I’m giddy with excitement to share everything you need to know about our transitional kitchen. We get asked what our home interior style is pretty often. If I had to pick one word it would be transitional, which is a blend of traditional and modern. However, we do lean more toward modern style when it comes to certain finishes and decor. The kitchen is our favorite room in the entire house because it’s the gathering space for our home. When family or friends come over they flock here to chat with us, get a chilled topo chico or eat a cookie fresh out of the oven.
I’ll be sharing all the details of our kitchen, why we designed it a certain way and what custom changes we were able to make with our builder since this isn’t a custom home. We are so happy with how our kitchen turned out and it makes us smile every day.
- Cabinets: Shaker-style doors painted Sherwin Williams Pure White
- Waterfall Island Quartz: Calacatta Foresta (approx 8’x5′)
- Back Countertops: Silestone in Miami White
- Backsplash: 4×12 Subway Tile laid on a Brick Pattern with Bright White Grout
- Open Shelves: Cedar shelves custom made by our builder. Stained Sherwin Williams Mountain Ash.
- Cabinet Hardware: Aged Brass Drawer Pulls & Knobs
- Floors: Shaw Floors (Made in the USA) Maple
- Door Hardware: Kwikset
- Walls: Sherwin Williams Extra White
Johnny and I both dreamed of a white kitchen with touches of black and brass for years. We love how it’s a timeless look and allows us to add our own touches without worrying about anything clashing. It’s important to have your priorities laid out first so you can figure out where you are budget-wise, then go from there. When it came to the design we had to have a waterfall island with beautiful veining, big apron-front or farmhouse sink with a brass faucet and an appliance garage. Everything else was something we wanted but wouldn’t make or break our dream transitional kitchen.
KITCHEN FAUCET & FARMHOUSE SINK
This 36″ Kohler Whitehaven Sink is a dream item for me. I’ve seen it in countless kitchens online and in real life and knew I had to have it. At one point, we almost cut it from the design plan to save money. However, since it’s an undermount sink, there was no way to install it without damaging our countertops and since we were already paying to upgrade those, it just made sense to get my dream sink, too. Now that it’s in our kitchen, I can’t stop swooning over it. The size is fantastic and even my biggest pots, pans and baking sheets fit. I got stainless steel racks to put in the bottom of our sink to protect dishes, the sink and prevent scratches.
Speaking of scratches, I’m somewhat convinced the sink doesn’t actually get scratched. I know that sounds wild, but every single “scratch” I’ve been able to get out with Barkeeper’s Friend. Put some on the scratch or spot you need to clean, scrub it in and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, put your back into it and it’ll come out. When it comes to the sink being white… I just practice common sense. If I’m cleaning up after a meal with curry or pasta, I don’t let that sit in the sink. I wash and rinse the sink afterward. I’m always careful anyway, so this isn’t a deal-breaker to me.
The brass faucet is one of the last pieces to complete our kitchen. We recently installed it ourselves (head to my IG highlights to see) and couldn’t be happier. The design center didn’t have exact faucet we wanted, so we decided to wait. If you change out your faucet yourself, it’s much easier if the old one has the same number of holes as your new one. It literally took us 10 minutes to install. I love the angled spout on this modern faucet and the knurled pulldown sprayer and knob. It’s truly a statement in our transitional kitchen. I actually got it for an incredible deal on eBay of all places! I explain how I use eBay to get items at a great discount here.
COOK & PREP AREA
The back part of the kitchen is very important to us. Similar to the island, it really does set the tone for the whole kitchen. You can’t miss it when you walk in so it has to beautiful and functional. We toyed with the idea of darker lower cabinets but stuck with all white to keep things simple. Our kitchen is organized by zones, so we kept that in mind when designing. The far left is our serve section with plates, bowls and flatware. The middle zone near the cooktop is the prep section. This is where we store cooking tools, pots and pans, sauces, spices, colanders, etc. and anything we need to prepare a meal. The right side is where we go when we need to store food. Glass food storage containers, plastic wrap, foil are all closely kept to the refrigerator to make it easy.
