Kitchen Goes from Builder Grade to Custom

From day one, the homeowners were not happy with their basic, builder-grade kitchen. With its two-tiered island, awkward layout and lack of storage space, it needed a major design overhaul.

They turned to Dover Home Remodelers to renovate their tired, dated kitchen, creating an updated and functional space—a project that earned Dover 2nd Place honors in the prestigious NARI Contractor of the Year (CoTY) Awards 2018, Kitchen Remodel ($60,001 – $100,000).

From builder-grade, cookie-cutter to completely custom: The stylish kitchen upgrade

The homeowners’ wish list: Organization, function and style. A built-in look for the oversized refrigerator, more pantry space, a large prep area, a ventilated range hood and a drop zone were also top priorities.

With a smart new layout, this fresh, sophisticated kitchen features a central island, custom cabinetry with built-in storage solutions and an art glass tile backsplash.

The Kitchen: Before & After

The original kitchen layout just didn’t work for these homeowners. A narrow, two-tiered island with a cooktop created poor clearance for other appliances, and the oversized refrigerator stuck out like a sore thumb.





Before Kitchen Layout


Before Cramped Kitchen


Dover was able to honor all the homeowners’ requests and create a beautiful yet practical design, all while working within the room’s original footprint – the re-thought, new layout provides open flow while maximizing functionality.

Renovated Kitchen Layout

Kitchen Island: Before & After

The narrow upper level of the existing island was completely wasted space; people could not sit at the island and open the refrigerator at the same time.

Before Kitchen Island Bar Ledge


Before Kitchen Island


The new island offers ample clearance for all surrounding appliances and smart use of the space – it houses a microwave drawer and convenient roll-out storage.

Versatile Kitchen Island

Microwave Drawer

In addition, the decorative back panels on the new island are touch-latch doors that open to provide even more storage.

Kitchen Storage: Before & After

Another challenge: The existing cabinets lacked functionality. Blind corner cabinets were difficult to reach so the homeowners barely used them.

Before Blind Corner Cabinet


Corner Cabinet Storage


The new custom cabinetry features multiple amenities: Easy to reach corner cabinets, pot and pan roll-outs, double waste baskets, utensil storage and a bread drawer, to name a few.

Utensil Drawer Custom Storage

Bread Drawer

Kitchen Refrigerator Wall: Before & After

The original cabinets to the right of the refrigerator were hidden and the microwave sat on the counter. The oversized refrigerator stuck out, making it look even larger than it was.

Before Refrigerator Microwave


Before Refrigerator Wall


In the new design, custom cabinetry creates the look of a sleek, built-in refrigerator.

Refrigerator with Plenty of Storage SurroundCustom Storage Cabinets

Custom stemware storage, a Sub-Zero® wine fridge and space-maximizing pantry roll-outs complete this incredible wall of built-ins for a uniquely high-end look and feel.

Wine Glass Storage

Built-In Wine Fridge

Kitchen Drop Zone: Before & After

The existing pantry closet was too small, and the homeowners desperately needed a drop area: There was always clutter. The new wall of built-ins provided ample pantry space, so the original pantry closet was converted into a separate drop zone for easy organization—and added style.

Before Cramped Pantry Closet


Drop Area and Cubby Storage


Kitchen Cooktop: Before & After

Instead of a separate cooktop and ovens like the kitchen previously had, the homeowners chose a multi-purpose range and gained extensive prep space.

Before Double Ovens


Stove With Glass Tile Backsplash


With most of the kitchen remaining neutral, the homeowner decided on a beautiful focal point using art glass tile: She designed a custom glass tile inlay above the range.

Glass Tile Focal Point Backsplash

Tile Work Backsplash DetailKitchen Backsplash and Counter Top Detail

Kitchen: The finished product

Without adding square footage or removing walls, we made the kitchen feel more open and spacious. The homeowners gained utility and functionality, with a clean, stylish edge.

Beautifully Updated Kitchen

Bright Open Kitchen Layout

Open Dining and Kitchen