A BIG Makeover for a Small Kitchen


This past year I had the pleasure of working with one of the sweetest clients ever…  Her name is Lois and she has the most darling cottage that had a kitchen in need of a bit of a renovation.  Lois had been dreaming of this kitchen project for quite some time and finally decided to go for it and I’m so happy to have been able to work with her through it!!

Here are 2 before pictures…

As you can see, the kitchen is quite small but very “cottagie” and quaint.  For a brief moment we hashed over the ideas of knocking out walls, expanding, etc…  Then we decided that this petite kitchen needed to stay just that.  So instead of expanding, we worked with the existing walls but made the kitchen way more efficient and way more, well…darling!

Take a look at how it turned out!!

Notice the beautiful hardwood floors that were hiding under the vinyl!!

One wish on Lois’ list was to have a spot for her to sit, read, and drink her coffee in the morning so we found a spot at the end of the cabinet to leave an overhang for a stool to fit beneath. We had some great concealed under cabinet lighting installed which helps the kitchen function perfectly when Lois is baking and reading her recipe cards.

Stainless steel appliances helped to give the kitchen a more clean and contemporary feel.


Lois lived in Germany for several years and had many great pieces and collections that she wanted to be able to display, such as this darling canister set.

A fun splurge for Lois was adding some hi-tech eletrical upgrades such as this power strip charging station.  This is perfect for her to be able to use while cooking from recipes on her ipad!

Here is another view so that you can get the full layout of the kitchen.  We also added a pocket door that enters into a room she uses as her dining room.  Before this opening was added, she had to walk through much of the house to get to it.  We also updated her door to the basement complete with a darling crystal door knob to match her beautiful cabinet hardware.

{Please excuse the blue tape on the glass cabinets.  I was too excited to wait for the knobs to come in so I went ahead and shot without!}

We had custom scalloped valences cut to match existing ones in her dinette area.  I think they help maintain the kitchens charm.

So here’s one last side-by-side before & after…

Well I hope you enjoyed this BIG small kitchen remodel!!!

Please feel free in PIN or share any images.

Have a great day!!


admin - I love it!!!!


Well, it’s been a year since we moved to Nashville.  We still love everything about this place.  It’s been a bit of a different ride for me as I discover a little more about what I want to do for work.  I love discovering new things but I also love to concentrate on that one thing I really love and make it the very best.  I have finally landed on it.

Introducing NASH + JONES…a new gentlemen’s product line.

It all started with a little beard oil and snowballed from there.  I hope to include women’s products in the future but one thing at a time.

Please take the time to visit the webpage: WWW.NASHANDJONES.COM and/or LIKE us on FACEBOOK and/or follow us on INSTAGRAM .

I will be putting these photography years to good use…stay tuned for some handsome photos and much more!!


1970′s Living Room Renovation

Today I want to share with you 2 spaces that I worked on a while back.  I was so excited to be asked by one of my favorite builders, Cates Fine Homes, to assist with the selections on a 1970′s rambler remodel.  The great room had the most dramatic before and afters.  This transformation really goes to show that anything is possible.  Here is the before…


 And here is the after…

 Obviously a ton was done to this home.  It was a major renovation but it turned out amazing.

Right off the the great room is the entry.  It’s very simple but I love how it turned out.  At the last minute we decided to paint the inside of the front door the same color we used on the kitchen island.


Hope you enjoyed this dramatic Before&After.  They don’t all have to be this dramatic, but when they are it is pretty fun!!!

Have a great day!!


admin - Thanks Jennifer!! They are both Benjamin Moore Colors. Walls are Revere Pewter, door is Aloof Gray.

Jennifer - Hi Natalie,

Great work on the remodel! Can I ask what paint colors were used in that hallway and on the door?


My MSG Allergy

I love food.  I love to be in the kitchen, I love to eat and I love to center an evening around the menu.

When my son was born {almost 10 years ago} I developed an MSG food sensitivity.  MSG has 12 names and is in everything!  It is a flavor enhancer, a preservative, naturally in certain foods, created by cooking methods, etc.  It is too complicated to explain but basically what it means is that I am safe to eat foods ONLY if  it has never been changed from its original form.  If I grew it or killed it, then it’s ok.  No box food, no fast food, no processed food, etc.  What could I eat?  Anything natural, fresh and untouched.  I lost a ton of weight.
After a few years, the symptoms subsided and I slowly went back to my old eating ways.  Well…its back in full force.  This time I am grateful.  I am in a place in my life where I embrace the change, the new menu and the discovery of the real taste of food.  This time I am enjoying finding ways to prepare food even more than before.
-If you experience nausea, headaches, fever-feeling, extreme and instant sleepiness after eating sometimes, email me.  I’ll let you know all that I have found out after years of research plus trial and error.-
Recently, the apples on our trees have grown into a size begging to be eaten.  There are so many that I got creative and made a bunch of new recipes using minimal ingredients + effort and maximum flavor.
Cinny Applesauce
10 Large cooking apples peeled/cored/cut in chunks, 1/2 c water, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 c sugar {you can use less}.  Crockpot for 3-4 hours on high.  Mash and eat.  Soooo good!
Apple Crisp
Filling: 10 cups all-purpose apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup water
Topping: {which I usually double} 1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter, melted
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Mix the sliced apples with the white sugar, 1 tablespoon flour and ground cinnamon. Pour into a 9×13 inch pan.  Pour water evenly over all. Combine the oats, 1 cup flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and melted butter together. Crumble evenly over the apple mixture. {I usually double the topping} Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.  Amazing!!!
Apple Strudel Muffins
Muffins: 2 c Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 c Butter
1 c White Sugar
2 Eggs
1 1/4 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 c Chopped Apples
Topping: 1/3 c Packed Brown Sugar
1 Tbs Flour
1/8 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 Tbs Butter
Directions: Preheat Oven to 375 degrees F.  Grease Muffin Pan {12 cup}.  Mix Flur, Bakin Powder, Baking Soda and Salt.  In another bowl, beat together Butter, Sugar and Eggs until smooth.  Mix in Vanilla.  Stir in Apples and gradually blend in the flour mixture.  Spoon into muffin pan.  For the topping, mix together Brown Sugar, Flour and Cinnamon.  Cut in butter until it is like course crumbs.  Sprinkle over the tops of the muffins.  Bake 20 minutes.
It feels good to know where my food came from and what is consists of.  I feel like I am turing into a real tree hugger here but I am loving the step into real food and real food only.  It is a lot more work than boxed or frozen but it is rewarding in so many ways.  I am learning how to incorporate it.  The great thing is that when I see something that I am unsure about, I just don’t eat it.  Those small choices save a ton of unnecessary calories.

