Beadboard in the Kitchen

Our kitchen has come a long, long way from where we started. (Hoorah!!) But there still are a few spots where it iss… showing it’s age, shall we say? A few gray hairs.

The wall where the sideboard is (where the refrigerator originally went – can you believe it?) was a disaster when we were taking down the wallpaper. There were big strips of glue remnants from who-knows-what, in addition to cracks, lumps and gouges. I would love to know what was there once upon a time!

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Doors, Handles, Knobs and Toes. (Knobs and Toes.): How to Install Cabinet Door Knobs

I lasted posted about my kitchen a week before Christmas and set our goal to be D-O-N-E with the kitchen by the end of January. So far we are on track and are about half-way through our remaining list of to-do items!

We installed the rest of our cabinet doors with the exception of the two underneath the sink. We still need to replace some piece of wood before can finish that up.

Along with new cabinet doors we also purchased new facings for our drawers. Those have been installed along with the handles.

I like that our handles are hefty and slightly retro. They feel nice and sturdy. We will be using these vertically as pantry door handles (when we get there). We got them from Lowe’s.

Then we installed the knobs on our cabinet doors.

First we decided where on the door we wanted the knob to be – low, middle or high on the shaker border. We chose the middle (and I reaffirmed my choice after consulting my Kitchen Pinterest board and liking this one best).

We ordered these amazing little templates off Amazon (here) to avoid unfortunate mathematical error when it came to drilling our cabinet doors and drawers. I won’t lie. Regardless, I had to go in the other room when me started drilling the first one.

We marked the hole with a pencil and pre-drilled the door with a bit similarly sized to the screw that came with the knob for a snug fit.

Then we inserted the screw by hand and added the knob in front.

And we have ALMOST all our cabinets DONE!!! I can’t believe it! I love it.

Buying new cabinet doors instead of ripping everything out was a huge time-saver and our kitchen looks brand new.

Can you believe it used to look like this?

Other news in kitchen-land:

We (*ahem* Moose) rewired all our outlets and lightswitches in the kitchen so they are all crisp and clean.

We (*me!) finally found and ordered a ceiling light for over the island. It should be here in a week or so.

Moose also installed our over-the-sink track lighting. Let there be light! I can finally see what I am cooking.

We bought it on sale at Lowe’s back in the summer.

Hold up, did I say “over the island” a few sentences ago? YES I DID!

We also recently purchased a raw wood island from The Mill Store.

(Yep… I’m really going to miss staring at my trash can and having kitchen cabinets all over the floor… I just don’t know what I’ll do with myself when it’s over. Maybe you’ll find me eating spaghetti off the floor.)

The island has yet to be painted and stained, but this is the general idea – except white legs, no casters and we remove our shelves to store the stools underneath:


Once we choose a stain for the top of the island we will also stain the top of the sideboard (which has been covered up by plastic placemats for the last 6 months).

What do we have left?

– Install new sink task light
– Find, purchase and install ceiling light
– Put in new wood pieces under the sink
– Finish installing drawer panels
– Finish installing cabinet doors (except for 2 more)
– Add cabinet door hardware and pantry door handles
– Stain top of sideboard
– Add quarter-round under granite
– Toe-kick
– Install hardware to attach dishwasher to the granite
– Repair and paint molding on doorframe
– Find and purchase and paint/stain kitchen island and stools
– Finish re-wiring the outlets and put switch plate covers on
– Finally take off the protective film on the dishwasher! After 8 months!

Sadly, we’re already starting our phase II kitchen list. But that can wait. Woot!

Kitchen Progress: More Demo and New Countertop!

When we moved we vowed that our kitchen and our bedroom would be our priority projects of the house. Within 12 weeks, we said. Within 3 months we would overhaul our kitchen and do our bedroom. We would then move on to the rest of the house in a manner of sanity and comfortability. “They will be done by July!!!!” we declared from the rooftops.

Yeah… about that… It’s December. Late December.

Our bedroom is mostly done. You last saw it here when it was in it’s drab de-wallpapered state and I was crying. Not crying, but certainly hyperventilating. And I’ve neglected to share our progress in that room, shame on me. So many fascinating things to publicly muse over, so little time. I will get to that soon.

This is what my countertop and sink have looked like since we’ve moved in. The backsplash was completely rotted and needed to be removed right away. This was due to the fact that our sink leaks… incessantly. We have kept a rag behind the faucet for the last 8 months to prevent it from ruining the wall further.

