Our Kitchen Reno: The Cabinetry & Kitchen Organization

Progress went a mile a minute since I shared our framing + drywall photos and our kitchen is now complete! Even though things are finished now I’m going to take a few steps back and share our cabinetry today. Also, this is kind of a huge reason why we picked Atreum to work with…

Back when we were receiving bids from various construction companies Matt and I were seriously astounded by the price of cabinetry. Wood boxes. So insanely expensive. In fact, the line item for cabinets in one of the bids we received was higher than the cost of our entire renovation. Atreum was our last bid received and we were blown away by the price difference. Actually, we were perplexed. Peter, our GC, explained that while they could most certainly have custom cabinetry made for our kitchen that he didn’t think it was necessary. Instead, Atreum offered to install prefabricated cabinets that promised to look custom. And it saved us tens of thousands of dollars which allowed us to put more money into other things that were more important to us – like a play room addition, a fireplace makeover…and my dream counter tops! We couldn’t sign on the dotted line fast enough with Atreum.

We picked out white shaker style cabinetry and YES, we are well aware how dirty white gets (our former cabinets were white too) but we love a bright white space and are used to cleaning sticky hand prints constantly! All of the doors and drawers are soft close which is seriously amazing. Also, we opted for as many drawers vs cabinet doors wherever possible. The amenities we requested were an appliance garage pull-out, a spice rack and a double trash can pull-out. Once Peter finalized our drawings he ordered the cabinetry…and a week later, our garage was filled to the brim with boxes of cabinetry. I did a happy dance the day they arrived because I had heard horror stories from many of you about your cabinets being backordered or delayed which significantly increased your renovation timeline.

I should also mention that on demo day, I assumed our old cabinets would be thrown into the massive dumpster sitting in our driveway. They were pretty beat and the plastic was peeling off the front of many of the cabinets so they weren’t able to be donated. So you can imagine my surprise when Steve, one of the owners, handed us some cash a few days later. He had listed and sold our cabinets for us on Craigs List!!! Truly awesome.

Since our cabinetry options were limited to standard sizes there were several areas of the kitchen where our GC got creative. First, we wanted our cabinets to go to the ceiling. To get this look, we used soffit and crown molding and then painted it to match the cabinets. For our upper cabinets above our beverage center, Peter installed two standard size glass cabinets and then built a wine rack in between to fill the space. Um, perfect!

Our kitchen is long and narrow so we spent a lot of sleepless nights time designing the look and functionality of our island. Matt and I really wanted to add seating to the island and went back and forth over whether to add seating down the side of the island or add an overhang at one end for seating. Ultimately, we decided to add the seating to the end vs the side because we worried that we would both lose our minds pushing bar stools (or people on bar stools) in every time we needed to get inside the fridge or ovens.

Last but not least, the hood. Oh, the hood! I mentioned on my InstaStories that Matt and I had our hearts set on a boxy, freestanding hood (no cabinets flanking it) for above the cook top. This was our inspiration picture, but we wanted it without cabinets on each side. Our GC tried very hard to persuade us otherwise, even drawing up several options for us. Alas, he began building our dream hood and when we saw it coming together Matt and I immediately realized we had made a huge mistake. It was too bulky, awkward and threw off the symmetry of the kitchen just as Peter had warned us. I was so nervous and felt badly about disliking the hood that I begged Matt to call and tell Peter.

Turns out he had been anticipating our call…and hadn’t even placed the insert inside the hood or finished building it out because he had a sneaky suspicion we wouldn’t love it. He laughed and said it was absolutely no big deal and the very next day they demo’d it and we redesigned it together using this picture for inspiration and I LOVE IT! So, I know I have professed my love for Atreum throughout this entire process, but I legitimately love this company and we could not have had a better experience. The new hood…

Two other amenities we were excited to add to our cabinetry was counter lighting controlled by a light switch with a dimmer and we swapped out our former wall outlets for under cabinet power strips which makes our tile backsplash so much prettier.

The original kitchen had an awkward wall to the left of the pantry which we turned into useful floor to ceiling cabinetry. These cabinets house all of our pantry items and all of our large and small appliances we wanted to get off the counter.

Hardware Sources

After the kitchen was finished, Minimized, a Charlotte boutique professional organizing company offered to unpack our kitchen and get us organized! Once the cabinetry was installed Minimized came out and took measurements and went shopping for all the organizing supplies for us. Not only did they show up and unpack us so efficiently, they did it in less than 2.5 hours! I was so impressed. I would have never organized my kitchen this well or this quickly — especially with our kiddos at home with us.

I promise to share the other spaces in our kitchen they organized in another post. In the meantime, if you’re itching to organize your kitchen, below are some of the products they used. If you want to leave your project to the professionals, Minimized is offering Carolina Charm readers a $20 Container Store gift card when you book their services!

