A Place for Everything in a Brooklyn Kitchen

The space is unrecognizable!

gray peninsula island with white countertop and pendant lights and recessed lights in living and dining and hardwood look tile floors after renovationProject: Add more storage and create a better flow in the kitchen

Before: Fatima and Scott purchased a 785-square-foot apartment in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, for their growing family, including their three-year-old Ayla and her future baby brother. They had been renting for years, and were finally ready to buy in Brooklyn. As their broker put it, they’d be paying top dollar for ‘the lipstick on the pig’ if they bought something turn-key. If they were brave enough to take on a project, it would be a better investment in the long run—and that’s exactly what they decided to do. The apartment is in the Clinton Hill Co-ops with views of the Empire State Building and overall good bones, but the kitchen needed some work. They posted their project to Sweeten to renovate the dark and disconnected space and were matched with a general contractor.

dark cabinets with white countertop and stainless steel appliances and peninsula island with black granite countertop before renovationfloor plan sketch of master bedroom with attached bathroom and living room after renovationAfter: The kitchen hardly looks like the same one. New walls were put up in what was once the dining area (to create another bedroom/nursery) which allowed for a new general framework for the kitchen. A peninsula connects the open living area with the cook space. The couple chose light gray cabinets, mixing in glass doors for variety and openness. Bright white quartz countertops and classic subway tile tie the simple and clean look together.

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The peninsula has drawer space all along the kitchen-facing side, and the opposite side hosts a wine fridge for easy access from the main living space.

coffee or breakfast station with gray cabinets and white countertop and white walls and tile flooring that look like hardwood after renovationThey’re so happy to finally have a designated spot for everything, “It was exciting to lay out a kitchen in a way that’s exactly how I move and flow in a space. You don’t realize how important it is to have utensils or pots and pans in a specific place until you’re in an inconvenient kitchen. To have fluidity in my kitchen today thrills me,” Fatima shared.

Costs and timing were their biggest concerns going into the project, especially since they didn’t want to be in a situation where they were paying rent and a mortgage simultaneously. Their contractor worked quickly and efficiently to make sure their renovation was finished in six weeks. He was also there to provide suggestions and recommended vendors for the material, too.

gray kitchen cabinets and stainless steel appliances and tile flooring and cabinets with glass doors above sink after renovationlight gray kitchen cabinets and stainless steel appliances and white walls and window with black frame after renovationTheir tips for future renovators: go into a project with flexibility. “Know that you will hit some hiccups, time frames may be stretched and some things won’t work exactly as you want them to.  The idea is to have a great contractor as we did. When my vision couldn’t exactly play out, he didn’t just say it couldn’t be done and move on, he came back with new ideas and we found solutions,” Fatima shared.

Bonus: Their new kitchen has so much drawer space, there’s room for a junk drawer, which Fatima considers a “suburban luxury.”

Style finds: Kitchen cabinets, hardware, and undercabinet lighting: Ikea. Quartz countertops and sink: Bright Granite in Brooklyn, New York. Daltile backsplash: Volpatt Tile in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Essie touchless faucet: Moen. Refrigerator, dishwasher, and stove: Existing. Pendant lighting: Plattsmouth. Floors: Pergo.

Here’s how much it costs to renovate a kitchen in New York City.

Sweeten handpicks the best general contractors to match each project’s location, budget, and scope, helping until project completion. Follow the blog, Sweeten Storiesfor renovation ideas and inspiration and when you’re ready to renovate, start your renovation on Sweeten.

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