places (WHY do people insist on hanging that stuff so HIGH?? or in weird groupings with no common denominator???).
    It's a curse I tell ya!

    Beautiful job - just lovely. Enjoy.

  111. WOW- your kitchen looks amazing!! You did such a wonderful job on it...I think my favorite photo is the first one with the casement window/farmhouse sink and your little pink flower just finishes it all off! :) Great job Joni- can't wait to see what your floors look like!

  112. Simply stunning Joni! I love the marble countertops with the matching splashback - it looks so much cleaner and uncluttered than tiles. I think the painted floor idea is fabulous - I've been suggesting it to my hubby for years but as yet I haven't worn him down! Beautiful post! Tracey xx

  113. Mudrick:

    NO - it's not that thick! I don't have that kind of money.

    it's like three slabs put together on the edge only and so it looks like it is 3 inches thick - but it's not.

    in person, you can sort of see the seams if you really look at it, but at a glance you can't tell at all.

    I think it's a little visible because it's white. with my dark marble you can't see the seams at all. but the look of the thicker slab, is soooooooo worth it.

    email me if you want more info:

  114. Joni, you kitchen looks fabulous! You must be sooooooo happy!! Love your window above the sink. That was how I built my home, all around the window above the sink looking out into the yard! It was always my dream! ~Cheryl

    ps. white or grey floors would be you just polyurethane the heck out of them???

  115. It looks terrific, very elegant, and I applaud your decision to keep the project to scale. Many of the monster kitchens I see seem terribly wasteful to me, and never used. Your realism should be the new trend, I think. About painted floors, don't. I have them, and they chip and wear. I've decided to strip them in the public areas of the house and just keep them in bedrooms. I would kill for pickled oak but I have yankee pine. I suspect the Susan Rheinstein floor is stained and pickled in that pattern, rather than painted. Hard to see online. I hope you get lots of work from this post. The kitchen really looks terrific and the window is a big part of it.

  116. Love your kitchen redo, Joni! You have a very lovely home even if you didn't do a thing. You marble is gorgeous & can't wait to see the floors!

  117. I can't quit looking at it. I am spellbound. Why would you want to do any more than this to it??? It's perfect. If I was building a new house, I'd want Katie's kitchen, (or the beach house kitchen from SGTG) But what you did....I can't get it out of my mind and I have to have it. I must have that sink and the marble. What color gray paint is that. I have the mourning Dove gray walls and this light gray would go great. I need to go back and read this again. I cannot get enough of this kitchen. If I were closer to you, I'd come over and cook for you like you read about, just to be in that kitchen. I am thinking about stalking you, now that I have a new friend in BellAire. Signed Obsessed in Dallas

  118. i love our new kitchen. your an amazing decorator

  119. What a fantastic kitchen you´ve got! // Camilla

  120. Joni -

    The kitchen is divine. Could you please share the paint color on your cabinets? If you mentioned it already, forgive me for not picking up on it. Thanks so much.

  121. I saw the photo on your Facebook page and wondered what magazine you'd found this gorgeous kitchen in. I was so surprised to stop by here and see it's yours! I love it. My kitchen desperately needs updating and this is very inspiring.

  122. LOVE the counter tops, I am beyond jealous! Your kitchen table chairs are precious!!!!

  123. The folks at House Beautiful and Southern Accents need to feature your beautiful kitchen on their pages. Simply a classic beauty.

    Congratulations of the startling number comments you are getting nowadays! We love you, Joni.

    My day is utterly incomplete if I don't visit your blog ... pure bliss!

  124. Joni, your kitchen turned out beautifully! Love the marble, and your new kitchen sink and window are absolutely stunning.

  125. I love the choice. That would be mine as well. Granite is so common now. If I ever get around to it, it will be that choice you made as well.


  126. Luscious countertops. I must have them. It has become my mission.

    Thanks for the inspiration!


  127. Hi Joni!
    I've been MIA for a little while... I finally got married in November!

    I LOVE your kitchen! It's beautiful. And I love your stories. Now I don't feel like such a freak for always wanting to change my mind on things. Chris thinks I'm a little nuts - I try to tell him I'm not the only one! ;-)

    And I love that picture of Lisa Epley's kitchen. It is fabulous! I love the dark cabinets. And from your previous post - I love the kitchen from the Cottage Living story! It is gorgeous too! We are in need of a kitchen re-do, so these are totally inspirational to me. Unfortunately, though, in our situation we cannot afford granite. Nor would it be fitting to put it into our "starter" house - people wouldn't expect it at our price range. So we are using tile. But I love the idea of the darker cabinets!

    And P.S. - on Cottage Living - I was so sad that they stopped publishing it. It was my favorite magazine.

