Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Kitchen Progress v2.0

Have you been watching my to-do list slowly get crossed off? Okay, don't lie... you probably haven't, but I have! Here's an update from the last update post:

Some things still aren't finished, but low funds and time are mainly to blame for that. We still have to buy all the trim (window/door/baseboard/chair rail), more shelves and figure out the back splash. And I have a lot of painting to do - cupboards, lower walls, and the trim once it's installed. Thankfully it's all going to be with the same paint. Now that Easter is over I can slowly plug away at those things when I have little windows of time between taking care of the kidlets and maintaining the rest of the house.
(Sorry, these pictures were taken before the sun was completely up this morning)

Facing Southwest. I need to buy 1 or 2 more shelves for above the microwave for my non-food plants.
South. UHG, lack of black spash brings everything down.
East. Still need to spray the two other lights black.
North. Any ideas about that frame (on the floor to the right)? It would make a really cute chalkboard, but I clearly already have one... It's big - about 12"x24".

The pantry! (This picture was taken a week or so ago, before we did the floors) Putting most of the food in this closet has really freed up some cupboard space, it's unbelievable! Also, before I put the shelves in, I painted the whole inside of the closet aqua (the same paint from Ella's bedroom). CUTE! I'm going to add a few more shelves that only come halfway into the bottom, so I can still get the vacuum in and out.

NEW COUNTER TOPS! (And the handles/knobs I have yet to install)
I still need to purchase a second shelf (and proper hooks for this one). The back splash will come up to the bottom of the cabinets to the left and straight across. Get a load of that green gingham wallpaper eh? They certainly weren't shy on the glue when putting that paneling up!
 I sprayed this light black, it was originally a brown/rust colour - not bad for $5 at Habitat for Humanity! I need to find some of those decorative "candle" tubes to hide the hardware, and I think some shades to help point the light downwards. I don't think I'll add crystals.
I painted this shelf white, it was originally orange-ish wood, left behind by the previous owners of the house.
A work in progress, I think the white frame at the top needs something in it. (It's hard to see, but the chalkboard frames say Happy Easter)
So there ya have it! (so far) Quite a change from what it was before!
You may have noticed that the gap in the cupboards has moved, when we took the counter top off (it wasn't even screwed down) we realized that they were separate cubes and we were able to completely rearrange them! So we swapped the two end ones, one is 24" the other is 30" wide, so by putting the 30" wide one near the stove, I can actually get my pots and pans in and out of the cupboard! We also switched the drawers and the stove in their places, which allowed the drawers to be more centrally located and close to the dishwasher and main preparation area. Now that the gap (which I will eventually build a cart to go inside of) is out of your direct view, the cupboards look much more streamline and flow so much nicer. I also went through and purged a lot of things in the cupboards that I never use, which provided a lot more room for the things I do use.

I'm extremely happy with the progress and how everything looks so far. Lorne and I have put a lot of work into this house, and I can finally love almost every room now. I think once all the last parts are in, the kitchen will be my favourite rooms.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kitchen Progress

Just a little update here while I procrastinate to not paint the ceiling...

So far I have painted the upper walls yellow, it's actually called "Flax seed" by CIL Paints. It's important to make sure you use the appropriate paints in your home, and try to use low VOC paints. In this case, I used Kitchen, Bath & Laundry Room paint which is mildew resistant, durable (to scrub food off your walls) and has a satin finish.
I couldn't decide if I should replace the trim or not, it was in ok condition and it would obviously save money to just paint it instead of buying all new stuff. But when it came down to it, the work I'm doing will look nicer when rough edge are hidden by new trim and it would be the only room in the house still left with flat boring old trim. So after carefully masking off the trim to paint, I ended up ripping it all down anyways. Every surface we've revealed in this house has this coat of green paint, it's so weird!
I also just finished installing all of the wallpaper on the bottom of the walls. It's a paintable textured damask-embossed wallpaper by Debbie Travis, with a soft foamy feel to the raised detail. It's supposed to mask bad textured walls, cracks, and bumps. I'm hoping that because it's cushiony it will be durable against the kids, chairs and other things hitting the walls. And because it's paintable I can use a white version of the scrubable kitchen paint I used above to be able to wash it as necessary. If you're interested in this wallpaper but don't like the design, it also comes in bead board, diamond steel, polka dots, speckled, grass cloth, and tin ceiling type textured patterns made by Debbie Travis or Wall Doctor, and can be found at Canadian Tire and other home improvement stores like Home Depot and Rona. You don't have to use it just for walls either, try it on ceilings, dressers, backs of bookcases or even cupboard doors! Check out this post that uses the same wallpaper.

