Budget Kitchen Remodel: Conserve, Conserve, then Splurge!

Finishing the concrete floor was a daunting task, but the major thing that motivated me to get it done was what was sitting in hallway waiting to be installed the whole time. Rewind… I decided my birthday present this year and also reward for saving bucks in other places in this kitchen- like, ahem, pushing through all that concrete skimming- was a total splurge purchase of a kick-butt, top of the line, make-my-life-easier-every-single-day-of-the-week, shiny new dishwasher. This actually sat in our hallway for weeks after delivery pushing me to dive into the darn floors so we could install it. Great motivator! The existing dishwasher was the only appliance that wasn’t new when we bought the house, but worked fine (except for the fact it was hooked up to reversed plumbing and only used cold water- um, not effective). So originally the saver in me was all about this budget kitchen face-lift getting done using the old dishwasher. But then I listened to an audio book during my commutes about how working moms really can ‘do it all’ and, specifically, the chapter entitled “Make Life Easier” and BAM, new awesome clean-dried-outmeal-off-all-your-dishes-and-out-the-baby’s-hair-at-the-same-time dishwasher was ordered! (maybe not the baby’s hair) Anyway- total splurge. But it was for my birthday, did I mention? And scraping, soaking, and clean rinsing every single dish in our little sink for the past 9 months to go into our tepid dishwasher sent me over the edge on pre-cleaning dishes. No more precious minutes spent on dishes! No. More.

Enter: Glorious new Bosch dishwasher [insert beautiful singing here].

dishwasher open

I went with the Bosch 800 series, with features like hidden flush buttons (O really likes pushing buttons so this was key), a third top rack for misc and sharp things out of toddler reach (O really likes ‘helping’ unload, including sharp knives if he can reach them so this is great), and eco-friendly settings like “half load” and “eco” so I can run it daily without feeling guilty. And it has an integrated handle with no frills/parts (instead of a bar or something) because I think ahead and know my sweet toddler will eventually swing and climb and hang on anything as tempting as that! And it’s practically silent. So now finally Oliver will listen to me because he probably just couldn’t hear me over the dishwasher all this time when I said “no/stop/wait/come”! (= fantasy parent epiphany). I did get this on sale and ordered online a slightly different model than the main one they usually stock which was another $50 less. So with free delivery, it was about $900. Big purchase for me! My big downfall of this semi/un-planned purchase was I ordered it right after Virginia’s tax-free weekend, when I could have saved another $50 on sales tax because it’s an energy efficient appliance. Frustrating. But you don’t get bent out of shape on things like that for splurge/birthday present/reward purchases, so I forgave myself. I was so excited to get this in, we worked until almost midnight and I still painstakingly poured in my sample of rinse aid so I could run the first load!

dishwasher joy

Some tips for installing a dishwasher yourself (besides first learning what you’re doing with electrical/plumbing stuff in general): definitely read the instructions through and inspect things before you plan to actually do it (I actually do this for eeeeeverything we do in advance), realize dishwashers sit flush with cabinet doors- not the cabinet boxes or the countertop, and though the instructions note checking the centered-ness of the dishwasher once it’s back in it’s hole, you really have to get this straight from the get-go and slowly slide it in inch by inch, making small adjustments all the way as you go. Once it’s in, there’s no way you’re going to be able to slide it side to side without pulling it out and starting over.

There are so many things I love in this new kitchen- the bigger sink, the amazing faucet, but this is my best kitchen bud. Since I’m behind on blogging, I’ve actually been using this about a month now. And with the eco setting, I just run it each night after dinner which is so convenient compared to waiting for it to be full and in between having to hand wash our daily smoothie blender pieces. And no more rinsing, just scrape off in trash and load. Which means more time for family. And isn’t that the point of all this home stuff anyway?

