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Heather Scott Home & Design is an award-winning interior design firm and sophisticated boutique based in Austin, TX and Scottsdale, AZ. Our blog shares the tasteful home accessories, furnishings and gifts that you can find in our retail boutique. We also feature our design projects, industry trends and expert tips that hope to inspire homeowners to create the stylish & chic home of their dreams.

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In Progress: Two Lessons Learned During A Kitchen Remodel
January 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | no comments

We have a client with a “lock and leave” as she calls it.  A retired school teacher, she has family out of state and spends a lot of time away from home.  She was searching for a “small cottage” in a Austin community where the landscaping would be maintained and an entry gate might reduce possible break ins while she was gone.

She found the ideal location and size (about 1,500 sq. ft.) but the home needed some significant updating, especially in the kitchen.


The kitchen had carpet (really- look at the photo!), a long bank of endless upper and lower cabinets, and was completely cut off from the family room with the fur down and row of upper cabinets.  Note the ceiling light fixture (more on that later).

kitchen before

The cabinets were in good shape, so we kept those and just worked on rearranging the layout.  The family room is very narrow, so we wanted to make the island smaller and move it closer to the back wall. 

kitchen into family roomkitchen before into laundry

We worked on some options for the layout (first round shown), then revised them:

kitchen v1island v1

Selected materials:

Backsplash with marble and glass

backsplash tile with paint

We chose “Grey Goose” for the countertop from Pacific Shore Stone.

grey goose counter for kitchen

And now, we wait for the contractor to finish the job! 

Remember where I said up above, “note the ceiling light”?  This is the perfect example of how you never know what you will uncover once you start a project.  The previous home owners had completely covered a massive sky light right in the middle of the kitchen!  This discovery has wreaked a little havoc on our plan to place kitchen lighting, but as with all projects there are always a few surprises and you need to be flexible!

kitchen during

Our client originally thought she wanted a white kitchen, but the more she looked at pictures, she decided she wanted to do something different.  So, we went with a blue/gray paint for the cabinets and a shade darker on the island.

painted cabinets, remodel

kitchen remodel painted cabinets, side view

painted cabinets, stove view

We are still waiting for some finishing details, including the island pendant lighting, but in reality, this was a very small kitchen remodel with major impact!  That is why I wanted to share our ‘progress’ with you.  

Lesson #1: Don’t underestimate what can be achieved in a small space.  Instead of separate and crowded, your kitchen can quickly become dramatic and ‘open plan’ with a minimal investment.

Lesson #2: You need to refine your design style.  Our client was sure she wanted a white kitchen, but it is ok to change your mind.  If you do a lot of looking you will train your eye to better understand what you want out of your remodel.  The best time to do this is before selections are made, not after the contractor has ripped out everything!  This will save you both time and money, and who doesn’t want that?

I hope these 2 “lessons learned” will help you if you decide to undertake any type of remodel.   Good luck if you decide to embark on this on your own; it can be very rewarding (once you are finished!).  If you decide you would like some help on your design and or decorating project, feel free to reach out to us here: