On pins and needles

Well, after several weeks of looking for just the right place, we’ve put in an offer on a house. It’s much closer to John’s work, and on a much smaller property, but has a big common area to run the dog and have picnics and host our annual 4th of July bash.  My favorite part is a mega-huge living room– perfect for having our mob over for Sunday dinner.

It’s a foreclosure property, and we’re crossing our fingers that the bank will accept our offer.  We think we may hear something today, so I’ll keep you posted.  Meanwhile our painting efforts have moved upstairs, and we have a someone coming in today to measure our kitchen for new cabinets.

Something about using a house hard for 22 years leaves the cabinets less than stellar, and prevailing wisdom these days is that kitchens sell houses. So here’s what I’d love to hear from you today: in your ideal kitchen, what color would the cabinets and counters be?   Here are some ideas that appeal to me at the moment.


But I thought it would be fun to take a poll and see what you all think makes a pretty kitchen. Here’s a photo of the current kitchen so you can get an idea of the space I’m working with.

Kitchen Before


It actually doesn’t look bad on the surface–we’ve thought of leaving the cabinets and just adding granite.  But the insides of the cabinets are very worn– lots of chips and broken bits as well as water damage under the sink. All that wear would be a real turnoff to a buyer, especially at the price point at which we hope to sell.

So tell me:  lighter or deeper cabinets?  What tones of granite would you have in your dream kitchen?  By all means share pinterest links and photos if you have ideas.



  1. Such exciting news, congratulations! I love white cabinetry in kitchens. I also really prefer light granite to dark — I’ve worked in homes with black granite countertops and they are SO HARD to keep clean! It’s just really hard to see where messes or sticky spots are unless you’re at the right angle.

  2. Personally, I am a fan of white cabinets in kitchens. When we built a custom home years ago, I “lost” that battle and we put in light oak cabinets. I have to say they did look great, but I always wondered what it would have looked like white. It seems the trend now is for the darker woods or a mix of dark on top and painted/lighter colors on the lower cabinets. I think there is a computer program you could us to “test” out the options in the actual layout you have. Just a thought. Such a great adventure you are on with the house/home front!

  3. White for sure! And we put in quartz countertops, which I love, and are lower maintenance than granite.

    • My MIL had a hot-pink Post-it note get wet and STAIN her new quartz. So I am leery of quartz…or maybe hers was not well sealed?

      • Really surprised to hear that. I left raspberry juice on my counter for 2 weeks (went out of town and was crazy disorganized) and it wiped right up after we got back. I am sure I have spilled everything on mine in the 3 years we have had it and nothing has stained.
        As far as white – my Mom has had white for years in her fairly expensive homes. She uses bathroom paint – easy wipe up and lasts longer.

  4. I like the look of white, but it just is not practical for a family with kids. We had a rental once…no matter how often I cleaned, they really needed a repaint after just 1 year. So, at least an off white. I think green is a nice color and I have seen nice ones on Pintrest.

  5. Light and bright is the way to go, like your inspiration photos. It definitely helps sell houses!

  6. I like white cabinets — but they do show *everything*!
    We need to replace ours as well, and will probably go with white again. Haven’t decided on color of countertop.

  7. Congratulations by the way on finding a house to make an offer on! That is such an exciting/nerve wracking time. Good luck!

  8. Our big kitchen remodel starts Monday. This is the quartz countertop it will have. There are brown and greys in it. We’re keeping our white appliances so we wanted a lighter countertop. I hope the link works it’s LG palermo quartz.

  9. We love our white kitchen cabinets — IKEA real wood (its been 18 months -they’re holding up great against 5 kids!). Also we did a composite countertop that is LOVELY (gray/black/white flecks), cheaper than granite/quartz & more casual looking for our family kitchen.
    We love it!
    Hope your house offer goes through!

  10. I have a mixture in my kitchen. (Because hubby and I couldn’t agree and the builder said having the island different is great!) My main cabinets are dark with light quartz counters and the island is white with honed black granite. I love it all. If you like black granite I would definitely look at honed. I do think white is still very popular and will sell well in the house.

  11. If you think you can sell quickly, white cabinets are the way to go. Everyone seems to love them. They’re a nightmare to keep clean, though, so If you think it will take a while to get an offer, make sure the surface is easy to clean.

    Dark granite pops better with white cabinets. Toy with doing cool tile (glass maybe?) for the back splash. It sparkles under lighting.

    I also agree with comments from others–maybe doing a different cabinet color (especially with you island) could be fun. Something painted that might coordinate well with your back splash.

    Best wishes! We sold our last house in day–due in no small part to the attention paid to the kitchen!