Taking A New Path

You know I am always quilting and knitting and whatever else. But I have found something new that makes my heart soar. I am having a ball. I was getting a bit board with quilting and decided to get my paints out. I had been perusing Pinterest and fell in love with Art Journaling. Now I always thought anything with the word ” journal” in it meant spilling your thoughts and woes on a page or just keeping track of your life. But art journaling is a way of keeping your art in a compact place. It’s mixed media.  It’s a place to try new things and possibly spark something bigger . Its fun and so relaxing. I usually make my coffee, and run to my studio to do a bit of painting before Rip VanWinkle gets up. Roger loves to sleep in. It works for me most mornings.

I started this path by soaking in as much info as possible. I bought a few books, new art supplies and watched UTube by all kinds of artists.How did we live without Utube?

So today I’m going to share my journal pages. My Owl page sparked a nursery quilt. So you see this doodling and new techniques can inspire something bigger than your journal page.

My Book

I bought this at Walmart. It has nice paper and easy to work with. I start with pasting two pages together  with gel medium matte for every piece of art I do.

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page 1

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page 2

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page 3

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page 4 and 5

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page 6

This is a great background for something in the future. Your paintings are never finished. You can always go back and add to them.

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page 7

This was inspired by a photo I took in the mountains a few years ago. This is agreat example of forcing me to do things differently. I always painted in realism. I wanted to paint whimsy. Now I have learned ways to venture out and try new things. This painting has also turned into a baby quilt wall hanging that you can see in my Etsy shop.

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page 8

I love bright colors, but here I want to paint soft and subtle. The harlequin pattern in the background was done with a palate knife and texture paste. So fun! ( I would love to do our bedroom in these colors) :)

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page 9 and 10

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page 11

At first I wasn’t happy with this, and I titled it Good and Bad days. Make art anyway.. But I kept adding more and more and I love it. I hope I have inspired you.

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Get out those brushes and blow the dust off of them. Your paints last practically forever. I will list a few of my favorite artists that inspired me. Start reading their blogs and you will learn so much.

http://teeshamoore.com/

Balzer Designs: Tutorial: Start With a Strong Image

https://belindafireman.wordpress.com/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7ftULedTHY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3JnpFvVYJs

Budget Kitchen Remodel: An Experiment in Concrete

This post is about a month late, but work has progressed on the kitchen! And this stage was done by my deadline-ish of end of Sept to have most of the major work done. As work progressed on the walls, we still needed to decide what to do with the floor. This was an area where I wanted to save some $ because long term, I’d rather the entire upstairs-including the kitchen- be the same flooring, but that is a more expensive undertaking for down the road a ways. We needed a “for a few years” floor that wasn’t worth dropping much moolah into. But even lineoleum would cost $150-200 in materials, we didn’t want stick down tiles again- couldn’t WAIT to get rid of the grimey ones we had. At any rate, any cheap flooring would just look like… well, cheap flooring and would still cost a couple hundred bucks in the end. Call me crazy, but I kept coming back to skim coated concrete. People use it for countertops, and other Pinterest-y DIY projects and it seems like a cool, industrial, natural/non-plastic looking finish that was worth experimenting with. For example, this kitchen looks pretty cool I think: 

I had to convince Chad on this one, but he came around and I quickly bought the supplies before he could change his mind :-)  (Kind of like I quickly starting painting cabinets to start this whole journey off before anything else could happen to delay!) The Feather Finish (Ardex/Henry) material is actually a polymer based concrete mixture, so this is NOT pouring exterior concrete in your house. It’s using a patching/repair compound to just coat your surface to give a concrete looking finish.

