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One Room Challenge Fall 2019 Week 1
I'm Erika Ward

Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation.  My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

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Today marks the official kickoff for the Fall 2019 One Room Challenge and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be selected as one of twenty Featured Designers.

Tosses confetti!

The One Room Challenge isn’t a design competition. It’s an event created by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home that allows design enthusiasts to get a peek into the transformation process of any room makeover via weekly blog posts.

The ORC has become wildly popular since its start and has garnered attention from national brands who’ve opted to get in on the action as a sponsor. Smart!!! Better Homes and Gardens is the official media sponsor and will also be providing coverage. It’s a pretty big deal.

So which will I be transforming in six short weeks? Drumroll please…

T H E  K I T C H E N !!!!

When I shared my commitment with Chris, my husband, there was first silence then the excitement caught on.

Aside from the fact that kitchens and bathrooms are some of the most cumbersome spaces to remodel, we are a busy family of seven—and a dog so this creates a bit of inconvenience. However, I promised everyone it’ll be all worthwhile in the end—six weeks from now.

We’ve got this!

This is the current state of our not-so-ordinary kitchen.. The room encompasses a breakfast area as well as a keeping room complete with a fireplace.

We once sat eighteen people in our kitchen for dinner. I still can’t believe it.

So how do I plan to flip this room in six weeks?

  1. We plan to use the existing cabinetry with some major modifications. I’ve opted to remove some of the upper cabinets. Crazy idea to eliminate storage when we have such a large bunch but in the 10 years that we’ve lived here, we’ve barely touched most of the items in those cabinets. Along with the cabinets, which are in great shape, the entire kitchen will receive a well-deserved professional paint job.
  2. We’re replacing existing lights and installing new lights in some areas.
  3. New countertops are on the horizon. The solid surface top here has served us well and have been great training grounds for allowing the older kids to experiment in the kitchen.
  4.  A backsplash is on the way. I had yet to install one because I’d planned earlier to replace the countertops. Then life happened and they were no longer a priority until now!
  5.  Our appliances are moving to a rental property and we are replacing them with appliances I received from a client who preferred a different brand. I felt like we’d won the lottery!
  6. The fireplace is actually two sided. On the other side is our great room. The mantel on this side will be replaced and will coordinate with the new custom millwork around the doorway.
  7. We’ll refinish the existing hardwood floors.
  8. The existing table will stay. We eat breakfast and dinner together here each day and I love that there’s still room for more when we have guests.
  9. The area under the window is still to be determined. I thought about a window seat but maybe prefer two separate chairs in that space. If you have an opinion, then leave it in the comments!

This is quite an ambitious project but it can and will be done.  Thanks in advance for your well wishes.



Want to see what the others are up to? Check out the links below!!

At Charlotte’s House | Design Addict Mom | Erika Ward Interiors | Erin Kestenbaum | Girl & Grey

Gray Malin | Hommeboys | I Spy DIY | Jewel Marlowe | The Learner Observer | Making it Lovely

Nicole White Designs | Old Brand New | Oscar Bravo Home | Place of My Taste | The Rath Project

Room for Tuesday | SG Style | Undecorated Home | Veronica Solomon | Media BH&G | TM by ORC

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  1. Shelly@ConfettiStyle` says:

    I’m so excited to see you participating in the ORC Erika! The makeover of your Kitchen is going to epic and I look forward to seeing the stunning design you create. Wish me luck because I’m participating as a guest participant for the first time!

    • Erika Ward says:

      Shelly! Thanks for the well wishes and I’m happy to see you’ll be onboard as a guest participant. I’m headed over to your place to see what you’re working on!!

  2. Nicole Q-Schmitz says:

    I love One Room Challenge time – and I’m really excited to see what you do to the kitchen without completely refinishing it 🙂 I agree, your window seat is a bit tricky since there is a door there. Maybe a narrow bench with storage (since you’ll be removing a lot of your uppers). Good luck!

    • Erika Ward says:

      Thanks Nicole for the feedback! I love the idea of replacing the storage in some way. I’m going to ponder it for another day or so! Time is of the essence so I’ve got to make a decision fast!

  3. sherry hart says:

    Gonna be epic with your talent…..I am so excited for you Erika:)

  4. Linda | ORC says:

    Hi Erika, This kitchen is HUGE! No idea on the window area, but it looks like a fantastic place to sit and scroll for recipes.

    • Erika Ward says:

      We often use it for overflow when we have guests or to sip a little coffee and admire the backyard.

  5. Darcel says:

    Been waiting for this because 1) You should’ve been an ORC featured designer a long time ago IMHO and 2) I always come back to your portfolio when I need inspiration for my home. And the fact that you’re doing your own kitchen is a bonus, since I haven’t figured out what I want to do with mine in the 16 years I’ve lived in my house. Can’t wait to see what you come up with. Good luck!

    • Erika Ward says:

      Thank you for sharing my excitement Darcel! We’ve both been waiting a long time for this!!

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Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation. My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

Learn more