Well our kitchen updates are finally complete. It was officially the longest remodel ever but that is okay.
It was worth the wait. You can see many of the befores and years and years of during in this post.
I have to say the undermount sink was a game changer for me..silly but true. It’s not a farm sink but its HUGE and one opening and undermount, I already said that right?!..the little things y’all. And you can read about the fun of painting the cabinets here. And you can see some of the original color scheme (or the 1970s layer)
Some things haven’t changed over the last 12 years. We have the same black and white color scheme and same cabinets, nothing has ever been gutted but we’ve been through yellow walls and leopard print chicken prints and a stove that was older than us! Not to mention that flurouscent light I put up with for years. You can see mid way here.
The counters weren’t awful, they were 12 x 12″ granite tiles. I was just really over the cookies and cream granite pattern and the GROUT LINES, the blasted grout lines and sink. And that small backsplash..yuk. I underestimated the power of a nicer bridge faucet..high necks are wonderful regardless of price point but if you can’t splurge on sink and faucet, just the faucet helps so much in my humble opinion. A farm sink would required major tear out and we just weren’t up to the mess or expense..you gotta know when to stop (cue my husband laughing).
So basically we started in 2010 with the opening of the wall between our kitchen and dining, that changed my life, literally. Then we painted over the yellow and slowly replaced appliances and the lights, removed cabinet doors and finally did counters and sink and backsplash. When we orignally moved in (ca. 2000) the room was avocado green with dark stained knotty pine and pink lamintate countertops. I started slapping white paint on things so fast we didn’t even get a very original before picture, just started painting and we’ve never looked back. I actually painted the counters until we could afford the granite tiles (photo above) we used for the first round of counters. It’s been quite the odyssey as my friend Camille likes to say.
Originally we used peel and stick tiles from Lowe’s to get our black and white look on the floors. We loved it so much I knew I wanted to go back with another black and white tile but I didn’t want to do marble since I was doing marble counters and our house is on pier and beam so I didn’t really want to use ceramic tile. I ended up using VCT. I really like the finish and I used a mop on wax I will do twice yearly, you don’t have to give it the industrial high sheen wax like in schools. My wax is satin but makes it easier to keep. So glad we made this change. The peel and stick tiles had become AWFUL!
The stairs and numbers were done a long time ago but I still like the look . . . and I am not over the chalk wall either, it’s messy sometimes but good for memory work and I love the seasoned look of the chalk and texture.
Thank you Lord for cabinets that go to ceiling (at least on one side)
And the IKEA stainless shelf that was hanging on the wood backsplash functioned so well re-installed it on the subway tiles. The 2 x 4 subway tiles are just from Lowes…so cheap and one of my favorite things we did!
I can’t wait to share what I have learned about marble and staining. Basically, it’s not an issue, there is some etching but no stains. And no grout lines and the light they give off in my older home is amazing. My previous counters weren’t awful or super dark but the change and freshness and brightness has surprised even me… It’s hard not to get giddy over the marble and the honed really lends it a casual feel.
Bottom line, things can take time but it’s worth it even it if you have a vision and can peck away at it slowly. I didn’t do everything, that would have been silly considering there are still other things we need to do that are more important. We didn’t gut anything, I didn’t get a farm sink or new fancy cabinet drawers but I did choose things I love …it’s a trade off and as many of you with older homes know, it’s never over. Thanks for letting me share;
Photos by Becki Griffin’s Curious Details
Becki and I had so much playing/styling and taking these photos, we call it “playing barbies! If you are a designer in Texas you really should consider her for portfolio photos, she is amazing to work with!
(Sources: Kohler faucet, Martha Stewart Sharkey Gray on walls, BM Black Jack on backdoor, Stair numbers by Leen the Graphics Queen, metal stool by Tolix, VCT tiles by Armstrong, Gilmore cup pull hardware by Restoration hardware and their Hanson knob in polished nickel, lighting by Rejuvenation, vintage sign from the Brown Shed, bucolic painting from Leftovers Antiques, vintage paintings from the Brown Shed, glass jars from Amazon, marble from American Countertop Fabricators in Houston, Texas, bamboo blinds from Selectblinds.com)