We’ve been getting a lot of help with this renovation by hiring subcontractors, but since my parents came to help out recently, Rupe and I took a couple days off of work and we all went full speed ahead on the kitchen.

kitchen-demo-sinkLiterally everything AND the kitchen sink went out the door and we started the process of re-building the new. See the demolition progression after the jump…

kitchen demolitionI liked the design of the doors OK, but the functionality was just not there. The cabinets on the right had drawers that didn’t pull out anymore and the drawers on the left didn’t close completely. So although it didn’t look too terrible on the surface, starting fresh was our best option.

The kitchen cabinetry was built right into the house and they were a total B*#@$ to get out! We should have bought stock in Band-aid before starting this project (or worn gloves like less impulsive people would think of).

The kitchen counter and backsplash were even more stubborn and ugly upon removal. We all took turns whacking the heck out of it trying to get through the tar paper, wire mesh, 1″ thick layer of cement and then finally the tile.

kitchen demolitionMy favorite part of demolition is uncovering the layers of old paint, wallpaper, etc. and getting a peek at the different lives of the space. This kitchen had a colorful past. Red ceilings, pink walls, blue walls, floral wallpaper, grey trim, salmon colored tile, snowflake patterned linoleum and the list goes on.

kitchen re-build new cabinetsAfter clearing out the kitchen we started assembling the new. We decided to go with Ikea cabinets because we found this amazing company called SemiHandmade that creates custom doors, panels & drawer faces that are made to fit Ikea kitchens. The genius part of this is that at Ikea you can buy the cabinets without the doors and drawer faces so then by getting those at SemiHandmade you end up with beautifully crafted and high quality doors and drawers, but it is still less expensive then a completely custom kitchen. It’s like the ULTIMATE Ikea hack (and you know I love a good ikea hack).

We just sent our order off to SemiHandmade so for now we are frontless, but I can’t wait to see how it will turn out. I’ve heard great things about the company and so far they have been a dream to work with.

To see all of the renovation progress check here.
To see the kitchen before check here.

  • What a genius idea. I’ve never heard of SemiHandmade before and we have a dated kitchen that is just begging for a remodel. Can’t wait to see how this turns out and will definitely keep this company in mind when we decide to update. What’s so nice about Ikea, is the lead time is so much quicker than if you were to special order cabinets that cost more and can take weeks or months to receive. — Amy

  • Can’t wait to see the finished product! You guys did such a great job on the cabin, I’m anxiously awaiting the photos of this project’s progression too. Such a blessing to be able to have family help out. xo

  • I’m really thinking of buying an older home and redoing it the way I want my house to be. So all of your home remodeling post are so helpful and informative. You are making me think it is totaly possible. I love the idea of making IKEA cabinets more custom. I can’t wait to see the finished product.

  • Lookin’ good!!! Love seeing these pictures and what a neat idea to get the cabinets from IKEA and the doors and drawers from SemiHandmade! I’m gonig to check out their site now. Can’t wait to see more!

  • what a seriously great idea for saving some bucks with the ikea cabinets and then going for different doors and drawer faces. It is so fun to watch the transformation.

    Have a great weekend!

  • Whoa… great tip on the SemiHandmade site. We just put in Ikea cabinets in our place, but I’m gonna bookmark that site in case we ever decide to change the white fronts. We also “borrowed” your cabin ceiling idea in our barnhouse. Turned out great!

  • really a nice n creative work kitchen demolition and reinstall it. …thanks

  • […] we were going to paint the doors and drawer fronts ourselves,” Sarah writes in her chronicle of the project. “I researched spray guns and read up on different DIY techniques, but in the end we hired a […]

  • Mindi

    This is so beautiful, I have to ask what is the brand of the flooring?

  • Sarah! I am just so enjoying peeking at all your projects and blog posts. I did wonder–were you confident installing the Ikea cabinets yourself? Any challenges or tips for making sure the sit evenly and are installed well?

  • Angela

    Beautiful kitchen! I am in the planning stages of remodeling our 80’s kitchen and have been toying with the idea of using IKEA/Semihandmade. May I ask how your IKEA cabinets are holding up 3.5 years in? We have small kids, so durability is an issue.

  • […] The new layout of the kitchen came quickly and easily. I had drawn up the plans before we ever set foot in the house! (see the floorplan before and after). I always knew I was going to utilize our “modern beaded” cabinet fronts from my line with SemiHandmade. They are my take on a traditional beadboard. With cleaner lines and wider spacing it brings texture into the cabinet but still has a modern feel. Two years ago I teamed up with Semihandmade to create the collection because they make high quality doors and drawer fronts that fit onto Ikea kitchen boxes, which brings a higher end look more accessible (and because we have worked together on many projects before and they are just good people. I only work with the good ones, 😉 and I am elated to be able to finally use them in my own kitchen (you can see them in some of my client kitchens here, here, here and here). Even if you aren’t a kitchen designer you can use the Ikea Kitchen Planner tool fairly easily or get help in store. How it works is you purchase all the boxes, hinges, legs and interior organization pieces from Ikea and then you get the cabinet doors and drawer fronts from SemiHandmade, as well as filler panels, plinth (toe kicks), and any spacers needed, for the look of a custom kitchen for less than a custom kitchen budget. You can read more about the process  here and see the beginnings of my first project with them, our LA kitchen from 2013. […]

  • Good post.This is a very informative article! Thank you for sharing. Last year, my husband and i were in the beginning stages of a kitchen remodel mal, we considered to hire a remodeling contractor near Boston and hoped to save money then we met Sarah and her team. They did a wonderful job on our kitchen, we also decided to go with Ikea cabinets as recommended, it was the best investment after all for us. Keep sharing!

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