Best Kitchen Redo: Before

Their story: I never thought I'd move back to the house I grew up in. But after living in Brooklyn, New York, with a 1-year-old, my husband, Kevin, and I knew we needed a place with more room. The 1904 Folk Victorian house I grew up in had been empty for six years—my parents had moved out but weren't quite ready to let it go. Selling it to us was a win-win.

So we moved to Minnesota and settled in with my parents in their new place while we finished what we expected to be minor upgrades—replacing cabinets, refinishing floors, installing a new backsplash. But we found a nasty surprise: mold, caused by a leaky ceiling. To be safe, we decided to take everything down to the studs. Then, another surprise: I was pregnant! Suddenly, we had a deadline.

Shown: The tiny kitchen got a gut reno.
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