This will be another long post...there is so much to cover with a renovation! But I won't make you wait through my long story yet. Here are the before & afters first! (Sometimes I am a dessert first kinda girl!)
So, obviously before up there...and here is the after
So you have seen almost every angle of our kitchen now! And I also want to preface my comments in saying that the previous owners did have a lovely home...I am in no way saying that our style is better. It is merely different; a change. I would hope that I could be half the people this couple are. They have been married over 60 years and raised seven wonderful children. This may sound silly, but I still feel their loving energy here. They blessed this home.
I did feel this home on my heart. The first time my realtor brought me here, I walked through a few rooms and walked out. I thought, "Nah...". Later that night (as I seem to do all my thinking at night!) I woke Chris up and told him that was our home. I had a real certainty. Decisions are rarely this way, but I love it when they are. (Of course, in hindsight, all things appear more clearly!)
We didn't realize at first that we would do as much as we did. It was a lot of work! We moved to my mother-in-law's lake home on Lake Lanier in North Georgia. Thank goodness we could save that money we would have to have spent on rent!
We hired Professional Home Enhancements to do the renovations for us. Boy, you sure have to make a lot of decisions quickly when you have a crew on the clock! And most of this fell on my shoulders. Chris was shooting My Super Psycho Sweet 16, and he was gone ALL THE TIME! No wonder there is a 80% divorce rate for people who work on films (the crew, too! Not just the beautiful stars). I think so much of it that they are gone for so long and it can last for weeks and weeks. Chris is a family man, which is why he mainly works on commercials.
Back to reno....this really was a lot to undertake by myself, even though I had a real clear idea of what I wanted. So I got my friend (who I have mentioned before), Anisa Darnell, to be there for me when I needed her. So if you like our kitchen, I thank you...but it really was a Darnell-Holloway team effort. I hope to work with her in the future--(we hope to have a client soon at Big Canoe, GA...we'll see. Still under construction)
Some readers have asked for specific resource details...and I am glad to offer them. But I know this is long and there is a lot of information, so I will split the posts up.
Yes, this is a kitchen renovation on a budget. I know that the term "budget" is relative. I have seen budget renovations for $500 and up. Ours was around $17,000. This includes adding oak hardwood floors throughout (finished on-site). We almost ebonized them...very dark brown:
Olii likes to model for me.
We love these and would totally do them again. I love the continuity with hardwoods everywhere. I think they will hold up fine here.
I say never hold back with lighting. Spend some money here! It is some of the jewelry of your kitchen...and do we not live in our kitchens?
I'll say close to $2,000 on lighting. We have 1 chandelier (West Elm...I'll do specifics later), 2 pendants (PB), under shelf LED lighting, recessed lights, and 1 hallway flush mount (Lowes Schoolhouse light)
The biggest chunks went to:
Appliances (all Kitchenaid)
We were able to afford the mac-daddy 5-burner cooktop and panel-ready fridge because we got all white appliances. For us, we could care less about stainless...so this was a no-brainer. (But prepare to wait for white. No one wants it...it is all stainless these days...so a good bit had to be special order)
Labor: We still really haven't made the time to add up all the labor. We'll just say a lot. They were fast and efficient (would use them again in a heartbest), but there was a lot to be done!
See this simple moulding around the see-through? Looks simple. It was not! You should have heard the argument between the contractor and the cabinet-maker!! They called me later to apologize it was so bad. I thought I was being so easy with these "simple" designs. They sure let me know I wasn't.
A large chunk (really because of the labor) was the open shelving. Don't let this scare you off if you love open shelving (obviously I do)...but I had to be picky about it:
The plan all along was to have the tile ALL the way up!!! They tried and tried, but it just wasn't gonna work. I wouldn't compromise on the bottom tile, though (Walker Zanger Ashby Mosaic in high gloss white...worth every dime). I did not want brackets on the bottom...it just felt to country or something. I love the clean look of the tile and that straight line of the shelf (oak planks...they said they are so sturdy that we could sleep on them!)
The big cost was reinforcing the wall so they they could install re-bar (sp?) with that first oak plank. It would have cost much more had we done all the shelves this way.
I love how it turned out:
This shelf supported without brackets
more to come later....thank you for still reading if you hung in there this long. I have much to say about resources for the sink, faucets, brackets, knobs, pulls, lighting, etc.
Also, we did save $12,000 by keeping (and just refacing) the cabinets.
One more question before you go. How hard did you laugh at this scene?