The Project House: Kitchen Plans

May 30th, 2011

Okay so I admit that I have a thing for trends. I blame it on my parents for having us move every 2 years, I just like new! So lets go down the list of what this kitchen will have that is super trendy:

  1. White shaker-style cabinets
  2. Subway tile backsplash
  3. Dark hardwood floors
  4. No upper cabinets (on one side)
  5. Stainless steel fridge (not my favorite but the lessor of 3 evils and we’re too broke after all these renovations to get a panel fridge)
  6. Matte black soapstone countertops (is this trendy? if not it will be soon!)

I would love to paint the bottom set of cabinets a gray color, but I just can’t pull the trigger on that one, plus the wall color will be gray and I don’t want to bore everyone to death.

This week the new windows are going in! Here is a quick before:

And here is a current shot (all those boxes are hardwood floors yay!)Mr Project is tearing out the cabinets on the left as I type. The ones on the right will stay until we are ready to install the new cabinets.

Are you ready for the fabulousity that is to come??? Here is the Right-hand side of the kitchen (we’re extending it about 5 feet) and putting the return (peninsula?) on this side:

And here is the best part – the Left-hand side:

I melt every time I see this sketch. I absolutely love the giant wall of windows. Its so impractical yet wonderful. I’d rather have a few less things to store in the kitchen and be able to see the glorious outdoors. I don’t drink coffee but somehow I imagine my life will be like a coffee commercial in this kitchen. Here are some photos to help you visualize just how gorgeous this is going to be:

I’m so getting a purple off-the-shoulder shirt to wear in my kitchen….

Okay so back to my kitchen. Like I said before the windows are going in on Wednesday. However, the kitchen itself will not be remodeled for a few more months. Mr. Project a fine carpenter will be building all the cabinets himself! Which means several things:

  1. They will be super awesome and never break (he tends to over-build)
  2. They can look exactly how I want them to look including the fabulous cut-outs in the kick plates.
  3. This is kind of part of #2, but they will have flush doors (like in the above photos) where the doors are all flush with the cabinet face frame.
  4. They will cost a fraction of the price of custom cabinets
  5. They will take about 3 months to build (boo)

The pros definitely make up for the cons, and when it’s all done it will be glorious and look like a million bucks! I can’ wait!

Weekly wrap-up

May 29th, 2011

I decided several days ago that I need to be keeping a journal about everything that is going on and to document all things Oliver. So I’m planning on doing a weekly wrap-up every sunday accounting for happeinings in the previous week.

Renovations: Things are just getting more and more crazy. Spencer was gone nearly all day and all night every day this week. Its nice that he’s had a little bit more time to work on the house, but he’s just so tired because of it. I wish I could do more, but Ollie needs me, and he can’t be at the house. I did get a few hours in though – I removed the rest of the wall paper from the half-bath. A nice lady in our ward watched him for an hour while I went and scraped away and I managed to squeeze in another 2 hours while he was napping in a more safe room in the house after the workers had left. It was nice to get my hands a little dirty and feel like I put some work into the house as well.

I am having a hugely difficult time picking paint colors. The biggest issue is that I know what I want… so finding it is like a needle in a haystack. And every color has such crazy undertones.I thought I found the perfect warm gray… I bought a sample and tested it in the house, with the first brush-stroke, I knew I was in trouble… it seriously was PEACH, not even remotely gray. I was heart broken! So now I’m still on the look out. I did have one old sample that could be workable, but its just a little too cool for my tastes, it even goes blue in some rooms which is only slightly better than peach. I’ve found that the house tends to make colors go green, so anything that leans towards green is a no-go, so I have to lean towards red, but then you can get roses and peaches. I have mostly found that its very very very hard to deal with pale unsaturated colors. Even the desaturated ivory I picked out turned practically neon yellow-white when I tested it in the house. Paint is seriously going to send me to the loony bin! I begged my friend to help me tomorrow to naildown a color. I need to get this wrapped up and feel at peace about the colors, so that I can order hundreds of dollars worth of paint.

Home Ownership: We are terrified of our pool! Neither one of us has ever had one and we are completely clueless about maintenance. When we moved into the house, the pool water was in okay shape, so we ignored it for a good 3 weeks (not a good idea) on top of the previous 6 months of it being ignored while the house was on the market. Finally I called the pool man to come and install a new pump (the old one was working but on its last leg and an energy hog) and teach us how to manage a pool. The pool was clear until the day before our appointment when it promptly turned into a murky green swamp. The poolman came the next day and assured us that all would be okay we just needed to go to a pool shop to learn the ways of pool chemistry. We did this and Spencer has been following the instructions given to us and today the pool is a pretty blue color except for a little bit of extra green in the middle. It should be nice tomorrow and on Tuesday we can get the water tested and balance the PH. Then we can actually go swimming in it! I even bought Ollie a swimming suit in preparation. Here is the pool 2 days into fixing the algae issue:

Growing: Ollie is getting so big so fast. But you know what, it’s not sad anymore, its exciting and fun! He has the brightest eyes and such a curiosity to him. He has my eyes and sometimes I feel like I could get lost in them as if I’m staring at a mirror. Everyone says that he looks like me, and I think so too, but every once in a while, he looks just like his dad and it’s the best! He is getting really strong. Just in the last few days he has started being able to really sit with just some balancing help. He loves to sit in my lap in the morning while I answer emails (I love it too) though my computer is getting drooled on more than normal. He is also wanting to stand up. Before he would only use those leg muscles when he was mad, but now he will gladly show you how strong his little legs are. This is fun except when trying to put him in his car seat or his bathtub. In both of these instances he arches his back and pushes his feet full force on the closest surface. That gets old really fast… but I bet it only gets worse! I am excited for when he starts rolling. Right now the days have been so busy he’s been spending more time in his car seat than on the floor – which doesn’t help his efforts in learning to roll. Hopefully after the paint is chosen nearly everything for the house will have been purchased and I can stay home most of the time and get things organized for the move – which will mean  A LOT of floor time for the baby. At his 2 month appt he was 23″ and 11.0 lbs. This is up 3 inches and 3 lbs. He is a perfect 50th percentile, just like he was in utero.

