Desperate Kitchen Makeover: Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

Kitchen Cousins John Colaneri and Anthony Carrino head to Lafayatte in their home state of New Jersey to update a 100-year-old farmhouse kitchen, creating a stunning design that combines both modern and rustic elements.

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Photo By: Chris Amaral

Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

John and Anthony blended old and new motifs to enhance both function and aesthetics in this farmhouse kitchen in a home that's more than a century old.

Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

The home is in the New Jersey farmlands, about an hour west of Jersey City. It sits on ten acres of land and was built around 1900. In the newly remodeled dining room seen here, highlights include a large farmhouse table, vintage wooden console and a sliding door made using antique barn wood. Simple vintage chairs were painted black to give them a new, clean look. The pendant light features a mint green shade that coordinates with fixtures in the adjacent kitchen.

Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

For a look that's cohesive with the kitchen, the adjacent dining room gets new white paint and dark gray wainscoating. Accent elements of mint green and pale blue also help to tie the two spaces together visually.

Kitchen, Before

Homeowners Nate and Katie Bennett purchased the country home with hopes of starting a small working farm. They loved the home's history, but the kitchen – likely updated in the 1970s – had lost some of its original and authentic farmhouse charm.

Kitchen, After

John and Anthony's design optimized the existing floor plan and opened up the sight lines between the kitchen and dining room while staying true to the home's original country aesthetic.

Kitchen, Before

"This kitchen is making us blue." That was how homeowner Katie summed up their old, barely functional kitchen. Prior to the renovation it had blue laminate flooring, sky-blue countertops and backsplash, a blue patterned wallpaper border and dated cabinets.

Kitchen, After

The Cousins brightened up the space with all new white cabinets, counter-to-ceiling subway tile backsplash, contrasting countertops, updated lighting and a new refrigerator in mint green. The bright white palette and open cabinet design helpmake the space feel larger.

Kitchen, Before

Homeowners Nate and Katie Bennett were eager for an upgrade for their outdated kitchen and dining room – Katie is a culinary teacher – but they didn't want to alter the overall vibe of the home. They wanted to preserve the fine craftsmanship that was a hallmark of the period in which the house was built. They described the look they were seeking as "antique/updated."

Kitchen, After

The homeowners' renovation wish-list included a more open floor plan, an improved kitchen layout and modern conveniences – but without sacrificing the farmhouse charm. To create a more open feel, Anthony and John created a new sight line between the kitchen and dining room, removing the hanging cabinets that formerly separated the two spaces.

Kitchen, Before

Besides a dated appearance and less than optimal layout, the kitchen was badly in need of an appliance upgrade. It had an aging range/oven combo and no dishwasher.

Kitchen, After

A star in the new kitchen is the vintage-look Smeg refrigerator in mint green, color coordinated to match the new pendant lights and sconce. The old lower cabinets are replaced with a new kitchen peninsula with drawer storage and integrated range. New painted-wood floor tiles in gray and white, along with the new pendants, create a visual delineation between the kitchen and dining room. Additionally, an original chimney was uncovered to add an exposed brick element to the space.

Kitchen, Before

The homeowners weren't keen on the outdated cabinets – or the scalloped trim withs sharp points along the bottom edges, a potential safety hazard. Even worse, demolition would later reveal that the upper cabinets and kitchen ceiling were being supported by the repurposed table leg that was serving as a makeshift support column – also definitely a hazard and not up to code specs.

Kitchen, After

With the old "support post" and cabinets removed, a new LVL support header was added between the dining room and kitchen to more safely support the upper floor, transferring the weight via vertical supports to a new footing installed in the basement. The support was then skinned in wood reclaimed from an old hand-hewn beam to give it a rough, rustic look and maintain the antiquated farmhouse feel. Continuing the rough-hewn aesthtetic, the base of the new peninsula is also wrapped in reclaimed wood.

Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

In the new configuration, the location of the refrigerator and range were flipped, helping to create a more efficient kitchen layout while opening up additional counter space.

Kitchen, Detail

The sink was kept in its original location, taking advantage of the natural light from the window, but the old one was replaced with a traditional apron-front design in keeping with the farmhouse look. The backsplash is a pitted, elongated subway tile that works well in either a traditional or contemporary setting.

Jersey Farmhouse Kitchen

Embracing old-time themes full on, John and Anthony used wood reclaimed from an old barn in Ohio — with authentic decorative cut-outs — to create a pantry door.

Kitchen, Detail

Engineered wood floor-tiles in a classic and elegant pattern and soft gray tones combine well with the natural wood textures. These are 12" wood tiles with the pattern printed on the surface and are an easy install.

Kitchen, Detail

This old antique wooden door from an out house is used to function as the door to the kitchen pantry. It was a creative way to keep the old rustic farm house feel.

Kitchen, Detail

"The important thing for us here is that this is a very historic home," says Anthony, "It's very clear that [the homeowners] bought this home wanting to respect history, and we wanted to work within that."

 

Kitchen, Detail

Black engineered quartz countertops, with natural veining pattern, bring a striking contrast alongside the new white cabinets and open shelving.

Kitchen, Detail

Brightly colored glass bottles, a rustic wooden crate and antique copper kettle add color, texture and contrast as decorative accents in the new open shelving.

Dining Room, Detail

A lighted marquis letter "B" celebrates the Bennett's newly updated home and provides a high-profile accent atop the vintage console in the newly remodeled dining room.

Dining Room, Detail

This old antique kitchen cabinet serves as a bar, and storage area for plates and dishes. It is also a great place to store old antique decorations that will make it an eye catching corner piece as well.

Dining Room, Detail

The large lit up letter B, not only stands for the family's last name, Bennett, but also functions as a light to brighten a dark corner, and as an exciting design element.

Dining Room, Detail

Worn antique chairs were given new life with a fresh coat of black paint, providing contrast with the wood floors and rustic farm table.

Dining Room, Detail

A red antique lantern and vintage suitcase add color and visual interest atop a rustic wood bench in a corner of the dining room.

Job's Done. Time for Cocktails

Moscow Mule, anyone? Copper mugs provide another stylized touch in the newly redecorated dining room.

If you enjoyed this America's Most Desperate Kitchens makeover, you might also enjoy the Retro Mod Kitchen, also from Season 2.