Although the countertop doesn’t look too terrible in this picture. It was super grody. As was the sink. Old, stained and yuck. Oh yes, and the disposal was really wonky too. The whole sink situation was not good.

After browsing Home Depot and Lowe’s countertops, we got an estimate from a small local countertop company through a  recommendation.

We opted to go for granite because of it’s durability and strength. Also it’s popularity for resale value. Although it can be more expensive than some options, we have so little countertop that it was was a good option for us.

After we chose our slab, sink and faucet and had our countertop templated, we needed to demo! Well, really my husband needed to demo. I think I was writing Christmas cards and cheering while watching some holiday-related movie.

And we also needed to remove some molding since the countertop goes right into the doorframe.

While I had the chance, I painted the inside cabinet under the sink! Before the disposal was huge and I couldn’t get around it with a paintbrush.

And…. drumroll *tada*

In regards to the granite, we got a great deal. For the countertop plus the sink plus installation we paid $47/sq foot. We chose to get the pencil edged finish because it’s supposed to be more durable and less prone to chipping. Plus we like the modern edge it gives to the counter. (AND it was one of the options that didn’t cost extra moolah.)

For the sink we chose a large stainless steel undermount sink. We opted for the one-big-cavernous sink, as opposed to the 50/50 or 70/30 divided sink because I find it annoying when I can’t fit large objects in the sink to clean (like our cast iron skillet or cookie sheets). Also, I don’t use our sink to dry anything, which some people do. The sink was “free”, as it was included in the cost of the countertop.

We also saved a lot of money by finding our faucet on the clearance rack for 75% off the SALE price plus another 10% off. Essentially we got a $200 faucet for $40. (that’s equivalent to 3 sq. feet of countertop we saved!)

We also purchased a new, functioning(!) and quiet(!) disposal. You’d have to ask Moose about that though. All I know is that it doesn’t get clogged and fill the sink up with water.

It definitely helped a LOT with giving the kitchen a major refresh. The old countertop and sink looked very dingy and old and aged the kitchen.

Our kitchen progress is coming to a close!

I’m now setting a realistic goal for our kitchen to be completed by the end of January 2012!

Here is what we HAVE (!!!) done:

– Strip wallpaper off the walls
– Scrape, spackle and paint walls, trim, ceiling
– Remove all hardware and patch holes with wood filler
– Caulk, prime and paint inside of all cabinets and drawers
– Paint cabinet bases
– Caulk, prime and paint cabinet doors… and subsequently scrap
– Remove old broken dishwasher
– Install new dishwasher
– Remove ceiling fan and broken sink task light
– Install new windows
– Remove rotted backsplash
– Tear apart pantry and re-build (I’ve yet to share this project.)
– Remove old blinds and add curtains
– Remove countertop, sink, faucet, disposal
– Have new countertop, sink, faucet and disposal installed
– Install drawer hardware
– Find, purchase and paint sideboard
– Tear down wall for recessed fridge
– Build new molding for recessed fridge
– Build encasing walls for recessed fridge
– Purchase cabinet hardware
– Move power outlet and kitchen light switch due to recessed fridge
– Install new fridge and water line
– Paint radiator

Even though we’re way past our deadline, I think we’re hardly guilty of not doing work in the kitchen.

What do we have left?

– Install new sink task light
– Find, purchase and install ceiling light
– Put in new wood pieces under the sink
– Finish installing drawer panels
– Finish installing cabinet doors
– Add cabinet door hardware and pantry door handles
– Stain top of sideboard
– Add quarter-round under granite
– Toe-kick
– Install hardware to attach dishwasher to the granite
– Repair and paint molding on doorframe
– Find and purchase kitchen island and stools
– Finish re-wiring the outlets and put switch plate covers on
– Finally take off the projective film on the dishwasher! After 8 months!

The end is in sight!

TGIF! Can you believe it’s 9 days until Christmas!?

A Kitchen Cabinet Teaser

Houston, the cabinets have landed.

Here’s a peek!

We still need to adjust them and put the hardware on.

I couldn’t be more excited! These are a million times better than anything we could have refinished ourselves.

And no more looking at all the junk in our pantry!

And we got our countertop templated. We are picking out our slab of granite this week and we will get our new sink, faucet and countertop next week!

I’d tell you more, but boy oh boy do we have work to do!!

The Kitchen Call of Paul Revere

“The cabinets are coming! The cabinets are coming!”

– The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere

Errrr, it went something like that, right?

Shortly after I shared that we were ditching our cabinet refinishing project, we opted to order new cabinet doors instead. They will be here soon and I couldn’t be more excited! Having lived with zero cabinets doors for six months, I can’t wait!

