Sunday, January 31, 2010

the kitchen chronicles - Part 5

Island Transformation Preview

Now on to the Island.  If you've been following The Kitchen Chronicles you've seen the Island was built and painted red for this kitchen. It's been red for almost 3 years.

But now as this part of the kitchen goes through some changes, so does the Island. This change in colour is in preparation for a new countertop, (coming soon).
As much as I loved the red, the black really pops in the kitchen and will be a terrific contrast to the aged cream new cupboard doors.  The distressed areas of the island show the layers of paint this piece has gone through giving off a true aged look.
Now you can help me out with the 'stool' situation.
Take a look at the poll over to the right --->
Let me know what YOU think should be done with the stools?



Saturday, January 30, 2010

the kitchen chronicles - Part 4 - glazing cupboard doors

Glazing Painted MDF Cabinet Doors

Ok.. So we've covered the priming and painting of the cupboard doors, and after a day or two of drying time it's time for the next step.   Once the paint has thoroughly dried take a sanding block and once again lightly sand the doors, just to smooth out any remaining bumps.

In this picture I have lightly sanded the paint and distressed edges in preparation for glazing.

Apply the glaze in the edges first and on sanded, distressed areas.

Wipe down with damp cloth leaving glaze in the crevices and on the raw edges.

The doors on top are finished

Here is a little sneak peek of what it's going to look like with the hardware
We're getting there!

Next Up.... Island Transformation Preview

Thursday, January 28, 2010

apple pie in a jar – a little diversion !

I’ve been so busy sanding, priming, sanding, painting, sanding, sanding, painting, that I just needed a sweet diversion.   And here it is! 
Apple pie in a jar.   In case any of you have missed this phenomenon in blogland, here is where I found it.  These gals are amazing!!! Our Best Bites has the recipe over there. Check it out.
These little babies were a hit in my household !
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Ok… Now back to our regular scheduled sanding, painting, sanding, blahhh ..blahhh… blahhhhhhh

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

the kitchen chronicles - Part 3 - working with mdf

Painting MDF Cabinet Doors
Replacing kitchen cabinets is a very costly undertaking.  Since the actual cabinets in my kitchen were good, I decided to go the less costly way and replace the doors.  I checked the price of doors at Home Depot and other stores and the average cost of a suitable door was $95-$120.. that's Canadian, folks, (far too much since I have quite a few in the kitchen.) 
I decided to go with MDF doors.  I had someone make the doors for me.  If you've never seen a CNC machine at work, take a gander over at youtube and watch one in action.  They cut doors from MDF like a knife goes through butter.  It's facinating.

The price of these MDF doors?  $7 - $20, according to size.

Here are the raw MDF doors as they were delivered to me.  I decided to finish them myself.

Painting MDF is very different from painting wood. MDF soaks up the paint as it's 'cut' surfaces are somewhat FUZZY.  Don't bother to sand the fuzzies too much in it's raw state, you'll be there forever.
The first thing you need is a REALLY GOOD PRIMER.
The best primer I've found BY FAR is KILZ.  This stuff sprays on amazingly!  Try it and I assure you, you won't use anything else. It's a primer, sealer and stainblocker.  The best out there. You'll use HALF of what you would use with another product, and because it goes on so great, you'll have less overspray in the air.

Another thing you need to know about MDF is it is very absorbent.  Because of its absorbency, using a lot of latex products on it can sometimes swell the MDF.  Something you definitely don't want.  Use all oil based products if you can.

In this picture below, you can see the 'fuzzies' as the primer is sprayed on the raw surface. It doesn't take too long to dry as the MDF just sucks in the primer.  Give it two coats of primer.

Below is a picture with two coats of dried primer.  You can definitely see the rough, pebbly-like surface.

Once thoroughly dry, take a sanding block and sand away! A fresh sanding block will allow you to get into the edges with a crisp firm block edge.

I don't think it's too easy to see, but the door on the left has been sanded and the door on the right has not.  The difference is really amazing.  They turn out very smooth.

