Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Day 317- Where have I been?

Sorry for the absence. I'm at the point of irrational anger and frustration that there is still stuff all over the house. Our floor still isn't finished and I'm pretty tired of painting. Updates soon. I just need a break.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Day 305- Devil's in the Details

Many couples are not able to renovate together. My parents, for example, fought over how many electrical plus were needed in the kitchen. So growing up, we literally had a plug every 2 feet. They were all used, so I don't really see how that's a problem. The main thing was that plugs were what throw-downs were made of in my family.

Hubbs and I have had a relatively easy time picking out what would go into the kitchen. Granite? 1 day process to choose. Tile floor? 30 minutes and ohhh! Home depot clearance! Cabinets? We want white, what's the best price?

Back splash? Cabinet pulls? Faucet? We'd come to a screeching halt. Part of the problem is that we are too close to Christmas and all I want for Christmas is something glittery. <--- This isn't my normal MO. The other part of the problem is that we are pooped by making so many design decisions.

After several weeks of deliberations, here are the finishes that we have chosen to far:


We visited a local hardware store that has over 5000 pulls only to find ones we like from Restoration Hardware. And because I am cool, I spent 2 hours looking up coupon codes because I thought it would be really expensive to get hardware there.  In the future,  I highly recommend LOOKING AT THE WEBSITE FIRST. Yeah.... they were having a 20% off sale. Which was advertised right on the front page of the website. My bad.

Here are our pulls: Grafton by Restoration Hardware.

The best part is they come in 3 inch, 4 inch, 6 inch and 8 inch; so we could get all the same hardware and adjust sizes per cabinet. And Will schmoozed it up and got us free shipping on all hardware. 


Will went by himself with the following directive: silver, pull out sprayer and one hole. Wow.... this whole post is just begging for dirty jokes. Anyway, after wandering through the store for 2 hours, and looking online with me for close to four (not in that order) he came home with this beaut:

Note: We didn't install the soap dispenser or that large bottom plate. This was so it would fit in the huge sink that we bought. We are brave, but no brave enough to drill a hole in a 134 pound sink that could crack. No siree!  The faucet is Lindsey by Moen.

And just to make me extra fancy, I found this faucet on Moen's site:

They look very similar, right? Well, I feel fancy and flush with cash, as they have a $300 difference!

So, there are some of the details. Now, I'm off to paint considering my roller is thawed out. 

PS- Still working on backsplash. But we are taking ideas!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Day 299- Tool Time

Hey everyone, you know what time it is? TOOL TIME.

I was thinking about Trading Spaces (did anyone else watch that?), and how they always had a $5000 budget. Sometimes you got awesome new floors, other times you would get a room covered in moss, thanks Hildi! But the thing that always really got me is that they didn't have to pay for the several THOUSANDS of dollars in tools. I mean, Ty was out there with a pricey table saw, it's not like I can build a hutch with a hand saw and keep my sanity.

When Will and I started this project, I thought we were doing pretty well with tools. We already had:

- sawsall
- two power drills & 1 baby one for small projects
- one circular saw
- two hammers
- a rocket level and a four foot level
- numerous screw drivers
- Numerous wrenches, including a graduated set
- chalk lines
- Pry bars
- 2 tape measures

And various other little things. Note; these are all now strewn across the house. Someday they might make it home.

We already those tools, but we had to buy another circular saw (the one we had was eating through batteries like crazy, so we got a corded saw), a tile saw, mortar paddle, float, electrical screw drivers (safety first!) and floor scraper.

Enter Dad. I've mentioned before that my dad is a general contractor, so his garage is literally full of tools. And he mailed them out to us!

Now we have a jigsaw, router, hand sander, belt sander, bottle jack and another drill. It was like Christmas!

My point is; sometimes I think the extreme cost of home renovation is based on the need to have a room full of tools.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Day 294- Maybe a (lin)dingo ate your baby

That's right ladies and gents! We have all the cabinets in! They even have all the little do-dads that go along with them. Like doors, and shelves, and THREE lazy susans. I don't know if that last part means we are really lazy or we have too much crap. You can decide for yourself.

First, let's take a trip down memory lane, shall we?

This is where we started. Somewhere in what I like to call "The Sound of Music chic". A little knottie pine, some large hinges and let's not forget the metal tile back splash.

This was all accented by some lovely cornflower blue paint and flower printed laminate that had seen better days. 

And so we say, farewell dear Swiss chic kitchen. Auf weidersen, goodbye!

While we are at it, let's get rid of that peeling linoleum. And rotting MDF. 

Perhaps we should not have giant holes leading into our basement, but you notice that we still have the uppers. Oh, we were hopeful to not have to get rid of everything. 

Annnnnd, we were wrong! So let's take down the walls too. Right after the hole in the floor was closed up. Naturally. 

But, it was only for a brief time, there's our brand new drywall. Yes, some is still on the floor. 

Now we have the upper boxes in and all the drywall up!

And now... We have uppers! We have lowers! We have doors!

We have a penisula!  With drawers!

And BAM, now we have a sink and counter tops. And some floor. That floor is still not done. 