  128. Ooops!! Okay, after re-reading my previous comment - I did not intend to imply that we were "freaks" for changing our mind. Chris thinks I'm weird and unusual (freakish), and I simply meant that I am NOT freakish for changing my mind, that there are others like me out there!!!


    Sorry! LOL!

  129. I just had to jump straight to the comments box without reading the other comments. JONI! It is wonderful!!!!!! I love the soft grey paint color and your marble is beautiful!!! Honed is definitely the way to go, I agree. Wow, wow, wow! You must be really happy. I can relate to the old house feeling. Your comparison to the engagement ring is right on. I never want to move from our house. You put so much love and care into it that it would just be painful to leave. I was so looking forward to the redo pictures and I am thrilled with for you, and for ME because it was so fun to see how beautifully it turned out!!!!! You are a wonder!

  130. Your update is just gorgeous. I love the marble counters. I can't wait to see what you do with the floors. Marty

  131. Absolutely beautiful! I love the photo of your kitchen windows at night with the flowers - gorgeous!

    I am so excited that I found your blog! We are seriously considering making an offer on an older home (with lots of character) that will need some updating/remodeling! I just love a good project!!!

  132. First time here, via Inspired Room.

    Absolutely beautiful, but most of all I love the philosophy behind. We are small house owners-lovers, too, and have enjoyed upgrading the details instead of upgrading the work that comes with more house and land.

    deb meyers

  133. Found you from the Inspired Room...really lovely! I am in the middle of a kitchen "re-do" myself. New paint on wall and cabinets. New sink and counters later. I'll live with the lay out and floors. It doesn't have to be destroyed to be made beautiful!

  134. Hi, I came over from the inspired room, you kitchen re-do is fabulous- I love the look of marble, but I've never used it, does it wear well, or stain easily? I have plans in the future-I really like your kitchen.
    Happy Day

  135. WOW!!!! I would be here all day just reading the COMMENTS!!! You sure have alot of followers...and now me too! Your "new" kitchen is just STUNNING, to me. I would not have gutted just because I would want the storage space that you have now. I am DYING for more storage space:):) We built our dream house (but not on my dream LOT) 25 years ago, with the intentions of staying maybe 10 years....and here we are. I have pined over a new house but now just the THOUGHT of packing this house up gives my husband a heart attack. I could do it in a heart beat but am afraid it is not in the cards. I do love my house, I just THOROUGHLY HATE living in the woods!!!!! It is so dirty and dark it is depressing to me. For 25 years.... but, I count my blessings. You have inspired me to redo my counters too. I too, have the old tile counters and have been wanting a mirror backsplash for a few years but now that I see your marble...........hmm, have to rethink this option:) Thanks so much for your post, I loved that you stayed, renewed instead of gutting and made the analogies that you did. Your kitchen is SOOOO wonderful. Pinky

  136. WOWZA, JONI!!! That was some serious porn! The before and afters were the best. You really know how to do a good post. Lots of waiting and waiting until the end! The kitchen is so awesome. Even though you didn't go for broke with the major reno, your updates have totally transformed the look and, yes, my favorite too is the farmhouse sink shot with the open window. BRAVO woman!!

  137. DROOL! Stunning kitchen, Joni!! Love, love, love everything. And I think it would be delightful to stay for a week in the Galleria while your floors were being done;)

  138. So gorgeous. What a great post to come home to after a weekend away from blogging! Seriously Jonie, it's amazing & so you. I love how thick the countertops are. It looks like such a hardworking kitchen yet still comes accross as elegant & refined. Perfection.

  139. Joni,
    Love the new kitchen!! Don't take the antique table out of the den!! Otherwise, those bathrooms could take a lot longer to get to... Also, the blog seems to be coming along. Do you ever sleep? Love, Your Soul/Cell Mate

  140. Wow! Great Job...

    I came over from Hooked On Houses and I'm glad I did!

    Great the thick edges.
    Great Farm Sink... really nice choice and a great faucet too!
    I LOVE your French Doors! I'm sure the courtyard beyond is amazing!

    We also live on a 50x100 lot and only 1000sf for four of us. I just wrote about it a couple of days ago on my brand new blog.

    I'm all about remodeling, design, and house stuff. If I can ever offer any help please let me know.

    I have to mention that I looked at Kurt Aichler's site and loved the phot at He does a great job and I like the use of curves he seems to favor. Love the stone sections too.

    Last, I love the idea of painted floors. I've done that in the past and it works out well. You can cover it with a great finish to make it last forever or leave the paint if you want it to wear.

    Anyway, sorry for such a long comment, I just loved your post!

    Remodeling Guy

  141. Your new kitchen is gorgeous. I love the ideas of the painted hardwood floors. Can't wait to see what you come up with!

