So after gutting the room and selling its contents to a contractor for $12,000, Corcoran set about maximizing every inch. She got rid of an awkward center support post by installing a steel beam, freeing up room for a larger island with a sink and seating. She specified pro-grade appliances throughout. Simple white cabinets—warmed up with milk paint—make the lime-green walls really pop. Most important, the cheerful space suits Corcoran's aesthetic and lifestyle. "You don't need the most elaborate kitchen," says the designer, "just the one you feel good in every day."
Shown: The kitchen was new but someone else's vision.