i heart my kitchen

Since I waited 5 years for my kitchen, I want to relish in the newness for a little while longer, and take you on a tour of some of my favourite details of the renovation.

:: A sleek new range hood vent!

Now this might be strange for some of you, but to me, it was a godsend. You see, previously we didn’t have a hood that vented outside. There was only a fan above the stove that went nowhere! Crazy, right? That’s what I thought, too. Suffice to say, I never cooked anything really oily, smelly, or deep-fried for 5 years.

:: An extra wide, extra deep sink and a hands-free facet.

I can’t say enough of both of these features! First, the sink. It’s 10″ deep and one single giant basin, which is great for cleaning large pots and cutting boards. And see that mesh? Okay, so it was pretty expensive, but now that I have it, I love it. It prevents the bottom of the sink from scratching and it keeps the water flowing down the drain when the sink is stuffed with dishes.

Second, the facet. When hubby told me about this hands-free facet, my first thought was, boy, men really love their gadgets, but after it went in, I couldn’t be happier. It’s the perfect  solution if your hands are dirty, especially working with meat; you just tap it anywhere and, viola, it turns on! Fantastic in my book!

:: Pot size drawers! Nothing new here, expect I love them, I wish I had the space for more (I only have 2).

:: This is called a spice pullout. We put it in a narrow space we had between the stove and our cabinets. It’s meant to hold spice jars, but I use it to hold all my oil and sauce bottles. It’s the perfect size, nothing tips over, and no messy drips. What more could I ask for?

:: And finally, see that little white rectangle under my pantry? It’s called a toe-kick vacuum. Sweep the dirt under the pantry, open the little door with your foot, and whoosh! dirt goes away! Miraculous! It’s hooked up to our central vacuum system, so it was a no brainer to get that installed. I wish I could have one in every room of my house (especially all the bathrooms — except for hubby, we’re a house full of girls — enough said, right?)

Thanks for joining me on my little tour! Enjoy your day! I’ll be sipping a coffee, admiring my kitchen!


reno reveal and crossing off #7

Our recent renovation was complete a while ago, but I haven’t been able (read: lazy) to take photos or blog about it for quite some time. It’s funny, but unless I blog about it, I don’t feel I can cross it off my list.

Ignore the less than ideal lighting — it’s a rainy day today but I didn’t want to delay any longer or else I would probably never get around to making my kitchen presentable (read: clean-up the food, dishes, mess on the counters) and taking more photos again. So without further adu… here is my reno reveal.

This is the overall view of our kitchen looking in from our dining room:

This is the view standing in the kitchen:

We changed the layout of the kitchen by removing the U-shaped counter and adding an island. We chose to go with cabinet doors in a simple recessed style, in an antique white colour based on our home’s age, style and neighbourhood.

This is the view of our kitchen from the main foyer:

This is the view looking from our kitchen into the dining area:

We removed the wall dividing the kitchen and the dining room and added double French patio doors into our backyard.

This is the view looking at the other side of our kitchen where the refrigerator and pantry is:

We kept this layout the same, however, added a shelf for the microwave and overhead pot lighting on either sides of the doorway (leading into the office and main foyer).

New appliances were not part of our budget and we were a little nervous about how our original appliances (Jenn-Air black glass) would fit in our new kitchen. All of the photos that we saw showed examples with stainless steel appliances. Really, there are very little makeover photos using black appliances, however, we really love how the colours came together and complemented each other.

Overall, we are in love with our new space. Every time we come home, we feel like we’re walking into a brand new house. I love the feeling. I guess there’s something to be said about doing your renovation after you’ve lived in your home for a little while first.

Here’s the nitty gritty:

Cabinets: Kitchen Kraft; door style: Chatham; colour: Seashell
Hardware: Amerock, style: Revitalize
Countertop: granite, Antique Brown
Island: Calacatta marble
Flooring: natural stone, honed travertine, 12×24
Backsplash: botticino marble tiles
Paint: Benjamin Moore meditation

This is only part of our renovation, albeit the major part. Next time, I’ll show you my new favourite part of the house — our mudroom!

reno mondays: week 6


This was the week I was waiting for in our renovation schedule — the installation of our kitchen cabinets! I can’t describe how happy it was to see the cabinets in place. Hubby and I just  stood for a long time in the middle of the room silent and gazing. We can’t get over how different it looks.