  142. Stunning! Everyone else already covered, the adjectives and the envy parts. LOL

  143. I am dying over those countertops! What an amazing transformation! Just gorgeous!

  144. Hi Joni,
    I love your house, too!! The kitchen is awesome. I want a farmhouse sink for my little cottage. My house is small, too, but it is just right for me and my fur babies. New is nice but it takes years to build character in a house. I'm glad that I found you, and I'll be back soon!

  145. Okay I'm inspired by you again. I want your window and sink too. I love the look of the marble, we can't afford a slab but plan on using marble tiles instead. Can you explain what white honed marble is...Do you think that cabinets have to be white when using marble?

  146. Joni - you did such a great job on your kitchen! I wish I had seen yours before I remodeled mine last summer!

  147. Hi Joni ~ there's just something terribly fun and invigorating in looking at a before and after kitchen. I LOVE what you've done and the sink is to die for. Love what you do!

  148. Hi Joni!
    Your kitchen has been calling my name all week, so I
    stopped by again to visit... brought some starbucks with me. ahhhhhhh heaven. You nailed it with this kitchen. I may be back next week!

  149. Good Night! I guess if I am comment #152 than who cares what I have to say..besides the fact that I actually wet my pants over your new kitchen sink. I am SO gonna have to have one like that some day!
    I feel you about the small bathrooms!


  150. Joni,
    Your kitchen is absolutely perfect! Thanks so much for sharing!


  151. You've done a beautiful job with this makeover! I, too, love marble countertops...not granite...and wood floors, not tile. Everything is just beautiful...I like that you kept it open. We live in the home we built 19 years ago...and feel much the same way you do right now about it needing some updating...and toying with the idea of relocating in a few years since we're "empty-nesters" now. In the meantime, I need to make similar decisions about some makeovers!
    You have a beautiful home and I always enjoy your blog posts!

  152. Joni -- the kitchen looks GREAT! I wouldn't change a thing. Seriously, it is beautiful! The backsplash - be still my heart.

    Oh. Our 50-year-old hardwoods probably need refinishing, too. We have them in every inch of the house (save the bathrooms and kitchen) and just the thought of having to essentially MOVE OUT to have it done is giving me anxiety right now.

    I do LOVE painted floors though! Kind of even love the stripe for my kitchen (when we get around to pulling up the lovely linoleum) but wouldn't want it in the entire house. Can't wait to see what you decide!

  153. whoops, me again. I've never thought about replacing just one (or a couple of) windows at a time. but it makes perfect sense! husband will not be thrilled that I've just added two new windows to our own kitchen remodel ...

  154. What a beautiful kitchen Joni!
    And I'm with you on the's a sculpted work of art.

  155. WOW, Marble used for this kitchen top is cute!Your way of style is very capturing,Your cupboard handle is very cute.I love and enjoy each and every tiny bits you have used in your Kitchen.

  156. I'll be right over! Oh gosh Joni, from one Texan to another, who needs a dishwasher. I could stand at that beautiful sink all day long. Don't worry i'm not REALLY coming over, just wanted to comment on a very pretty kitchen.
    Also wanted to say hello and tell you that the very first blog I ever read was yours! How lucky for me. I finally had to explain to my gang where Mommy was
    going every evening after dinner. I was going to COTE DE TEXAS!
    Once they heard the name they's a Texas thing.
    Well, your beautiful blog and humble opinion gave me confidence and inspired me to finally get busy. I'm learning as I go and hoping to inspire a few others! I have included a column called, Cooking Class and thought I would do a section on great kitchens. I would love to start with yours. Just wanted to use good manners and ask first.
    Thanks Joni and I hope to hear from you soon.

  157. Love the marble counters.

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  159. Hi Joni,
    First time reader/commenter here. I adore your kitchen and your philosophy. I am also a member of cereal for dinner anonymous and enjoyed that. It is over a year later and I wonder if you have encountered any problems with your counters other than the salad dressing stain. I want honed marble but hear that honed granite is more durable and easier to maintain. Also, I live in a 1930s pre-war brick building and cannot have a disposal due to ancient plumbing, which has actually psychologically preventd me from lunging ahead with a kitchen redo. Thanks for any input!

  160. Love your kitchen! I am remodeling mine and am redoing windows. Just wondering what size of grids you used in your windows. 7/8" or 1 1/4". I love the look of yours.

  161. I don't know why it is using WBC worship team, but my e-mail is

  162. That kitchen is stunning, great designs, functionality and just really beautiful.

  163. Absolutely beautiful, those large windows make the whole setting. sash and case windows Glasgow.

  164. Definitely a beautiful setting and so tastefully brought together. Very nice! Wooden windows often times make such a difference in such a setting.

  165. You have such a lovely kitchen! I LOVE all the fresh florals that you have in the space, makes such a big difference with all the colors :)

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