A New Kitchen (Before)

For more than 5 years, this was my kitchen.

When we moved to L-Town, I was still working for a custom publishing company in Des Moines and spent a portion of my days looking at photos of and writing about dreamy kitchens. I did not consider this one of those dreamy kitchens. Not even close.

At first I wondered if I'd ever get used to the mismatched appliances, salmon tile, and retro wallpaper. But I did. I spent a lot of time in this kitchen, trying all different sorts of recipes every chance I got. I got used to the finicky oven, to the ever-present spots staining the white countertops, to the way certain drawers didn't open correctly. It became my home. I appreciated its midcentury modern style (and its quirks).
But then Little Man came along. And our oven moved from retro-cool to fire hazard territory, getting so hot you could actually burn yourself if you touched the outside of it without a pot holder. Not a good situation with a toddler in the house, particularly one who likes to play in the kitchen as much as his mamma does.

The oven also made it harder and harder to bake with any consistency—it got so bad I pretty much stopped using it because everything I tried to make either came out overcooked or undercooked (because I was afraid of burning things, which seemed to happen in mere minutes).

We looked into replacing the oven but, alas, they don't even make ovens that size anymore—unless we wanted to spend thousands of dollars buying a used replacement that looked like the original, with no guarantee it would be any safer.

We could have replaced the oven with a new one of different dimensions and had our contractor rig up the cabinet it was in so it looked like it fit, but we knew that would be a temporary, rather unfortunate fix.
And so replacing the oven suddenly became replacing the oven, the cabinets, and the countertops. And while we were at it, the refrigerator, microwave, and dishwasher too. Oh, and tearing out the tile. And ditching the wallpaper. And painting. And getting new light fixtures in the kitchen and dining room because the lovely retro chandelier in the dining room was a fire hazard, too.
It's amazing how quickly a little project becomes a big project.

So we picked out new cabinets and countertops, ordered new appliances, found light fixtures and a new sink and faucet.

Once my semester ended, I hastily packed up our kitchen (for such a small space, it's amazing how much stuff we had in there!) and tried to take off the wallpaper on the soffit. It was dreadful, let me tell you. The number of hours I spent steaming and scraping was ridiculous given how little progress I made. But that's a story for another day.
Once the kitchen was cleared out, we ran off to Georgia. And when we came back two weeks later, we had a new kitchen. How's that for glorious timing? I can't imagine how dreadful it would have been to try to work from home and keep an incredibly curious dog and little boy away from the action for two weeks. So I highly recommend getting the heck out of town the next time you hire someone to work on your house. It was terrific.

Anyhow. Now that I've talked all about what our kitchen was and how it got remodeled, I'm going to stop for today. You'll just have to come back tomorrow to see the "after."

1 comment:

Gabrielle Jeromy said...

That's the great thing about hiring an expert to do the remodeling project for you. You don't have to worry much about it because you're sure that he'll give you an excellent service. Well, in your case, I can feel that you really trust your contractor. You even went out of town, huh? And the best thing was you came back and saw a spectacular result. I'm happy for you!

Gabrielle Jeromy @ Majestic Exteriors LLC