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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Kitchen Evolution

I love some good before and after photos. I just hate the "during" part. That's why I don't really watch those home improvement shows on HGTV. But if I happen to catch the end of "Fixer Upper" or "Property Brothers" or even "Flip or Flop" (which is hard to watch now knowing that those two aren't going to make it), I consider it a victory. Then I ONLY have to see the before and after shots. Watching them do all that work just makes me feel tired and inadequate.

Well, I have some before and after shots to share with you! We have lived in five houses since we got married fourteen years ago. (I'm including the rented duplex we lived in that had a kitchen from the 70s. It had so much potential! But alas, we didn't own it. Nor did we have any money or time to renovate it.) I have LIKED all of our kitchens. But none of them were my dream kitchen. And even though my actual dream kitchen is farmhouse style, and this is not, I do think it is pretty dreamy.

I always thought this one had a lot of potential too. Here it is when it was listed.



I loved the layout of the kitchen but I hated the cabinets. They looked like they were from Ikea! The counters were functional but they were corian. The stove was black and electric.

So to improve it a little bit (well, a lot!), we had the cabinets painted white and the island painted grey. The cabinet guys put extra pieces on the particle board areas so it looked less Ikea-chic.

Island painted grey (Thanks, Popsy!) 

Cabinets painted white

But still, I yearned for new countertops. This year I finally convinced Frank to do it. What happened next is a classic case of "scope creep" as we used to say in the advertising biz. Feel free to say "ca-ching" to yourself after each line item.

--Went to get new countertops, learned there would be a gap between new counters and backsplash so had to also get a new backsplash.

--Chose white counters then realized a black cooktop wouldn't look great with that but they don't make stainless steel electric cooktops. Had to have gas guys come out and run a line from basement to kitchen (luckily did not have to cut through sheet rock) so we could have a gas cooktop. Purchased new gas cooktop from Sears.

--When deciding what surface to put on the island (went with soapstone which I love), a friend suggested extending the island to accommodate bar stools. We thought, if not now, when? Paid more to extend island and add supports. Oh, and had to purchase these bar stools she spoke of (which I adore!!)

--When you get new countertops, apparently you have to get a new sink. Chose to change divided sink to single sink. Plumber came out to replumb the sink for one drain instead of two. He also connected the gas stove. He talked me into a new garbage disposal and...wait for it...a new WATER HEATER!!!  (You're remembering to say "ca-ching," right? Cause this part really deserves it).

--And by pure coincidence, our dishwasher died during this process. Apparently it had been recalled since 2009. So we got a new one at 40% off for our trouble. But still, ca-ching!

So today the backsplash guys finished grouting and my kitchen is DONE!!! Well, now we think we might need to repaint the green walls to a soft blue or gray but will wait until Popsy comes in town for that. Until then, I will just LOVE my kitchen, which I present to you now. (Or did you already peek? If so, I can't blame you!)

After! Soapstone Island 
After! (Oh, new table added 2016) 
How 'bout those bar stools?! 

New backsplash! 

New Stove! 

New garbage disposal and water heater not pictured. Will send pictures by request ;)