One Room Challenge: Week One

You guys! It’s here! Do you know what the One Room Challenge is? I’ve been talking about this forever, but to fill those in who don’t know, the ORC is a six week design challenge hosted by Calling It Home and House Beautiful magazine! Anyone can participate, and each week, bloggers are sharing the progress of their projects. Week one is all about the BEFORE photos and letting you know what’s in store. Let’s get to it, shall we?


I get asked all the time why I don’t share my kitchen. Gonna go ahead and tear this band-aid off… Folks, this is why!







Yes, technically we have “nice”  cabinets and updated counters, but they are not me at all! When we moved into this house almost nine years ago, the small changes we made were the lighting and the tumbled stone backsplash.  Yes, it made it better, but my taste has changed a LOT in the last nine years. So it’s safe to say a LOT is changing!




I could stare at this mood board ALL DAY LONG. Let’s talk specifics!


What’s staying?


The appliances! They’re stainless steel and they all work fine. The only appliance changing is the microwave. I’m planning on replacing the one over the stove with a range hood, and just getting one that sits on the counter.  Ideally, I’d love a microwave in the island, but I don’t know how to go about fitting one into pre-existing cabinetry. I don’t want to deal with figuring out an opening! We have plenty of counter space and it’ll be nice for the kids to have easier access to it anyway. Here’s the hood I have picked out from Home Depot. The black is actually sold out- I’m going to get the wood one and have my cabinet painter paint it the same Tricorn Black as the cabinets:



And the microwave I’m considering:


What’s changing?



First thing on the agenda after we return from vacation is getting our cabinets professionally painted. I can’t wait to see this change make a huge difference. Our kitchen doesn’t get a lot of sun. I’m planning on having the uppers painted Simply White by Benjamin Moore, and the lowers painted Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams. 



Three of these for over the island:



And this beauty over the kitchen table:


Both are Elk Lighting from Lighting Design Company. I’m always blown away by their selection and it’s my go-to site for all of my lighting needs! So fun to browse and I love how their site is organized in a way that makes it easy to shop and hunt down exactly what you’re looking for!


Yes, those pendant lights are everywhere these days, but truth be told, I love them! I’m not one to shy away from anything just because no one else likes it, but I’m also not going to shy away from something because it’s popular either.  Designing your home is simple. When it comes down to it, you choose what you love! That’s it. Popular or not.



You guysssss! I cannot tell you how much I’ve longed for new counters! Our kitchen it so dark, I’ve been so excited to start with bright white counters. I was so excited to find the local company Lakeside Surfaces. Can’t recommend them enough. Nicole has been a pleasure to work with, and their selection is fantastic. I’ve found counters I’m simply in love with. Totally modern, but not cold. Look at this baby!




I love the look of marble, but knew I needed something more practical in a kitchen. These counters are quartz (scratch and stain resistant). They’re called Calacatta Luca from the Metro Quartz collection. Planning on a waterfall edge for the counters. Can’t resist the extra splurge!



These pulls for the cabinets by Amerock from Home Depot:




And these cup pulls for the drawers by Martha Stewart from Home Depot:



Can we talk about these pulls? I love that they’re traditional cup pulls, but the different angles give it a modern twist. Way to stay edgy, Martha! Love them!



33″ Cerana Apron Front sink in white from Blanco!




Have you seen matte black options these days? I was all over this faucet from Kohler! Found it at the Branded Infusion kitchen and bath showroom in Wixom, Michigan! I really wanted a bridge faucet and I was so happy to find a modern one like this…




Ah, the furniture. Really can make or break a space. If you look in the “before” photos, you’ll see we had the metal chairs from Resoration Hardware. Gonna be honest. Not sure why those got so trendy. They are cold and uncomfortable! We honestly started laying a towel down on them when we had shorts on. Not ideal. I’m excited for something warm and LUX…




Can you even handle these? So beautiful! I love the lines of them!  I haven’t finalized the bar stools that’ll go at the island yet. Stay tuned. But four of these black velvet/brass beauties will be at the kitchen table. I love the juxtaposition between these lux chairs and the rustic wood table. The table is staying! That’s from West Elm and it’s only a couple years old.