At first I was scared that the yellow was too strong and dark, but I think the orange floors are throwing me off. Once they're a more neutral colour (see the posts on my laundry room) it wont look so much like a box of crayons.
While it's wet, it looks a little beige so the design is more noticeable, but once it dries it's a solid white, and I will paint it white as well.
This section has dried, but is not painted. There is a chair rail going in between the two halves of the walls.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Kitchen To-Do List

There's going to be a lot of work (hopefully) done in a very short amount of time in the kitchen. I've pretty much mapped it out what order everything needs to get done in, but I may or may not actually follow that (it's like a rule - meant to be broken).
Again, this is more for my personal reference, but it could give you an idea of how much work will be done.

Entire project to-do list:

  • Empty room
  • Prepare for paint (scrub walls, caulk cracks, remove switch covers, tape off trim)
  • Paint upper half of walls yellow (x2 coats) 
  • Remove light fixtures
  • Spray 3 lights black (2/3)
  • Paint ceiling white (x1 coat)
  • Re-install light fixtures (in different places)
  • Remove all trim
  • Hang & paint textured wallpaper on lower half of walls
  • Change light switches & outlets
  • Remove old flooring, clean underneath, build up threshold to laundry room
  • Install new flooring (1/2 way)
  • Paint, build & fill pantry
  • Disconnect sink
  • Remove old counter tops
  • Cut back old back splash to below counter height
  • Install remaining flooring under appliances
  • Rearrange cupboards, secure to wall
  • Cut & install new counter tops
  • Reconnect sink & dishwasher
  • Install new back splash
  • Install chair rail & all new trim
  • Install cabinet door organizers, drawer baskets
  • Fill holes in doors from knobs & handles
  • Paint cabinets & all trim white (x1 coat)
  • Install new handles & knobs
  • Hang shelves/racks/hooks etc
  • Hang frames & other decorations
To Purchase/Construct:
  • Counter tops
  • Back splash
  • More shelves
  • New table & chairs set
(I've decided against putting a cart in the cupboard gap, I don't think it would do much more then just installing some open shelves would instead. Also, the walls are starting to feel cluttered so I'm opting out of curtains, at least for now.)

    Thursday, April 14, 2011

    Kitchen - Before!

    I have always hated my kitchen. They say "Kitchens and bathrooms sell houses" but neither of those encouraged us to buy this house - it was the yard. From the second I moved in and started to unpack I realized that there isn't nearly as much storage as you think, and the storage it does have is only partially functional. The layout (or lack thereof) is frustrating and tiring, constantly walking back and forth when cooking a meal. And once you get over how bright and sunny the room is, you quickly realize how poorly all the past renovations have been done (but this shouldn't be a surprise to someone who has revealed other poorly done renovations in the rest of the house).

    At one point I planned to completely rip everything out and put in all new cabinets and floors. I even went as far as mapping out the cupboards I would need on the Ikea Kitchen Planner and purchasing them as I found them in the as-is section (these eventually got used in my laundry room). We knew it was going to be a big job. Also (this might make me seem like a hoarder) it was a way for me to be able to use the apron-front farm sink and antique gas stove that I have stored in the garage that I love so much. But you really only notice how terrible the kitchen is once you're actually using it to cook so if we needed to sell without renovating it, it wasn't going to be a big deal. And now that we've decided to finish up the pending house renovations as quickly and inexpensively as possible, we're going to try to make the best of the original cupboards and layout.

