100. The Not-final Kitchen post

See that 100 up there before the title? I’ve spent the last few weeks wondering what I was going to write about for my 100th post. Big time writer’s block? Afraid of a number? My WordPress statistics tell me I’ve already written 100 posts, it’s just that two of them weren’t numbered. I started the numbering system after the first few posts, because originally? This blog was for me. For us. So we could keep track of what we’d done on the cottage. I wanted an orderly progression of ugly, uglier, better, beautiful. (And heaven knows, something needed to be orderly in my life.)

For a long time, I thought my 100th post would be the Final recap of the kitchen. The Biggie. 100. The Complete Cottage Kitchen Renovation for Less than $10,000.

We did stay under budget, but there are still a few things left to do, and I can’t write a final recap post when the kitchen isn’t final yet.

But I can do everyone’s favorite — Befores and Afters! (Is there anyone who doesn’t like before and after shots???)

70s kitchen

Before.
You can see the sample flooring, but that was the expensive stuff — we bought simple Armstrong VCT.

New old door $35 from Habitat for Humanity. Hardware $45 from Construction Junction.

New old door painted Blooming Grove (Ben Moore) from Habitat for Humanity. The lovely creamy white color is Sherwin Williams Steamed Milk

IMG_2896

Before…

And the same space now…

You can see that the subway tile doesn’t yet go around the corner. And there will be appliance shelves above the tile. Oh and real electric outlets…

This is a close-up of the soapstone countertops and sink. You can read about our soapstone love affair and adventures here.

Even after some nicks and dents and scratches, we still love the soapstone.

This...

This…

…to this!

…to this!

This corner below made it into the recent post about the orange phone. (You can read that one here.)

IMG_1695

corner with fridge

We don’t have any before photos of the little pantry that we demolished — it was just to the right of this door below:

But we do have a lovely shot of the hole that we found when we took out the wall. These next two pics are of the same space — about 16 months apart… I made the first picture small on purpose — no one wants to see how awful it really was.

hole in the wall

Discovering this was one of the low points…

The chalkboard was my Christmas present...

The chalkboard was my Christmas present…And the peninsula covers that hole nicely. The butcher block wood is Sapele from Hardwood Lumber Company in Ohio. You can read about it here and here.

From this above photo you can look in and see the almost finished dining room. You can see that the trim isn’t finished around the door, the crown still needs to be put up (we just finished the ceiling this past weekend!), and the mirror between the sconces still is leaning against the fifth wall… But yes, life is good.

Dining Room before

View of Dining room into kitchen

and what it looks like now.

Just a few Post Scripts: Some of the walls you see aren’t there any longer — we took out some half-walls here and there. The only things kept from the original kitchen were the windows, the light with a pull chain above the green door, the fridge, and the built-in cupboard. Oh, and the pantry sign. We’ve still got art to hang, and finishing touches to do, and now that I see the bushel baskets on the fridge, I think they have to go… But it is Apple Hill Cottage after all, so they’ve got to find a place somewhere…

71. Baseboard, Crown, and Cupboard

I’ve been struggling to write two posts — very different posts — one on stuff and one on our new bedroom that’s almost, but not quite finished. I’d like to show it to you, but there’s just one more finishing touch needed…

And so I’ve given up on those longer, deeper posts for now; instead I will just show you what’s new in the kitchen.
BaseboardCrown mouldingWe’ve got some baseboard in finally — no more ugly gray plaster lines! And notice the crown moulding. I only have one thing to say about that. If your husband is doing it, keep out of his way and keep your mouth shut. Okay, that’s two things, I know…

A panorama shot taken with Mr. H.C.'s IPhone camera...

A panorama shot taken with Mr. H.C.’s IPhone camera…

We’ve also brought in the cupboard that was always going to go in that spot; we just weren’t sure exactly how it would look best. So what else would you do on a Sunday evening except move the cupboard around in different spots? We have our favorites, of course; and Mr. H.C. only mildly complained that I was making him move this very heavy cupboard, when it was obvious to him which way it should go…


What do you think?

60. That was then, this is now…

Things are looking pretty in the Apple Hill Cottage Kitchen. Amazing, but true. Excitement abounds. We can actually see over the mountain top — we might even be descending through the slippery slope of final details and finish carpentry! This past weekend not only did I do a load of dishes in my new sink, the next evening we did a load of dishes in the newly installed dishwasher. Life is good.

In the last post I promised some pictures. The tarps are still on the floor, protecting its new beauteousness, and some cabinet doors aren’t yet in place. The tile backsplash isn’t in yet, and neither is the stove. That is actually the next project. We are trading stoves and bringing the electric stove to Pittsburgh and taking my much-beloved gas convection oven to Apple Hill. Also I want to preface some of these photos with this: You will see a lot of green. That is because we painted the whole wall to the left of the sink. But once the tile backsplash goes in (small subway tile — American Olean in Biscuit) the only visible green on that side will be above the cabinet.

So for your entertainment, I’m also including some pictures (of the same spaces) that were taken in August of 2011,  right after the cottage became ours.

This...

This…

Cabinets and woodwork are Sherwin Williams Steamed Milk semi-gloss

is now this!

Yes, we took out the little room that was the pantry, so half the wall you see in the first photo is now gone.

This...

This…

is now this.

is now this.

The cabinet at the far left will eventually be put on the wall and used as part of floor to ceiling bookcase for cookbooks, bowls, tins, etc.

This...

This…

IMG_1744

is now this.

We had several landmark events this past week, but one of the best was water in the new faucet coming out beautifully into the new sink…
First water from a new faucet
And another was actually installing some cabinets that have been sitting around everywhere since last summer! In fact, here are just some random shots.

And my favorite —

No plumber's butt here. No plumber's gut either!

No plumber’s butt here.
No plumber’s gut either!
It’s a good thing too, or he wouldn’t have fit.