Organization Products & Supplies

Thank you to Minimized for partnering with me on my kitchen organization! All opinions are my own. 



  1. January 3, 2019 / 10:57 am

    Absolutely beautiful!!

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 11:20 am

      Thank you so much, Audrey! We absolutely love it!

  2. Meredith Brim
    January 3, 2019 / 12:27 pm

    I am very excited to see the kitchen posts– how did you design it? Did you know what you wanted, or did you use a plan drawn for you by the company you went with? How many people did you talk to before choosing someone to perform the work? My husband and I are going to embark on a reno in our home this year, and I have no idea where to even begin.

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 11:23 am

      Thank you, Meredith! Matt was better at having a vision on where things should go than me. We had 3 construction companies come out for a consultation and we ended up going with Atrium’s recommendation for layout. We just thought their flow was the best. My recommendation is to get several opinions! We liked and learned something about each opinion we received and each company brought up ideas we hadn’t thought about!

  3. Sara P. Colombel
    January 3, 2019 / 12:31 pm

    I’m just wondering if this is a sponsored ad and if you got compensated by these 2 companies. I’m looking for a client, but want an honest opinion. Thanks!

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 1:38 pm

      Hi Sara! Thank you for taking the time to comment! Minimized reached out to me initially for a collaboration and the organization was sponsored by them. I genuinely love what they did for my kitchen and if you liked their organization too, I would highly recommend meeting with them for a consultation for your client. Matt and I hired Atrium after receiving bids and quotes from several contractors in the area and are genuinely thrilled with their work, which is why I shared about our experience. I was not compensated to share about our experience and I never share a brand or company that I don’t wholeheartedly believe in. I will say that the renovation process is crazy overwhelming so I recommend everyone request bids from multiple contractors to ensure that they find the right team to work with!

  4. Emily
    January 3, 2019 / 2:52 pm

    I agree with above, it’s beautiful, but what part of this what sponsored/comped/etc?

  5. January 3, 2019 / 3:12 pm

    Wow!! It looks perfect! Every detail is beautiful & I love how it flows so well into your living room!

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 2:41 pm

      Thank you, Lauren! Our living space feels so much more open now! So glad we took down that wall!

  6. Andie
    January 4, 2019 / 9:18 am

    Beautiful! We’re re-doing our kitchen this summer. Did you use the long handles for the drawers?

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 2:53 pm

      Yep! Long handles on all drawers and then knobs for cabinet doors.

  7. Elaine Goertzen
    January 4, 2019 / 9:35 am

    What brand of ready made cabinets did you go with? I am getting ready for a kitchen redo.

    • Christina
      January 4, 2019 / 2:55 pm

      I had to check the box. 🙂

      They are wholesale from National Kitchen and Bath Cabinetry!


  8. Ashlie M Brining
    January 4, 2019 / 9:54 am

    What brand of stock cabinets did you go with? There are a lot out there–would love your opinion!

  9. Rosie
    January 4, 2019 / 4:16 pm

    I love your choices, and wow, this is a challege, but you sure are up for it. Everything you did looks so nice! Now I want to do this!!

    • Christina
      January 8, 2019 / 10:16 am

      Thank you, Rosie!!

  10. January 5, 2019 / 9:56 am

    Looks great! File me under people who got screwed when our contractor forgot to order our cabinets. By the time he did, there would have been a (more) significant lag so we had to go with another cabinet guy. The cabinets are fine (love my pull out spice drawer and utensil drawer), but they aren’t what I originally planned. 😉 That’s so awesome that he was able to sell your old ones – AND GIVE YOU THE MONEY. You really lucked out – and the kitchen is gorgeous!

    • Christina
      January 8, 2019 / 10:17 am

      I have seriously heard that SO many times, especially with the bigger companies juggling lots of projects! It’s the best feeling ever when the project is COMPLETE, right?! And I loooooove my spice drawer too! I wasn’t sure if it would be as amazing as I had heard — but it is!

  11. Sarah Mikowski
    January 23, 2019 / 4:33 pm

    Love this! I’m picking out hardware for my kitchen now. Did you do the same 7 3/8 inch long pulls on all your drawers? also, from your links it looks like you used stainless steel pulls and satin nickel knobs. Do they match close enough?

  12. Laura Coats
    August 23, 2019 / 7:59 am

    Hi! Looks AMAZING! 2 questions: 1) where did you purchase your under counter outlet strips? 2) did you finish the underside of the counters with some sort of wooden panel or are they bare? We are redoing cabinets and moving the outlets up to the underside. I can’t believe that $10,000 for cabinets means they are unfinished on the underside!


    • Christina
      August 23, 2019 / 5:38 pm

      Our contractor provided the outlets and the underside is not finished (but it is white)!

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