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My New Outlander Kitchen

My New Outlander Kitchen

Beyond the Books

If you follow on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll have seen me mention a kitchen renovation at least once or twice in the last few months. We started the process last October, but unfortunately ran into some trouble with our initial contractor. When the quote comes back at double the budget, it’s time to get a second opinion.

Enter IM Design, located right here on little old Pender Island. Santi and Patricia came over the day I called them to ask for help. They set my mind at ease immediately, especially about the budget. Our kitchen really isn’t that large, and they assured me that they could transform our 14′ galley into something special while sticking within the budget.

my outlander kitchen

Our new kitchen is filled with racing red and moonstone grey (can you see the twinkle?) ALUMINUM cabinets and drawers. The upper doors lift up rather than out, and all of the hinges and drawers are soft close. The back splash is also aluminum, and everything wipes up easily with a damp cloth.

The design is unique to IM Design, and is a result of Santi’s 30 years of designing and manufacturing in aluminum, first in Spain, and now here on Pender. They guy is part artist and part engineer, with a little bit of magician thrown in. Every curve ball he and Patricia were thrown (and there’s always a few when you renovate in an older house), was met with a quick, practical solution.

my outlander kitchenThe counter tops are quartz, and the curved bar that sits above the sink serves as a perch for guests who care to keep me company as I work.

I chose a Fisher & Paykel refrigerator, induction stove and hood fan, as well as a Miele dishwasher to fill in the gaps between the cabinets — there’s no doubt this is a serious upgrade from my Kenmore appliances of the past — but while you don’t need thousands of dollars of equipment to make delicious, tasty food, I think that after 12 years in my basic (aka ghetto) kitchen and almost 4 years of writing Outlander Kitchen, I’ve earned something a little better.

my outlander kitchenAt the same time, one should never take oneself too seriously…

my outlander kitchen

Hello dishwasher, down at the end! Many of you have questioned it’s placement in the past, but I love where that thing sits. If I’m in the zone and cooking up a storm, I just keep pushing the dirty dishes down that long counter where I can ignore them…a lot like what happens in a restaurant kitchen with the dish pit.

If only I had a flesh and blood dishwasher as well.


Down at the end beside the dishwasher is the location of my pet project during this renovation, now referred to as The Pantry.

In it’s previous life, The Pantry was just a big tall cupboard with the ugliest pair of mismatched doors you ever did see. There are not enough words to tell you how much I hated those doors. Inside, the cupboard was dark and deep, which meant I could never find anything.

my outlander kitchen

So before the cabinets and the electrician and the plumber got here, I renovated my little pantry. I ripped off the doors and shelves, lined the space with wainscoting, and built a custom set of u-shaped shelves specific to my storage needs.

I like the contrast between the rustic, marine-varnished wood shelves and the streamlined look of our new cabinets. And since no one can see the shelves from the rest of the living room or kitchen, I can be as messy as I want.

my outlander kitchen

I couldn’t have asked for a more practical AND beautiful work space. Bold, sleek and sexy, it inspires me everyday as I develop and write the Outlander Kitchen Cookbook.

It’s my dream come true.


  1. Sally
    June 9, 2015 at 5:16 am

    It’s really beautiful and concise! Now it’s time for a new photo portrait of you to illustrate your blog, since both your appearance, and the kitchen in the background look more attractive!

    • Jackie Finear Kerner
      June 9, 2015 at 12:02 pm

      Your kitchen is lovely! So happy for you! I’m not much of a cook myself, but I love your blog, so keep on cooking! Glad you have such a great new environment!

    • Susan Dorward
      June 9, 2015 at 4:35 pm

      Wonderful! So cheerful and efficient!

    • Donna
      June 9, 2015 at 9:34 pm

      You deserve a great kitchen to work in. This is just lovely. Time for a new pic.

