Tuesday, January 15, 2013

My kitchen

You know how you can do one thing, and that leads to another, and another?  Well, making my curtains has really started something.

Since we moved in, I've always thought of this home as a temporary place.  Since residency is only five years long, and we have no guarantees on where we might end up for fellowship or employment after fellowship, I haven't spent any time making my house a "home."  We have furnishings, and it's cute and comfy, but I never took the time to make it something I really enjoyed.

Until I made the curtains.  Then last weekend my husband moved our washer and dryer upstairs so I don't have to pack clothes up and down two flights of stairs to get it done.  It has really been a life-altering change.

Now I'm on a kick.  Partially because I've realized that this is my home, and even if I only have another year and a half here, I want to really enjoy it, but also because if we have to sell in a year and a half, I want someone else to want to buy it. 

So, my kitchen.  I know that a kitchen sells (or doesn't sell) a home.  When we were house shopping, there were plenty of homes that we turned down because the kitchens were so awful, even though every other aspect of the house may have been okay.  Considering that, I've decided to focus my efforts there.  I have a very limited budget, so I'm working mostly with what I have, with some minor new expenses.

Here's what we're working with.


Left side

 Pantry area

Right side

As you can see- it's not the worst kitchen out there, but it's certainly nothing spectacular by any stretch of the imagination.  These pictures are already somewhat upgraded as well, as the microwave and 30 year old refrigerator (which we were graciously loaned by my in laws when we moved in) have since been replaced by the side by side refrigerator and over the range microwave (that still needs to be wired into the cabinet-- hence the drop cord.  Beautiful, eh?).  The cabinets are covered in a plywood veneer, and the trim was an obviously DIY job by someone who didn't know who to install it properly.  The floor is sticky tile (unstuck in a few areas) that has been stuck to another laminate floor, that I *think* is covering hardwood, but I'm not sure.

This was the microwave, and it sat on this icky wood stand that hung behind the stove:

 (Yay, Diet Coke!  Don't judge.  Mama needs some kind of juice to keep her going!)

It "works" in the functional aspect...but it doesn't work in the aesthetic one- for me anyway.

I have a lot of plans that involve a lot of paint.  Unfortunately, I don't foresee us buying new stainless appliances in the next year and a half, and so my decisions need to work with the white ones we already have, but also with stainless because the option is there for us to buy, and possibly come back to live here longer after fellowship, it's just not immediately practical (but really, what doesn't go with stainless?).

These are some of the kitchens I've been looking at for inspiration:

(Found through: Idulgy)

source unknown

The general themes that I'm noticing in all my inspiration pictures: apron front farm sink, open/glass cabinet fronts, tall cabinets, neutral walls, butcher block counter tops.

I love white cabinets, but like I said- white appliances.  I don't really think the two go together very well.  I just envision getting it all painted, and having it drive me nuts that the whites are not all the EXACT same.  So, I think I'm leaning towards gray (big surprise, from me, eh?).  And since my cabinets are not perfect, I don't really have the time to take them totally apart to sand, prime, prime, prime, sand, and paint, paint, paint, and seal- I think I'm leaning towards light distressing, and using Annie Sloan in French Linen for the color.

HOWEVER, before I buy the paint and am stuck with it, I want to know what you think.  White or gray, distressed or not?  PLEASE comment and let me know!

See you all soon!

Linking up at:


  1. I would have never thought of gray cabinets on my own but those pictures look amazing! Would you paint your walls too?

  2. Oh, of course. The orangey red theme going on in there is NOT staying! I'm going with white trim on the molding, and a light color on the walls. The faux brick is going to be white washed to look like old brick.

  3. I would LOVE to paint my cabinets. I've been dreaming of a white kitchen for a while. Unfortunately, my cabinets are in such terrible condition that we are afraid that paint would just highlight the issues. Oh to have the $$$ for a real remodel... ::daydreaming away:::

    As for yours, I totally understand the worry with the white appliances. I love the idea of grey! I've seen it used along side so many other color combinations. You can really have fun with the decor. I probably wouldn't distress it though. I LOVE your work with distressing furniture, but some people aren't really sold on the style and since you are trying to sell soon... But that's just me. I don't really have any sense of style myself so I always go more conservative. If anyone could pull it off though, you could!

  4. P.s.- I'm pretty sure that's the exact microwave we just got rid of ourselves. LOL!

  5. Hi there. I was kinda interested when you said that you treat your home as a temporary place and how the curtains started changing that perspective. You know, five years is long enough and I think you deserve to enjoy your stay there. Anyway, how is it going? Did you enjoy the last year and a half there? I’ll be glad to see more updates from you. :)

    Keaton Oakes

  6. “You know how you can do one thing, and that leads to another, and another?” – I totally do. Once you start making one project, ideas will flow in and next thing you know, you’re ready for another project. And it won't be a problem if you know what you want exactly. Your inspirations are great! I hope you accomplished everything, just like how you successfully made your curtains.

    Roxie @ WindowTreatmentsPhiladelphia.com


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