However, before any of that could start, step 1 was repairing the flooring under the weirdo floating cabinet between the kitchen and dining room, which miraculous was a simple task. The flooring just extended under the cab so we had to cut some away, as opposed to trying to patch it with leftover pieces. Chad got a new multi tool so this was actually pretty easy. Bummer we discovered some old wall damage that wasn’t repaired properly when someone put that weird cabinet there years ago. So more drywall work for me later, yippee :)

floor cutout

Next was moving everything out to the dining room (no oven until this was done!) and tearing up the vinyl sticky tiles. So our dining room/kitchen looked like this the week we were working on this. Eek.

dining room living

And STICKY was the name of the game removing the existing tiles. Modern day conveniences (ie, peel and stick flooring) = disgusting messes for whoever gets ‘stuck’ with it down the road (pun intended). We used the multitool Chad got for cutting the floor to work up the edges and this floor scraping pole we found (!) in our garage from the previous. It had mud on it like they used it for edging the lawn or something. Lucky find for us! And scrape, scrape, scrape we did, for two layers of sticky tile for a few hours. Here’s what this process looked like…

floor removal

The next conundrum was how the heck to work on the floor when it was too stick to actually step on. Solution- sprinkle and scrape out the concrete mix we would be using to soak up the stickiness a bit. From there we sacrificed a $3 tarp from Harbor Fright to cut up and lay out on the semi-sticky powdered surface to work around the room. The tarps were key! But cardboard or anything else you’re willing to pitch later would work fine. And you could do this same technique to prep any sticky subfloor by sprinkling another kind of powder (corn starch?) or sand down to help you move around and even try to scrape up the adhesive if you need to.

floor powder

Next we started mixing our skim coat according to package directions in small double batches. You have to work in small amounts because it sets up in minutes. The first coats I scraped on very thin with a metal trowel, scooting around with my sticky tarp.

floor first coat

When it was dry after about half an hour, so you could walk on it again and we did these layers late at night after dinner so it wasn’t as inconvenient as it looks. It was also much easier after the first coat covered all the sticky gunk. Chad handled the mixing station and I scraped on the layers each night. This stuff sets up fast so I had to keep scraping my trowel clean so the drying bits didn’t crumble into my next batch.

mixing stationAfter the first two very thin layers, thick spots of the tacky dirty gunk still showed through slightly, mostly where the vinyl tile seams were so you could still see the square shapes in certain areas.

floor 2 coats

So, fearing we’d be doing a dozen layers with  this technique, we decided to smooth it on a little thicker for the third coat instead of the scraped thin coats, assuming we’d sand it all smooth in the end which gave us this.

finished concrete

Next I kind of stopped to think. I hated the idea of fine concrete polymer dust spread everywhere using an electric sander and hand sanding was practically pointless on this once it hardened up. So after a couple days, I scraped down the ridges and little bumps here and there with a putty knife and I really loved all the depth and texture it had. Kind of like slate has a lot of natural imperfections. So we decided to just seal it and live with it and see how we liked it. Much simpler proposition! So out when the sanding plan, and on went the concrete sealer to this third and final coat. The sealer was a breeze!

floor sealing applI did a coat one night, again the next morning, the next night, and a fourth coat the third morning. So it was four coats of Behr low luster concrete sealer, each about 12 hours apart to avoid having to scuff in between. You can see here the variations in the overall final look.

floor finish

Sealing really put the final touch on and left us with a reasonably durable, polished looking industrial floor. floor sealer

There are certainly imperfections so if that’s not your thing, this might not be the project for you. But for $100 in feather finish and sealer, we have a new one-of-a-kind floor with a lot of personality. We’ve dropped things on it since finishing it in Sept and it seems like a sharp object (dropping a fork, tines down) might chip or dent the surface a bit, but it’s not noticeable in this type of rugged floor finish and it’s nothing that recoating the sealer once a year or so wouldn’t fix. The beauty of it too is that when we do change all the upstairs flooring, we have a nice subfloor all ready to go too ;-) K, now on to upper cabinets!

List update:

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops

Install new sink and faucet

Replace hood with over the range microwave (Done- coming soon!)

Added: Finish painting cabinetry, install upper cabs

Sell current hood and microwave (added: and dishwasher) on CL (bonus! sold extra washing machine to couple at HD! +$180)

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls (working on it!)

