How to upgrade fairly new kitchen?

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anything like granite (except maybe a real low-end granite). OTOH, the engineered stones (which the Granite Transformations stuff is one of many) have a lot of nice properties, if you like the look.
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This room appears small and cluttered. Lose the tile on the counters and backspash, install a white solid surface (SS) on the counter and a 4" SS backsplash, maybe a tile mural behind the range. Paint the walls white. Lay some mirrors on the top of the wall cabines and add some tubelights (mood light and ambience). Put some uncomplicated silk plants on top of the wall cabinets. No crown molding, it will increase the cluttered look. Yank the cabinet doors and install glass inserted ones, add brass knobs on all doors and drawers. Install a ceiling fan/light combo. Using lighter colors and less lines the room will more spacious and airy. The cabinets themselves are dark and therefore make the room seem small but cabinets are expensive to replace. Point: make the entire room seem less cluttered and in a small room less is more.

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Ew.
Huh?
Aiieeeee! What - it's to look like a Christmas display at Bergdorf's?

:-O
Hopefully *you'll* be the buyer if he sells soon. Otherwise, unless this is what the O.P. likes for himself, I'd have to say - no. Not a wide-appeal setup. In fact, a run-screaming setup.
SS all over? Then brass knobs!? Mirrors? Even up there? Glass showing all my stuff. There's a hood in there. I don't need a fan in there too blowing stuff other directions. (And what is this with fans being *in* *every* *single* *room* - a few well-placed in certain rooms yes - otherwise, I go outside for breezes!) You have the place with white, SS, and mirrors, it's cold enough without the fan.
But then, you're entitled to your opinion ;)
Banty
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Don

Thats because you have a very narrow focus and don't know what you're talking about. I've designed hundreds of million+ dollar homes for the past 20+ years. My own home had many of the features I described, it sold for what we listed at (3 times the amount I paid to have it built) exactly 4 days after it went on the market. And you've done what? I am presently designing our new home which will have many of the *proven* design specifics I mentioned. Now go back to your *shabby chic* home and garden shows. LOL
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??
"Shabby chic...garden shows"?!
Well, tells me that you think you know way more than you really know.
Which reflects on the rest of what you had to say before that little closing..
But, anyhow, mirror and white-stainless away, with my blessing.
Cheers, Banty
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Look, I do this stuff for a living. The OP asked for suggestions, and I offered. Then you tried to embarrass yourself by jumping on me, and you succeeded.

You clearly have no ability to visualize, thats your fault.

You didn't see me touting stainless, but don't let that stop you from making stuff up as you go. Onward.
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I have to agree with Banty on this one. A lot of what Don has suggested makes no sense.
Like solid white countertops? IfRex wants a home that will have more appeal and stand out, I would not rip out white tile countertops only to replace it with white solid surface.
And the suggestion to just replace the existing cabinet doors with see through glass makes no sense. The glass doored cabinets that are attractive and add value do so because the whole cabinet, including the inside, is designed to be seen. The wood inside is finished and usually made of the same wood as the exterior. Putting glass doors on existing builder cabinets will simply make the insides, which are usually ugly, visible.
As for mirrors and mood lights, well that sort of speaks for itself!
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<sigh> Another person that has had zero exposure to anything more than a double wide. You've never seen cabinet doors with glass inserts? Just about ALL of the major cabinet makers have that option. As far as your suggestion there may be something seedy about ambient light, well, that says more about YOUR lifestyle than anything else. When you've lived your entire life with that rusty old round flourescent fixture in the middle of the kitchen ceiling its completely understandable why you haven't the slightest notion as to the meaning of the THREE types of lighting in residential applications. And no that doesn't mean 1) candle, 2) exposed lightbulb, 3) exposed lightbulb with a string. Hint: Put on your sunday-go-to-church duds and go preview some of the PERMANENT model homes in your area if any exist and observe whats going on in the real world. You'll know if its a permanent one if it isn't sitting on wheels and the car in the yard is missing its wheels......
Yes, I hope you are insulted because that is exactly what you attempted to do with your post about me. Thanks alot.
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So - what - no one here can have a different taste from yours? If they're not into your ultra-contemporary look, they must be trailer trash?
Consider that people aren't even criticizing your *style* necessarily (personally I think it is slick, if done right), it's that you're putting it forth as a widely-appealing style that Rex should do up his tract-house kitchen in, and that's what bears some discussion. And without getting so defensive.
It hardly seems something to get so prickly about. Although I did amuse some friends recounting how some men really can get into pissing contests over kitchen decor. So thanks.
Cheers, Banty
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You can have whatever taste you want and it won't bother me at all, nor will I down talk your choices or insult you, as you have done to me. I offered the OP some suggestions and right away you jumped on me and you lied about it to boot. That silliness about solid surface meaning stainless steel. I mean really. You like stainless steel sinks, I don't - I think they look cheap. But I didn't jump on you for your opinion. Do unto others as you would like done to you.
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"You've never seen cabinet doors with glass inserts? "
Heh, Don, you moron. Of course we've all seen cabinets with glass inserts. I didn't say they didn't exist. I said YOUR suggestion of simply changing the doors on his existing builder cabinets to glass ones makes no sense. That's because, as I already pointed out, cabinets with glass doors have inside finishes that are attractive, usually the same as the exterior, and meant to be seen. If you replace the doors on typical builder type cabinets, which is what this person has, with glass doors, all you're going to do is look at an unattractive inside of a cheapo cabinet.
Is that so hard to understand?
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Why does it seem that you're lying, again?