    Anyway, I know you're just here for the pictures...
    This is the view from the backdoor and laundry room. The carpet to the right is the living room and the rest of the house, the door straight ahead is the bathroom (and yes it is extra short), when you walk forward and turn left you see the rest of the kitchen, and the silver rectangle on the floor is the trap door to the creepy cellar - the only form of basement we have in this house.
    This is the same are as the picture above, but from standing in the kitchen. That cabinet was originally in the laundry room and holds things that I still need to either get rid of, display or find a home for. It wont be staying there.
    Basically the same view - to show the whole trap door, how terribly orange the floor is and how badly I need a pantry.
    Still in that same little area - the "broom closet" soon to be "pantry" and the only closet in the entire house, obviously very well organized... You can see into the laundry room to the left, and trap door on the right.
    As we come into the kitchen (this is standing on the trap door) looking southwest. You can see how narrow the kitchen is, there's actually only 42" between the edge of the table and the front of the stove. And look - a sneak peek at the yellow paint I've chosen! I also hope that I get a new table and chair set for Easter... *hint hint*
    And coming around the corner, that window faces west. (I've removed the switch covers in preparation for painting.) The pipe behind Ella is from the hot water heater in the cellar below, nothing can be done about it.
    A great way to tell if something is painted with oil or latex paint is to try to remove it with liquid nail polish remover. If it comes off (like it did here) it's latex, if it stays put it's oil (and you will either have to use oil again or an oil-to-latex primer).
    The bottom half of the walls is paneling that is supposed to look like tile, it has been painted white but it's filthy and is scratching off to reveal all it's 1970's beige and yellow glory.
    There's this great (sarcasm) 12" wide gap in the bottom cupboards. We imagine that they removed a cupboard to install the dishwasher but the counter is lower then modern standards so instead of building it up they just stopped the old counter and put a "butcher block" (read "plywood") counter on top of the dishwasher. Right now all it's good for is storing a basket of potatoes.
    Here's a better look at most of the south wall.
    Looking east now, that's the plant shelf I put in when doing the laundry room last week.

    We also have this beautiful (sarcasm) gas meter in the kitchen. I love it (sarcasm) when the meter readers have to come in my kitchen with their muddy boots on to read my meter once a month. Because you know - another cabinet wouldn't be any better there.

    And to come full circle - the square wall to the left of the fridge with my to-do list is the "broom closet".
    A close-up of the counters. They have "gold" specks in them straight from the 50's... Unfortunately they've accumulated burns and stains since then too. This is as clean as it gets, it's supposed to be white.
    So there ya have it folks! The kitchen in all it's useless, outdated, unorganized, cramped glory!
    And now that I think about it, I only have 9 days to have this kitchen project done for Easter. To make it even better, I have plans for parts of 5 of those days. What am I thinking?!

    Tuesday, April 12, 2011

    Laundry Room is Done(ish) - After!

    My whole house could be considered "done-ish", which makes everything a mess. I'm such a procrastinator. It seems like as soon as an area is functional again I pile everything back in, make it a disaster to start the next project, and never actually put the finishing details on it. Our bedroom still doesn't have baseboard, after almost 4 years of it being done. Ella's room and the living room still need crown moulding, the living room needs even more window and door trim... (see a trend here?) But thankfully the laundry room has most of it's trim.... hahaha.

    Anyway, so the laundry room still needs a few things:
    - 2 pieces of trim on the plant window
    - 2 sets of hinges & install doors on cabinets above dryer
    - A transition strip for the back door
    - A horizontal piece of trim for under the step to the kitchen (once the kitchen floor is in)
    - 5 Baskets for the little shelf beside the freezer
    - The door & chair painted green
    - A small mirror on the wall with the clips & clock
    - A tray for Lorne's boots behind the door
    - Counter tops
    - The shoe cabinet exchanged

    So let's compare, shall we?

    And more specifically:
    More of those amazing green acrylic knobs (there are 5 in the room).
    Still loving the (now painted) bead board, trim and floors!
    The top of the window still needs trim and the gap in the bottom. Not all those pots are staying there.
    Martha found this chair for me at Goodwill for $8! Coincidentally, it's originally from Ikea, ha ha ha!
    It will be painted green (the same paint from Logan's room) and crackled & distressed.
    Unfortunately, the two drawers on the left of the shoe cabinet weren't drilled properly so they rub on the vertical divider in the middle. I'll have to exchange it at Ikea and hope the next one I bring home is drilled properly. Otherwise it works really well, and holds at least 8 pairs of shoes! (FYI - It has now been exchanged and the new one is perfect!)
    The baskets on top of the shelf hold things like sunglasses, travel size things of kleenex & lotion, gloves, hats etc.
    Since this was posted, I got a tray for Lorne's boots and hooks to hang the ironing board (in the same spot). But I have yet to paint the outside door green.
    I found these giant clothes pins at Micheal's for $2 & $5 and sprayed them aqua (from the kitchen) and olive.
    Love this little messaging center!
    The jars have since been painted 2 different shades of green and I've added chalkboard labels,
    they hold change and papers I find in Lorne's pockets when I wash laundry.

