So in part 2 of the great kitchen overhaul, I ended with this picture that shows you a little bit of how our kitchen was going to end up, minus all the pretty stuff.
Oh what fun it was to see our kitchen coming together and have more of a feel for the layout! Despite having no counters or sink or functional space, I still managed to cook us meals. Sort of. We ate a lot of noodles and sauce.
We got the counters cut and in place pretty quickly and then Dan shaped the peninsula to make a nice little seating area. He's got mad skills like that.
This part was really dusty again. Sigh. It seems like all parts of renovations are dusty. Except for maybe painting.
Once the counter was in, it felt like things moved fast. We oiled it with a food grade butcher block oil and sanded between the many coats. Finally, after 5 months with no proper kitchen sink, I came home to this beauty one day!
I may have squealed and then gone and hugged it. For real. Doing dishes felt so glorious for a few days. It's amazing how much you can appreciate washing dishes normally after washing them not so normally for so long. The novelty did wear off eventually though.
Once the sink was in, we moved some stuff into the kitchen to make it feel more real. Important stuff like wine and chips.
Isn't it beautiful? At this point I was feeling really good about things and thinking how we were almost done. Oh bliss! I could see the finish line and took off on the last final sprint!
Which led to priming and painting the cabinets. Now, if you've never primed and painted cabinets, you don't quite understand the painful process that it is. It takes so long! And it is so frustrating and time consuming and awkward. Oh I hated it. So much. Especially the open shelves and the wine rack. That wine rack was a beast to paint.
But I persevered and pretty soon the cabinets were looking fabulous. We chose a lovely off white colour for the cabinets called Spun Cotton and we love how they turned out. Nice and bright but not too stark. Just perfect. And it blends with the wood so nicely.
We then got a dishwasher! And back splash! Oh so exciting! We totally lucked out on the back splash, since everything we were looking at was so expensive. We couldn't quite justify almost $20/sq.ft. But we found this gorgeous grey subway tile at Lowes for $5/sq.ft. and it goes so nicely with the kitchen. Win for us!
Shortly after this point we were able to start putting things into the kitchen for real. Like actual things that stayed put in the cupboards. I still had no drawers (they were being painted) but the upper shelves were usable. Hallelujah!
I was getting excited and feeling like we were nearly done. Again. You'd think I'd learn and stop thinking we were nearly done until we actually were. Because if I thought painting the cabinets sucked, try painting a bajillion doors and drawers. Okay, so maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration. But there were a lot of doors and drawers. And I wanted to make sure I did a good job so I sanded and washed them well and then did two coats of primer and two coats of paint. I loathed those doors by the end of this process. Thank goodness for Young House Love Has a Podcast to keep me company or else I would have pulled my hair out.
It did finally end. And I didn't die. The whole painting process was really hard though. The basement was cold and dark and the floors were hard and my hands got cramped. I may have whined a lot to Dan during the process, because by this point I was so over this kitchen reno.
But oh boy was it worth it. Our kitchen is beautiful (although not quite done yet) and I love using it on a daily basis. Plus, I'm proud of the fact that we basically built it!
We love the colours and the flow and the stools at the counter with the pendant lights. We love the back splash and the brightness and the stove. Every little bit we love. Well, minus the fridge. I hate the fridge. One day we will get a nice new one but for now, I will glory in the beauty of my mostly finished kitchen.
We finished it on Christmas Eve and it was the best Christmas gift ever. Over 6 months of renovations to end with this transformation. (Excuse the crappy dark iPhone pictures for the afters. We are waiting until everything is done before taking fabulous after photos. But you get the idea.)
So there you have it, the great 6+ month kitchen renovation. I'm not sure if I'll ever be convinced to do this again, since I honestly don't know how I survived it. But it's done and it's beautiful and that is what I'm focusing on.
Anyone care to share their kitchen renovation stories with me? Tell me I'm not the only one who nearly lost her mind during the process.