Six years ago, I peeked through a dusty north bay window into the long kitchen of a foreclosure that was soon to be ours. Here’s what I saw:
- Orange sherbet walls
- Black trim on cream-colored cabinets
- Orange checkered linoleum floors
- Buckling cream vinyl countertops and backsplash
I was very impressed.
After removing the view-blocking cabinets, applying fresh paint and installing quartz countertops as well as a white subway tile backsplash (laid by yours truly) the kitchen was on it’s way! Still, since the room spans almost the entire back side of our house there are lots of gaps to fill, and I’ve spent the past couple years mulling over how to solve this long kitchen conundrum. Thankfully, my friend Serena over at Thrift Diving is hosting a Make It Happen March Challenge!
Room challenges are always a great way to break out of a rut, and I’m excited about the solutions I will find to the following conundrums….
Welcome to my long kitchen!
Here is the south side:
The addition of the rug (which I painted) and the tall island has helped tremendously in creating flow. Before their arrival, the space was so…dead.
Here’s the backstory to my beautiful, handmade island….
Ok, so last spring, I visited a friend’s home and was quite taken with her kitchen table. She told me her husband built it. Ding! I immediately thought of the pile of old decking sitting in our back yard waiting to be turned into something spectacular. They were the partially singed deck 2x4s the construction workers had pulled up after our November 2013 house fire. A few weeks later, I hauled five pieces of this California redwood decking over to my friend’s house and a few more weeks later, her husband delivered this fabulous island.
Conundrum #1: Which color, which color?
As much as I preferred the soft, natural look of the bare wood, I had to seal it for kitchen cleanliness sake. The polyurethane brought out the yellow in the wood which meant that staining the base and legs a driftwood grey (like I had originally planned) would have looked funky. So instead, I painted the base and legs white. Then grey. Then white again. Then black. And after all that, I’m still not sure that black is quite right. Would the island base and legs look better in a white that matched the cabinets?
Conundrum #2: Stools are too tall!
I love these stools which a friend gave me, but they are too tall. They also need a new coat of paint.
I’m really nervous about sawing down the legs because I don’t like saws, and the probability of me cutting the legs unevenly is very high. I also can’t decide which color to paint the stools. Perhaps a robin’s egg blue…or grey…or yellow…or back to grey….
Now that you’ve seen the south side, here is the north side:
Despite the too-narrow-but-still-fabulous rug, this chest of drawers (which doubles as a cat feeding station and linen storage) could use some flair. Perhaps some new drawer pulls?
Conundrum #3: The long, lonely wall.
My next conundrum is this long wall connecting the north and south halves of the kitchen.
Tis a long, lonely wall which has been improved by the gorgeous window pane gifted to me by a friend. Still, the window pane needs a partner.
My options for filling this space are either:
- a long, wooden church pew
- a coffee station/bar
I’m leaning heavily towards coffee bar. And I may just build it myself. (Even though I don’t like saws and other power tools!)
Conundrum #4: Icky, icky, icky!
Underneath the lonely window pane is the icky kitty dining area:
My apologies. However, in my defense, I have yet to find a food mat that is designed for cats. They’re all for dogs and have words like BOW-WOW and WOOF-WOOF printed on them.
I might wind up crafting my own food mat or other system.
Conundrum #5: Clutter spots.
What kitchen is complete with piles of this and that?
I appreciate the convenience of my little note-taking/gum-stash station, but it could stand to look less like a pile. Perhaps a larger tray?
The top of the fridge is also another random spot that is hard to put my finger on. It looks too bare with nothing on it, but a large basket looked strange and pretty glass bottles looked flat. Hmm……..
Conundrum #6: Black or white?
The back door leading to the Rumpus Room needs a paint job. However, instead of white, I’m wondering if a coat or two of charcoal black paint might look sharper. But then again, I could be wrong, and it’s hard painting over black paint.
I’m excited, but also feeling very challenged. Who knows? Maybe I’ll be comfortable with power tools by the end of this March challenge. Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to walking into our long kitchen without wondering “What is wrong with this space?”
What do you like/dislike about your kitchen?