Updating our 1930's kitchen.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016


The kitchen in our new house was in pretty rough shape when we first saw the house. There had been some water damage across an exterior wall (which has since been repaired) which was torn down to the studs, and the flooring was starting to come up due to it's age. There is still a lot  that I would like to do (new appliances, new countertop), but for now we've tidied it up with some paint, lighting and flooring on a pretty tight budget. I really love this room now. We have so much more counter space for preparing meals, and there is even a little breakfast nook (which we have yet to furnish!).





Our sunny kitchen window.
Buying the house and doing the major repairs, like replacing the furnace and taking down the chimney, sucked up a lot of our resources. We didn't want to get into any debt prettying up the place, so we've chosen projects that we could DIY.  We removed all of the cupboard doors,  removed the antique hardware, filled  the holes and sanded them down, then painted our cupboards in a two-tone colour scheme with white up top and grey-ish blue down below. We took a lot more time and care painting our cupboards this time around than we did in our old house. Let me tell you, painting cupboards is an ordeal. It is not a quick and easy project. It is long, annoying, and grueling. Be prepared to have your canned goods and dishes strewn throughout the house for weeks.




One of the most annoying parts of the paint-job was that the hinges had been painted over. We had to chip away the paint in order to fit a screwdriver into the screws. That alone took us a day, at least...

We replaced all of the vintage red hardware with new chrome cup pulls and knobs from ikea. We also had to replace the hinges. Hardware adds up, but it made a bit change.


We replaced a small piece of the countertop over the dishwasher. It wasn't even really made of countertop material, just some plywood with old tile on it. My parents recently renovated their kitchen and had a piece of wood countertop left over from their island they installed, so we were able to get that for free! I would like to eventually replace the rest of the countertops with the same, and tile the backsplash. I'm particularly proud of this little piece of countertop because I personally demo'd it. That sucker was screwed it good.

A little built-in in our breakfast nook



One of the things I've had the hardest time adapting to is our new range. First thing, just look at it. How the heck do you use that thing? I actually had to read the manual. Second, it's a gas cook top. I've only ever cooked on electric, and as a result burned ever grilled cheese sandwich I made for the first two months living here.  At first I really did not like this range, but it's really grown on me!


I really agonized over the flooring for this room. The rest of this house has hardwood (except for the extensively tiled bathrooms). I had originally envisioned tile, but we are dealing with a pretty lumpy floor and did not want to get into a new subfloor. We ended up choosing vinyl plank flooring, which was easy to install and is really easy to maintain. Dan and I are getting really good at laying quarter round.

A little place to hang our hats.
 I am happy to have kept many of the original features of the house, like the tall cupboards, but am glad it has a more updated look.  I'm also really happy the work is done (though I just remembered we still have to paint the trim... ugh).

I keep thinking back to our little apartment we shared in Orillia. We literally had one little block of counter space, which was usually filled with dirty dishes.  Now it feels like we have so much room. The four of us (don't forget Oliver!) can be in here comfortably with room to spare, and Dan takes up a lot of space so that's saying something! (Love you, Dan, but you are super tall)


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