Type of remodel: Kitchen
Type of building: 1940's house
I am such a fan of Apartment Therapy Renovation Diaries so I decided to do a mock one of my own! My favorites have been Dan and Jennifer. We bought our house approximately one year ago. We are first time homeowners, and have bought a fixer upper in our desired neighborhood and have been putting in a little work throughout the year. The kitchen has undergone what I like to refer to as "phase one" and "phase two" renovations. For example, "phase one" came about to maintain my sanity for the six months before we started our kitchen reno. I immediately painted all of the brown paneling on the walls in our kitchen white, as well as our kitchen cabinets. It almost looked worse but at least it wasn't as dark in there. Originally I wanted to keep our cabinets as many others have done successfully for their renovations, but our cabinet size and style was outdated, and coupled with the extremely hideous and excessive 1970s bar and the ceiling tiles that connected to our upper cabinets that needed to be removed anyway, we decided that we should just put in Ikea cabinets because they are so inexpensive. "Phase two" was to remove the floor tile and put in our hardwoods since that needed to be done before we could replace our cabinets. We do things incrementally as our budget allows. I would recommend this to anyone who is desperate to feel like progress is being made towards improving your house. Actually having your home under reno is motivating for saving up money quickly to finish it! That isn't to say this hasn't been a very long and tiring process... Our original list of eeks in our kitchen:
-floor tile that was ugly, old, dirty, and cracked in several places due to improper installation from the original owner
-ceiling tile that was once meant for noise purposes made the ceilings feel very low and like an office building
-the giant brown fan in the center of the room as somewhat hazardous and unnecessary for our purposes
- the appliances were black which didn't match the aesthetic in the rest of the house
-the lime green countertops
-the dirty steel backdoor
-the lack of efficiency especially with the fridge (we had a giant white boxy fridge that was here when we moved and there wasn't any room for it so it was in the middle of the kitchen hallway)
-lack of overhead lighting and light in general
This part was somewhat easy, as I constantly pin images. However, when it came time to try to choose my own options, I realized that even within the images I'd pinned I hadn't looked closely at the details. I know what I wanted to big picture to look like, light and airy and open, but I hadn't realized all that goes in to creating a kitchen- room color, backsplash, cabinet doors, pulls, overhead lighting, seating, layout, and appliance selection.
I finally decided on Caesarstone Misty Carrera countertops, Ikea Lidingo white cabinets and Stenstorp island, a Frigidaire 30" slide in stainless steal range, a Frigidaire vented microwave, and a Summit 27" bottom freezer refrigerator. I read a lot of appliance reviews, which can be a slippery slope because all have negative reviews, but ultimately you just have to make a decision that fits your space and budget and don't look back. For anyone deciding between London Fog and Misty Carrera I feel your pain, but we chose Misty (on the left in the photo below) because it was less expensive. Tips: Take advantage of Ikea kitchen sale and other promos like Lowes and Home Depot 4th of July.
Everything looks kind of silly without the countertops! Stay tuned.