    I got this rug in the as-is section of Ikea for $30 instead of the original $50, it's the perfect colours!
    The can on the left is an umbrella stand, but our umbrella's are still in storage...

    And a break down of the budget:
    Flooring (on sale) - $70
    Beadboard Panels - $280
    Trim (approximate) - $200 (plus 4 tubes of caulk)
    Paint & stain - $37
    Cabinets (including door fronts, legs and knobs) - $237
    Shoe Cabinet - $150
    Decorative (rug, light, clock, vases etc) - $130
    Plant& Pots - $33

    I'd say I saved at least $150 by buying things like the cabinets and decorative items from the as-is section of Ikea, and I saved $70 by buying the flooring when it was on sale (which actually sparked this renovation)!

    Edited April 14th to add:
    Yesterday I went to Ikea (yet again) to purchase the counter tops, horizontal hinges, pantry shelves and a few small things. Ella wanted to go to Smaland, so I dropped her off and headed directly to the kitchen department upstairs. I was surprisingly unfazed when the kitchen specialist told me that I shouldn't have bought the horizontal cabinets from the as-is section without the hinges because they don't sell the hinges separately and now I would have to go somewhere else that sold cabinets (like Home Depot) but they would probably end up being more expensive then just buying an entirely new cabinet (or in my case - 2 cabinets) from Ikea just to get the hinges. So I got the form I needed for the counter tops and went on my way. I got through to the point where I was waiting for them to bring out the counter top to me, but had to wait at least 20 minutes just for them to tell me that although I've already paid for it, they don't have it in stock... So I had to go to the Returns & Exchanges counter (AGAIN!) to get my money back and will probably have to wait 2-3 weeks for that counter (IF I decide I even want it now). While the same guy that returned my money for the shoe cabinet a mere hour ago was returning my money for the oversold counter tops, I asked him about the horizontal hinges. He confirmed that they did not sell them seperately, but he could order them for me and they would take at least 2-3 weeks. While we waited for the counter exchange to be verified, he told me to wait there while he checked something...
    There must have been a glow of sunshine around him and angels singing or something, because he came back with a pair of brand new gas-powered horizontal hinges JUST FOR ME! And he said I could "just take them"! I couldn't thank him enough, I was so shocked! I went from assuming I'd have to give up on the cabinets having doors or pay another $180, to scoring 2 sets of FREE hinges out of the kindness of this guy's heart!
    Ikea, you're lucky some of your employees are amazing.

    Wednesday, April 6, 2011

    Laundry Room Sneek Peek!

    ...because honestly it's STILL not done! :-/ It's mainly my fault because I choose to do other things instead of work on it, like feed my children, sleep, write blogs etc...

    I absolutely love the beadboard and the floors!
    yet to be painted...
    My plants have never been happier with all this sunshine!
    Sweet Basil sprouts!
    My little Gnomey friend.
    And the pièce de résistance (so far):
    Green acrylic cabinet knobs

    Friday, April 1, 2011

    Laundry Room Checklist

    Again with the lists, I love 'em! This is more for my personal reference, but it can give you an idea of how much work still needs to be done...

    Entire project to-do list:
    • Empty out room, store in kitchen
    • Remove trim, siding & linoleum
    • Move necessary wiring
    • Build up any areas that need extra support or depth
    • Purchase, measure, cut & install bead board panels
    • Roll out foam underlay, staple, tape
    • Purchase, measure, cut & install new laminate flooring
    • Purchase, cut, stain & install plant shelves
    • Assess floor plan & cabinets (organize craft drawers)
    • Purchase, cut & install baseboards, door & window moulding, 1/4 round
    • Sink nail heads & caulk all seams
    • Paint all surfaces
    • Purchase & install new ceiling light fixture
    • Install machines, pipes & vents permanently
    • Stain & hang big coat rack permanently
    • Purchase & install shoe storage
    • Build, install & fill cabinets, add doors & knobs
    • Purchase, cut, stain(?) & install counter tops
    • Find & paint chair
    • Spray accessories as necessary
    • Decorate (baskets, clock, hooks, rails etc)
    To purchase:
    • Trip to Ikea for shoe storage, cabinet doors, shelves & hinges & counter top
    • Baskets for 12" shelves near door
    • An old beat up solid wood chair to paint green (to replace white bench)
    • Mirror near outside door
    • Hooks to hang the ironing board
    To Make: 
    • More labels (once everything is put away)