    • Thanks for the feedback. What else did you do that you think contributed to the quick sale?

  12. I would look around at other ideas for a vent over the stove and not have cabinets there. I have bad both white cabinets with dark countertops and dark cherry with charcoal countertops and I liked them both. I think just the fact of NEW will be a big draw. I’m excited for you!

  13. White, it really brightens up a kitchen. As far as keeping them clean, while white painted cabinets don’t clean well, if you buy them they are not painted white. It is like a think plastic coating that cleans wonderfully well. I had them for 11 years and a quick wipe down with a magic eraser is all it takes to keep them clean. We’ve just moved and while the kitchen in my new house is beautiful with granite counters, I already miss my white cabinets!

  14. My hubby, like yours, has a great deal of wood working experience. Soapstone can be worked with traditional woodworking power tools and can save thousands on a kitchen counter. It’s an ideal surface and easy upkeep, too. As for cabinets, most of his installs are either white or cherry natural wood in upscale homes. The finish on white cabinets makes a huge difference on how easy they are to clean.

  15. I’m not sure I would spend much money to update a kitchen . . . only because it seems that tastes are so particular and people seem to often update kitchens that were JUST updated. A gorgeous house across the street from me just sold (after being on the market for a hot minute) and for over 2 months, the house has been worked on. The new owners have yet to move in. They are changing EVERYTHING and even repainted the exterior of the house (the SAME COLOR) even though it was just repainted last year.

    Anyway. I do like a white kitchen with white cabinets. I have white-washed oak which I love and white tile–which is all outdated but I like it anyway.

    Since your husband is handy, updating things wouldn’t be the costly nightmare it would be for me, so disregard my opinion. 🙂

    Good luck!

  16. Gary Coryer says:

    To tell you the truth I prefer the original wood finish cabinets over any of the other color schemes. Probably comes from living in Vermont and having grown up in the Adirondacks. It just seems so much warmer to me.

  17. I”m thinking white would sell nicely! My kitchen is white and used hard for 15 years — not a good choice in the long term but so pretty when we first moved in. Light on top, dark on the bottom is trendy, too. Good luck with the house purchase — I hope it is a smooth process.

  18. I love a bright kitchen, so white cabinets and lighter countertops appeal most to me.

  19. i loved white until I had to live with it. It’s not ideal for young kids and a busy kitchen. We had a blackish quartz and darker wood cabinets in our old house and I loved it! We will eventually redo our current white kitchen and will go that route again. So exciting about the new house! Congrats!

  20. You might look into a vented microwave for over the range to replace the vent. It will give you more upper cabinet space. And speaking of upper cabinets, the picture might be distorted but it looks like the cabinet doors are about 24″ wide. If you replace the uppers with smaller cabinets (say 30″-36″) it will give you an extra door or two and you could some of the doors glass fronts. Buyers loooove glass fronts in Texas 🙂

  21. I personally don’t like white cabinets and wouldn’t have bought our current home 1 year ago if the cabinets would have been white. Reminds me of the mid to late 90’s where every house had white cabinets with white tile counters. We have oak cabinets which hardly show any wear and tear and still look great even though our 6 kiddos spend a ton of time in the kitchen. I also wouldn’t go with dark granite. Every single white speck, be it from toast crumbs to cereal crumbs stands out like a sore thumb. I usually wipe my counters down several times per day.

  22. My preference: white cabinet with a medium gray counter top.

  23. I think it’s funny how many comments there are when you ask us for our opinion…we’re ALWAYS happy to give opinions!! 😉

    I think that cabinet color really depends on how much natural light you have in the house. My house has limited natural light, so light colored walls and wood are important to brighten up the space. My sister’s house, in contrast, has so much natural light that white cabinets would reflect too much light and be glaring, so they have gone with beautiful black-brown cabinets. I think you should evaluate your home and decide if it needs the extra brightness that white cabinets would provide, or the contrast of dark cabinets that pop against the walls.

    As for counter tops, we have some Home Depot laminate counters by Hampton Bay in Milano Brown and I LOVE the color. It hides dirt and stains so well (ahem! maybe too well!). I would love a higher quality surface that I could put hot pans directly on, but for a basic counter top, I am really satisfied.

    I’m super excited for you and eager to see what happens next! 🙂

  24. This is probably a pase comment, but I just wanted to chime in to say I love my white cabinets. They are basic builder-grade white laminate cabinets from HomeDepot or somewhere. Because they’re laminate they wipe clean so easily! And I really don’t feel like they show that much even when they are dirty. But they aren’t high gloss, so maybe that is part of it. Also they brighten up the kitchen and match any dishes/towels whatever I put in there.


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