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updated kitchen pictures


Before we dive into the pictures, I had to share something funny.  My mom read my post from yesterday and immediately got her painting clothes ready.  You see, she helps me on Wednesday nights when the boys are at Awana and she knew after reading the post that we would be painting my guest room!  She knows me so well and was, of course, right.  We painted most of the guest room tonight.  I still need to do the dormer, ceiling and trim, but we made some good progress.  It’s coming together bit by bit.

I also worked on some photo shoots today.  I have a freelance magazine shoot & article I’m working on as well as images for the look book and updated pictures for “my home” page on the blog.  I shot some of the kitchen today…


The picture above was taken today and the one below was taken months ago with my old camera.  I can’t believe how much better the white balance  and sharpness is with the new camera (a Nikon d800).

AFTER | Kitchen


It makes me want to reshoot everything!  Here are some other pictures from the shoot today…







And because before & afters are so much fun, here’s a reminder of what the kitchen looked like when we first moved in…

BEFORE | Kitchen


…and today…


That’s a lot of work right there!

You can check out all of the sources and cost details HERE.  The cool thing about this kitchen makeover is it happened over about a three year period and almost all of it was with materials supplied to us as a part of a freelance project or a blog partnership.  And we did almost all of the work ourselves.  We made the counters, built the range hood, installed the tile backsplash, painted the walls, ceiling and cabinets and beefed up the trim.  The only thing we hired out was the installation of the tile floor.  (If we did have to pay for everything out of pocket, it still was a dramatic kitchen makeover for under $6500.)

More updated pictures of my home will come over the next few weeks…

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  1. This kitchen is so beautiful–the cabinets, butcher block counters, and hardware are my favorites. I love the personality of the cow and chalkboard wall; they’re bold and so very fun. Hope to blatantly copy your kitchen when we (Lord willing) own a home of our own someday.

  2. It’s hard to believe those are the same cabinets, but I can see that at least some of them are, and have been painted. Isn’t it amazing, the power of paint? The transformation is beautiful!

  3. I love your backsplash, I need to install one but can’t decide what I want. Your kitchen has come a long way!

  4. Amanda says:

    I love the sheen on your countertops. I have read you chose to use waterlox finish, but can not find what type (indoor, marine) or where the color came from. Would love additional details as we have butcher block counters that need some love!

  5. Look at you!!! You are not only a professional blogger but a professional photographer!!! Rock it girl! Enjoy your mama too and build those memories!

  6. Teresa says:

    I have always admired your countertops and range hood but I am curious to know if you would change your decision on having white tile floors in the kitchen. I had white tile in my foyer and it was impossible to keep clean. I cant tell you how happy I was when the tile got replaced with hard wood. BTW….your new camera rocks!

  7. Awesome! I love the before and after pictures and that camera wow, although I bet quite a bit of the awesome is all the photographer’s skills. :)

  8. So pretty! Even with the pot rack. LOL! My favorite thing is the counter, what a beauty.

  9. Your kitchen is beautiful! But I have to tell you that every time you post a picture of it I get a little envious of all your counter space. It looks like it goes on for days! We’re working on our kitchen remodel a little at a time (remember when I told you we were going to tear out all of our cabinets?) and we’re hoping to add a walk in pantry, but we need to wait until all the snow melts.

    I’m curious about your pot rack. Do you use the pots and pans that are hanging there often enough that they don’t get all kitchen dust covered? If not, how often do you find that you need to take them all down for a good cleaning?

  10. Beautiful kitchen….I wish I knew how to capture light better….I think I need a camera course.
    Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful day

  11. Beautiful! We are at the very beginning of our kitchen renovation and this is really inspiring. And the photographs are great – I need a new camera after seeing these.

  12. I do love your kitchen makeover! I’m hoping to paint my cabinets white, at some point soon.
    While I like the true colour of white that you are getting with your new camera, I can actually see more detail in the older shot. I’m wondering if it’s just me, or my monitor (although I did fiddle with the settings and it made no difference), but I find your shots almost blinding, and hard to make out the details of the white areas. I’m wondering if anyone else has this problem?

  13. Jeanine C. says:

    I love how spaces can transform. It is 3D art! You have done a great job and I love the new photos.

    Quick question: We have the same tea kettle :). What do you find best to clean the outside of it?

    I leave mine on the stove and cook a lot, so it seems to get splatters on the surface all the time.

    Maybe the trick is clean it more often! Hahahaha

  14. Absolutely gorgeous! I’m in love with your butcher block counter tops. Your pictures are beautiful too of course!

  15. Gorgeous! I’m in love with those countertops! Such a great contrast between the white cabinets and floors.

  16. Wow, the “before” and “after” shows such an amazing transformation, it’s hard to believe! You have so much to be proud of! That will certainly add value to your home, no doubt about it!

  17. Barbara says:

    I like the old camera better. Everything is so white and bright I can`t see any detail. I even ask my granddaughter if she could change the screen or the computer and she said not. It looks awesome for what I can see.

  18. I’m with Barbara. I liked the old camera better! Can I buy your old one? I just bought a Rebel T3i and am very disappointed in its performance.

