Who: Macksi and Cody Warner
Where: Marathon, N.Y.
Macksi and Cody Warner loved everything about their late 1800s home in rural New York State—except, that is, for its chopped-up floor plan with tiny rooms. The worst was the kitchen, which Cody says was little more than a narrow hallway lined with rickety cabinets. The couple's dramatic fix: Knock out the wall separating the kitchen from the adjoining dining room to create one open space. They then started from scratch with new base cabinets and open shelves in lieu of bulky uppers. Furthering the airy feel, they exposed and whitewashed the original ceiling beams.
Though Macksi and Cody hired an Amish neighbor to build the poplar cabinets, they kept costs down by installing and painting the units. They also put up a counter-to-ceiling beadboard backsplash, as well as the open shelves made with stock parts from the home center. Taking pride of place below the windows is a secondhand enameled-cast-iron sink that the couple scored for just $30. "Our kitchen is so welcoming now," says Macksi. "For years I was compiling ideas of what I wanted, and this came out exactly as I imagined."
Shown: White-painted base cabinets have an elegant simplicity, while open shelves and exposed beams add a sense of loftiness.