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Showing posts from March, 2013

Kitchen Demo

It's been another whirlwind weekend for us.  On Friday night we had a mostly-functional but very ugly kitchen. We packed everything up and removed the countertops and cabinets.  I pre-sold the cabinets on Craigslist so we only had to store them for a day until the buyer could pick them up.  After ripping things apart we could see how very gross this kitchen really was.  There was a lot of mold growing under the kitchen backsplash. And the walls had been painted a shade of pink that not even Barbie could love.
We had long suspected that the original kitchen had been on the left side of the space and the dining room had been on the right with a wall separating them.  Finding the original flooring proved our hypothesis correct.  A major remodel in the late 70's or early 80's swapped the kitchen and dining room. This wasn't a great plan but wasn't half as bad as some of their other choices like hiding two junction boxes inside a wall or leaving wires spliced together …

Getting Ready For The Next Big Thing

Even while we were working on finishing the laundry rooms we are gathering the last of the materials for the another big project : the kitchen. It's hard to get a good feel for our kitchen/dining room without seeing it in person. However, I'll do my best to let you see what we are planning. When we bought the house the kitchen/dining room was accessed from the living room through this arch. The doorway between the living and dining room was enlarged to 9' and we added stairs to the basement. You can see that the new stairs took up most of the narrow dining room space. Our dining room is now only 3' wide.The kitchen has not changed much since moving in. We bought a fridge and stove but their pretty stainless steel finish doesn't make up for the many, many deficiencies in the kitchen.
Even if we ignored the lack of dining space the kitchen is deeply flawed. The cabinet bases are maple but someone decided they would look better with 1/8" oak veneer glued over the…

Laundry Room Before & After

For someone who hates doing laundry I am strangely excited to have a finished laundry room.  It is gratifying to see that all this work has paid off.  The laundry room is currently nicer than our kitchen.  But I needn't brag.  I'll let the photos speak for themselves.
Before - The laundry area was part of the kitchen/dining area Before - The future laundry room
In Process - We framed in a new laundry room in the basement and used it like that...for over a year. After - It's difficult to get a good picture without a wide angle lens
Before - Control wall for radiant heat system After - The controls are hidden behind louvered doors.  Built in cabinets provide ample storage underneath. The new doors can be opened to allow access to parts of the heat system or lifted off their tracks if complete access is necessary.
 Before - Space for a washer and dryer, but no work area After - Added storage cubbies, folding counter and laundry sink.  We have a 20" wide space next to the washi…

Make Over Cabinets on the Cheap

We don't have a huge budget for the laundry room.  There are bigger and better projects demanding our money.  To save money I made over old cabinets and was able to get a room full of custom cabinetry for under $100.

 It's pretty rare for my local store to have any sort of cabinetry so I was surprised to find this ugly sink base cabinet for $20. The laundry room only has space for a 24" cabinet; this one is 36" wide. The doors and drawer fronts are solid maple so I removed them and set them aside for future use.  This left the face frame of the cabinet.
 Then I cut the horizontal portions of the face frame and attached the shortened pieces to the side of the cabinet.  This created a new, smaller face frame with only one door opening.  I also built up the base of the cabinet so it would be 1" taller than the washer and dryer.  I found an old scrap of plywood to cover the toe-kick area.  Since it's getting painted the markings don't matter. 
Once the s…

Built-In Cabinet Wall

Yesterday I posted pictures of the new counter and sink in the laundry room.  Today I have an update about the opposite wall.  We want to cover the controls for the radiant heat but there is a lot of usable space at the bottom of the wall that I don't want to waste. We started by framing out the opening.  The wall is currently a little over 100" wide but my cabinets and doors are only 96".  This blocking will fill that dead space and give me something to anchor my face frame to. Then it was time for the storage cabinets.  I had two 30" cabinets that were above the old laundry area.  I also ripped out a 36" cabinet from the kitchen to complete the space.  These cabinets are beautiful maple, but some idiot glued an oak veneer to the maple frames and replaced the maple doors with plywood.

I removed the oak veneer and sanded down the frames to get rid of the glue.  The maple is so beautiful that I hate to paint over it.  I have no problem painting pine and I c…

Laundry Counters

This week we built something that Luke really didn't want to build: the laundry room counters.  I know it's just a laundry room but I really wanted butcher block counters.  I love they way they look with white cabinets and this room is going to have plenty of white cabinetry going on.  But butcher block was out of our price range.  Luke wanted to buy a 10' preformed laminate countertop and just trim it to fit.   There was nothing wrong with the laminate, it just wasn't what I wanted.  But Luke was swayed by the fact that we would save $100 by making our own counters instead of the laminate.  We started with this pile of oak flooring leftover from the back two bedrooms.    Because it has a beveled edge it does not match the original oak floors so I can't use it in our kitchen remodel.  But there's no reason to let it go to waste. We ran it all through the planer then glued and clamped all the pieces into one large board.  Luke spent hours sanding it down until …