Kitchen Reveal

The kitchen is finally 99% complete, so now is as good as a time as any to post pictures of it, because a space is never really ever 100% complete is it?

First before pictures.

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It really doesn't look too bad in the pictures, but the cabinets were full of nicks, the counter had deep scratches all over it and the appliances had seen a lot of use and it showed!

Here is during the remodel process, which now seems so long ago.

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And now after.

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IMG_6623IMG_6626IMG_6577IMG_6645I am sooo happy to be living and using our home with no contractors! We had wonderful people who helped transform our home but it is hard to be practically living with them for over six months. I am having a farmhouse table made for the nook. It will be made out of reclaimed barn wood. The table that is in that space is too small. At some point (when the bank account grows some) I want an antique runner for in front of the sink area. And I'll need new chairs for the table, but I really don't know what I want.

I am pretty happy with choices that I made, it is a comfortable space, light and bright and practical. But that said, if I could do it over again, there are some things I would do differently. I think it is a rare person who would do a project again exaclty the way they did it the first time. Sometimes I wish I could be that person, but there are just so many designs that I like, it is hard to choose!

It has been a long time since I published a post. I have been trying to get better at my photography. A promise to myself – take pictures EVERY day! Practice makes perfect (or least makes "better"!)

A couple of parting pictures, where I was trying to get artistic!

IMG_6672I just love those little bowls!

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Enjoy your day!

First Ebay Purchase

I have been looking for something special to put in a nook/niche in the kitchen. I wanted an old/antique piece. I checked antique stores in my area. I looked on Craigslist. No luck. So I checked out Ebay. There are so many wonderful things to available to buy on Ebay. I spent many hours looking and put many items on my watch and wish lists! I found a lovely old oak bookcase from France and it was the right size. The same seller had a lamp that was made from an old tin tea caddy, I bought that as well.  I spoke with the seller (his shop is called French and English Anitques) who is in Texas.  I told him this was my first Ebay purchase and wasn't sure how it all worked. He was very nice and he explained it all. He took the items to a packer and then he had the box shipped by Greyhound. As far as I understand this is the least expensive way to ship items that can't be sent by regular mail. The local Greyhound station called us when the box arrived. We picked it up from the Greyhound station Easter night. It was very well packaged but the box was too big for my car, so we had to unpack it at the station. We cut the box open and out spilled a billion packing peanuts! It was QUITE THE SIGHT, wish I had taken a picture. But, now out of the box, the bookcase and lamp fit in the car. Before we could go home with our new treasures we had to sweep up all the peanuts. Thank God the station had a broom and a dustpan we could use. It took us a looooong time, but we got every one of those stinker peanuts. It was worth it, I love the pieces I bought! Hopefully they will be in the kitchen very soon. And I will be checking Ebay on a regular basis.

Here's my first Ebay purchases.

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The blue cabinet next to the bookcase in the garage is a project I'm working on for the laundry room. More about that later.

Week 10 – Kitchen Remodel – So Close!!!

I can almost smell the first meal cooking in the kitchen, we are that close! We now have running water. That alone has made this journey a bit easier. The faucet is beautiful!

IMG_6445The tile backsplash has been completed. I am so happy with how it turned out. Very simple, but the detail behind the range dresses it up a bit I think.

IMG_6487There has been a shelf installed on the wall next to the refridgerator. I can't wait to pretty it up. I'm thinking of maybe putting cups and saucers on the shelf and bins of teas. Maybe make that area a tea/coffee area.

IMG_6458And the built in bench has been installed under the window. I've ordered fabric to have a cushion made. We get the best morning sun in that window, it will be a great place to start the day.IMG_6448Yes, that is carboard on the floor. The painter will finish the last coat of paint later this week. I hope to get the cardboard, rosen paper, and dropcloths out this weekend. I won't be able to completely settle the kitchen though. The shelves for the glass front cabinets were ordered in the wrong size, fingers crossed they are here next week.

Countertop Installed!

I had thought about what kind of countertop I would want in a new kitchen long before we began the remodel. I wanted to do something other than granite. I had seen a soapstone counter in a display of a countertop company and fell in love. I did all the research one should do. I know that it is a soft material, it can chip, but you can't stain it and chips can be oiled out.  Soapstone if left in it's natural state is gray, if you want it darker, oil it with mineral oil. From what I understand the more it is oiled the darker it will get until it reaches a point of where it will be as dark as it will be and then it only has to be oil occasionally. I want mine to be dark, black really.

 The veining is what I love most about this stone, the more the better. I picked out a slab that had the most veining I could find. I checked out a couple of stoneyards to make sure I got the slabs available in this area with the most veining.

After they came to the house to template for the counter I went to the showroom to see where they would lay out the template. Good thing I did! The first time they laid the template out on the slabs much of the veining was lost. Even after we moved some pieces around some of the beautiful veining was still lost. It was explained to me that they have to keep the template pieces close together, otherwise to much of the slabis wasted. So this is what it looked like with my template pieces roughly laid out on the slabs. It looks streaky because the slabs were washed down with water so I could see the veins better and then the water began to evaporate as we worked on the lay out.

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Today was installation day!! I have to say I was a bit, okay, a lot nervous! There have been many hiccups with this project so I was just afraid that something else would happen. But all is well and I love  it!!!

 

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Look at the gorgeous veining!

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Floors get refinished in two days! I can almost smell the first meal.

Kitchen Remodel -End of Week 7 – Stressed a Bit!

Maybe the kitchen remodel is getting to be more stressful than I want to admit. I sent an email to the kitchen designer and our contractor last Sunday. Yes, on a Sunday. I never call, text, or email a contractor on a weekend day unless they have said to call them then. Sometimes our technology makes it seem that everyone should be accessible to who ever wants them, right then and there. Remember when there were not even answering machines, we just had to keep calling the person we wanted to get in touch with until they answered the phone. But I digress. . . 

So I sent an email explaining some of the issues that were keeping me awake at night. Back of the hood insert is bowed, the unfinished edge of the plate rack, no panels on the bottom of the upper cabinets, dents in the door of my new range. I asked for a meeting Monday, I received an email back from both of them quite quickly and yes they would come on Monday.

I am so happy that I am working with the kitchen designer and the contractor I have. They both want what I want, a beautiful kitchen with attention to detail. Communication is the key, we had a nice conversation and they listened well. There are solutions for all of the issues, it may delay the project as we will have to wait for some more materials to be ordered. But I feel so much better.

We are now at the end of week 7. The kitchen has been gutted, rewired, replumbed, new drywall, trim, doors, cabinets, and appliances have all been installed, most of the painting has been completed. BUT the under cabinet lighting has to be rewired as we did not discuss the type of lighting that I wanted, and what I want requires low voltage and it was wired for high voltage. The hood insert has to come out because the back in bowed. The range has two dents in the door. A couple steps backwards but still progress! Hope to cook Easter dinner at home!

This is what it looked like at the end of yesterday. I love the blue that has been painted in the back of the cabinets with the glass doors.IMG_0279 IMG_0280I had the painter use Benjamin Moore's Aura paint, it is more expensive but the finish is beautiful. Now I want to do the rest of the house over using that paint. Just kidding, well maybe not! I used Benjamin Moore in the rest of the house but not the Aura line.

And this where I was this morning.

IMG_0284The floor gets refinished in a week, then the new washer and dryer can go in.  There is an advantage of going to the laundromat though, you can get many loads done at once. Not a bad thing!