Kitchen facelift

>> April 8, 2013

I am totally embarrassed by the fact that I haven't blogged in (seemingly) years. The reasons are many, none of which I will get into today. Perhaps at a later date. However, I have been truly touched by the family and friends who say "we miss your posts! Where are you?" I know I am very behind on my updates of Caroline, and the various projects we are tackling - one in particular - if you follow me on Instagram.

But I am not giving up!

So for my friends who have been missing my updates - this post is especially for you.

We are currently neck deep in a kitchen facelift. If you remember this post from many moons ago, I had dreamed about re-doing our kitchen. And I mean a full overhaul. But when Hubby and I really sat down to think about it, a brand spankin' new kitchen would be nice (and I mean really niiiice), but frankly, if we were going to put that kinda cha-ching into our home, we should really add a second bathroom (because right now we only have one. Yes, one). So as much as I would love a nice new kitchen, we knew deep down our funds would be better spent somewhere else.

So we set out to do a kitchen facelift, using our existing crappy cabinets, and the not-so-ideal layout. The budget is small. We wanted to modernize our kitchen without spending a ton, dipping into savings, taking out a loan, or hiring a single contractor ('cause daycare is expensive, yo!). This is a total DIY project - if we couldn't do the install ourselves, or order the materials ourselves - we picked different sources.

I started with this inspiration, Erika's Kitchen. You will notice a few borrowed ideas from her kitchen facelift a few years ago.

(Photo from Urban Grace Blog)

...only she has better cabinets to start with. Our cabinets were not in such great shape. But hey, we are workin' with what we have.
Our 1942 house is cape/cottage, so that's the look we are shooting for. We could glam up the kitchen all we want, but in the end, it will still be a little yellow cape, and I think this facelift goes well with our house. Here's what we picked:

We decided the current white paint was not doing our 1940s cabinets any favors. It accentuated the flaws and dings, and what we needed was to cover up the blemishes. We decided on Martha Stewart's Mourning Dove (matched in Behr Paint + Primer), which hides all the imperfections very nicely.

For the floors, we are pulling up the inexpensive laminate tile we installed when we first moved into the house. We had originally installed it, because it was cheap, we were house poor, and it was better than the mint green laminate that was in the kitchen when we moved in. But we found this inexpensive wood option, which is the same shade as the rest of the home's wood floors, and should blend nicely. The sample we received was great, so I am keeping my fingers crossed for the full shipment, which should be here this week.

We updated the cabinet pulls a couple years ago, with these knobs, and bin pulls from Restoration Hardware (now discontinued, but are similar to these). This time around, we also changed out the old hinges to match the brushed nickel pulls, with these. This was a real pain, as the cabinet doors were tough to fit-just-so. But we made it work and I think it was worth the effort.

We are going to clad the walls in 1x6 tongue-in-groove wood paneling, painted bright white. Did you know the 1x6 paneling has a bead board pattern on one side, and is plain on the other side? So you can just flip it over to get the look you like. We are using the "plain" side, and I like how it's going to look.

We wanted a good bang for your buck sink, and it doesn't get better than this one from Ikea. It looks like a $600 sink, all for less than two. I really like the farm house look, and it goes perfect with the space. The only scary part - our cabinets weren't set up for a farmhouse sink, so we had to cut away (!) our cabinets to make it fit. It ended up just fine in the end, but I almost pooped my pants in the process. It was all or nothing. (Side note: the Ikea sink is a drop-in farm house style, when I know a lot of people prefer undermount. Something to keep in mind, when the apron front sink is resting on the front cabinets, and is undermount - should anything happen to the sink (crack, damage, etc), you can't remove the sink without removing the counters, or ruining the cabinets. At least with the drop-in sink, you can switch it out, should anything happen, keeping the counters and cabinets in tact.)

We picked these butcher block counters, also from Ikea, in the beech color. Why did we go with butcher block? Well, it's much cheaper than any other material, it was a HUGE step up from what we had to start, it goes with the feel of our house - and the zinger - we could install it ourselves. Bonus.

This looks like a $400 faucet, that I scored on Overstock for less than 2. (Watch Overstock daily for price changes. I got a good deal, but it fluctuates.) I really wanted an industrial looking faucet, as a foil for the rest of the space, and this fit the bill. It comes in a model with a chrome sprayer hose, but I like the contrast of the black hose against the chrome coil (personal preference). Hubby managed to install it himself.

Stealing directly from Erika, I hunted down these brackets for my open shelves. Taking down the upper cabinets has really opened up the kitchen space. I'm stunned.

Finally, I will be changing out the fabric in the kitchen and the adjacent dining room, to this floral/paisley number. The valences will get a new look on life, and the windows in the dining room will get a "fixed" roman shade. (It will look like a roman shade, but it won't go up or down.)

Check out my Instagram page (projectshannon) to see regular updates.  I promise to post before and afters once it's done (hopefully in the next couple weeks).

And just for good measure...
Happy Monday friends. Missed you too.

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