Replace flooring

Added: Install new quarter round, floor transitions

Less Is More

DSC_0003Every year about this time we contemplate getting rid of the pond that we have loved so much. But any time something breaks or its fall, and time to cover it with mesh, we discuss it’s demise. When you are retired, you want less and less maintenance. So we began to peruse Pinterest and found a few pondless waterfalls that we liked. We called Lonnie, our pond guy and he came and drained the pond and took all our fish so they can enjoy some other pond.  We were left with a stinky, mucky hole and Rog took over from there.

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He moved all the rocks out of the way to get the liners up and clean everything with a pressure washer.

So much work, but he wanted to do this by himself…so I bowed out. Notice he wears ear muffs the whole time, listening to music so he can’t hear me.

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There were plants and shrubs to move, electrical wires and water lines to move and most of all the pump. Whew !

He had dirt dropped twice. But I must say , he did such a beautiful job and we love it!

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Now we still enjoy the waterfall, the sound of it and all the birds enjoying their daily baths. No maintenance to speak of. Rog is pretty proud of his project and I am amazed at how beautiful it all turned out. Way to go honey. It’s wonderful! He also lit the Japanese maple and the waterfall with new covered out door receptacles. He is even talking Christmas lights.

Oh Clark :)

Night pics later.

And here they are….Wow, I finally got a post off.

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Budget Kitchen Remodel: Catching Up

Plumbing, countertops, sink, faucet! So much has progressed and there are some pictures to prove it, but it’s been a bit crazy so this isn’t a very organized post. Here goes, a quick update…

The plank wall was primed with Kilz No VOC primer, I really like this product…

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…and the walls where countertops were going in were partially painted so I wouldn’t later have to closely paint against brand new counters.

countertop ready paint

I remember when this wall (above) looked like this (below) and I’m very glad to be past that dusty messy stage. Sweet sweet progress!

drywall patching

We installed IKEA Hammarp counters in beech. Unfortunately, we needed just a few inches more than the 98″ larger slab they sell so had to buy a second smaller slab for a total of about $300. It ended up being a fortunate thing when we had a few flaws in the wood we wanted to avoid and had an oops cut that caused us to completely recut one of the pieces. The counters come with these brackets which we just fasted to our cabinets boxes flush to the top, making sure along the way that the counters would sit level and adding shims where needed.

brackets for counters

The beauty of wood countertops is they are natural and can just be conditioned periodically with a mineral oil and beeswax based product. We will periodically condition them to maintain their water resistance and keep them looking good, and if they ever get damaged, we can just sand out the flaw and recoat. Voila. countertop cond

Oliver handled the cooking during this big push to finally get counters and working plumbing (including a sink!) in place.
o cooking

Chad had already done the hard work rerunning our drain line a few inches lower, but still had some plumbing to figure out to connect that new lower line back to the sink drain/garbage disposal. He has learned a lot of plumbing on You Tube. Here he is studying a video with parts in hand :-) Chad learned a lot from this video to get a good idea of what parts and pieces go where, but we did ours in plastic drain pipe.

you tube plumbing

We installed the new faucet on the sink, put it in place, and then inserted a drain assembly picked up at Home Depot. The faucet and drain assembly required using plumbers puddy (like play doh for plumbers) following the package instructions. Both went in really, really easy. We put the faucet in before dropping the sink into place which made that a breeze on a brand new sink. The faucet is Kohler and has a great powerful ‘sweep’ spray to really clear crud off plates!

puddy drain assembly

So after 10 days of washing dishes in the bathtub, we had running water! And a functioning drain. I was sooo excited! It was so satisfying to install things that wouldn’t be coming apart again for any next steps. It really is coming together. Can you see the light at the end of this tunnel? It’s still a bit far, I know, but I’m seeing it too!

running sink

Alas, the list update:

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops

Install new sink and faucet

Replace hood with over the range microwave

Added: Finish painting cabinetry, install upper cabs

Sell current hood and microwave (added: and dishwasher) on CL (bonus! sold extra washing machine to couple at HD! +$180)

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls (working on it!)

