I mentioned a while ago that we were redoing the kitchen. Giving it a “face lift” is probably a more accurate way to describe it. It was fully functional when we moved in but we wanted to spruce it up a bit. It’s not completely finished but I’ll show you the progress so far. I apologize in advance for the graininess of some of the pictures. We’ve had beautiful sunshine for days. Until today when I needed to take pictures. Keep in mind that this is a very budget conscious face lift. We aren’t able to spend 30,000+ on a total kitchen overhaul and we aren’t willing to go into debt for it. We live rather modestly by American standards but compared to most of the world in general, we live very well indeed. We are very much aware of it and truly grateful for the blessings that we have. So here’s what the kitchen looked like the day we moved in:
The shelf and cabinet to the right were not there originally but we put them there temporarily because we desperately needed food storage space.
Yes there was a ceiling fan in the kitchen. Yes it was covered in grease. That was one of the first things to go. That and the “interesting looking” chandelier in the foreground over the dining room table which I sold on Craig’s List. Buh Bye.
First step was adding the island (a clearance item at local store) and installing a new light over the sink and in place of the aforementioned ceiling fan. Much better.
Ah but those plain European style cabinets were the exact same ones we had in the city house for 10 years. I wanted a change. Fortunately my second oldest son, Kyle, is a cabinet maker so the plan was for him to make new cabinet doors. That is until my brother in law, who is also a cabinet maker, decided he was going to do it. In the end though he wasn’t able to completely finish the job so Kyle took over. It’s not quite done as we’re still waiting on a few things, but I’ll get to that in a moment.
Still, here are the “after” pictures:
Side by side:
Not the exact same angle but pretty close. We are VERY pleased with it!
This open shelf unit that Kyle made is exactly what I wanted. Simple and clean lines. I found the brackets online many months ago and were saving them for when this was done. The original plan was to paint the shelves white but when I saw them I decided I liked the natural wood better so I stuck with that and we just treated them with linseed oil. I really like this piece. The ease of plates and bowls being at our fingertips and the ability to display some of my pretty glass ware and china is very nice.
I also really like the pull out trash can and the sink drawer fronts for storing sponges and brushes. You might notice there’s no dishwasher. We are fine with that and opted not to have one installed. You might notice too that we have a rather small refrigerator. That’s by choice too as we have found too much space means too many things get forgotten about and go bad. We like to eat fresh as much as possible so we try and not store too much. That being said we do have a small apt. sized fridge in the downstairs laundry/second kitchen for storing milk as I buy 4 gallons at a time from an Amish farm. We also have a small deep freezer there too.
So what still needs done? The backsplash on the wall unit still needs to be added and the hole where we removed the old phone jack needs spackled and painted.
Did you notice that not all of the doors close completely? We’re waiting on the hardware to arrive.
I love the new faucet but I am still undecided about the sink and counter tops. We’ve kept the old stainless sink for now but plan to replace it with a cast iron sink down the road. But we can’t change the sink until we’re sure about the countertops. The original idea was butcher block but frankly I think the black formica looks just fine and a change isn’t in the budget at the moment anyway.
So now I am thinking about all that white space above the counter tops. A pretty and colorful tile back-splash seems like it would be a perfect fit but I am still deciding. Whatever I* decide to do though it has to be DIY -able and cost conscious. Suggestions welcome.
Speaking of suggestions I would love some for this ceiling. It feels like it needs …something. Color, design? Suggestions? Tearing it out is not an option. There’s duct work under there and that’s way more DIY than I have the time or energy for.
Did you see those black and white canisters on the counter by the stove? Don’t they just match perfectly? Yeah I hate them. I got them on clearance online back in August and they’ve been sitting in a box downstairs until this afternoon. They are very functional and I like them for that but the design is just not doing it for me. It’s a little –two headed dragon tree– ish for me. I think I am going to just de-glaze them and re-paint them all white. The design will still be there because it’s raised but it’ll blend in. I’ll probably leave the knobs on top black and who knows, maybe I will get inspired and add some color. Either way, they have to go. [Edited to add: I fixed them! Scroll down in the comments to see my simple solution.]
Then there’s the floor. There’s nothing wrong with it. I don’t hate it though I don’t love it either. It’s stick down tiles but they are all in good condition so for now it stays. Frankly I haven’t seen anything yet that strikes me as the perfect floor so I am open to suggestions there too.
So there it is. The kitchen face lift so far.
Tell me what you think. I look forward to hearing your suggestions!
*I say “I” because my wonderful husband pretty much just goes along with whatever I want. It doesn’t really matter to him what it looks like he just likes me to be happy.