Alright you guys, we have a kitchen! Are you ready to check it out?
Well, first we’re gonna go back and reflect on what the kitchen used to look like.
Yes, lovely hunter green walls. And you see that little spot on the bottom shelf that’s empty right now? In between the microwave and stove? That was exactly how much counterspace we had. Which led to a lot of cursing anytime someone (I) was cooking.
Alright, so there’s a little more counterspace right there next to the Keurig, but even those travel mugs are looking a little cramped just sitting there. And that was also the extent of any cupboard/storage space in the kitchen. Not to mention while the outside of the cabinets were painted dark green, the inside was a peachy flesh color and the paint would constantly peel and chip so you would find fleshy spots on your dishes every now and then.
And while I appreciate retro-looking pieces and the idea of keeping original pieces in a home, at the end of the day I was not sad to see this sink go. It was old and the finish was wearing off so the sink would stain very easily and in just a few days time it would be from being clean to slimy and dingy. Not to mention, the hot water handle was broken when we moved in. We managed to find out a way to use it so we could have hot water (not sure how the previous owners were doing dishes and whatnot without it…) but it was a hassle. You had to wrench the handle every time you wanted to turn the water off and you’d usually have to spend a few minutes trying to get the faucet to stop dribbling out water.
The wall facing the backyard had this lovely drywall/spackle look going on. When we first moved in there was a different window here, in a slightly different spot. Knowing completely gutting the kitchen was on our list of projects someday, we moved the window while the house was being resided last summer. But then we never did anything to the wall because it seemed like a waste of time and effort to do it twice.
And then there was our fridge, just hanging out all by itself. You can also see the window to the right of the fridge. While it was nice and let in additional light, it was kind of in an awkward spot. It used to be a window to the outside, but once the sun room/screen porch was built it just led into that room.
And if you really want to reminisce, check out our previous kitchen renovation posts:
Prepare to be Floored
Just dropped in to see what condition our kitchen was in
Kitchen sneak peeks
So are you ready to see what it looks like now?!
Drum roll please…
It’s functional and new and white and we love it. There’s still a list of things we need to finish up, but we’re not sweatin’ that right now. We’re just enjoying the nice bright, clean, new kitchen that we get to call our own.
Here’s just another overall shot that lets you see a little more.
We know not everyone would think a white floor in a kitchen would be a good idea, and we do realize it’ll probably be more work to keep it clean, but we love the way it looks. Like we mentioned before, we knew trying to put a wood floor in there would be difficult with wood countertops and already existing wood floors in the rest of the house. And I do love dark wood floors, but that also didn’t seem like an option with the lighter-colored countertops.
Ok, so let’s take a little kitchen tour. When you first walk straight into the kitchen you’re facing the fridge.
We added a cabinet above the fridge and a filler piece next to it to create a designated space for the fridge. No more just hanging out by itself. And we also realize the fridge looks a little small in that space, but our fridge is the one that came with the house and actually does run a little smaller than typical refrigerators. So knowing we would prefer stainless steel appliances (when we hit the lotto) we left the space a little larger to accommodate to more typical size fridge someday. And as you can see we took that window to the screen room out. I was a little hesitant to see it go at first, but with a completely white kitchen and plenty of lighting, we’re not really missing it. And the screen room itself has tons of windows so we weren’t hurting that room either.
Turn to your left a little and you can see some counterspace (yeah that’s right, counterspace!), some drawers and the dishwasher.
I cannot even tell you how excited we are to have a dishwasher! Not having one before, combined with the fact that there was really no counterspace to leave dirty dishes, we felt like we were doing dishes all the time. We’re already used to our new dish-washing-free lifestyle. And you see that hole in the ceiling? That’s a spot for a pendant light – as soon as we actually find one we like. For now, there’s plenty of light in the kitchen between the main light fixture and all the puck lights.
A little more to the left is the sink.
We went with a single-basin sink since we were getting the dishwasher anyway, and even though we have wayyyy more counterspace than before, our kitchen is still on the smaller side. There wasn’t really any reason to try and fit a larger, double-basin sink in here. The faucet is a Delta brand pull-down faucet from Lowe’s. We went with Delta because they were the only pull-down faucets we found that had a magnet that catches the head when you replace it. We definitely wanted a pull-down faucet, but we did not love the idea of it wearing out over time. We had heard of some problems with faucets like these not fully pulling back up/attaching, so we knew the magnet was a good investment.
Right next to the sink was originally a little gap in the layout. The way the Ikea cabinets measured out there was going to be a little space somewhere that we were going to have to fill. Luckily Matt was really clever with that Ikea kitchen planner and turned the space into a custom storage spot.
The small, narrow spot is perfect for our cutting boards, cookie sheets and other small pans. We didn’t have a place for these before, so it’s been awesome so far!
Just a little more to the left and you’ve hit the corner of the kitchen.
You can see the wine rack up top (notice it’s empty, we’re currently taking wine donations haha), along with a nice big corner cabinet, which has already become the catch-all, all-purpose cabinet. Below is another large corner cabinet. I didn’t take a picture but inside that bottom cabinet is actually a really large, 2-tier lazy susan.
On the back wall (remember this is where the sink used to be) we have the stove and microwave and a few more cabinets. We also hope to one day do a backsplash back here, but like I said we’re just happy to have a functional kitchen. We’re in no hurry to get back to work. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, yes these cabinets are all very tall. I can reach the bottom shelves of the upper cabinets and that’s about it. I’ll be investing in a step stool soon.
And I really should have taken a picture of it pulled out, but that lower cabinet on the left side there is a pull-out cabinet. That;s why the handle is horizontal instead of vertical.
The last major stop on our tour is the empty wall.
If you can picture it, this was the wall that the stove, shelves and microwave were on originally. These are actually upper wall cabinets that Matt decided to use as base cabinets. This way we would have some extra counterspace on this wall without completely losing walking space in the kitchen. The cabinets are also just deep enough that we can keep all our pots and pans in there, so win win. On the wall above these cabinets we’re thinking about adding open shelving someday.
And as you exit the tour you may notice our floor is a little unfinished.
But so close! The reason we’re sporting that gap in our floor is because when Matt and his brother were installing the floor they got to the last box and realized the boards were damaged. It seems like the box must have been dropped during delivery because most of the boards were chipped and therefore useless. The manufacturer is replacing the broken boards, but it’s taking longer than we’d like and we’ll probably have this gap in the floor for most of April.
But let’s not focus on that. Let’s just focus on this nice, new kitchen that we honestly still can’t believe is in our house.
We’re still settling in and getting used to all the space. At first we couldn’t figure out what cupboards to use for which items because there were so many choices. That’s also why the counters seem so bare. We just don’t know what to do with it yet, and frankly we’re liking having an immaculate, clean space. And just like any other room in a house, we know it will keep changing as we live in it and adapt it to our needs, but we think it’ a pretty amazing start!
We’d love to hear what you guys think! (And I’m sure Matt would love to hear some more compliments, considering he basically designed this kitchen from top to bottom.)