Kitchen Projects
Transitional Kitchen Remodel in Northeast Portland

Custom Kitchen Renovation in Portland, OR

Neil Kelly’s in-house design consultant Rob Barham helped our client reimagine and restore the kitchen in their early 20th-century home in Northeast Portland’s Alberta Arts District.

Learn more about the project details and see before-and-after photos of this custom kitchen remodel in Portland, Oregon.

Project Objectives and Client Wishlist

The need for this kitchen renovation was driven by substantial water damage and structural issues. While the bones and character of the kitchen were stunning, the space needed attention in the functionality department.

There was also a clear need for new appliances, more food-prep space, and a better flow of traffic, which called for rearranging the layout.

Beyond that, the goal was to update the kitchen with modern fixtures and finishes without veering too far from the traditional style of the craftsman bungalow. “I did not want the final product to look like it didn’t belong,” says Barham. With that in mind, we went with a transitional design aesthetic.

Our client’s wishlist for this kitchen renovation included:

  • Remediated water damage and structural issues
  • Improved functionality with more prep space
  • Better layout and traffic flow
  • Modern updates that align with the home’s traditional character
  • Upgraded major appliances
  • Transitional design aesthetic

Want more inspiration? Check out this custom Slabtown Townhome Kitchen Remodel in Northwest Portland.

Project Planning and Design Challenges

We presented the client with three routes to take this project. “Each option had a unique scope of work and space planning,” says Barham. This allowed our client to see multiple possibilities for the kitchen and make more informed decisions about the end result.

Of course, no renovation is without its obstacles. The kitchen had multiple entries and exterior window openings, which posed spatial and structural issues. After demolition was complete, the Neil Kelly team realized the wall structures needed to be reinforced.

The plan our client chose involved a custom wood range hood. But hood ducting termination is required to be at least 3 feet from glass, and with windows on either side of the range, we had to rethink our strategy.

Design Solutions

Due to the multiple entries, the new wall was made into a shear wall to protect it from future structural damage.

The solution for the wood hood was to extend it all the way up to the ceiling. “This allowed the exterior termination to meet code requirements from the window glass,” says Barham.

Special Features, Customizations, and Finished Results

We worked closely with the client every step of the way to ensure the space met all their functional needs and aesthetic vision.

Special features and customizations for this kitchen remodel included:

In the end, this kitchen was a perfect marriage of traditional and modern design. “Shaker cabinetry helped merge the two styles, and the light fixtures and cabinet hardware gave it that modern push,” says Barham.

This Central Seattle Kitchen Remodel is another great example of how contemporary upgrades can be balanced with the original design of a home.

Before-and-After Kitchen Remodel in Northeast Portland

The design/build remodeling team at Neil Kelly includes seasoned design consultants, knowledgeable project managers, and skilled builders. If you’re considering a custom renovation at your Pacific Northwest home, we’d love to hear from you.

You can schedule a consultation at your home, via video conferencing, or at one of our design centers in Portland, Eugene, Bend, or Seattle.

Contact Neil Kelly today to get started.


robby john barham, portland Design Consultant

Robby John blends his versatile sense of style with a methodical approach that allows him to deliver impressive, functional designs to fit any home. His clients love the enthusiasm and creativity he brings to the process, while also appreciating his organized and adaptable nature to keep everything on track. With a strong sense of empathy, he is able to listen and intuitively lead his clients toward the right solution for them, making the process fun along the way.

Robby John has been in the remodeling industry for almost a decade and formalized his education through Portland Community College’s Interior Design program before joining Neil Kelly in 2018. Looking for references? Robby John has many happy clients willing to testify to his team’s fabulous work.