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Our Plan to Transform a Dark Northville Kitchen to One that's Bright and Timeless

It's been quite a while since I've given a project update, and I'll admit, even starting this post feels a like a lot of work. It's been seven months since our move to the east side of the state, and BOY has it been a challenging seven months!

Between raising a highly sensitive puppy alongside our highly sensitive 5 year old dog, navigating the crazy supply chain that is the aftermath of covid, and many, many commutes between Clarkston and Grand Rapids, I feel pretty darn pooped!

Luckily, we have a RESTFUL vacation planned for this summer and I'm COUNTING DOWN THE DAYS.

That said, on the work side, I feel incredibly blessed to be staying busy—in fact, busier than ever—and already building up a client base in Southeast Michigan as well as Grand Rapids metro.

Today I'm going to give you an update on a project that's in the works. Due to the supply chain issues, we likely wont install this project until after the first of the year, so a good ole "how it's going" post will have to suffice!

Our Client's Design Goals

Our clients moved from California, and prior to moving, they lived in a STUNNING condo that they'd completely renovated and furnished with the help of an LA designer. Their move here, like so many of us, was the unexpected result of covid, with the goal of being close to family.

That said, their new house and previous condo couldn't have been more different, and they didn't bring much with them in the move—so we had our work cut out for us!

Our directive included the following:

  • The house was build in 2012, and for the most part, they clients liked the shell of the house. What updates could we make to brighten up the space without any major renovation projects? Specifically, the kitchen, while beautiful, had all dark wood cabinets. Could we make this brighter?

  • We needed to furnish the following spaces: kitchen/breakfast area, great room, lanai, formal dining, main floor office, and upstairs office.

Brightening Up The Kitchen

Here's a screenshot of the kitchen as it was when the clients moved in. Like I said, a beautiful, SPACIOUS, kitchen, but just not their style. The cabinets were in great shape and style wise, fairly timeless, so we decided we'd do a mini makeover without any ripping anything out.

Our plan included painting the cabinets, updated hardware, new lights, countertops, and backsplash. We wanted to maintain the tile floors because 1) tile floors are darn expensive, and 2) while it might not have been something they'd picked if they were building the house themselves, it was fairly neutral, and we felt we could work with it.

Here are a few photos I found in my research phase (all pulled from Pinterest) that did a great job of incorporating the sandstone tile floors:

I noted that these all used some kind of neutral base for the, slightly grey, beige...and I appreciated, in the second image, the use of a contrasting colored island. Our space was SO large, that I felt a contrasting island was important to break up the neutral color.

While I love the look of the dark blue with the sandstone, we wanted to go more taupey/neutral vs. a color in their space. Below is a quick study playing with material colors: subway tile backsplash, marble-look quartz countertops, lighter perimeter cabinets, and a darker island:

Another detail that's worth noting is on the range cabinetry. The original range had two overly ornate corbels on each side and a decorative wood detail across the front. These weren't to any of our tastes, so we had our painter remove the wood detail and replace the decorative corbels

with less ornate ones, like this example here.

We also decided—my clients idea!—to do the quartz countertop as our backsplash in this spot. This would break up the vast amount of subway tile and keep the range area as the focal point that it is.

Here are a few progress shots that showcase the new paint colors. We're missing the island countertops, most of the doors, and range backsplash, but this gives you an idea of the overall transformation.

Take a look at how the tiny detail of removing the wood decal and ornate corbels on the range makes such a big difference. Additionally, the darker, very fancy lantern pendants will be replaced with updated ones that better fit the new style:

Here are the pendant lights, similar in size to what is currently there:

And here's a close up of the new corbels on the range, which are far less ornate and fit the overall style much better:

Here's a shot of the butler's pantry, which showcases the new tile backsplash, countertops, and updated faucet. These cabinets will be painted the same color as the island, and this space will also get an updated light fixture:

Okay! I have LOTS more to show you from this project, including mood boards and layouts with the furnishings for all the spaces I listed above, but this post is far too long already, so that will have to wait for another time! Excited to keep you updated as this project continues to progress.


- Lauren


Work with Lauren Figueroa Interior Design

LFID is a full-service interior design firm serving West and Southeast Michigan known especially for our Designed in a Day service.

We work with clients from Detroit to Novi to Clarkston, and Grand Rapids to Holland to Traverse City—and anywhere in between! We pride ourselves on creating bespoke, people-centered spaces—because after all, people are what this life is all about!

If you have a project on the horizon, get started by telling us about your vision here, and you can view past projects here. Thanks for stopping by!


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