Sometimes I have to take a step back, breathe into a paper bag for a few minutes, and remind myself that not every surface in this old place needs work. There are a few spaces where only a few tweaks are necessary.
For instance, the kitchen had no personality and had stainless steel EVERYWHERE. While perfectly lovely for a modern home, I was not really feeling the old victorian farmhouse charm here.
Just replacing the cabinet hardware from modern stainless steel to victorian oil-rubbed bronze made a huge difference. Downsizing the light fixture makes the room look bigger and helps take the focus off the stainless steel.
Feels much more like a farmhouse and didn't cost a small fortune. I'd like to someday change the counter tops and add a tile backsplash, but for now this option fits the budget better. I do think maybe I'm going to change the paint color though. I've always had a yellow kitchen. I think my psyche needs a yellow kitchen. This color on a cloudy day seems very grey, like a jail cell.
(By the way, that stainless steel light fixture/pot rack is for sale. Make me an offer I can't refuse.)