Monday, January 3, 2011

First Stress Out

As the other owner of this grand home, I, Marlo, am posting for the first time and unfortunately it's not pretty. I'm admitting to having a melt down yesterday in regards to the kitchen remodel, or should I say the "kitchen in the making" since there is no kitchen currently. We're repurposing rooms, turning the original 12 x 12 single cook's kitchen into a laundry/mud room and turing the 14 x 20 dining room into the kitchen, since with modern living the kitchen becomes the social gathering place.

Some of the challenges are having two large, low windows on walls where cabinets need to be, wanting to use original butler's panty doors for upper cabinet fronts and needing cabinet boxes built, as well as using found original wardrobe doors for pantry front doors and also needing the box of the pantry built.

We purchased a nice kitchen island from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore store. It came with blue/grey corian countertops, one for the island and two more "extras". Problem is, I don't want blue/grey countertops. Yet with our very small budget, we're wondering if we can afford to purchase countertops for this large island and the base cabinets. I'm looking into concrete countertops...anyone know of a concrete coutertops maker who would be willing to give us a quote?

How to design the needed cabinets, counter space, appliance space and pantry space around the radiator and two tall, low reaching windows is quite challenging. Two kitchen deisgn guys have said it won't work. One said we're talking about creating a $50,000 kitchen. Um, that's not our budget. Other advice givers have said it can work, we're just not sure of the next step to make it work.

Wondering if we could dry wall over the windows on the inside creating space for kitchen use, leaving the outside of the house original, and have custom stained glass windows placed on the outside (originally, the house had custom Tiffany stained glass windows - so this would be in keeping with outside of the original house design).

For two novice restorers, this kitchen challenge is stretching my brain - trying to be creative with space, keep to the integrity of the house design, make it livable for a modern family, and work within a strict, small budget.


  1. Sorry this has been so stressful! I have no wisdom or answers to offer, but always willing to listen and to send folks your way as I come across anyone who has the skills you need!

  2. You guys are braver than I am! The idea of the window coverings with stained glass seems like it is promising and you wouldn't really know the difference on the inside or outside of the house. Enjoying reading this blog! You guys are on such a remodeling adventure.

  3. So the countertop is not as blue as I imagined it to be. It's a high quality countertop w/ undermount sink, dishwasher and pull down faucet. It really is quite nice. We're still working on the layout and design. We're getting there, one idea at a time.

  4. I am only just seeing this blog. I assume you already worked out everything with the kitchen? We did our kitchen remodel in an old farmhouse, even completely moving the room the kitchen was in, for less than $6,000. I've got tips and pointers! :-)