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Posted by on Jan 6, 2012 | 1 comment

A Family-Style DIY Kitchen Renovation

A Family-Style DIY Kitchen Renovation

Last month we featured Sarah and Lee’s charming bathroom renovation. But that wasn’t the only upgrade they made to their as-is Del Ray rowhouse — the kitchen was in even worse shape than the bathroom. It didn’t even come with a refrigerator.

Sarah sent me a couple of shots from the renovation. Here’s a look standing in the original dining room. The doorway to the right leads to the kitchen  — does that linoleum floor give you an idea of the condition of the room?

kitchen before

The doorway straight ahead actually used to be a window overlooking a sad and dreary addition with paneled walls. If you look closely you can see the worn carpet and popcorn ceiling. The addition was wasted space, closed off from the rest of the house, and offering nothing more than an eye sore.

With the walls gone, an expanded, modern eat-in kitchen would be on its way. First up, demo.  Below are the remnants of the wall dividing the kitchen from the addition and another shot at the awesome 1950s floor.

kitchen before        kitchen before

You never know what you’ll find in an old house during demo, and unfortunately Sarah and Lee discovered mold behind the paneling in the addition (far right of the picture below).

kitchen before

But once mold was removed, pipes were replaced, and gleaming new hardwood floors gave the tired old carpeting the boot, here’s how the room looked.

kitchen after

Doesn’t that stove just make you want to cook a tasty meal? And the stainless hood lifts your eyes up to that dazzling pressed tin ceiling (more on that later).

They considered putting cabinets opposite the stove. After consulting with her brother who is an architect (what a handy family!), Sarah decided she’d rather have space for a table and chairs. Though this limits pantry storage, it makes for a warm and welcoming eat-in kitchen.

The backsplash wasn’t an easy decision. It literally took years after the renovations were complete to decide on what type of tile to use — they considered subway tile, mosaic tile and finally agreed on Mosaic Source Sumi-e glass tiles.

But what an excellent choice. I especially like how the tiles pull the warm earthy colors of the room together.

kitchen after

Their plan was to keep the sink, dishwasher and refrigerator in the original kitchen area and expand the workspace and stove along the wall into the addition. This required moving the gas line, so they hired a plumber to do this as well as replace the water pipes. Here’s the view into the revamped original kitchen area.

kitchen after

Remember when it looked like this? Wow — what a transformation.

kitchen before       kitchen before

Sarah’s dad did all the electrical work and installed the cabinets. Sarah said her dad has renovated just about every home they lived in growing up (there were many).  He’s president of his local Habitat for Humanity in Vermont.

Everything is neat and tidy behind the glass door upper cabinets.

kitchen after

I love the hardware on the base cabinets. There’s even a wine shelf (kept empty because of a curious little toddler roaming around the house).

kitchen after

The crown jewel of the room is the sparkling pressed tin ceiling. This was Sarah’s inspiration for the entire project. The best part is the ceiling (from the American Tin Ceiling Company) uses an interlocking system, making it easy for Sarah’s dad to install. He installed the ceiling directly over the popcorn.

kitchen after -- tin ceiling

Through creativity and some family teamwork, Sarah and Lee’s as-is kitchen became a sunny showroom, tastefully designed, carefully crafted, and with a nod to vintage style. And in case you missed it, check out their bathroom renovation for more ideas how to transform a dated room.

Posted by Katie

1 Comment

  1. Love the tin ceiling!
    If anyone is interested, i have a load of those tin tiles i will sell cheap! They’re left-over from an old project…
    Call Lori @703-582-7281

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