Friday, February 13, 2015

Breaking Down the Daunting Kitchen To Do List Into Stages

I love the gray cabinets and wood shelves with simple brackets

Redoing our kitchen is very daunting to me and the prospect of actually doing it this year is scary and overwhelming.  It's not just putting in new cabinets and adding a dishwasher, I mean a wall is coming down and floors are being redone throughout the whole house.

I love the farmhouse sink and the butcher block countertops

So I decided to break it down into steps so I can take it on one part at a time.  I've also sprinkled some kitchen inspiration pictures courtesy of Pinterest throughout the post.

I love the colored dishes on open shelving popping off a white wall

Step 1: Reinforce the floor joists in the basement so the house doesn't shake as we walk through it anymore.  This connects to the kitchen for me because when we refinish the hardwoods as part of that project I'd like the floor to be all done and fixed.  This will hopefully happen in March as preliminary planning has begun.

I love the gray cabinets, farmhouse sink, and the warmth the wood brings to the room

Step 2: Take down the wall and put up the replacement beam to take the structural weight.  This is the part that scares me most out of all the steps.  Separating it from the kitchen being demo-d and not functional make it less stressful.  Also doing it first will help us to finalize the new kitchen layout before we even start the demo.  Until that wall is down there's some lingering questions about dimensions on that end of the kitchen that can't be answered till it is down and we know what we're dealing with.  Plus hopefully when it's down we'll be able to tell if there is original hardwood in the kitchen underneath the gross laminate flooring (FINGERS CROSSED!  I don't want to deal with it not being there).  Hopefully this project will happen in May.

I love that the backsplash goes up the ceiling and the open shelving
Step 3: Make a detailed budget and gather supplies.  I want to figure out all the little details, like how many sheets of drywall we need, how many can lights, how many tiles for the backsplash, which sink/dishwasher/exhaust fan/fridge we're buying etc and price it all out at a few different stores.  Then hopefully I'll be able to buy things as there are sales and coupons and know I'm getting exactly what we need at a good price.  I plan on buying things throughout the summer so when we demo in the Fall we have everything ready and waiting.

I love the exposed wood beams.  Now considering adding faux beams along the ceiling mimicking the actual structural beam

Step 4: DEMOLITION, BABY.  The most fun part of the process!  It doesn't take skill to pull out nails and knock out plaster.  The plan is to get to this point in the Fall and keep the kitchen as functional as possible for as long as possible.  We'll put the old cabinets in the basement or garage.

I love the dark wood and the subway tile

Step 5: Put it all back together.  Hopefully we won't hit any major delays (but I know we will) and this will only take a couple months.  This is the most exciting part: new functional cabinets, more counter space, A DISHWASHER, a nice big farmhouse sink, I CANNOT WAIT.

I love the bookshelf on the peninsula, and am wondering if we can have room for seating at our peninsula.  Also debating putting in a cookbook bookshelf or using some open shelving for mine

Step 6: Refinishing the original hardwoods for half the house.  This goes hand in hand with Step 5 since the floors need to be done before the cabinets can be put in.  If there are hardwoods in the kitchen we'll pull up the nasty laminate & carpet and have it all refinished (except the bedrooms so we can stash furniture in there, bedrooms will happen later).  Whether or not we rent a sander and do it ourselves or hire someone is still a topic of much debate in our house.

Love how the colored cabinet looks with the butcher block.  Also love the cupped handles

So the kitchen will pretty much be a year long blog topic as we tackle each step.  Hold me.


  1. To add to your discussions of who should sand the floors, you or someone you hire. I sanded floors in several places, using rented equipment. Then I hired a good pro for another project, and learned that his sander was way heavier than the ones I rented. Thus besides his skills, he had the heavier equipment to leave the smoothest floor, all spots sanded, no ripples either. I added more finish coats after the pro was done, on to the next customer, for longer lasting floor. Sanding was fun to do, with mask and goggles and separate clothes to wear -- so much saw dust! But the floor looks so good.
    Does a farmhouse kitchen sink mean one that protrudes into the room, like some of these photos? I would be getting bruises from walking into it and worrying about the little ones hitting their heads. Maybe that does not happen in real life.
    Wow, you have another hugely busy year planned for yourselves! Seems like you have tasks broken out correctly, and in the right order, so you can make decisions based on what is really there, and have the structure sound and strong. It would be great if the linoleum is hiding a maple floor. Hope it is. So much energy! Put to good use.

    1. Thanks for the input on sanding ourselves vs. hiring out!

      Yes farmhouse sinks protrude past the cabinets a bit. I don't think it'll be a big issue

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