Natalie’s Custom Kitchen Island

Well this spring I shared my kitchen makeover with you all, then life got a little crazy so I never got to zero in on some of the details.  Today I want to share a little bit more about my center island.

One of the priorities with this kitchen remodel was to make our kitchen island our families main eating area.  It originally sat 4 so we needed to extend it to accommodate our party of 5.  I could have chose to just extend the concrete top we were doing over the main area, but I really wanted to do something a little different.  I considered using marble and a few other materials, but then I came across a gentlemen by the name of Chuck Paulson who had done 2 amazing barn wood mantels at a clients of mine.  They had found him on Craigslist and highly recommended him.  Here are some pictures of the mantel he did for them.

As you can see, Chuck does an amazing job preserving the original character of the wood!

I gave him a call and explained what I was envisioning and what he built exceeded our expectations!  He even suggested adding some rustic bolts on the end to give it a little more character and we love how they turned out!

The barn wood extension is supported by some beautiful brackets we found on ebay.  We couldn’t be happier with how it turned out!!  Please visit Chuck’s website to learn more about his work.

Heritage Mantels

or contact him at:



Have a great day everyone!!



A good old fashioned before and after

It’s just fun to see before and after shots.

Here is a set of chairs I recently did for a friend…

After a little love. . .

Painted with flat enamel {Painter’s Touch, of course} and sanded for a little rustic charm.  I took off the cushions because they had cording around it then added new ticking stripe material for the seats.

I didn’t notice that Joann’s had switched from their weekly 40% coupon to a 30% off coupon.  Bummer.  This means less shopping trips for me…I’ll wait for the 50% specialty coupon now from now on and plan projects in advance.

Natalie’s House is For Sale!!!

Well we have big news today here at JJ&Co…

Natalie’s house is for sale!!!

Do you know someone who is looking to buy a beautiful home in the charming historic town of Stillwater, Mn?  Well be sure to share this news with them!

Here is all the information on the home~

Built in 1913- built to last!! Original farmhouse in a newer development. Located in a quiet caldesac on 0.4 acre lot with a pond view. Just 5 minutes from downtown Stillwater. Great schools!! Great Neighborhood!! Non-smoking home. Well cared for and thoughtfully and professionally renovated. Beautiful maple floors- tons of character and excellent craftsmanship!

Recent updates:
- new Hardie Board Maintenance-free siding
- new Pella windows
- remodeled bathroom with new claw foot soaking tub, ceramic tile floors, and concrete counter top
- 2014 kitchen remodel including concrete counter tops, Marble tile back splash, Karndean LVT flooring, and an apron front farm sink and faucet.
- complete finished basement with new block foundation

*Professionally designed and decorated
*Has been featured in 6 nationally known home decorating magazines
(currently being featured in August 2014, Cottages & Bungalows Kitchen issue)

Approx. room dimensions~

Parlor 15×14
Living 16×14
Kitchen 18×14
Dining Room 10×10
Bath 5×6

Upper Level:
Bed 1- 10×12
Bed 2- 15×13
Bed 3- 12×13
Bed 4- 10×14
Bath 6×9.5

Lower Level:
Family 13×18
Work Out 15×13
Bedroom 11×12
Laundry 8×9
Bath 5×9

This home is priced at $425,000.

Call, email, or text Natalie to schedule a showing. Only serious inquiries please. Pre-qualified buyers please. Not rent to own, for sale only.

****For Sale By Owner****

Thanks so much!!!




Please feel free to share with your friends who may be looking to move to the Twin Cities Metro Area!!!

A New Dishwasher!

It’s the little things that make life so much easier.  Our dishwasher was an eye sore and the trays were all rusty.  The rust transferred to our dishes and stained them all.  I researched new trays to save us from having to pay for a new dishwasher but the trays were $150 each.  Really?!

Instead we bought a new LG dishwasher…the floor model from Best Buy.  We got a super deal and this baby is amazing.

A cycle is 2 hours and 7 minutes.  Seems a bit crazy but my dishes have never been so clean.  It is whisper quiet, has cool ring tones when you turn on the touch buttons and the stainless steel inside should be a long term blessing.

I used a variety of dishwasher detergents in it…just to see.  The name brand powders don’t dissolve all the way, leaving a glob of stuff in the tray.  Same with the pods sometimes.  Liquids are the best choice.

It’s hard to only get one new appliance when the others are still the ones from the 90′s.  All in good time!