As you may have guessed; we have lindingo cabinets from Ikea. We really are liking them, even though all they currently hold are tools. Is tools? Someone help me out. 

So that is my big fancy, news. Anyone else have some fun news for me?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Day 290- Azul Platino

No, I'm not becoming bilingual (although that does say blue platinum), that's the name of our counter tops.

Hubbs outright rejected my plywood counter tops, but I am determined to make a table or bar or something with the plywood and copper treatment. So we went with granite instead. And the name of our granite is.... Azul Platino. 

That is our actual slab. And it went in today. 

By the end of this week I will be doing the cabinet reveal,  but be aware that we are without pulls. 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Day 289- Back on the floor

First off, I apologize for my absence, we finished the cabinets and I lost the camera cord, so you can't see the kitchen right now. But I will talk about the floor.

As I talked about here, we brought the kitchen down to it's studs. If you look at the linked post you can see our former kitchen floor in all it's wrecked glory. Hubbs and I spent many a weekend removing the linoleum,
Ok, so TECHNICALLY I'm removing the counters, but the lino is gone too

 then the rotting MDF,

 then the rotten plywood.

Our house would have failed OSHA safety regulations for sure. Now we have to build it back up (buttercup).

Hole in the floor BEGONE! 
Before my dad came out, Will and I were planning on making a mortar bed for the cement board. Cement board is great because it only hardens with moisture. We've already tested the boards by spraying water from the hot water pipe all over the room, and they seem to be ok. Moral of the story? ALWAYS know where the water main for your house is located, and those five gallon buckets are your friend.  Once Dad was here, however, he said we didn't need a mortar bed, because the plywood was mostly even. Level? No. Even? Yes. Instead, he recommended that we use roofing paper as a water barrier, then install the cement board on top.

Thus, we pulled out our handy dandy staple gun.... to find out we didn't have staples. So we hit up HD for staples, and they don't sell the staples for our current gun, and we had to buy a new one. Watch out furniture, I've got my eye on your old cushions.

Now that the holes in the floor were sealed up, we rolled the paper out and leaving 4-6 inches of overlap, stapled that bad boy to the floor:

Other awesome things about heavy duty felt? It's really easy to lift a shoe print. So don't commit a crime where this is on the floor. Oh, and I could felt the floor all on my own. Sweet!

Once we were all felt up (oh, yes) we proceeded to lay the cement board. We chose to use hardibacker cement board; it's more expensive, but also looked much stronger in the store. As in, the corners weren't crumbling. The rule with cement board is that four corners are never to come together, and that includes the sub floor. We chose to lay the hardibacker perpendicular to the direction of the plywood under base. 


Here's the bucket of screws we used. Pay special attention to the number on that bucket. That 800 number. And we had to go buy more. On the upside, I am totally using that bucket for painting trim. Oh, it's the little things in life. 

Once the hardibacker was attached with all 900 screws we went ahead and mortared the seams. I guess the hardibacker acts as a floating layer. Plywood doesn't move, hardibacker needs to be able to expand and contract with weather, so by mortaring all the seams we created one large base instead of 22 little ones, so our tile shouldn't crack!

Then we installed the cabinets (more on that later), and we are ready for tile. We actually picked up the tile week one of owning the house, before we knew that the whole kitchen had to come out. So here's hoping it winds up looking ok!

Offset pattern 
Showing off my buttering skillz

Tomorrow the granite comes. That means by Friday I might be able to wash stuff in my SINK. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Day 283- Shimmy Shimmy Coco Puff

We have upper cabinets, as you know. So now it's time for base cabinets. Usually, Ikea recommends these funny little feet things;

For those wondering; yes, we do have that particular cabinet.

but Hubbs and I like to over build and over engineer everything. The people who get this house after us will be confused. Some stuff will be really overbuilt (what we build), some stuff will be built just fine (original to the house) and some stuff will be practically falling down (previous owners). That might sound harsh, but you haven't seen our deck. Suffice to say that at least 3 support posts are just hanging off the bottom of the deck. We don't let people out there.

Where was I going with this? Oh yes, we chose to build a base instead of using the feetsies. This required many hours at HD buying the straightest wood (make your own joke there, people). And then we spent a ton of time measuring, and measuring again. Then Hubbs would go outside to cut and I would measure once more, just for good measure (HA! A pun!). Then we brought the bases into the kitchen and got our shimmy on. Our floor isn't 100% level, but those cabinets will be, so we used shims to bring the bases to level. And we used our handy dandy levels, all three of them, to check obsessively that they would be level.

Is the bubble in the middle?

Another really nice thing about building your own bases is that you can customize the height of the cabinets. Hubbs is pretty tall, so having taller cabinets is a huge plus. Not having to pay for custom taller cabinets is an even bigger plus!
See all the shims?

Since we finally picked out counter tops, we will have all the cabinets installed by this Friday so they can make a laser mock-up of what we need to get. That leaves us ready for tile this weekend. My, we are moving quickly now.

And on the menagerie front; Hubbs found this gigantic spider in his laptop bag. I've used a pen for scale.
Please don't eat me!
In my opinion, spiders shouldn't have eyes that reflect light. Creepy.  No worries, we put him outside to help control the skeeter population.