I would hazard a guess that most homeowners eventually want to renovate their humble abodes one day. I’ve been dreaming and wishing and somewhat planning to Cinderella our house for, well, years. While we’re not exactly wanting to get to the ball, we’d at least like to get to the reception. Know what I mean? Thanks to the house flooding the week of Thanksgiving 2014, we’re finally *SOB* getting started.
Living Room/Dining Room/Office/Kitchen Before:
The living room is, shall we say, eclectic? When hubby saw what colors I’d chosen for the house ten years ago, all he really said was, “You’d better not want to repaint anytime soon.” Aww, way to go, sport! The support was shining through that day. Let’s just say this and the results in other rooms were born of merely two weeks to try and prepare for meager renovations back in the day: paint, new carpet…hmm, that’s pretty much it. Honestly, I thought these bright colors were a huge improvement considering all the dark wood trim, the wallpaper that was everywhere before and…. *shudder* …the paneling. I wasn’t glomming HGTV back then and I wasn’t scouring any sites like Houzz either. It was just me, the paint chip display at the hardware store and a huge lack of imagination. Plus the reality that any serious renovations would be a long time coming.
The dining room was taken up a lot by this gas fireplace monstrosity. Back in the day, this was a different homeowner’s living room. When the people just prior to us bought the house, that fireplace was fire engine red, from what we were told. We can’t blame them for painting it a more…err…reasonable color. But we never used it, never liked it and it’s too bad hubby and I weren’t there when the workers busted it up and took it out. Otherwise we’d have cracked open some champagne and christened that the day all our dreams came true. Over a fireplace? YES. It was in our way, presciousss!
By the way, those were asbestos tiles in here. Good times.
From the dining room you can waltz right into our old office space. That chair rail level paneling, it follows you every damn where.
Ah, yes, the kitchen. My little box of baking and cooking and hair pulling over the lack of functionality and counter space. You’ll notice the dishwasher is across the kitchen from the sink. Feel free to side-eye that. The fridge space, to the very right in the top pic (couldn’t get it totally in the shot) is way too small for 99% of today’s refrigerators. We know because we had to replace ours late last year and it came down to which of the beasts would FIT. Then there’s, yep, lack of counter and storage space. There’s way too much stuff on said counters, but there was nowhere else to put it. I even have some kitchen stuff stored in both bathroom storage closets.
Wait, it looks like there’s a lot of cabinets in here? True, there are for sucha small kitchen. But they’re mostly box cabinets with a lot of wasted space that my short arms and height can’t reach. The one cabinet where I stored pots and pans I could only use half of. The rest was back in a deep corner that even hubby could barely reach back into. So there you go – big lack of functionality.
In essence, no, there’s nothing wrong with these spaces. It’s been a very good house to us. Despite the busted pipe and resulting flood. And the multitude of other homeowner problems. It just doesn’t work for how many modern families live. The flow is…well, there was no flow. There was no one room in the house that could hold a party of people comfortably. There were always small groups here or there, separate. The kitchen was a joke at those times – it’s the heart of a lot of homes these days, and people like to gather there. I like to think it’s because they know the one that’s working their butt off to feed them is likely there and wants some company, too!
Living Room/Dining Room/Office/Kitchen Demolition:
So…does this look like the old living room, dining room, office and kitchen? When I said we were doing open concept, I meant it. The old living, dining and office spaces are going to be the new living space. The old kitchen is becoming the dining room. We did have to have some header beams for structural support, and while they couldn’t be wedged up into the attic because of how the trusses there are built, I don’t mind them at all. Cuz look at ALL THE SPACE. We may wrap the beams one day in wood as a nice accent detail. Maybe. All the places we had wood detail, like the door and window trim? Painting it.
Want to see where the kitchen is going? Sure ya do!
Uh…that’s a porch.
And now it’s closed in! Already having a slab and roof saved us a lot of money. Know who’s idea it was to move the kitchen here and enable us to get a BIGGER kitchen? Hubby.
I love him.
After 23 years, I think I’ll keep him. He’s also going to rebuild the deck as soon as possible to wrap around the new kitchen.
So inside the new kitchen, soon, will be our stove/oven on the right wall with a window and sink (where that square shape is) on the left wall. Upper and lower cabinets and a long-ish counter on the left as well. Shaker style cabinets. White on top, a dark, stormy blue-gray on the bottom. My next post will detail some of the finishes we’ve picked out.
This is the wall opposite the sink wall and there will be floor-to-ceiling pantry cabinets here with the fridge built in somewhere in them as well. The little bit of torn up wall you see on the very right is the old exterior wall and will soon come down so that the new kitchen and living space can hug each other all they want.
Soooo…we are excited! It’s not how we planned to renovate. We were going to turn kiddo’s current rom into the office first, fix up the guest room to be her new big girl room and THEN do the kitchen and living room. Houses don’t tend to let you have plans, though. You have to go with their flow, especially when busted pipes and floods happen. If you’d like to follow the pictorial progress of the whole shebang, here’s a handy link to the Flickr folder they’ll all be in.