Replace flooring (done-ish, coming soon!)

Added: Install new quarter round, floor transitions



Budget Kitchen Remodel: Wood Planked Feature Wall

In going with our modified kitchen remodel approach, aka, the budget remodel and not a full gut… we also sacrificed being able to modify the layout. So, one main wall remains the central hub of the kitchen. Previously, it was dark and sliced up by ugly cabinets, a design that did not fully appreciate the angled vaulted ceiling above.

Kitchen photo plan

So, to remedy this ugly wall, I found a budget friendly way to make this wall a true feature of the kitchen, avoid lots of tedious drywall repair from the damage the previous tile removal made, and make the wall function reasonably as a backsplash without the cost of tile. Originally we were thinking maybe beadboard, but I was worried it would look too “country”, and instead I found this idea for a planked wall on another blog, Sweet Pickins. We used plywood utility panels we found at Lowe’s, cut into 6″ strips, that were maple as opposed to artificial wood so it was slightly more expensive than it appears Sweet Pickins used. But this project for our one wall rang in at $100 in materials ($25 per 8′ by 4′ sheet) and about 3 nights of ‘after the baby goes to bed’ effort, maybe 6-8 hours total including prepping for paint.

Since we were aiming for a level gap appropriate for a caulk line against our counters, we set our cut counter pieces in place temporarily for the first plank, started at the bottom and worked our way up. You will need a good long level for this, checking the board as you work your way across with nails and hammer (or a nail gun if you have one). We were quite thorough and put two nails through at each stud. See how nasty the wall behind still is? Since we’re covering it all and sealing it all up with paint after, this let us get by with little effort on repairing this main wall.

hammer first plankWe took our planks full length across the right side, and let all the seams stack up above the oven area on the left because this would mostly be covered by oven, microwave, and cabinet. It seemed like a better option to make the cuts and puddy a few seams in the few small visible areas there than have them scattered all over in more visible areas of the whole wall. Made the process pretty easy too. We paired our boards that would be side by side ahead of time based on their width matching up since the cuts from Lowe’s were not exact (bad enough actually they didn’t make us pay for the cuts in the end!).

plank measuring

planks stacking up  planks almost doneOne factor we were pretty proud of in this project is we used no power tools- save for the few times we used the electric mouse sander for some edges. This was all the old fashion way with straight edge, pencil, hand saw, hammer, and nails.

handsaws at nightIt took us about 3 nights of cutting and nailing planks, trying to feed O whatever was on hand for dinner- like “here’s a whole tomato, kiddo. have fun!”plank break O eats tomatoAfter the final pieces were in place, Chad used a nail set to sink all the nail heads, and I used wood putty on all the nail head holes and visible seams above the oven. Sanded, repeated on the seams, and we were ready for primer, paint, and polyurethane to seal it. What do you think?

finished planks

We dropped all our cut countertop pieces and sink in just for a photo op. It’s these moments that keep us going on this!

List update:

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor (done, coming soon!)

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops (done, coming soon!)

Install new sink and faucet (done, coming soon!)

Replace hood with over the range microwave

Sell current hood and microwave (added: and dishwasher) on CL

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls

Replace flooring (done-ish, coming soon!)

 

Budget Kitchen Remodel: Dust, Dust, Dust

Just an update today- lots happening in the kitchen over the past two weeks. Last week was mostly about planning, plumbing, patching drywall, sanding, smoothing, mudding, sanding and whole lot of dust. Chad took the lead on the plumbing work which involved moving our sink drain in the kitchen back wall down a few inches to accommodate our plan for a deeper sink and adjusting the supply fittings under the sink. We had a day off work together where we dropped O at daycare and tackled the countertop cutting and fitting, as well as dry fitting the apron sink which was a lot of serious work to get done. More details on those processes later (how to do your own countertops with only a circular saw and $200!). Everything else we do when O goes to bed at night so pardon the bad photo lighting. Here’s some pics to welcome you into our mess :-)