CUSTOM VENT HOOD
When we upgraded to our farmhouse sink, we knew we would have to make our gas cooktop and vent hood 36 inches as well to get everything symmetric. The vent hood was surprisingly a labor of love for what we call a “plain white box” and took a lot of work. In fact, in these photos, it’s still not right but no fear. The cabinet maker is coming back out to get it all perfect. One must for the vent hood is it completely hides the vent. I did not want to see it, I did not want it sticking out. We cook a lot, so having a strong vent is important to prevent smells and help with the mess. Everytime we cook, we turn it on and the items on our open shelves don’t get dirty!
In our transitional kitchen, we wanted most things on the minimalist side. Plus, since it’s made of the exact same materials as our cabinets, it’s so easy to clean!
OPEN SHELVES & CABINETS
These are custom-made by our builder and 28″ long, 12″ deep and 3″ tall. They used cedar and stained them Sherwin Williams Mountain Ash. They did two coats but essentially buffed out the second coat to get them smooth. We really wanted open shelving to increase the functionality of our kitchen. On the lower two shelves we keep the bowls, plates and glasses we use every day. It makes it easy to grab when we’re plating and put back from the dishwasher. Think of these things when you’re organizing your kitchen. Above that we have items for serving we don’t use too often. A big casserole pot and serving board act as decor in our transitional kitchen but are also functional.
The two drawers right next to the cooktop are essential for us. I bought this we got this handy spice drawer insert. It comes in two sizes: 18? and 24? and meant to be trimmed with a circular saw to perfectly fit your drawers. We got the 18? and had it trimmed down to around 15? to fit our drawer directly to the left of our cooktop. I love how the spices are laid horizontally at an angle because it makes them easy to see, use and put back.
I highly recommend these 6 oz glass jars. At the time of ordering, only one color lid was available, but now they hve gold! Having all of our spices in the same size jar is super soothing to me. Take your organization up another level by getting these modern white labels. They are so easy to apply, oil and water-resistant and you can get custom options. I got the 1.25 x 2.25 size! Easily one of the five things that will make your kitchen more organized.
For our flatware, I got this cutlery organizer. It looks completely different from others and I love it. Spoons, forks, knives all have a specific spot and everything is laid out beautifully. For more kitchen organization, check out this blog post.
A completely custom item we did and have absolutely no regrets. Our designer initially recommended this and we looked online to find inspiration photos. After that, we knew we wanted it to have doors that open and slide inside the cabinet space. This is where we house our rice cooker, air fryer, blender, coffee grinder… all those big bulky appliances you use regularly but don’t want to clutter your countertops. This is the perfect solution. Eventually, we will install a drawer system so we have two shelves we can pull out to maximize the space inside. I love how I can close the doors and the clutter is gone.
Under that, we did three drawers. One at regular depth with a flat panel front and two “pot and pan” depth drawers. The middle drawer is where we keep our tupperware and the bottom is for all baking tooks such as my Kitchenaid attachments, measuring cups, etc.
Since this is a completely custom item, it was pricey. The cabinet maker needed to stop production on standard items, draw this up and make it for us. However, the final product is perfect and makes a big impact on the functionality and aesthetic of our transitional kitchen.
Since our transitional kitchen has a bit of black and white, we wanted brass hardware to soften up the space. I love solid brass hardware because of the quality. Think about how many times you’ll open and close a cabinet or drawer a day. Multiply that by how many people live in the home and you need it to stand up the test of time. I love the ridge detailing on these drawer pulls and knobs, which really elevates the cabinet. Our hardware is not a perfect match to the handles on our refrigerator, but I love how it looks!
We did not have the money to do a custom refrigerator with paneled doors. It’s a gorgeous look and truly looks high-end. Maybe in our next house. This GE Café Appliances Refrigerator helps us achieve that high-end look without breaking the bank. My full review of it is on this blog post.
To keep with the black, brass and white transitional kitchen, our decor is the same color. We really didn’t want anything to really pop out too much. As with most things, it’ll most likely always be a work in progress but here are some decor items we probably would never change.
Johnny and I love the simple look of these pendants. The shape is exactly what we wanted with its clean lines juxtaposed with the circular clasp. When we got them, I fell even more in love. I love how it’s not perfectly smooth and the clasp and chain have this aged texture. We installed these ourselves after moving in and it was easy to do!
Most of the kitchen is white, so I needed something to contrast and pop out. These black leather counter stools with brass legs are perfect. They are actually very comfortable to sit in and the legs slide so easily. I don’t think I could go back to having four legs on a barstool again!
SHOP OUR KITCHEN
ACCESSORIES & DECOR