Now you're backpeddling.
I said YOUR suggestion of

<yawn> Try to get out of the trailer park sometime, and see how the rest of the world lives.
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I don't see a response to trader's point anywhere in this post. (And, no he did *not* say they didn't exist.)
Banty
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The tiling in the room looks very institutional especially where it is tiled around the tiny window without any window casing. Why is the backsplash tile so thick that they had to use those heavy edge tiles? The grout lines are so heavy and pronounced. The layout is not bad, and not worth changing but getting rid of the bad tile job would go a long way to improving the room.
While I see a lot of that type of tile countertops on TV in old and new houses, in this area they are not considered to be "in", in fact would devaluate a house. Either solid granite, a sythetic such as Corian, or at the cheapest, colourcore laminate would look better (in order of preference).

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Generic/tract houses are designed and set up the way they are because that's the best trade-off between cost and appeal that the builder could come up with. You're unlikely to do better than that unless you plan on investing an awful lot of time and effort.
Stick to painting things until you've got a better idea of what works for you.
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Rex wrote:

I looked at these pics, as well as the later ones you posted.
Other than the fact that the recessed lights seem to be illuminating the tops of the cabinets, rather than your workspace, the area most in need of renovation is the floor.
I renovated (brought back from the dead, actually) a property using the exact same neutral color scheme except I tiled the floor and laminated the countertops, and I got the highest price ever paid in that particular neighborhood.
So if resale is important to you (personally I prefer to live in a house *I* like, and to hell with the next owners) just change the floor to tile. Don't do wood, as it will probably be water damaged long before you resell it.
I may be the only one who's already sick of granite countertops, and thinks they'll be as outdated as those hideous pink pickled oak cabinets I saw everywhere a few years ago.
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"Bob (but not THAT Bob)"> wrote

I agree Bob, and I believe the current trend in stainless appliances will pass soon as well. Trends change all the time. Frankly, I think the stainless stuff looks cheap, like something you'd see in an old greasy diner or something. I hear it from my clients all the time that they did the stainless thing and now its time to move on.
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Here is a picture of a neighbor's house where they went ahead and changed out the standard tile to granite. What do you think of this?
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d163/rexpix/Kitchen/9546ec69.jpg
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my cupboards are about the same style and wood colors as yours and I have wood flooring.....one thing I can advise is not to paint the walls yellow......you would be surprised as how much yellow is the woods itself it just washes each other out. A nice mossy green is what I ended up with. Attended the home show. There is a company that makes a silestone product that can go right over existing tiles. They come out measure everything so its one solid piece. My daugher has their card so will the info on it over the holiday. Prefer my formica countertops over the tiles...which is what my bathroom has ....yuck yuck and more yuck.
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I didn't like the oak cabinets, and I don't buy into this stainless steel look. I don't buy into the see-through cabinet doors either, for that matter. And why everyone seems to be putting wood on the kitchen floors now is beyond me! But, I've always admired the look of stone. My practical sense had me considering a solid surface manmade counter material, but I went with the granite. To *not* do something just because it's the style is to be just as much a slave to fashion as it is to do something *because* it's the style. And I only live once ;-)

Looks very warm, comfortable, and nice. Although I would have changed out the sink for a stainless double sink. The taupey wall paint and copper sun add a lot.
If you're still thinking resale, it's look that will hold up and have wide appeal. But since you say you're going to stay at least five years and possibly much longer, I'd say just do what you really want.
Banty
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