I came home from a meeting last Thursday night and found our sink on the curb and Chad waiting for me to help carry the countertop outside to join it. I was thrilled! Like, literally, I was thrilled to find pieces of my kitchen on the curb. Progress!!

kitchen disaster sink out

The following week was a loooot of drywall repair. The three places at the countertop sides (far left, far right, and next to frig) were damaged badly by removing the tile. The main wall we were less worried about because we have a different plan for that wall. So, I spent about a week patching and repairing. I used a puddy knife to scrape as much old grout away as I could, then used mesh drywall tape to cover really bad spots where the wall was ripped. Then patiently applied joint compound, let it dry, sanded smooth, repeat, repeat as needed.

drywall patching

One end was really badly damaged when the counters came out so it seemed easier to cut the whole part out and patch with a new patch piece of drywall. You can by just small patch pieces about 2′ by 2′ for a few bucks that are easy to work with so it’s a good way to go. 
cut out patch
hole patched

We opened up our new IKEA Hammarp countertops in birch and worked on the cuts (see lots of measurement notes in previous post!) last Friday. And it was soooo exciting to place that first piece on the cabinet box and start to see my vision come together.

first countertop piece

We also worked on modifying the sink cabinet and dry fitting all the pieces in their places. Sad part was to take it all back apart for us to finish the work on the back wall, but was exciting to see it all fitting together! We did it this way because this was the only day we could both be home with O in daycare to get all the cutting, fitting, cutting, fitting, sanding, fitting again, etc done and have it all ready to go for installation later we were ready for those steps. Can you begin to see the vision too?

countertop dry fits

We made more progress this holiday weekend that I’ll get updated later, but here’s the list til here. The list hasn’t really changed much since most of the work we’ve been doing has been prep work (plumbing, patching, etc) but it’s about to start moving quickly! And still under my 2K budget cap :-)


List

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops

Install new sink and faucet

Replace hood with over the range microwave

Sell current hood and microwave on CL

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls

Replace flooring

 

Budget Kitchen Remodel: Shopping and Demolition

Let the games begin. I warned/promised Chad I would not dilly dally on moving this kitchen plan along. So, the shopping began. IKEA, Home Depot, Amazon, Lowe’s… a living room full of boxes of beautiful things I can’t wait to install (and a pile of old stuff building up to repurpose or trash). IKEA delivered our butcher block counters and Domsjo farm sink, but was so late on the delivery day, they later returned our entire $99 delivery fee. Yay!

shopping pile

Taking down cabinets and existing lighting was rewarding. Someone put lots of extra screws in weird places so this was kind of interesting to get done.

chad start demo

Then I took Oliver for a long walk over a couple of evenings while Chad cracked away at removing the old tile leaving this lovely mess.

tile out

We later decided to just take down all the cabinets, including the two that will go back up, because we’ll need to raise them anyway and it will be easier to do the wall finishing we have planned- more on that later. Nothing like spending money on a pile of waiting-to-be-installed shiny things and demolishing half your kitchen to light a fire for getting this project done! Yet, after getting this far, we learned our new over-the-range microwave should ideally have a dedicated circuit. For that matter, there are other electrical adjustments we wanted made in the house (additional circuit for future bathroom and bedroom in basement, additional 220 circuit for future fantasy master closet washer/dryer) so we had to hold up a couple weeks to get an electrician friend to come set us up (for a bargain, but still some unanticipated expense). So this has been our kitchen the past two weeks- functional, but a little dangerous looking and certainly not pretty :-)

tile cabs all out

Needless to say, the kitchen has become mostly off-limits for little feet and hands… “Dad, what are you doing behind the fridge?”

gate O

But now we have our new wiring and are ready to attack the final wall preparations (moving microwave vent up in wall to allow better clearance above stove, put in receptacle for new dedicated microwave circuit, put in outlet/junction box for under cabinet lighting switch). That’s where we are now… and making lots of lists and measurements for getting the wall planking (oops, just spilled the beans a little on that!) and countertops cut and installed next!
math

There may be some late nights and longs days without sink and plumbing ahead soon, so please help keep us motivated! Also, let me use this platform to thank everyone for the birthday gifts and wishes these past couples weeks!


