Kitchen reno: the final chapter

The final chapter unless you count all of the little things we still need to do like painting a bit a trim, a bit of caulking etc…

Not much to say. I’ll let the photos do the talking. Enjoy!IMG_4328


Yeah, so I left a few things on the counter.  I’m no stager.


What I see when I walk in the front door.  Makes me smile.


The new bank of drawers.


The hidden spice rack.  Just brilliant.

The drawer butcher block is a find I’ll treasure forever.  Available here.


Look at the curve on the moulding.  Tim Soper is an artist.  The cupboards were inspired by pinterest pics: Here and here.


I love the metal grating for the vents and how they tie the cupboard fronts together.

Huge amounts of storage and a clever broom closet, another Tim Soper invention.

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The flour drawer.  One of Tim Soper’s genius inventions.

and that pretty much completes our tour.  Now look at me…





Look back….

the awkward stoveLook again!  Yep. I can’t believe it either.IMG_4336




Kitchen Reno: the final stretch

Not the prettiest series of posts I’ve ever written but I’m just wanting to get this process down as promised.  Not my best writing but hopefully the outcome is worth it!

I think I forgot to mention in the last instalment that I painted the hideous backsplash white just after our cupboards were painted.  It was actually a great solution that lasted a long time. Although they are not close ups, when you look at the before and after photos you can see the amazing difference:

In the next steps in the reno we knew we wanted to keep the original cupboards.  Jamie’s paint job was fantastic and had really held up.  I couldn’t justify getting rid of them.  So we were left with the question of how to approach the backsplash and the counter.  The backsplash had been on there for 60 years or so and the wall behind is plaster.  I studied the topic online and the basic conclusion was that this was going to be messy and could potentially damage the wall significantly.  We thought of covering it up, adding tiles that matched….nothing would work and we knew it.  With no time and lack of confidence in our skill we hired Mike from Pro2call and we were set.

We also needed a new counter desperately.  You can see in the above picture the odd corner bit of counter.  It had a weird seam where the two side pieces met an oddly shaped middle piece.  We couldn’t afford a stone counter, I wasn’t sure we could do concrete justice, I knew I’d ruin wood…so what could we do?

We searched and searched for a solution.  When Tim and John came into the picture they commented on my centre island.  I had painted the old wood IKEA island pictured above with chalk paint (you knew I’d get it in there somewhere) and attached a cracked ice formica tabletop I’d found when out thrifting.  The edging was vintage metal.  I loved it and it worked well enough (see photo below).  John wondered if we could source the metal edging and have them custom create a counter.

So off I went googling vintage counters and discovered that counters were often made of linoleum edged with metal.  Then I read this kitchen reno with these exact products. So off I went to Living Rooms, and eco friendly building store to see what they had in the way of Marmoleum, an eco friendly version.  I fell in love with the Lemon Zest colour!  Tim then sourced the metal edging and we were set.

See? It was messy. Only one wall was really damaged.  Mike repaired it no problem an dee painted over it.  Mike tiled with white subway tile from Home Depot and we decided to take it all the way up the wall behind the stove.  It is one of my favourite features.


Life went on during this reno…baking cookies when I had the kitchen all to myself.

IMG_20150604_161156Tim raised the counter height and installed the Marmoleum masterpiece that now had NO SEAMS!!!!  They reused our original sink and faucet after cleaning it up a bit and replacing the draining baskets. We changed out the pulls on the old drawers and I love the difference they made.

What else can I show you before I reveal the final product?  Well, as per the design pictures I shared in the last post, we needed more drawer space and so Tim built us a new bank of drawers on the other side of the stove.  This is where we were finally able to put in a true butcher block countertop.  I LOVE IT!!  And the drawers are slow close, something our vintage drawers are not.  The pulls allowed us to tie in with the old drawers.butcherblockwithhandlesOn the other side of the stove we had a weird gap.  This bit took a lot of thought.  Tim and John are geniuses though and they cut into the old cupboards and added a spice rack with a front that closely resembled the original “flat with round edges” look.  All pieces were painted in the same colour Jamie had used years ago.spicerackThe piece de resistance though is the unit they created around the fridge.  So much to show you there but I need to take pictures first.  For now, you’ll have to be content with these:

I think that’s as far as I can take it given I have no more pics to share.  I’ll take some soon so you can see it in all its glory.  Until then.

Kitchen Reno: the years in between

Facebook reminded me today that I had intended to document my disaster of a kitchen and our renos as they happened.  Years have passed since this post and this one. We covered the outdated colours and wallpaper, the awkwardly placed and aging appliances, how I managed to save the original hinges on the doors and finally, the discovery of the yellow formica under the contact paper.  When I left off, the next step was to have our friend Jamie come over and paint the cupboards.  We painted the walls and then did this:

plasticJamie took the doors to his workshop but the rest of the cupboards needed to be sprayed on site.  We had to move out for a bit but the new colour on the walls and the paint on the cupboards made the whole kitchen brighter and more enjoyable so it was worth it.  The pictures aren’t much but you get the idea:

kitchen cupboardsAway went the awkward cupboard.  The stove was still awkward and the oddly grouped appliance corner remained the same:

applianceRemember, these two corners looked like this:

fridge and dishwasher

the awkward stoveNot bad I’d say.  And there the reno stayed from quite a while.  I did manage a table and shelves near the back door and the next picture is the only one I have…Years passed and the roll-y dishwasher started to cut into the floor which was in terrible condition to begin with and we realized it was time to move forward.  But the awkward layout still posed challenges so, we tried different layouts:

layoutI was convince that this layout, proposed by our close friend, Chris, would never work.  I just couldn’t see it with the stove shoved in front of the door.  Maybe it was the state of the kitchen?  The bagels were delicious : ).  You can see how bad the flooring was though…


flooringAnd this is where I think we made our only mistake with the reno.  We put on peel and stick flooring.  It only took a few hours and it looked/looks great.

flooring type

flooringjoshWho knew vinyl tile could be grouted!  It still looks good, I just wish we could have afforded a better floor because we’ll have to deal with it eventually.  It’ll be a pain now that we have built in cupboards…but I’m getting ahead of myself…

behindstoveFirst we decided to follow Chris’s design advice and we took out the backdoor.  Thanks to our handy father-in-law, we were able to install our new to us stove (thanks Andrew and Jonathan) and vent a range hood.

behind stove 2Its fuzzy but you get the picture.  Oh and we bought a new fridge.

stoveAnd with the stove is a better spot we were able to install a dishwasher in the cupboard that was previously hidden.

dishwasherAnd that is where it was left once again for a good long time.  Until we met Tom and John and they saw the possibilities I was missing.  I’ll leave you with these drawings and then, soon, I’ll take pictures of their brilliance and share it with all of you.