  19. Your mom sounds awesome! She definitely knows you!

  20. Hi Marian,

    I love your kitchen. The cow on the range hood is a perfect addition with the boxwood wreath.

  21. Tracy says:

    Just curious what lense are you using for your shots? They look great and are so much better than the old shots.

  22. Patricia says:

    The pictures look as if they were taken at different times of the day- but if the new picture is closer to the reality of the room than that’s what (imho) you go with.
    I had a question about the countertops. I guess you stained them and have some sort of wax on top? Any suggestions how to proceed on a countertop that is not brand new and has some light stains?

  23. Love it, Love it!

  24. I am also repainting my cabinets and needing new countertops. The choices are almost endless, but I am wondering about your countertops. There is just too much information out there, but I am drawn to the butcher block and I am curious about why you chose it over granite or solid surface. I am married 46+ year to a wonderful, kind, generous, caring, highly messy man (he was even banned from cooking at the fire house because of his messiness!), so I am concerned about the upkeep and what he might, could, probably and highly predictably will do to it! HELP ME PLEASE, MISS MUSTARD SEED!

  25. Suzanne says:

    I’d love to know how you are liking the wood counter tops. They do look beautiful. We are about to renovate a kitchen and would like to consider them, but with six children I’m hesitant. I’m afraid I’ll constantly be warning them to, “Be careful with the countertops!”

  26. I LOVE everything about your pretty kitchen!!

  27. Your new camera really does make a difference! Now I want a new one….

  28. Love seeing pictures of your home! What would we do without paint 😉

  29. sharon says:

    I like your mom too! I

  30. Aren’t Mamas the BEST! My mom helped with my quilting business for a number of years and having her by my side created SO many great memories.

  31. Love it! LOVE your countertops. My husband and I were just talking about gutting the kitchen someday and redoing the whole thing. Your kitchen is just lovely!

  32. Carol says:

    Beautiful! Where did the wreath come from? I’ve been looking for one that large. Love your blog, thanks for sharing your talent.

  33. Laura says:

    I absolutely love your kitchen. BUT, living in the Northwest now (used to live in SC) there is alot of wood cabinets, and painting is frowned upon. I did in my last house and it still hasn’t sold. Is there a way to make it look more farmhouse without painting EVERYTHING white or cream? We will need to sell the house in about 10 yrs.

    • Miss Mustard Seed says:

      what about taking the doors off the upper cabinets and painting the interiors white? You can then put the doors back on when you’re ready to sell and they look like normal wood cabinets.

  34. What a difference from the old kitchen to how it looks today! The old was so dark and uninviting. But then again, I am partial to white kitchens… :-)

  35. WOW! It doesn’t even look like it could possibly be the same kitchen… I’m fascinated by the differences in the cameras too. Everything looks so crisp and bright and true to color with it. If i hadn’t seen the two photos side by side i would have thought the first photo was perfectly fine, in fact really really good…. Your kitchen is so pretty, and i love the way you can see into the other room with that darling little chair at the desk. Everything completely flows together… Love it


  36. The pictures look amazing, I can’t get over the before and after images, it looks like a completely different space and the light is so much better.

    I bought the Nikon D7100 but wish I had waited longer to get the one you have as I just love your images. I think I have asked before but have you lightened these images at all or are these as shot? Do you use a manual setting or did you take them on automatic…the room shots that is. I want to take shots of my new office next week, its still in the throws of re decorating but I thought it would be good to take some before shots.

    Thank you for sharing you are very talented and your photography is looking like a pro.


    • If I have the pictures correct, first one new, second one old, I have to say I like the old best. I think the new is just too bright. Everyone has an opinion, right? At any rate, I love your new kitchen. Soooo pretty.

    • I shoot on manual and I do adjust the contrast, exposure, highlights, shadows and clarity of most pictures. Thanks!

      Vicky, yes, they are bright and it may be a difference between your monitor and mine. I like pictures with a very true white balance and lots of light. It’s definitely a preference thing. :)

  37. Cynthia says:

    Wanted to say, “Thank You” for the great video tutorial on painting your kitchen cabinets!. I must have viewed it 10 times to gain confidence before starting in on the millwork and built in cabinet/book shelf in our “90s” office. (I honestly don’t think I would have tried a roller on the flat bits if I hadn’t viewed your video.) Hubby paid a great compliment…”I don’t even want to put the French doors back up because it looks so good!”….good thing because they’re still just primed in the garage 😉
    FYI, BM has come out with a great new Advanced Technique product for woodwork…LOVE IT…looks like we sprayed it on!

  38. We are still working on the kitchen and haven’t installed cabinets or counters yet. We (finally) decided on paint grade cabinets in a light color, probably an off white to match our Bisque appliances and I know I don’t want granite counters. I LOVE your counters and how rich they look! I’ll have to go through your blog and find the post on your finish. Love how fresh your kitchen looks. I wish ours had more natural light. On my list of musts for the next house.

  39. I love your kitchen, can not believe it’s the same one. White paint makes your kitchen look so big and bright. Love your back-splash too.

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