Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 3:17

Friday, April 4, 2014

Our Kitchen, Part Two-ish: Flooring, Framing the Island, and Fixing Crumbling Kick Plates

When we left our beloved new construction home and moved to this one last winter, we may have been both slightly under- and overwhelmed. Underwhelmed because nothing felt like home here, which was a terrible feeling; and overwhelmed because to make it feel like home involved a little more work than we'd anticipated.

And more moolah. That's never a fun surprise.

We dreamed and planned and schemed and plotted out a budget, re-schemed, thought some more, and finally jumped in and never looked back. Basically because once you start ripping up old tile and painting over cabinets, you really have to just keep on keeping on.

This is what she looked like when we first laid eyes on her...

You can read all about Part One HERE.

For this Part Two-ish, we installed new floors, painted and added trim to the island, disguised ugly, crumbling kick plates under the cabinets, and dealt with the off-center over-the-sink lighting issue. Whew! We wanted to replace the counter tops, but the money well for extra projects  ran dry...

First things first, we tackled the tile. And by we, I mean they.

Next, we had to address the issue of the crumbling kick plates beneath the cabinets. I couldn't paint over them because they were just too badly damaged, but we weren't thrilled about the idea of yanking them out and potentially causing more damage to the already-not-great cabinets themselves.

The pic below also shows you the other issue we had: a really, really bad grout job. Like, really bad! There were some gaps over an inch and a half wide (deep?) where the grout had been used to fill in what should have been a trimmed down tile. Plus, as you can see, the grout was ever so lovingly smashed up against the kick plates. Every. Single. One.

We hemmed and hawed for months over flooring. We finally decided that since this is not our forever home, we would let practical trump dream, and we settled on an upper grade oak laminate. (Plus, a broken leg that we're still getting bills for may have had a little something to do with the final decision.) It has held up remarkably well with the dog. And the kids. And the Barbie-Mobile races.

Still had those pesky kick plates with which to contend. Well, we faked it. Covered 'em right up.

I cannot for the life of me locate a picture of the completed kick plates, but they look awesome.
Okay, here's one...

Next up was painting the island. I'd been wanting to try a darker color for a while, and I'd kind of mentally committed to the blue-grey color before the tiles had even come up. The creamy-beige tiles against all that white, plus the creamy counter tops was just begging for something more. So early in the morning one sweltering hot day back in July, I went for it. 

We also decided to beef up the charm factor on the island. Does one "beef up" charm? Hmm.

Getting rid of that lip was Numero Uno on my priority list, so we anchored 1x4's to the kick plate/cabinet before adding the final 1x6 as a frame. (We used 1x6's for the other kick plates as well.) We cut out a notch on the edge that abutted the sticky-out part you see on the right in the photo below.

And then a few months went by. We needed to caulk around the trim, and repaint. Sometimes it's the little things that kick us in the rear. I just could not get motivated to finish, but I finally did.
I do like the blue-grey (though it's more blue than I'd anticipated - I wanted more grey); however, the color of the floor is so rich and warm now, I think the white island would look fabulous. Maybe someday...

Just for kicks, here's a photo from Christmas time that I just love...

To alleviate my angst over the non-centered light fixture above the kitchen sink, we settled on something smaller scale that we could simply swag. Which meant no cute pendant light for me for the time being. Oh well. Problem {mostly} solved. Of course now that I see the old master bedroom-turned-kitchen-valance, they really don't work anymore. I've been thinking of a bamboo shade and subway art Bible verse above the window. Maybe it's time to get moving on that.

I may also put some things back up above the cabinets, but for now, I really like the calm, uncluttered feeling they give me.

The white on cream on beige on white...

It amazes me how the warm "wood" floors and darker island have altered even the color of the walls. The kitchen is still bright and airy, but not quite so blinding.

Up next will be replacing the counter tops and perhaps adding a subway tile back splash, and addressing the window covering that no longer seem right. I'd do it sooner rather than later, but there are more pressing things right now. And I think the kids might miss, you know, eating. This kitchen makes me smile now. =)

If you're looking for some lunch bag inspiration, check out this post!

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Sennie said...

Bethany, your kitchen looks lovely! I really like the blue and white. Great job!

The Kim Six Fix said...

Wow. What a change. I love the little budget friendly improvements you made. I totally understand the need to balance getting exact what you want and staying in budget. I think it looks great. 1000x better for sure!


FABULOUS after! Wow, what a great job you did, your kitchen looks gorgeous and at any holiday!

anislandlife said...

Came over from Thrifty Decor Chic...I love your makeover! This looks a lot like the layout of my kitchen. Can you tell me what the dimensions of your kitchen are? I would love to add an island like yours, but I am not sure it is wide enough. Thanks!

Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse said...

You did an amazing job transforming your kitchen! I love the look of all the white cabinet with the blue gray island.

Bethany @ Our 4 Sons Plus 1...Super Cute Girly Girl said...

Aw, thanks so much everyone! Your kind words are very much appreciated!

Lindsay said...

looks great!! you did a fantastic job on the island!

Unknown said...

Having this kind of kitchen is really awesome! those splashbacks and the table is really exceptional.

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