Milestones: We are working on having Ollie sleep through the night. He is actually doing really well. After two rough nights, last night he slept from 8:30 – midnight… I woke him up at midnight to feed him, and then put him right back down. After that he slept till 6:45. I was amazed to see the sun without having to go to him at all during the night.  He is learning that he doesn’t need to eat as often. Today he went the whole church block (3 hours) and then some without eating, He has gone that long without eating before, but that’s usually when we are out and about. Today was the first time he made it through church yay!

Nicknames: I swear this child will not know what his real  name is. We are making a concerted effort to call him Ollie and Oliver, but we mostly end up calling him: little dude, dude, the boy, boy boy, sweet pea, baby boy, the babe, squirmy wormie, and all manor of other silly names.

Work: Right now I don’t have any major design projects – and that is really nice since things are a little nutty. But I am art directing a line for MME. I haven’t art directed any lines in more than two years, and now I remember how much I love it!

Word of the week: CHAOS! We are attempting to keep some sort of semblance of sanity amidst being the contractors of our own 2-month renovation. The apartment is FULL of boxes – half empty and half full of light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, misc bathroom hardware, door handles, vessel sinks, etc etc. with 4 weeks left though I need to get my behind in gear and start packing the empty boxes, and getting this place clean. Here is a snapshot of the chaos (the boxes have easily doubled since this shot):

Bathrooms, Bathrooms, Bathrooms!

May 29th, 2011

We had an interesting development on Thursday of this week… we decided that since every other room in the house was being re-done, there was no point in waiting to re-do the guest bath. I’d been wanting to do it, but since Mr. Project has to actually be the one to do the work, I didn’t want to push it. But he was the one who brought it up and decided that he wanted to take it on. So that was Thursday and on Thursday night he ripped out the whole thing. Luckily this bathroom has a nice shower with white tile surround, so we didn’t need to do anything with that.  So the toilet, vanity, mirror and light were removed, as well as all the underlayment with the 30 year old vinyl floor.  We had to find tile fast – no special orders – so we trekked to HD and Lowes. At Lowes we happened upon a fabulous spa-colored glass tile mosaic. We instantly fell in love and the best part was that it was on sale for $3.98/foot which was doubly awesome, so we couldn’t say no.

On Friday new underlayment was put on, and on Saturday our tile guy came and put hardy backer board down and leveled the floor as well. He was also able to lay all the tile pretty quickly-no cutting necessary. On Monday he will put the light grout in and that will be that! Here is how it looks now…

So pretty! It’s going to look even better once all the grout is in. So this room is going to have kind of a beachy cottage vibe (how could it not with this tile) so we decided to have some fun with it and put in some board & batten wainscotting. Here is my artistic rendering of how it will look:

That is what our custom ordered doors look like ( I love them!) Here is a photo where you can kind of see the doors.

Mr Project learned how to hang the doors yesterday, so that is on his list right after this board and batten gets put up.

Here is a good before photo of this same hallway. It feels so different with that mangy carpet and old paint.

And speaking of before photos, here is one of the guest bath, and imagine how great it’s going to look with the wainscotting and the gorgeous new tile. The wall color above the wainscotting will be Sea Salt by Sherwin Williams. Its very similar to the tile color, and just de-saturated enough for me to like it.

We will also put a new toilet in the guest bath. I believe we are going to do the Kohler Devonshire because it’s 50 bucks less than the Memoirs and it’s just a little bit different — at little more beach-cottage-esc:

And speaking of toilets… the toilet in the powder room has been installed! It’s so awesome to see progress being made:

We also made a change to the vanity in the powder room. Because of the demo in the guest bath, we needed a usable sink sooner rather than later. So having Mr. Project build the vanity for this room would just take too long. So we actually found a pre-built one at Lowes for $342 (!) and bought it on the spot. It’s still all wrapped up – so this is the best photo I have:

And here is the faucet I ordered:

And the new light fixture:

So now with the vanity purchased, the bathroom will be pretty much done – just painting left!

The master bathroom is also seeing some progress. Since the last time I updated it has gone from this:

To this:

To now this:

Here is a great shot of the floor a few days ago when all the plumbing was being done.

Its all roughed in now though (yay!) and we just have to finish framing and then our tile guy will put up WEDI board on the shower walls and start tiling the shower. That will give Mr Project time to get drywall up and prepare the floor for floor tile.  I am also trying to get a laundry shoot installed.

So you can see how quickly things are moving. It’s so fun to see the progress, we just need to keep on schedule so that everything is livable in 4 weeks.

Here is our updated move-in list:

  • scrape ceilings
  • tear down some unnecessary walls
  • remove ALL trim/casings
  • add necessary walls (frame, drywall)
  • put in recessed lighting, move outlets, fix non-working outlets
  • re-texture ceilings and smooth drywall (almost done)
  • Completely re-do half bath
  • Completely re-do master bathroom! (in progress)
  • Completely re-do guest bath (in progress)
  • put up new railing on stairs/overlook (parts ordered)
  • replace ALL doors (in progress)
  • Board & Batten in guest bath
  • replace ALL trim/casings + install crown moldings (order will be placed on Tuesday)
  • install all new underlayment
  • install all new hardwood flooring (ready to go)
  • Prime + PAINT!