A brief note on open shelving:

Kitchens with open shelving are extremely popular right now. Having lived with 100% open shelving since May, I debated the concept for the first month or so and determined it just wasn’t for me. While it makes putting away dishes very easy, I just couldn’t handle seeing EVERYTHING all the time. Photos of kitchens with open shelving look very cute, but usually the shelves are staged to look nice. They don’t show the reality of the amount of dishes that we have (granted, we’re entertainers at heart, so we have quite a bit). And, I never had any problem with dust or residue.

We will be installing white Shaker doors with stainless steel knobs. The two doors flanking the sink will have a glass inset panel.

Similar to this:


WOOOO HOOOO!!! The end is in sight!

We’re also about to order our countertop and sink. We’re going with a white/gray/blue granite with flecks of black.

This is our color palette:

For the sink we are going with a large rectangular stainless steel undermount.

We purchased our faucet a few weeks ago off the (*drumroll*) Lowe’s clearance rack!! I believe we got about 75% off the original price!

The sink and faucet will look similar to this:


I’ve started looking at backsplash options, but I don’t want to get too ahead of myself (per usual).

We’ve also started looking at kitchen islands. We’re looking for a butcherblock top and something I can slide 2 stools under. When we get it we will also stain the top of our existing sideboard to they match.

I’d love to find something like this one:


We have found one option that might work, but I’m not sold. We’re obviously looking to find something for as cost-effective as possible.

We still need to find light fixtures too, but I am hoping everything will be wrapped up by Christmas!

The cabinets are coming! The cabinets are coming! The cabinets are…


Have you lived through a kitchen reno? Did it make you crazy too?

Island Inspiration

Our kitchen renovation is continuing to progress slow and steadily. Emphasis on the slow.

While we aren’t making much visual headway, we actually have made quite a bit of planning progress.

We purchased our faucet last weekend (woot woot to the Lowe’s clearance rack!). I also went through our cabinets and windows with a tube of paintable caulk to fill in a few more cracks and leftover holes from my initial pass through.

We’ve also picked out a sink and (I think) our countertop. We’re going with a gray granite. And, those of you whom I am Pinterest buddies with will notice, I’ve been starting to look at backsplash tile as well. Because, you know, it’s not like I ever get ahead of myself or anything.

We’ve also got a lot of small projects like lighting, replacing the outlets, radiator painting and disposal replacing to do.

We’ve been looking at kitchen lights for months. You’d be surprised how little you can live with. I have one lonely, naked lightbulb in the middle of my kitchen ceiling for cooking dinner. Suffice it to say, we’re not purchase-this-for-the-interim kind of people.

On to bigger kitchen news, I think we’re killing our cabinet project. As in, we’re looking at getting new cabinet doors but keeping the cabinet bases.

When push comes to shove, when we sell this house (funny how all the decisions you make about your home have so much to deal with selling it), we will have made a much better investment in purchasing new cabinet doors. While we did put a lot of sweat equity into refurbishing the old cabinet doors, we didn’t make much of a financial investment besides wood filler, primer and paint. Also, since our house is in the potential lead paint era, we’d rather be on the safe side.

*Phew* I know how to ramble, don’t I? All this to say, that blue tape square you see on the floor is where we want to put a potential island.

I have a few things I’m looking for:

1. A nice drawer. Thanks to our custom 1950s cabinetry, we don’t have any drawers wide enough to fit a silverware organizer.

2. Seating. Since we opted NOT to make this an eat-in kitchen, I’d like to have a stool or two to sit on while I’m hanging out in the kitchen.

3. An open bottom. I think. Since we have a smaller kitchen, I’d like to maintain the visual flow of the room without creating a blockade in the center of the room.

Some inspiration images I’ve been pondering:


I love the combination of the homey, warm wood tones with the white cabinets. Although I think I’d want a straight, chunkier leg so it looked less like an end table.


Repurposing an old piece of furniture could be fun too! We could order extra granite if we wanted the countertops to match.


The white with white is also quite clean and pretty.


But, as much as I love the clean white look, I can’t seem to escape my love for color!

So many things to ponder, so little time.

I had Moose bring up a huge cardboard box (that contains a someday-to-be-installed bathroom vanity) to get used to the idea of an island in the middle of our kitchen before we commit. I love it so far!

Speaking of islands… on this cold, dreary and rainy day I’m thinking of other islands. Particularly a little place called Jamaica.

And wishing I was there! Is it time for honeymoon #2 yet?