Friday, November 7, 2008

DIY Funnies

I walked into the kitchen to find Sean running the liner for the woodstove up the chimney and this:

Tin backsplash scoop

Bell wrote and asked: "Just beautiful! I'd been waiting to see it. Is your back splash tin?"

So here is the backsplash, thrifty inside scoop: It looks like tin, feels like tin, but nope, it is not tin! We decided to do tin here to tie it into the existing tin ceiling in the room behind the kitchen and also because I am not a big fan of tile and grout in a kitchen. But tin is ridiculously expensive. So were the fake tin panels sold in the kitchen section of Lowes and Home Depot for this purpose.

What to do, what to do.... After searching online, being sent samples of flimsy plastic "tin" panels that would never hold up on a backsplash, I had a moment of inspiration at Lowes and checked out their ceiling panel department and found these. I believe the panels were $16 each for a two by two panel. It wasn't exactly cheap but it was the best option with the least expense incurred. The panels are thick, sturdy, washable and went up with liquid nails.

Lastly, here is the wall being taken down. Sean says it is not a good thing when your wife calls you at work and asks where the sledgehammer is. I cannot imagine why not....

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

More kitchen remodel photos

We (especially me!) are loving our new kitchen!

One of the nifty drawers...

I love the glass doors and plate rack. Must thrift some cuter plates for up there though...

Our sink is composite granite from Lowes. The faucet is from

Yippee! The wall is gone between the kitchen and diningroom!

I have to do a quick post on these lights. They were cheap-o lights from Lowes that I tinkered with for that Pottery barn on a budget look.

This original staircase is so very steep. I am getting used to it though. Upstairs will be the boy's bedroom and a family/playroom.

Our free fridge (credit card reward program) and free chalkboard that I pulled off a curb.

I love these deep drawers.

Sean says this is the supervisor's chair.

Another nifty cupboard!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

There's something new...

Once upon a time we bought a house with a teeny kitchen and a big empty purposeless room. The said big empty purposeless room was also HIDEOUS. Brick red walls, gold trim, outdoor plastic green carpeting wall to wall. Weird walls and doorways... Luckily it had a door so I could close it off and sing a happy song.
And I had a dream....
Okay, so once upon a time was only a year and a half ago but that's two summers of canning in a small kitchen, five major holidays of holiday cooking and baking in a teeny space, fourteen elbows bumping each other constantly and nine months of being twice as wide in that small kitchen = a long time in a small kitchen!

Standing in our entryway, this is the view looking to the left. To the right is the living room, but to the left - well, that's where all the exciting fun is these days. Granted, the only people who use this entryway and its enormous set of double doors are neighbors at Christmas time and the porch is so dilapidated I'll have to put yellow warning tape around it soon.... but anyway, back to the left....

Past the table of birthday goodies....
Is that a counter top? A faucet? Be still my heart!

Beautiful, beautiful kitchen of my heart!

The agonies of bumping and tripping over other people you will save me! The lack of elbowing one another as we pass in the kitchen! The more than two square feet of space for kneading dough, rolling out six pie crusts, canning - oh, the room for canning!

The sweet little fridge that is pretty and has enough space for food for 2.1 people.
Since we are a family of seven, the massive monstrosity of a fridge that we use now will be housed in the garage to hold everything else and the twenty dozen duck eggs that are crowding us out. (They are de-lish btw.)

And this is my beautiful thrifted chair. Sean says it is my supervisor chair. I think it'll be great this winter with that wood stove roaring away on cold mornings, a cup of Earl Gray in hand.
Looking back the other way...
Lots of trim work/ veneer work/cabinet crown molding to be done but I am so excited! Love it.
(photos will enlarge if you click on them.)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Hand cut blue stone island counter top

And soon to be off my front lawn - Hallelujah!
The small cut out is for the prep sink and the larger one is for the slide in range.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Counter Tops

We decided on blue stone for our counter tops. It had all the characteristics I wanted in a stone top for very, very inexpensive. $16 a square foot. Cheaper than anything available at Lowes or the kitchen store. You can see from these photos why it is so inexpensive. Sean is doing it all himself.

The slabs are straight from a quarry in PA that is owned by a local stone place. They ordered some slabs for us and we went over and picked out our favorites. Blue stone is GORGEOUS polished up and oiled. The first piece in already set in place in the kitchen. It resembles slate or soapstone in color but is very, very hard. And heavy.

All of Sean's cuts and polishing is done with diamond blades and diamond polishing pads.

I promise a photo of the installed counter soon!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Coming along now,

View from outside on the porch looking through the kitchen door. Dining room is to the right, old fireplace and wood stove to the left.
(Just ignore the desk piled up with tools on the right.)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Faucets on their way...

Small faucet for the 12x12 island prep sink:
Bridge gooseneck faucet for the double undermount kitchen sink:

Both in brushed nickel and courtesy of Gotta love the $2.95 shipping!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Drum sanders hurt...

Its been a noisy night through that door. Three rented floor sanders and one owned one and five hours with 25 grit sandpaper have accomplished this:
Not even close to being done.
Whatever our mystery wood is - it is HARD.
I spent about an hour with the drum sander because I think I'm tough and can do anything. (Sean did make me go put shoes on after this photo below!)
Four blisters later (could they not make the handles padded?) I woosed out and opted for my dainty hand sander, starting to go over the dark spots.
That thing weighs about 100 lbs and you have to lift up and pull back on it to make it sand. I am suddenly not regretting all the money we have paid in the past to have someone refinish the floors in a previous home.
I don't think my arms will work in the morning.

I'm wining like a baby, I know. I think it was worse than labor...
Many kudos to my father in law and Sean for their hours and hours of monotonous sanding. Love you guys!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Kitchen walls!

"Tell them that I'm doing the job I hate the most with the woman I love the most," Sean says as I snap away with the camera.
He hates sanding drywall...
Have I mentioned that I love that he's going gray?
Would now be a good time to mention that a policeman helping me a few years ago when I ran out of gas thought that Sean was my father?
I was mortified and when I explained that Sean is indeed my husband, the cop gave me the dirtiest look ever.

And ooohhh...lookie here. Whats that?
Some fine looking muscles on my handsome husband! Eh hem...back to the kitchen...

While he's been sanding the walls, I've been sanding this:

And these:

And the edges of the floor. Sean'll tackle the rest with a big rented sander.
Any guesses on what kind of wood? I have no idea.
Two hundred year old something.

These walls that he's sanding will be where our main cabinets are. The cabinets, the oh so beautiful cabinets, are piled in mega boxes in that back room right now. Just waiting...

That cut out section of wall above is for my new fridge. I have to downsize fridges. Is that wrong or what? Seriously, that was the only place to fit a fridge in the kitchen - and I love that it'll be built in. We are definitely going to become those people who have the old clunker second fridge in the garage.
More updates soon on counter tops. Our slabs are in and soon to be delivered to my front lawn. Our neighbors had no idea what they were in for when we moved in. Have I mentioned that the nice folks across the street mow at least twice a week and have PERFECT mulch around every perfect tree and perfect bush and they mow in nice diagonal lines?
Nice people across the street - I'm so sorry... ;)