The Kitchen Reveal!

Hey everyone!  I've been talking about this big project that we've been working on for what seems like a very long time, so I hope I haven't created a bigger build-up than it deserves.  You just have to keep in mind that we are older, move slower, & take longer to make up our minds about "stuff."  This was definitely how it went with our kitchen.  This is going to be a long post with tons of photos; so grab a snack, something to sip, & please keep all sharp objects locked away in case you feel like harming yourselves because this post is soooo.... long!  Here we go and you've been warned....lol!

It was truly a very nice kitchen from the get-go but just needed some TLC.  Here are a couple of pics of what it looked like just before we moved in last August.
A "sea of tile" with tiled countertops & floor.  I truly don't think anyone cooked in this kitchen, because the tile & grout were pristine. 

The dishwasher was broken (thank goodness), so it got replaced right away.  
Matchstick roman shades -- gotta go!

By early November, we had already made some major changes.

New granite, stainless steel dishwasher & refrigerator, stainless sink, shutters, cabinet hardware & a "wimpy" but much needed pendant over the island.  

Looks good, & we thought we were finished, or rather The Man thought we were finished!  I think he actually forgot, momentarily, who he has been married to for 43+ years -- silly man!

This was also when I scooped up my little oak kitchen table & chairs on Craigslist.

Looks cozy...........

Very user friendly with lots of counter-space.

Large island......are you waiting for the "but," because it's coming!
BUT, the kitchen & breakfast room just didn't feel complete.  It needed somethin', somethin'!

Now, if you are expecting to see white cabinets, nope, that didn't happen.  Oak cabinets are getting such bad press these days, & painting our cabinets white was something we thought long and hard about doing.  We chose not to do that because of the size of our kitchen, the light tile, white shutters & the fact that it's super-hard to make oak look good painted white.  I know some of you have been successful at doing this, but we had our concerns.  Maybe it's because we're older, but we actually like the beautiful grain designs of stained oak -- so sue us!  We did want some contrast, & The Man wanted to add crown above the cabinets & decorative trim below so that he could conceal the lighting he wanted to add in both places.  We also wanted to add a cabinet to the left of the sink (always looked like something was missing), & I wanted a desk-buffet under the window in the breakfast area.  Knowing that it would be almost impossible to get those pieces & have them match the existing stain, our solution was to go "dark."  We used a Rustoleum's Cabinet Transformation Kit in Espresso on the island, some of the trim & the cabinets we used for the desk-buffet.

I did the following collage so you can see the immediate contrasts of the before's & after's, but there are many more photos to come -- just incase you hoped thought this was it!

Using the Espresso on the trim between the cabinet top & the crown & also on the trim around the bottom of the cabinets, was The Man's idea.  He had done something similar in the kitchen of our last home & always got compliments on it.

The first thing we used the Espresso on, however, was the oak table top.  We didn't think we had much to lose, because the top was really beat up.  We were nervous about this color & needed to see it on something in our space.

We loved it immediately.  The color was just what our kitchen-breakfast room needed.  As I worked on the table, The Man worked in the garage (it was so hot) on the trim pieces.  The Rustoleum kit includes everything you need, including an instruction DVD, but it is a 4-step process which takes quite a while.  It worked out best to do everything we needed to do in stages.

Timing is everything, so THEY say, which meant we could work on another kitchen project while we waited for the painted pieces to dry and cure.
We had been wanting to add a backsplash but were slow in deciding what we wanted.  We also didn't want to spend an arm & leg to do it.

Thank you, Costco, for having this great glass & stone mosaic tile!  It was exactly what we had been looking at in some other places, but it was quite pricey.  Costco had boxes of 5 sheets for $20 -- so, yes, we scooped up enough for the kitchen & laundry rooms!

This is a close-up of the tile (sorry for the glare) & the dark trim The Man added to the bottom of the cabinets to conceal the lighting.

Here's a close-up of the trim & crown.  I don't know why the top of the crown looks funny on the upper edge -- some reflection, I guess.

Better view of the tile.  We had never tiled before, so this was quite interesting, & we didn't even get too upset with each other -- heehee!

Here you can see the new pendant light above the dark island & the new upper cabinet to 
the left of the sink.

I really like having the desk-buffet under the window.  And, yes, we are going to be painting the chandy to match the oil-rubbed bronze pendant -- it just never ends, does it?

I can't believe what a difference all the extra lights make, both above & below the cabinets.

I'm not going to share close-ups of most of my vignettes at this time, but will do a separate post since most of them are Fall-related.

I could see myself blogging here, but I think it will be used more for buffets.  I also have my cookbooks in one of the cabinets, so it's a great place for menu-planning.

Oops, forgot to put away that step-stool!

I love the reflections on the wall & ceiling from the lights.

With the under-cabinet lights, I don't even need to turn on the recessed lights in the ceiling unless I'm using the island.  

One last look, because the previous "gazillion" pics just weren't enough, right?

That does it for now.  You will be seeing more of our kitchen-breakfast room in upcoming posts as I share some of my Fall decor in these rooms.  I'll also be posting about our laundry room makeover which was going on at the same time as the kitchen -- yeah, we may be old & slow, but we don't shy away from hard work!  Actually, we are a bit DIY shy right now as we wait for tired, achy 
muscles to heal.....lol!  I am so happy that you stopped by, and I truly hope you will come again soon.


I'm happy to be linking to the following parties:

Susan  at Between Naps On The Porch for Metamorphosis Monday 
Marty at A Stroll Thru Life  for Table Top Tuesdays 
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays 
 Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Katie at Katherine's Corner for Thursday Favorite Things
 Kristen at Kristen's Creations for Share Your Creations on Thursday
Heather & Vanessa  At The Picket Fence for Inspiration Friday
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday

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