  2. Sharon V
    June 9, 2015 at 5:16 am

    I love it! I know you’ll be cooking up something wonderful soon! (pun intended) 🙂

  3. Jamie
    June 9, 2015 at 5:19 am

    Absolutely yummy kitchen… Congratulations!

  4. Suzanne Lucero
    June 9, 2015 at 5:38 am

    I’m so jealous. We bought a new dishwasher, stove and refrigerator, but our shelves and counters look terrible, all chipped and split. *sigh* Maybe next year. (You realize I’ll be expecting some pics of you in your kitchen as you create those wonderful Outlander recipes, not just pics of the food itself.)

  5. Lynne
    June 9, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Love it! The red is fantastic!

  6. Judith Nadreau
    June 9, 2015 at 5:44 am

    What a delightful space! I screams creativity. I hope you enjoy it for many years Theresa.

  7. Anna Lapping
    June 9, 2015 at 5:55 am

    I absolutely LOOOVE your new kitchen! Red being my favorite kitchen color. I’m envious of your new appliances though, I’m still stuck with builder grade from when the house was built 20 years ago or so. Do you mind If I use your idea for my pantry? I have the same issue, deep and dark. I’m sure we’re all expecting great things to be coming out of that great kitchen. Cheers!!

    • Theresa
      June 9, 2015 at 6:15 am

      Go for it, Anna! I love it now…highly recommend it.

    • Anna Lapping
      June 9, 2015 at 6:43 am

      Thanks, Theresa.

  8. Amanda S.
    June 9, 2015 at 6:11 am

    Congratulations! I think it looks fantastic. I know how great it feels to upgrade a kitchen. You do deserve this, and then some! Absolutely cannot wait for the cookbook but in the meantime I always look forward to your posts, whether here or on Facebook. Enjoy!

  9. Natalie
    June 9, 2015 at 6:28 am

    It’s gorgeous. Enjoy! Looking forward to the Outlander cookbook!

  10. Katherine Lambert
    June 9, 2015 at 6:58 am

    Beautiful kitchen and I suspect that there will be many wonderful meals coming out of there. Enjoy.

  11. Charree Mahoney
    June 9, 2015 at 7:00 am

    Love it!!!

  12. joanne collyer
    June 9, 2015 at 7:15 am

    our niece owns a kitchen and bath design store. she thought it looked great! there you go. they certainly maximized a galley kitchen! looks beautiful. i had no kitchen for 5 months because my husband was doing most of it. did not realize what you can do with a crockpot!

  13. Jan Anderson
    June 9, 2015 at 7:19 am


  14. Beth Wolfe
    June 9, 2015 at 7:26 am

    What a wonderful space! I do miss having a kitchen to work in. My galley needs help to as it’s a 40 year old boat, but I’m learning. So glad you were able to see this dream come true – now totally enjoy it!

  15. nancy
    June 9, 2015 at 7:55 am

    Love the red. absolutely perfect.

  16. Kathy
    June 9, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Beautiful Kitchen! Congratulations for surviving the renovations!

  17. MJ Guidry
    June 9, 2015 at 9:05 am

    Absolutely LOVE IT. And I really love the red. I’ve always wanted a “red kitchen,” but it has just never worked out. And the easy-to-clean aluminum! Heavenly. I’m very jealous, but so happy for you at the same time. Hoping for many more years of Outlander Kitchen!

    MJ in Boise, Idaho

  18. Molly
    June 9, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Congratulations on your new kitchen! It is just beautiful and yes you do deserve this great upgrade. Thank you for sharing the progress and the big reveal with us.

  19. Denyce
    June 9, 2015 at 9:52 am

    Love thenew kitchen! It looks spacious & streamlined. And it looks like you’ve got a new haircut to celebrate! Gorgeous all around. Congratulations, you deserve it.

  20. Pogonip
    June 9, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Wow, so mid-Century Modern!

  21. Jill
    June 9, 2015 at 10:43 am

    That is amazing! I love it. It is so red but in all the right amounts! And I love that Bacon sign! Also, a dishwasher in the house, no matter it’s location is better than none!

