Achieving a functional kitchen

Before and after, Renovation

Achieving a functional kitchen

20 June 2022

When I meet with clients about a kitchen renovation, part of the time we spend together is discussing our process. When you hire a designer to help you fulfill your dream of a functional and beautiful kitchen it is important to know what to expect. Let me walk you through a kitchen renovation project we have completed recently.

Being the cook of the family, Sharon wished for a more functional kitchen. She loved baking and cooking, and there was just no sufficient storage for the baking supplies and trays in the old kitchen. Moreover, using it by two people simultaneously caused all sorts of discomfort. The kitchen was closed off by a wall from the dining room. It was an older kitchen as well, so aside from the functional deficiencies it needed some oomph to make it a magical and exciting space to be in again.

In the first in-home consultation I explained that we are a full service company who design, select finishes for the kitchen, arrange a contractor for the job and oversee the entire construction process. We charge service fees for the design that includes rethinking the layout, preparing drawings, selecting all finishing materials, getting a quote from a contractor based on the discussed scope of work and presenting you the re-designed kitchen with its cost of the renovation. We touched on the budget of the renovation and timeline of the project and decided that we are a good fit.

During the site visit with a contractor, after the contractor answered Mike and Sharon’s questions, we sat down and talked about the look and feel we want to achieve. We discussed details such as the materials for the flooring, cabinetry and the countertops, type of the kitchen faucet, how they would like to use their kitchen, what they absolutely needed to find a place for and appliances they planned to purchase. A presentation date was booked in about three weeks from the site visit and we parted excitedly about the potential of what their kitchen can become.

When we met in three weeks we started the presentation with the change of the layout. Studying the floorplan allowed me to communicate major changes quickly. Removing a wall separating the kitchen from the dining room was the biggest change to introduce more natural light and make the kitchen feel more spacious. Imagining the regularly traveled lines of traffic on a floor plan helped understand how practical the suggested changes were.

Then we went through the elevations of the kitchen drawings, which helped to explain the storage solutions the new kitchen has to offer. I continued with the finishing materials. I had samples of a kitchen door, floor and backsplash tile, countertop to show. Elements like cabinet hardware and kitchen faucet I showed on presentation slides.

We concluded by presenting the total cost of the project consisting of the cost of the materials sourced by CPI and the contracting cost. It was exciting to see how comfortable the new kitchen will be for the lifestyle of the home owners. They were excited to get started.

Tackling large renovation projects, such as kitchens, requires a lot of planning and coordination. It is prone to costly mistakes if something slips your mind.


I will be happy to chat with and to walk you through our process. It is your beautiful new kitchen that can be featured on the pages of this blog 🙂


Here is what the clients shared about their experience renovating with us:

“We initially contracted with CPI/Marina to renovate our kitchen/dining room area. She paid strict attention to our wishes when we described the scope of the project and we were delighted with her design concept and the products she recommended. She was open to our opinion if or when a change became necessary and paid attention to the smallest detail. She was a joy to work with, and her follow-up once the project was completed was faultless. The fact that CPI has contractors with whom they regularly work was a bonus, as we were assured of their work quality. We are so pleased with our kitchen renovation that we have now contracted with CPI and Marina to renovate our en-suite bathroom.

~ Mike and Sharon Kelly, Ottawa