List update:

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops

Install new sink and faucet

Replace hood with over the range microwave

Sell current hood and microwave on CL

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls

Replace flooring



 

Budget Kitchen Remodel Plan & List

Time to share the plan forming up for the kitchen. I know it will take us some time to get it all done. But here’s the general plan and our to-do list at the bottom of the page. I look forward to crossing these things off over the next several weeks- hopefully mostly done with it before October?

Kitchen photo plan

The apron front sink from IKEA with new faucet butcher block counters will look like this, where they also retrofitted an existing sink cabinet to accommodate the apron front. With this choice we can get a bigger overall and deeper sink that will still fit the width of the existing sink cabinet and will have a great look also. I was torn about not having an undermount which I loved in Pittsburgh, but I know we’ll love this too.

Once the cabinets are down and that back wall is redone, we’ll add rustic open shelving, hoping for a look sort of along these lines…

And I’m leaning towards this light, similar to a Pottery Barn light, but from Overstock for a fraction of the price…

And here’s the to-do list!

Redo backwards plumbing to sink and dishwasher (currently reversed and feeds only cold water to dishwasher!)

Remove floating cabinet, repair dining room floor

Remove upper cabinets

Remove backsplash tile

Replace countertops

Install new sink and faucet

Replace hood with over the range microwave

Sell current hood and microwave on CL

Install backboard to backsplash wall to ceiling

Install open shelving

Install backboard on island, bar attachment?

New ceiling light

Install undercabinet light

Paint inside pantry, new door knob

Install hutch to dining wall, paint, move light switch

Paint remaining kitchen walls

Replace flooring

Budget Friendly Kitchen Remodel… a woman with a (new) plan

So this is happening at our house now:

step 1

Some back story… when we moved in last December, I had plans for a quick kitchen remodel on a 2-3K budget. People told me I was nuts. Kitchens cost 20K and up. Upon moving in, they got to me and I too agreed and thought “the cabinets have to go, they are too crummy and not worth the time to repaint” and the “layout doesn’t work,” everything needs to be redone to really make this kitchen right. So my mental budget for the kitchen grew and the plan brewed and brewed. Then we paid the tax bill (some unexpected quirks with my fellowship and maternity leave stuff, rental property, etc), then our Pittsburgh basement flooded and the central AC up there died… and I always toss around in my mind how a potential second child (no, no, this is not that) will clean us out with doubled daycare costs. So the big kitchen gut was seeming farther and farther away. (this is what your kitchen looks like when you skip dishes and paint instead)

chaos

 

Then, I learned about a new paint my mom used on a project I’m sure she’ll share soon- that is specifically designed to paint old wood furniture without sanding and priming. And I realized my desire for open shelving in the kitchen would largely eliminate several cabinets and having to paint them anyway. SOLD. The kitchen plan was reborn (again!). This time, I’m diving right in before I change my mind :-) To satisfy my need to NOT spend money on something I eventually would really rather tear out, etc, the budget is quite small. I’m calling this a 1K remodel (while allowing for 2K when all is said and done- I know how these things go!). I will organize the plan more and share that, but for now, here’s what our base cabinets will look like. Recognize the hardware? I’m going to use the pulls I put in our rental a couple years ago, but removed before moving out. So, that’s $0.

finished drawer

The amazing paint I’m working with is a bit spendy for paint but has great coverage, so one quart will get the base cabinets done easily for about $30. More to come, but just wanted to kick things off to share the chaos I’m starting in the kitchen, and involve you all to keep me accountable to getting this project done quickly and affordably!