KITCHEN PROGRESS: Adding The Final Details

kitchen renovation Making Nice in the Midwest

You guys! We are SO close to being finished with this kitchen progress. I still have to add some details, such as the shelving on either side of the window, a door knob to the playroom, caulking in some places, and a shade for the window. But look! It looks so close to my final vision!

I wanted to share some special details about the nitty gritty stuff today. Things like, how I hid a wall switch inside a 2×10 board of my shelving wall, what kind of switches and outlets I’ve used, and how I patched the texture of my ceiling where we installed two hanging pendants.

kitchen renovation Making Nice in the Midwest

Now, let’s play a little game. It’s called spot the outlets. I have four outlets and two switches on the kitchen window wall, and am so pleased with how they fade away without making a visual statement at all. I used Legrand’s Radiant line of switches and outlets, and their wall plates are actually screw-free, so they look very minimal— to the point where you really have to look for them in photos. A blogger’s dream.

Replacing my outlets and switches wasn’t even on my radar when I began this process, but when all of the newer elements began to replace the old, I realized how dingy and outdated all of the old electrical fixtures looked by comparison. I’m so glad we replaced everything— these are the little things that make a big difference!

Legrand nightlight outlets

We also utilized some specialty items in the Legrand Radiant line, like outlets that have 3-setting nightlights which you can set to automatically turn on in dim lighting, wall chargers, and synced master/remote dimmer switches.

hide a switch inside a shelf

When I planned the shelving wall in the kitchen, I realized that I would be building shelves around the switches for the kitchen lights, which meant we would’ve had to reach our hands inside the shelves to turn on the light! Not a great idea. My dad recommended I use a shallow electrical box (like this one) and router a space for it on the outside of the shelf. Genius! He drilled a hole through the back of the shelf for the wires to enter the routered section, and now it looks like there is some kind of magic electrical situation going on. We covered the old box with a blank cover plate.

hide a switch inside a shelf

legrand radiant GFCI outlets

kitchen accessories

As we’ve been finishing up the details of the kitchen, I realized I need to make up my mind about a few final details. I decided to upgrade my door knob selection, and possibly my island stools as well. What do you guys think? I ordered an Emtek knob set for the playroom door and one for the pantry (pantry not shown in these photos), and I think the crystal and tumbled white bronze tie in well with the sophisticated feeling of my appliances and lighting, but also mimic the shape and style of my simple, modern wooden knobs. I also decided to do a white linen relaxed roman shade over the window, and got a few great baskets to put on my shelving wall. Still haven’t made my mind up about the stools though. Decisions, decisions! 

  1. Emtek tumbled white bronze and crystal passage knob set
  2. Xinh and Co Caña Baskets
  3. Relaxed roman shade
  4. Wooden cabinet knobs
  5. 24″ wooden counter stools

open shelving unit

Just for fun, I had to share a before and after— well, before and during picture! It’s from a slightly different angle, but when you’re taking before pictures of a space you’ve never photographed before, it can be difficult to know what the sweet spots will be for taking after photos. Oh well!

Kitchen Before

kitchen renovation Making Nice in the Midwest

I’ll share more photos of the shelving wall and other details as I begin to share more posts on the kitchen project at A Beautiful Mess. But for now, check out my post on how I built the hood vent and also my post about painting wood cabinets with chalk paint vs. latex paint.

kitchen renovation Making Nice in the Midwest


Wall paint: Benjamin Moore’s Super White
Cabinet paint: Annie Sloan’s Pure White
Lighting: Hinkley Congress collection
Wall tile: Home Depot
Tile grout: TEC Silverado
Outlets and switches: Legrand Radiant
Pink sink: Thermocast
Faucet: Kraus from Home Depot
Island butcher block: Lumber Liquidators sealed with Waterlox
Flooring: Lumber Liquidators maple engineered wood
Knobs: eBay
Stove: KitchenAid from Home Depot
Dishwasher: KitchenAid from Home Depot
Coffee maker: KitchenAid
Island stools: Urban Outfitters and The Classy Home 
Rug: vintage Turkish kilim from Etsy

15 Responses

  1. Courtney says:

    WOW, WOW, WOW. I am soo impressed by your entire kitchen – the design, execution and just every detail is amazing!

  2. MelissaB says:

    Wow this is an amazing transformation, I’m really loving the restrained and sophisticated evolution that I’m seeing in this house from your last. I’ve loved all the rooms so far! True inspiration to also be doing on cash! I can’t wait to see all the finished rooms and final touches. (Side note I actually really love your existing stools better but maybe with a white or pink! painted base?)

    As a fellow person with a white base happening in their kitchen and ALL open shelves (YES ALL no drawers either – don’t know what the owners were thinking!) I can tell you that the kuggis/pluggis/variera storage options and the korken glass jars (labeled with a fat sharpie marker – washes off in the dishwasher or with rubbing alcohol) from Ikea have made things feel more open, unified, attractive and easy to maintain in my space! I even have a few tillsluta boxes to conceal stuff like our compost mess before we take it outside.

  3. beth says:

    I have those stools in the natural color (the walnut spoke to me but it looked way too shiny in the pictures) and I love them. They are very comfortable and your girls will especially enjoy the swivel feature!

    • Mandi says:

      Are the natural ones shiny? I’m thinking they’re the ones!

      • Beth says:

        Not terribly shiny but definitely not matte – more of a satin finish.

        • Beth says:

          These stools are very heavy and not tippy at all. If your kids will mostly be using them, I would recommend bar height – counter height works best for adults. Also, if you zoom in to the seat part of the picture you’ll see that a bit of the metal swivel plate is visible. If I had known this before I assembled them, I would have spray-painted the plate black or brass. (It doesn’t bother me enough to dis-assemble them, though.)

  4. Jennifer Brasher says:

    How do you clean a vintage rug like that? Do you worry about food and spills? (especially with little kids) I’d love to have a beautiful rug like that but have no idea how to keep it clean.

  5. SO SO GREAT. screwless wall plates sound great too!

  6. Woah my name Justice Pirate was spelled wrong. so weird. I blame dyslexia (which I thought I overcame). anyway. . .keep on keeping on.

  7. Carolyn says:

    Love the shelving! The wood looks so solid and substantial – gorgeous! I’m planning to take a beginner’s woodworking course soon to give me some base skills to build on. I can’t wait to dive in and take charge of changes in our home like you’ve done. Go you!

  8. Rebecca says:

    I love this! I can’t believe you made your shelving look like high-end wood. Your hard work has paid off in spades.

    How do you like your faucet so far? I’m looking at it for my kitchen remodel next year and at first I thought it would be too tall because it would be taller than the window sill, but then I realized yours is too, and it looks great.

  9. alan ceil says:

    Thank you for shear a great tip. It;s very helpful for all kitchen user.