Thursday, May 15, 2014

Kitchen Remodel (Part 1)

Well, folks, it's been a long journey, but I'm happy to announce that the Eldredges finally have a new kitchen! So long pink and turquoise (not sure who thought that combo should go in a kitchen) and hello clean and new!! Let me preface by saying that I have been designing this kitchen since the moment we first contemplated buying this house. And now, here it is in all its glory.

I realize that for most people, home renovations probably aren't that big of deal. You design it, you hire someone, and a week later it's complete. Such is never the case in our world. We undershoot everything - our time, the budget, and the amount of arguing it takes before one of us caves and I get my way. I'm happy to say that this renovation was not the case. Other than a four week delay on the installation of our counter tops, things went pretty smoothly. (Although I should note that without counter tops one does not have a sink and without a kitchen sink one is forced to wash dishes in the bathroom sink. Not. Fun.) Not only was this the biggest undertaking we've attempted to date, but it's the first one that we've actually come in on budget and managed to stay (mostly) loving to one another. (I should also probably clarify that my husband and I really do love each other. We are both just stubborn and opinionated and don't like to give in to the other. I assure you that our relationship is, in fact, happy and healthy. Sarcasm is our foreplay. That's just how we are.) 

Regardless, we are now on the home stretch. We still have to add the crown molding to the top of the cabinets, install the back splash, and  finish painting the trim but, otherwise, we are FINISHED!

Before: beige on beige with pink & turquoise laminate floors and counter tops.

This remodel was a total and complete gut job. Fortunately, my husband has stellar friends who helped him rip out the entire kitchen in one evening. Who needs a gym when you can carry cabinets up and down a flight of stairs?

This included ripping the old carpet out of the hallway as well. See all those little black spots? Those are staples. I pulled each one of those sons of...out by hand!

Thanks to my dad and brother-in-law, we were able to knock out the flooring in one day. It turns out that the angles from the kitchen into the hallway are much trickier than one might imagine. It also turns out that my dad did not hold still for the panoramic photo, which is why he is missing half of his body in the photo below.

Here he is in completion. Much better.

The following day, the guys were able to get all of the cabinets hung and the appliances installed. We went from bare bones on Friday night to the image below on Sunday night. It was amazing to watch the space completely transform over the course of 48 hours! 

A few days later, the electrician installed under cabinet lighting (which is amazing), an additional three pot lights in the kitchen, an additional pot light in the hallway, and hard wired the pendant lights above the island. Our kitchen literally went from three lights to eleven! It's so nice to finally be able to see!!

Initially, I purchased the pendant lights as shown below. I loved them from the second I saw them online, but they were just too big for the space (and they literally hung down to Jake's chest). Clearly, they weren't going to work. So, back to the home improvement store we went for the 972 time.

After a lot of back and forth, we decided upon glass pendant lights with Edison bulbs (shown below). They make the space feel so much more open, and I love the retro yet modern feel they add to the room. 

We lived in a construction-zone-state-of-chaos for nearly three weeks. For most people, this probably wouldn't be considered "chaos", but my OCD-ness could barely stand it. I'm the lady who has to pick up every room in the house before I can go to sleep at night, so you can only imagine what this was like for me. Also, I'm pretty sure it's completely unsanitary to feed your baby right next to power tools, scrap lumber, and a shop vac, but we made do with what we had. And Taylor never seemed to mind.

Upon hearing the news that our counter tops weren't going to be installed for an additional two weeks, Jake cut plywood to cover the bottom cabinets. That way, we would at least have some work space (and somewhere to sit the 500 tools that were scattered all over my brand new hard wood floors). 

At this point, we had gone as far as we could go and were just waiting on the granite to be installed. We cleaned up all the junk that had been contaminating our dining room floor, and I was finally able to breathe (or at least not cringe every time I walked through the room).


We finally received a set date and time for our counter tops to be installed, but then tragedy hit a few days later and I learned that my friend's funeral would be on the same day (at the same time) as the granite company was scheduled to be at our house. I immediately got on the phone with the designer, informed him of the situation, and anticipated another two week delay. To my surprise, he arranged to have the counter tops installed the very. next. morning. I was blown away. 

Sure enough, Friday morning arrived and so did the granite company at 8:00 on the dot. Two hours later we had the most gorgeous Venetian pearl counter tops I had ever seen. I literally spread my arms across the giant island and hugged it.

At long last, I had my kitchen sink back.

So, here you have it, the [nearly] final product. I will do another post once the molding and back splash are installed and the final touches are in place. Stay tuned!

*insert l-o-n-g sigh of relief here*