Sunday, May 16, 2010

A not-so-mini kitchen redo!

Helloooo there! Hope you had a great weekend!

I am SO EXCITED to share some fun news with you – I’m talking giddy, I am not worthy, glorious news.

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I have been planning a mini redo of our  kitchen:

It’s usually a bit more dressed up than in this picture, but I had just decluttered, so the extra stuff was outta there that day. :)

I think I totally freaked some of you out when I said I might paint the cabinets. I kid! I kid! I’m not going to paint (most of) them! Really, I love our gorgeous cherry/maple cabs and I am not planning on touching (most of) them!

I am so annoying. I know.

My mini redo plan was to do a new backsplash and replace the sink and faucet. The faucet I told you about a long time ago in this post:

It is the most fantastically annoying faucet ever made. It’s SO low, so basically anything I wash/fill/rinse smacks into it when I am trying to wash/fill/rinse it.

And since we moved in six years ago, the sink has bothered me because it was installed crooked. I showed my husband once and he just shook his head at me, but it’s true. A whole half inch. That’s like, two feet in Sarah-length. It drives me mad.

Plus, I realized ohhhhh, about two months ago, that the wrong sink was installed. It’s not what we picked out. Six years ago. So I notice a half inch of crookedness within days, but the wrong sink I don’t notice till last month.

Fantastically awesome, I am.

Anyhoo – my mini redo was going to be enough to lighten up the space and make me happy.

And then I heard birds singing. Actually I didn’t hear anything – it was an email from American Express. My dear friend Jessica (she’s a dear friend now anyway) asked if I would like to participate in their spring home makeover initiative to promote their Membership Rewards program.

Um. Yes. Yes I would.

Jessica, my BFF, explained that they are trying to show how card members can use their Membership Rewards points to pay for home improvement and decor items. I know many of us use them to pay for travel, but I was completely shocked at what you are able to get for your home with points as well. I’m talking gift cards to Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, Restoration Hardware…swoon.

Because I am the crazy nut that I am, the one that got me the most excited was a big orange gift card that said “Home Depot.” You’ve got to be kidding me.

Sooo…Amex has given me reward points to transform a room in our house! I am completely beside myself and feeling quite blessed that I was chosen to be a part of this opportunity. I was asked to pick a redo of our master bedroom, family room or kitchen. And since the kitchen was in the works anyway…it was a pretty easy decision.

I am pinching myself! Gleeeee!!

It's hard for me to pay to have anything installed, so I hope to show you the how-to on a lot of the projects I have planned. Your dollar goes so much further when you tackle it yourself.

So here’s the rough plan for the kitchen over the next few weeks:


Pretty self explanatory with those nifty arrows, but I hope to master the art of coping with crown molding – and I’ll show you how it goes. We had the ceiling painted (same color as the walls) in our great room space years ago, I’ve been positively itchin’ to get white crown up there against the wall and ceiling since then.

I have a grand plan to drive two hours to our nearest Ikea to purchase butcher block to replace the island counter. I’ve never been to Ikea. Never used butcher block. Never replaced a countertop. We’ll see how that goes.  ;) It will have to be cut to the size I need, and I’m still working on that as well.

From what Nice Ikea Guy told me on the phone, they don’t have the dark wood tone I want, so I am doing a little research – I think I can stain it and then finish it off to protect it. (We will not be prepping food directly on the counter.)

I’d like to look into some new accessories for above the cabinets. It’s been years since I changed much of it out, so I’m really excited about that. (And I may be able to buy some items directly from Pottery Barn?! What the what? Without making my own knock off?!)

I’m also getting rid of the black, shiny backsplash and I have an idea to give the refrigerator area a more custom look:

backsplashI also hope to put glass fronts in a few of the cabinets to break them up a bit. You know how it goes – I see it in my head…but we’ll see how that vision turns out.  ;)

I have this dream of a gorgeous chandelier over the island, but I think it would be too much with the light over the table, the sink light, the recessed lights, yes?:

pot rack

So instead I’ve already removed the pot rack to see how it looks without, and I cannot tell you what a difference it has made in here!! It really seems twice as big. Hubby and I both stood back and were in awe. Crazy what a difference the simplest changes make. (I’ll show you soon!)

I hope to darken the stain on the top of the kitchen table, and perhaps paint the base – maybe cream, maybe black. I’m not sure yet.

The bay window area will get some changes as well, including a lighter coat of paint on that wall. (It’s quite dark there in real life.)

By the way, bear with me on these pictures – I copied them from different posts over the years.  ;)

I have MANY more projects in mind – and they won’t all get accomplished over the next few weeks of course. But I’ll share my plan, the process, and the purchases along the way.

Starting with this week – I was asked to use 50,000 Amex points to start, and with that I was able to buy a $500 Home Depot gift card. (Hate me, I know. I’ve been there. Seriously.)

So this weekend I bought the black granite kitchen sink I’ve been ogling for two years now:Pegasus AL20MB Granite Double Bowl Kitchen Sink in Black

And because I thought an oil-rubbed bronze faucet may disappear against the black sink, I got a stainless set (to match the appliances) similar to this one:

Moen 7730SL Monticello Single Handle Kitchen Faucet - Stainless Steel

And this is where I’d love your thoughts – does anyone have a single bowl sink and love it? Hate it? I love them but don’t know if they are practical for us. I am constantly rinsing paint brushes and sanding blocks and all that good stuff, and that all ends up in the right bowl in our sink for weeks days. So I feel like I need a spot to put clutter. Isn’t that great? :) But I would love your thoughts if you have a large, single bowl sink.

Also, I was thisclose to purchasing the faucet that you pull out, with the sprayer on the end of the nozzle -- I wasn’t sure how well it would hold up though. Anyone have one? Can you adjust the spray pressure? Has it held up well?

Basically – is there anything concerning a new sink or faucet I need to know? We’re having a friend (or my Dad? Wanna come over?? Smiles sweetly.) help us with the installation, but we are just a teensy bit clueless on what to pick out. I’ve never done this before peeps. I would love your thoughts!

And because I am so excited about this redo, I already started this:


Aren’t you SO GLAD you don’t live with me?  :)

I’m thrilled that there’s a little somethin’ somethin’ from Amex coming for one of you too!  Stay tuned for a great giveaway in the next few weeks!


TDC is one of five blogs picked to promote the Amex Membership Rewards program.
I have received reward points to use as I wish to redo a room in our home.


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