Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Our Kitchen - The Debut

Glory, glory, I love my new kitchen. It's the kitchen of my dreams, really. It's so small that we once wondered if there was room for the island, but there was and it works and I happily spend much of each day shuffling along the alley between the sink and my main food prep area.

The two upgrades we made were cabinets (white rather than oak) and the flooring (laminate rather than vinyl). We love both, though the laminate is mid-grade compared to the high-grade we had back at the farm and it does scratch more easily. Honestly, we cringe to think of what we spent on the high-grade stuff. This works well for us, was very affordable, and I'm a girl who doesn't mind a little patina.


Lighting makes such a difference in a room. I bought the white chandelier 9 years ago off ebay for $200 and I might as well have bought a brand new Mercedes. It felt super splurgey. But it has lived with us in 3 homes now. I can't imagine leaving it behind.

The over-sink light was $25 from Lowes in the outdoor section. We have no fancy under-cabinet lighting because this was a very bare-bones build and I truly can't say that I miss it.

See? Small. But functional! And happy.
It's quasi-eat-in, with the dining room table smack dab between the kitchen and our living room.

Repeat after me: Small houses build close families!
Or something like that.

{Click here to see more of our dining area.}

The island pulls quadruple duty (breakfast bar, food prep, homework station, junk-mail display) houses the trash can. (You can't imagine how dire my dad saw our trash can prospects in the little kitchen.)

We had the island custom built at Green Oak Antiques in Rochester, IN. The builder let me root around in his crazy-town work shop for reclaimed decorative wood (totally scored on those flowers!) and the main panels are crafted from old doors.

We screwed a bin pull onto the other side of the island to loop a dish towel through. Life saver!

The stools were found at TJ Maxx.

 Cory tiled the back-splash using subway tile from Lowes and a charcoal gray grout.

The bread lives in a locker basket. And the metal tag came from an old telephone pole at our farmhouse. 

Despite an overall lack of storage space, I waved my Impractical flag and opted to forego upper cabinets on both sides of the sink. We had open shelving in our old house and loved the look and accessibility.

The dimensions made it difficult, but after searching high and low, I found the perfect shelves at Joss & Main. Are you familiar with Joss & Main? You need to be! I have found some of the best things there - super unique and affordable. The sales change every day, so it's always fun to check in. All you have to do to get started is give them your email address. They don't sell it to other companies or any of that nonsense. It's fantastic! Go here to sign up.

We keep our everyday dishes on these shelves -- they're used too often to collect dust.

The little flower painting was bought eons ago for $5. It used to live in Ruby's nursery, back in the day.

What we lack more than anything in our kitchen is drawer space. I've gotten creative! I found this vintage metal caddy at a thrift store for $3 and the silverwear and cloth napkins now call it Home.

The other side of the sink has a vintage battery display for my thrift store mug collection and dish towels.

It felt risky to do two different things on each side of the sink. In the end, we scoff at symmetry up in here. 

And did you catch the artwork above the mugs? I had no choice!!

I popped the Katie Daisy print into a frame I already had and called it a day. Eventually I'd like to find something larger and with more contrast for the area, but right now, this is just what I need to see every single day. I love it. 

We're still rocking the napkin curtains. They are better than ever here.

The best part of this space?? The sliding door!

It came from the school I attended for 13 years. We bought it at the pre-tear-down (sniff sniff) auction for $8. I think it may have been the door to the nurse's office, which is peculiar because I don't remember our school ever having a nurse.

Cory hung it himself using this method after realizing that a real track can run hundreds of dollars.

I found the art at a sale a few months ago and it was instant love. The guy said he brought it only because he thought someone might like the frame. (The frame???) And to quote him, "My wife said 'Jim, what the h*ll are you doing bringing that junk in here?'"

Ladies, listen to me: This is why we thrift. This is good work we're doing here. Humanitarian, practically!

I bought it for $15 and I can't stop loving it.

There you have it. Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments and I'll do my best to get you the answer!

Wall color: White Dove - Benjamin Moore (We had 6 whites to choose from. ha!)
Island color: Twilight Meadow (Valspar at Lowes) 5007-8A, eggshell finish
Countertops: Pionite Graphite Talc (AG361 suede)
Floors: Inhaus - Shenendoah Hickory (Timeless Impressions collection)
Cabinets: Wellborn - Franklin (maple, white)
Cabinet hardware: Lowes
Island: Green Oak Antiques
Open shelving: Joss & Main
Love Has Come print: Jerusalem Greer
You Shall See Wonders print: Katie Daisy

*Joss & Main links are affiliate links