if you can't stand the heat...

I bring you the kitchen. For some reason, this was the room I wanted to paint the most when I bought this house. I'm not sure why. Maybe because it always ends up being the heart of a home. Maybe because it was old-sock grey and had so much potential. I mean, really, why not make those built-ins pop? It was also the dirtiest room in the place. It took days and several people to make it livable. And it holds my first major appliance. The fridge.

When you walk in the front door of the house, you come into the living room. If you keep walking forward, you get to the dining room. (Those rooms will come later.) Turn right off the dining room gets you in the kitchen. Look left=kitchen; look right=breakfast area. Here's how the place looked shortly after I moved in. Seriously, it was fairly soon after. I can't stand things lingering in boxes and I hate bare walls.

This picture is the left side of the kitchen half of the room. (Love the wine storage, plate racks, and freakishly large amount of drawers.) The next one is the right side. (How about that fridge? Actually, the stove I inherited rocks. The guy who lived here before was a professional chef, which explains the fantastic, high-end, 5-burner gas stove.) Then you get a shot of the window above my sink. (Love that.) In the cabinet to the right of the sink I now have the coolest spice rack ever. I'll have to post pics of that later. Seriously, you'll be impressed.

I have no pictures of the hideous hardware that was originally on the cabinets. They were nickel and various shades of white and off-white. None really matched and they made the cabinets look worse. Let me just say here that every inch of the place needed painting when I moved in. Most still does. Everything that's white was painted with oil-based paint and has since yellowed. Yet another reason to paint the kitchen walls. The new paint really helps hide the yellowing. And while I've gone off and started writing about paint, I'll also tell you that I'm using all National Historic Trust colors. Anyway, here are the great pulls I ordered online at about 1/3 the cost of the ones from the local home improvement store. Brushed nickel. The doors are plain knobs but the drawers! Oh, how I love those cup pulls. (Thanks, bub.)

Then this is the right side of the room (at the other end of the kitchen). Maybe I'll try to get the blueprints on here at some point to help y'all out. I love the built-ins. You can't really see them but I also had my brother change out the hardware on those cabinets. They are now a tiny fork and spoon on each side. They're cute and were something like 25 cents in the clearance bin. The table set I've had since 1997. Somehow, though, it works perfectly in the room. You'll see in the "after." Thanks to km for the wine rack back there. And cph for the hydrangeas that I've since planted in my yard. The floor is peel-n-stick tile. Not my first (or second or third) choice but as far as that material goes it's about as good as it gets. Very non-intrusive and way less ugly than the flooring in the main bath.

I realize now that I'm like a bad fashion magazine. It just so happens that I took the "before" pictures at night. Things look even more drab. The "afters" were during the day (albeit an overcast one). I do get really great light in that room. There's a window by the table, too.

I don't know if you noticed the counter tops above but they were (and are) this bright blue color. They will get changed somewhere way down the road. But for now, I'm working with them. I give you...the "after."

Doesn't everything pop? And the counters make much more sense now. I love the kitchen. Things I still needs or would like to do:

  1. New floors (not sure what).
  2. New counter top (not sure what).
  3. Paint fan blades. The fan works and doesn't rattle or anything. If it ain't broke... But it is a little grungy. I already changed out the light "globe" thingies. They now match the fixture above the sink.
  4. Get a farmhouse apron sink if possible. Because of the configuration, this may not be doable even though I love them. I'd have to go from a double sink to a single one; I'm not sure how I feel about that.
  5. Have my brother build a new light box for the fluorescent overhead light. I'd like to find a simple clear and white stained glass piece to put in there instead of those cheap plastic covers.
  6. I'm toying with the idea of a white tin ceiling or possibly bead board/tongue and groove.
  7. Paint all cabinets and trim. I'm thinking of making the inside backs of the glass-front cabinets a different color.
  8. Speaking of those cabinets, the shelves do not match up with the panes. This makes me crazy.
  9. And I need to replace the window by the breakfast table. All the windows in the house(except 2) are those old, weighted windows and hardly any work. Because of their great, wavy glass, I'd like to keep some like the ones above the sink.

I think that's it. Yeah, I have enough projects to keep me busy (and make me broke) in this one room alone. But, honestly, I love doing it. I love seeing change, improvement. If you think the kitchen is fun, just wait till the dining room... If you think none of this is fun, you can just stop reading about it. I'll never know.


Bubba's Sis said…
Love it, love it, LOVE IT!! May I suggest laminate wood floors in the kitchen? I have them in mine and they are WONDERFUL - easy to maintain and they look nice!

I can't wait to come over and see the whole house! Of course then I'll want to move into it...
Bubba's Mom said…
That is so ca-yute!! I love it!! You've done a great job. We've got to come see it.
StaceyG said…
What a difference! You have great taste.
wendy bird said…
It is so great!!!

On the to do list, I have the same weighted windows. they make kits to repair the weights and pulleys. It is suprisingly easy...and the panel/trim around the window holds the mechanics. If I could do it...you could.
samantha jo campen said…
My jaw literally hit the ground--that kitchen is fabulous!!!

And the blue! With the white! And the corner sink! With the window! And the build-ins! And you're right! The table looks perfect! Oh my god! I love it!
angelq said…
Two notes: I LOVE the fancy Coors light box you've decorated with (really? coors light?). And the best product ever, Barkeepers Friend for your sink. It magically removes stains and pot "scratches". It works on tile, too. I get mine at BB&B.
Katie Lady said…

Am in total jealous funk now. Can't wait to see it (and to meet you)!

crowd favorites

100 things--thankful

hey, would you like to see the nursery?