Kitchen…many iterations

I am a chronic rearranger.  For as long as I can remember I have rearranged furniture, reorganized stuff, shuffled, moved, and then in some cases, put it all back where it was originally in the same day.

Not exactly sure why I do this, but one could guess it has some sort of underpinnings as a need to change and control.

In the nearly twenty years that I have been in my current home, I have redone the kitchen more than a few times.

Here’s a peak at the many iterations.

Upon moving into the house, the kitchen sorely needed attention.  The walls, floor, cupboards and appliances were dark brown and filthy.  The green laminate with burn marks and cracks went up the wall under the upper cabinets as a back splash.  I really like demolition work-so one rainy Saturday afternoon I pulled off all of the dark brown wall paneling and back splash with a crowbar.  It was so cathartic and liberating.  I had a huge pile of construction waste just outside the back door, a zillion holes to fill, and an unplanned renovation project on my hands, but the effort was worth it.

With a bit of help, we sanded the knotty pine cupboards down to within a hair of there useful life, added nickel hardware, bought new appliances, painted the walls white, put in a new maple floor, and felt so accomplished.

Iteration #1

After a few years or so, the wonky cupboards and mint green countertop weren’t working for me.

So, I hired a wonderful carpenter to make new doors and drawers while keeping the cabinet frames. Just seeing fresh, white painted cupboards was a welcome change, but the big advancement here was a mounted microwave convection oven above the stove.  I was so happy to have the big box microwave off the counter.  I was living large, so to speak.

kitchen2 micro white

Iteration #2

When I added the hanging pot rack, I felt as if I were cooking in a pro-kitchen.  It wasn’t long before I realized that hanging pots get really grubby if you don’t use them (wash them) regularly.  I sold the pot rack and the pots went back in the cupboard.  That was short lived.

iteration #2 plus some

Iteration #3, or perhaps 2 with some extra stuff

This configuration worked quite well for several years…. that is until I went to a high end appliance warehouse sale and spotted the dual fuel range of my dreams at the time for a bargain basement price.  It was a little bit dinged and dusty, but all bells and whistles were working and my adrenaline for a good deal was off the charts.  I had to have it.  While trying to flag down a salesperson to negotiate the delivery pricing which could have put the price out of reach, I literally wrapped myself around the range before someone else nabbed it.  I was talked into a hood and fridge at the sale and I went home a happy camper.

The new appliances were coming in a week- the space where they were to go wasn’t big enough- the range, hood and fridge were delivered and sat in the middle of the kitchen for two months while the carpenter reconfigured the cabinets to accommodate the new toys.  This was a huge indulgence.  I kept telling myself it was an investment.  Kitchens don’t appreciate, but the house around it would.  That logic satisfied me to justify the expense.

Iteration #4 the range

Iteration #4 the range installed

During this demolition I had the upper cabinets removed…loved the look, but missed the storage space.  Off I went to the consignment store with cartons full of kitchen gizmos and gadgets that I rarely used- oh, how good it felt to get rid of a hand crank,pasta machine used once in twenty years.

Lightening the load is good for the mind.  Less stuff to think about, move, clean and store.

On the left side of the kitchen I put a big cabinet that was made from some of the old upper cabinets for storage of cookbooks and special tableware.  That too worked for a spell until I decided it was too cluttered.

Iteration #5 the long table

Iteration #5 the long table

I added a long, narrow custom maple top farm table for casual kitchen dinners and Tolomeo great task lighting.

Somewhere along the way, I finally got around to painting the crown moulding that was installed after the upper cabinets were removed.  I only procrastinated about three years before getting that done.

Iteration #5 wall lighting

Iteration #5 wall lighting

One of the key features of the kitchen is the hearth.  When I bought the house it was multicolored, fifties style brick- I hated it.  After much deliberation about painting brick, I did it.  It’s not my favorite, but after staring at the yucky red, green, and gray bricks for ten years, the white paint was like a new beginning.

kitchen wreath mantel

kitchen8 long table copper

kitchen9 long table stove

Here’s the kitchen this morning…I’ve changed a few things in the past few months…

And yes, I have a pot rack again.  The difference here is that I now cook with copper nearly all the time as it is a dream to cook with and if I use the pot, the dust can’t glob onto it- regular cleaning- ha, such a good concept.

Perhaps it’s time for another iteration.

kitchen9a round table