And I just love our new mudroom!

There’s still a lot of finishing touches left to do, but it’s coming together nicely. The next big installation will be our countertops. I’m eagerly waiting for those and counting down the days I’ll be back at home. About 2 more weeks and I should be there. I can’t wait! Living away from home for 2 months is really getting old. Even my babe has hit so many milestones in the time we’ve been away, it’s incredible.

The next time I post will be the final before and after photos. Yippee! Please pardon the bag photography lighting in these pics. They were taken in the evening. The final set will have to be taken during the day in all it’s glory!

By the way, happy summer solstice today!

reno mondays: week 5

the making of a door

Something exciting happened in our renovation in the fifth week… a new door appeared!

I’ve been waiting eagerly to see this installed. Adding a French door in the kitchen to our backyard was one of the first features I envisioned when we bought this house 5 years ago.

I hated not being able to  entertain indoors and out directly from the kitchen — always having to bring food in and out to our barbeque from the laundry room! It was a horrible and inefficient design! But now my beautiful French door is finally here!

I love how the light shines brightly through the glass door panes! Gorgeous, won’t you agree? Love, love, love!

reno monday (on tuesday): week 4

colour week!

Our renovation is taking a little longer than I had hoped for. We’ve past our fourth week and there’s still so much more to do! A few set backs, such as the weather being too cold during a crucial period we needed the plaster to dry, and a delay in ordering our patio doors, were the main culprits.

But week 4 was all about walls and COLOUR! I was a little worried about the choice of paint — there’s so many to choose from. I was afraid of making a mistake, not loving the colour I picked, or changing my mind. I found this magazine to be extremely helpful. It was full of beautiful paints chosen by designers for every room, colour spectrum and even mood!

Wonderful calming and soothing colours, like daydream, seashell, or topsail.

And the best blues, such as blue toile, stillness, or dolphin’s cove.

We chose Benjamin Moore’s Meditation for the kitchen.

And Coventry Gray for the hallway leading into the new mudroom (former laundry room). I’m very happy with the colour choices. They look modern and sleek. I can’t wait to see the tiles and cabinets in place to really judge my paint selections. Crossing my fingers…

reno mondays: week 3

and then there were lights

Week 3 of our renovation continued with much needed electrical reworking, including the complete installation of our potlights. The new lighting makes such a dramatic difference. Before, the lighting in our house was always dim and inadequate. Now, we have lights in every room, controlled by dimmers and various switches. I love it!

:: In addition, the drywall went back up in the kitchen

:: and the window where the doorway will be made was prepared.

:: Lastly, the main floor closet was widened to make room for double bifold doors and more storage! I can’t say enough about having lots of storage space! Love!

So far, the project has gone smoothly with only a few minor, but manageable hiccups. The only thing I’m wishing is it would go along faster! I’m anxious to see the new flooring and cabinets installed. I was never a patient person!

reno mondays: week two

Week number two of our renovation was mostly behind the scenes type work. New floorboards were laid, new plumbing and electrical were in place, and new ceilings in some much-needed areas.

:: like the kitchen, where the ceiling had bulged in some areas due to water leakage in the past (before we owned the home).

:: and in the family room where the ugly old stippled will be scrapped and painted with potlights installed.

Part of the renovation is to move our old laundry room into the basement, where there is lots of room, and transform the room into a mud room complete with a sink, a bench, and shelves for baskets and storage.

I’m really excited for this part of the reno because with two growing kids, I see the mud room as essential for corralling all their jackets, shoes, mittens and school bags. 

:: so the plumbing for the new sink was installed, and the washer and dryer moved downstairs, along with new plumbing and venting in their new location.

And lastly, our tiles were delivered! Picking out our floor tiles was super stressful. We could not decide. We tossed around ideas with marble, travertine and even porcelain, but in the end we chose a honed ivory travertine. I think they will go nicely with our antique white kitchen! I can’t wait to see them go in!