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Our Fancy Traditional Kitchen that isn’t White and Modern

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I thought I would share our fancy traditional kitchen that isn’t white and modern.  These pictures are from the MLS listing when the house was for sale a couple years ago. 

It’s a Chef’s dream kitchen. The layout is amazing and the appliances are to die for. The ceilings are high and the door adds fabulous visual appeal.

The traditional cherry cabinets and dark granite are indicative of a formal traditional kitchen.

For me personally, I wasn’t a fan at all of the kitchen when we first looked at the house while for sale but it’s starting to grow on me.

For those of you who know me, I am more of a white cabinet and quartzite kind of girl (see our previous kitchen). 

Our Fancy Traditional Kitchen that isn’t White and Modern

The Fancy Traditional Kitchen That Keeps Me Awake at Night

How to update a traditional kitchen with paint

If you notice in the background, the walls were a faux gold finish. 

One of the first things we did was have the walls painted white – Westhighland by Sherwin Williams.

White paint is an easy and affordable way to modernize a space. 

The Fancy Traditional Kitchen That Keeps Me Awake at Night

The kitchen island pendants and chandelier are definitely indicative of Italian traditional design.

Swapping out the existing pendants for more of a lantern look will help modernize the space and tone down the Italian design. 

Something light and airy and more of a Modern Rustic look.

Light fixtures are a fairly inexpensive update (in the large scheme of things) and can help create an entire new look in a space. 

The Fancy Traditional Kitchen That Keeps Me Awake at Night

Kitchen lighting and fixture updates 

One of the faucets needs a little TLC so I think we may plan on swapping out the existing oil rubbed bronze faucets for something different as well.

Whatever finish we choose for the light fixtures, we will choose the same finish for the new faucets and hardware. 

THis is a shot of the kitchen and family room that was on the MLS listing in 2018. 

The Fancy Traditional Kitchen That Keeps Me Awake at Night

For now, the granite will stay but down the road, I would love to swap out the existing dark granite for something more neutral.

I am not opposed to leaving the cherry cabinets either but perhaps switching out the hardware for more of a modern traditional look will help tone done the formal aspect as well.

The island also has potential for a different color down the road and maybe less formal corbels. 

Do you see the fireplace in the background?

We have a mason coming next week who is removing the stone mantel.

UPDATE: See new mantel here. 

The existing mantel is too high and we are having on old 100+ year old beam sandblasted and stained which will serve as our new mantel.

I cannot wait to see how the rustic old beam looks once mounted to the stone.

In an effort to create a Modern Rustic home, the fireplace makeover with a gorgeous rustic beam (see new beam here!) will most certainly help achieve that look.

I will be sharing that entire process on the blog starting next week and it’s going to be such a fun project.

My friend Jake (who did the kitchen for the Police Station makeover) is the one doing the beam for us so you may recognize him when I start sharing the fireplace makeover

For now the three things that we can do to update the space on a budget are pendants, hardware and new faucets. 

Further down the road,  we may tackle the kitchen in a bigger way but for now, a few small updates will help tie the kitchen in with the rest of the changes in the house.

Want to see more of our new home? Check out our Mediterranean Home page. 



Meet Jessica

What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.


  1. Great ideas! I like the lighting idea and also the fireplace! Oh wow, can’t wait!

  2. Love all your ideas and they’ll go a long way to lightening up the area from the dark feel.

    Since my heart and head is screaming for white, I’d get rid of the dark, busy tile back splash and add white/barely cream subway tile (whichever works with floor). That would make the beautiful cherry cabinets shine! Even the island is same shade? Would bring you to only 3 main colors … cherry, white, and black !

    I am Italian and no, Tuscan is not my thing lol!!!

    1. Or stain island to match cabinets!

  3. Such a beautiful home! Love following you on this adventure. I feel so silly even making a suggestion to you because you’re just so good at home design!! But I had to tell you about our previous home. It had a very similar Tuscan look and feel as this (which is beautiful!) however I too love rustic/farmhouse! And just by 1. switching the pendants to seeded glass globes, 2. replacing the travertine backsplash with subway tile, and 3. painting just the island white with some “aging” we were able to change the whole feeling all while keeping true to the Tuscan bones! The subway tile made the biggest difference but still felt Tuscan! Can’t wait to see how everything turns out, I just know it will be perfect!

  4. Rachel P. says:

    Oh Jessica, your new home is gorgeous. And the kitchen? Well, the only comment I have is WOW. What I do agree with though is corbels that aren’t so fancy. Love your appliances. Do you know the size of your refrigerator? Always wondered what sq. ft. one like that would be. Do you have a separate walk in pantry? We re-did our kitchen a few years back with all high end appliances. (love, love, love my 6 burner stove. However, we’ll be moving in 4 weeks, and going to a different home, south of here, with a nice kitchen but not as fancy. We’re in our ’70’s, what do we need with 6 burners now anyway????
    Loving all the photos you’ve been sending. Sad about your parent’s camp however. Will you be buying a new one for yourselves? Know that you sold yours last year. Well, you have a pool with this house, so perhaps you can have “staycations” for this year.
    Congratulations on all you’re accomplishing. Lucky family!

    1. Meegan Warbritton says:

      I would also like the info. on your refrigerator. We are getting ready to build and that looks like what I am looking for. Any info would be much appreciated.

      Thanks! 🙂

  5. Barbara T Whitaker says:

    what about, casual stools around the counter (with fabric) that tone down the gloss wood tones. It’s a beautiful kitchen (House) and it would be ashamed (financially and style wise) to change it drastically. I liked your kitchen in the old house, but give yourself some time to settle in with things that you like…and mix them together. Might be an interesting way to blog; live with what you have and change things that involve less money. I sort of feel that’s why bloggers became popular, now it seems like everyone is giving $20K redos in every room. Most of us don’t understand that; and related to old style blogging. But I do love your choices, and style…just take it back to basic.

  6. I think the items you picked will help a lot in getting a more casual look. The fireplace will be a big helper too! You can easily paint those tiles behind the stove one solid neutral color. Someone would need to hold me back from chopping off those columns at the end of the island ????

  7. I would paint those cabinets off white to brighten the entire space up

  8. Audrey Johnson says:

    I think your touches will help immensely but agree with the prior comment about some stools with a covered top. That could also tie the decor in with another part of the house if a similar fabric were used as elsewhere.

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