Raise your hand if you’ve dreamed of a white kitchen. Okay, now raise your hand if your dream kitchen also has marble in it. Beautiful, right? White kitchens and marble are so in style right now and the combination is gorgeous! Our guest today is here to share her beautiful white kitchen with marble island:
Keep reading for all the details (and, of course, the before and afters) and check out some of our favorite white kitchens and islands:
And now, get all the beautiful white kitchen details and marble island know-how from the lovely Nina:
White Kitchen Overhaul and DIY Marble Island
by Nina of Everyday Enchanting
Hi everyone! I’m Nina from Everyday Enchanting, a blog about decorating, entertaining, and the renovation of our builder grade home. I’m so excited to be guest posting for Remodalaholic today! I have been a huge fan for years, the title sums it up for me – I’m very much addicted to remodeling, as I’m sure most of you are too! Since moving into our new house we have completed a few major projects, including our pantry. However, today I’m going to share with you the biggest project we’ve ever tackled: a DIY overhaul of our kitchen!
When we put our former house on the market, the paint had barely even dried in my (almost) dream kitchen. We had been at a point where we were waffling between selling and staying, and staying had won out just long enough for us to renovate the kitchen. We had it almost where we wanted it- we had white cabinets, a farmhouse sink, new appliances, sparkly granite, and a pretty wall of glass cabinets. Then we changed our minds about staying. The town that we wanted to move to had a booming spring market, and we were lured in. Long story short- we sold our old house more quickly than we expected (our first offer came the second day it was officially on the market). We were the losing bid in a few bidding wars, and we figured out that we were going to have to lower our sights to a less-updated home in the interest of finding a place to live quickly. Luckily it all worked out- we found a beautiful home with really great bones. All it really needed was a little TLC. Okay… maybe a lot of TLC, actually. We traded this kitchen: For this one:
I was definitely a little sad to leave it behind, but if you’re like me, you’ll see the potential in the new room. Since it was lacking in natural light the dark finishes were not doing it any favors. However, the cabinets were pretty solidly built. The granite wasn’t necessarily what I would have chosen, but hey- it’s granite! The appliances were a bit outdated, but serviceable. We lived in this kitchen for over a year as I researched the best way to go about majorly updating it on a very small budget. We knew we were going to have to keep the countertops and cabinets in order to stay on budget, so the real challenge became how to transform what we had into something that better fit our style.
Last fall we finally decided that the project could begin. We began the very long process of transforming the kitchen. We added crown molding and built sturdy plywood shelves. We sanded, filled in the grain, primed, and painted all of the interiors, exteriors, doors, and drawers. We did this on the weekends, and the project lasted from October 1st to Valentine’s Day.
We replaced the travertine backsplash with subway tile and an arabesque backsplash accent.
It even has hidden storage!
We switched out the less-than-pretty builder’s light for a pretty industrial inspired fixture with a custom finish:
We have never worked so hard on a project, but the results more than made up for it. However, the show stopper and centerpiece in this kitchen was actually the quickest and easiest part- the island.
Strangely enough, this part of the kitchen almost didn’t happen. We unexpectedly had to replace our heating system midway through the project during the coldest week of the year(insert major panic attack here), and one of the new vents had to be smack dab in the middle of the kitchen. We knew that a lonely vent in the middle of the kitchen would be less than ideal, so we began planning for an island to cover it up- but still allow the heat to escape. We wanted it to be realllly cheap, because we dished out a lot of money for the new heating system. Mack scored big on Craigslist- the marble top was only $200! We found our inspiration for the base in Ana White‘s book The Handbuilt Home. We modified her kitchen island plans to accommodate the marble top. We also ordered the beautiful Grand Harvest Island Legs from Osborne Wood Products.
For the most part, we stuck to Ana’s plans, using her materials list to maximize yields. We used our Kreg Jig to drill the pocket holes in all of the 2x6s and 2x4s.
Assembly was pretty easy. Building the island took a single afternoon.
Instead of the suggested slats, we went with a piece of pine butcher block from Lowes for the shelf, and notched out the corners for the legs.
It was done so quickly! Then we just stood back and looked at it
The next day I got started on the finish. I covered the whole island in a coat of Minwax Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner. Then I did a coat of Minwax Waterbased Wood Stain White Base tinted Slate. It was surprisingly dark for a gray stain!
Then I started white washing with a spare can of Benjamin Moore Simply White in eggshell. I took a very dry brush and began to lightly add white paint all over the island. I made sure not to go too heavy on this step- after all, I knew I would be sanding everything off!
After we got a whole coat of whitewash onto the island, we sanded it mostly off. There was no exact science to this- we just knew that we didn’t want the original wood peeking through too much. After, we determined that it looked too white, and we thought it looked busy with so much blond wood showing. So we took a can of Rustoleum in Driftwood that we already had, and did a coat over the whole island. The effect was perfect- it blended everything together nicely and made the white appear more neutral.
We attached the top with silicone caulking. I was so excited to see the whole thing come together! This was also the very last part of the kitchen that needed to be completed, so the feeling when the marble was set into place was of immense relief… and also exhaustion.
Time: The island took about 6 hours total. Not bad for such a statement piece!
Cost: Marble Top (found on Craigslist): $200
Maple Grand Harvest Legs: $248
Stain & Supplies: $ 33
Total Island Cost: $579
Overall, our kitchen took a lot of time and hard work. But we saved thousands of dollars by doing it ourselves, and that opened up space in the budget for items like the appliances and the island. We are SO happy with it- even happier than we were in our old home. This time we will get to enjoy it a lot longer too!
So lovely, Nina! Thanks so much for sharing with us!
Want the look of marble without the cost and upkeep? DIY a faux marble counter with just paint!