    Congrats on the beautiful kitchen. You deserve it!

  22. ms.yoshimi
    June 9, 2015 at 11:01 am

    Well done! I always admired what you did with your original kitchen — I love the less is better concept. I don’t feel a huge kitchen necessarily means that love and creativity go into what is prepared for friends and loved ones. That being said, I love your kitchen remodel!

  23. Penny Reid
    June 9, 2015 at 11:23 am

    Love your new kitchen! Congratulations — it looks like it will be a fabulous place to cook and entertain. Thanks for sharing — and thanks for the Outlander recipes!

  24. Denise
    June 9, 2015 at 11:46 am

    A woman after my own heart, a red kitchen! Love it. What a great design and use of space. I do like the placement of your dishwasher. Looks like once the door is open you can just throw those dishes on in and continue cooking up a storm. Our Bosch dishwasher is a stand alone under the window with a hard top which acts as extra bench space so we keep our toaster and juicer on top. The best appliance though is my Mitsubishi Red Fridge, I just love it:

    Enjoy your kitchen Theresa! You totally deserve it!

  25. Judy
    June 9, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Gorgeous!! You and your designers did a fantastic job!

  26. Gilda
    June 9, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    The kitchen is beautiful!. I love it. Congrats!

  27. Mary Morgan
    June 9, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    Stunning, Theresa! I’m so looking forward to your cookbook! 🙂

  28. Hakulani Naone
    June 9, 2015 at 2:37 pm

    Congrats! The kitchen looks great. Enjoy!

  29. Erinyes
    June 9, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    Wow! Stunning!

  30. Kristine
    June 9, 2015 at 11:12 pm

    What a beautiful work space. There are so many gorgeous kitchen but so few really functional ones. I think your choice of red was inspired. The red energizes while the grey soothes and calms. I look forward to trying many more delicious creations coming out of there.

  31. Reni
    June 10, 2015 at 6:15 am

    Completely amazing! But I have to ask…. Quartz!?!?!? We live in Colorado, which is a serious quartz capitol!! I MUST find this. But frankly, never have seen it! I love love love the idea. Is it thick? What type of upkeep? I. WANT. THIS! hehe

  32. Lexi Wilson
    June 10, 2015 at 8:31 am

    Theresa! It looks fabulous!! I’m so excited for you, creating and cooking in your brand new kitchen. 🙂 Looks perfect to me!

  33. De Murr
    June 10, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    I like to hear your comments about your induction stove top. I have a cousin who has one and loves it. What brand did you get?

    • Theresa
      June 16, 2015 at 4:01 pm

      I also love mine, although there’s a bit of an adjustment period from an electric stove top. This is a Fisher and Paykel…highly recommend it.

  34. Michelle Vance Scott
    June 11, 2015 at 8:06 am

    Congratulations! It is stunning– LOVE Outlander Kitchen!!

  35. Emily Finnegan
    August 18, 2015 at 7:36 am

    Your remodel was clearly a success — so modern and efficient looking. If I may note one thing on your accompanying text (sorry, it’s a pet peeve of mine and may be useful in the upcoming cookbook): “It’s” should be used to mean “It is” or “It has” only. It’s not the possessive form of “its”. Thanks.

    • Theresa
      August 18, 2015 at 7:40 am

      Wow — thanks. If you read the rest of my writing, I’m sure you’ll realize that was a typo. But, like I said, thanks.

  36. hiking
    April 19, 2016 at 3:01 pm

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    while I was researching on Yahoo for something else,
    Nonetheless I am here now and would just like to say thanks for a
    incredible post and a all round interesting blog (I also love the theme/design),
    I don’t have time to go through it all at the minute but I have bookmarked
    it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to
    read much more, Please do keep up the great work.

    • Theresa
      April 20, 2016 at 6:33 am

      Welcome! Great to have you here. The recipe index is a great resource to get you started. Theresa

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