Pantry Door:

Do you ever consider interior doors when designing a space? They’re easy to forget but can be such a wow factor if you let it! You can even disregard attempting to “wow” and just recognize that a dated door can make a whole space feel aged. Consider browsing through Home Depot’s selection! You’d be surprised at the cool options you’ll find! I honestly didn’t think much about our pantry door until I came across this


How cool is that? And here’s the fun part… you know I needed to incorporate green, right? I mean, what would a room in my home be without it? Decided to paint this my favorite go-to: Chrome Green by Benjamin Moore. This kitchen is fairly neutral, but I wanted a fun pop! Here is my plain Jane pantry door in it’s current state:



Props to me for sharing embarrassing parts of my kitchen. This is what happens when you photograph quickly before heading out of town. Do you think I had time to clear off my fridge while attempting to help pack up six people for a vacation? Lol! This just makes for better “before” photos, right? It’ll be all the more drastic of a change when I share the “after.” 🙂 I’m still deciding on the door handle! Stay tuned on that!


Here’s my other dose of pop: See this skinny wall that currently has a stencil?



Why yes, that is a pile of junk/papers on the counter. #reallife Anyway, back to the skinny wall! Lol. First off, all the walls will be painted Repose Gray by Sherwin Williams, but that skinny wall is getting THIS!



If you follow my InstaStories on Instagram, you know how much I’ve struggled trying to figure out just how bold I want to go with a backsplash. And I’ve finally figured something out. As bold and colorful as I like things in the design world, I’ve actually always been drawn to classic kitchens! So, I decided to keep things simple with a backsplash, but still needed some doses of fun throughout the space, and that skinny wall is just perfect for that! This wallpaper is from Spoonflower and you can find it by clicking HERE. Yes, it’s a bit wild, but that’s the joy of wallpaper- way easier to change than tile! And a portion of it will be covered with a mirror. Thinking of going with this one. Same one I used in my recent powder bath makeover!




Now, scroll back up to that last ktichen pic… notice that little butler’s pantry off to the side? We’re removing the upper cabinets there, tiling up the wall, and adding three reclaimed wood shelves from Blissopia. I love finding a sweet husband and wife team! Their work is beautiful and has gotten wonderful reviews! Here’s the sample pic:



You know I love a good mix, and I think the rustic quality of these shelves will be such a fun contrast to the abstract wallpaper nearby. It’ll all make sense when it’s done, I promise! 


Soooo, what’s left? It’s 3am and I’m typing away in a hotel room in Myrtle Beach. Oh, yes! The backsplash! I know you all are wondering what I’ve actually settled on after all that fuss, and I’ll say this. It still isn’t 100% official, but I’m leaning towards a honed 4 x 12 Calacutta marble from the Tile Shop, with brick behind the stove laid in a herringbone pattern. You guys. I’ve always loved exposed brick in a kitchen. Reminds me of the kitchen I grew up in. Why wasn’t that already considered? I have no idea. But strolling through the Tile Shop recently with Zane at my side, we passed some beautiful brick options and it was like a light went off. Do I love funky black and white tile with some 3D elements that I’ve been posting about? YES. But somehow this look is speaking to me, so I’m following my gut on this. I like that it’s subway tile, but it’s larger scale. And it isn’t solid white and glossy, it’s matte with subtle grey and gold veining- so it’s warmer and hopefully looks fabulous with the counters.


I think that’s it for now, guys! So much to cover when such a big change is happening! Are you as excited to watch as I am? This will be so fun to see unfold! April is going to be CRAZY! Feel free to subscribe on my home page so you get email alerts when new blog posts come up with updates:) Thanks for stopping by! 


Shop the plans…



Affiliate links were used in this post. Thank you so much to the following sponsors helping to make this possible:


Home Depot

Lakeside Surfaces

Branded Infusion

Lighting Design Company

The Tile Shop





Be sure to click on the image below to see over 200 guest participants in the ORC! So many good ones to watch!



Cheers to the six weeks ahead!





This Article Has 2 Comments
  1. Dana Lindner says:

    I’m trying to find the wallpaper pattern you used on a little book nook in a tik tok video

    • Haneen says:

      Hi! I’m not on Tik Tok, but I think you may be referring to the Saint Sebastian wallpaper I used in a nook- from Wallpaper Direct!

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