Give it a good vacuum and a wipedown with a tack cloth, and paint as you like.
I'm giving my doors a coat of Rustoleum Heirloom White to start.
Here is a picture of one painted, (propped up on canned pumpkin - will be baking later on)

Next up - Glazing Cupboard Doors 

the kitchen chronicles - Part 2

So now that you've seen one half of my kitchen, (the nice half) it's time to reveal the not-so-nice half. The previous owners rearranged the kitchen cabinets from the original layout, and I'm glad they did, but they didn't reuse the original cabinet doors, they made new ones ...  out of plywood.  Terribly painted plywood cupboard doors, Complete, with a plywood hood cover.  tsk.. tsk..... terrible.

Unfortunately, my camera isn't all that great and any real close up pictures I took just came out blurry.. so you'll have to take my word for the fact that these thickly-paint-ladened doors are just plain nasty.

I won't even start the appliance rant! But never the less, I cook, bake and prepare all meals in this lovely setting.... you can see my freshly baked buttermilk pie out to cool!

Ooohhh, now let's take a peek at that GORGEOUS tile countertop, shall we ?? Slightly uneven, ALWAYS hard to clean and I'm sure totally unsanitary no matter how many harsh chemicals I use on it. 
How about that devine backsplash?
Now you see it ??

Now you don't !

Next up............ Replacing Cupboard Doors

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

the kitchen chronicles

I know I’ve been virtually M.I.A. lately, but with good reason.  I am getting ready to undertake a major project.  My kitchen is about to receive a well deserved facelift.  Since I am not hiring this work out, it is going to take me some time to complete. 
Rather than take a before picture and then magically come up with an after picture, (it’s just all too much work to be reduced to a couple of pictures)  I thought I would chronicle the process.
Let’s start right from the beginning shall we?  Here is the ‘BEFORE before” picture.  I call it that because this picture was taken when I purchased my home almost 3 years ago.  This is the entire kitchen as the previous owners had it.  (Their kitchen table, not mine).  See this blue room in the forefront of the picture?  
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This room was used as a sitting room off the kitchen. (WHY ?  I don't know!) …………….. But I had a vision.  This room was about to become a larger part of the kitchen.
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Here is a shot of the kitchen from another angle.  Keep your eye on the pantry cupboards in the right wall.   Now lets move on!
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Let’s start by ripping out the parquet flooring in the blue room and remove all the ceramic tiles in the kitchen area.  As a matter of fact, we removed all the flooring on the entire main floor.
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Unblueing the blue room.  You can also see the new subfloor that has gone in and in the process I decided to widen the entrance between the blue room and the kitchen. 
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SO… out comes the pantry and some walls.  The opening between the blue room and front hallway was also closed off. Now for the fun part!
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In goes a beautiful archway to open the kitchen wide up. You can see the wall being built to close off the blue room and hallway.
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The entry to the kitchen (beside the fridge) was also widened. You can see the hardwood flooring making it’s way down the hallway.
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The arch with a little more detail. The popcorn ceiling in the blue room was also scraped off a few days later to match the smooth ceiling in the kitchen area.
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This island was put together with cabinets bought at Home Depot, then covered with finished plywood and MDF.
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For a little added punch, I painted the island red.
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You can see the new place for the pantry (to the left) where the entry was closed off.  I can also stop calling the blue room “the blue room”, as it’s currently a nice soft yellow/gold. My little kitchen table appeared totally lost in that area and has since been replaced.
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So here is a shot of the arch, all finished. All previous tiny baseboards were replaced with 8" baseboards.
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There’s a story behind this interesting ceiling mount for my pendant lights.  When the old owner had their kitchen table where the island is now, they had a medallion and a chandelier. As hard as I tried I couldn’t scrape or sand that glue off the ceiling once the medallion was removed.  How to hide the hideous glue ?  Build 3 squares in an interesting pattern.  It hides the mess and looks like it was meant to be!
So believe it or not……. here is where my renovation STARTS.  This is the kitchen I have been living with now for 2 years.  What you HAVEN’T seen is the dreamy plywood cupboards and tile countertop I’ve also been living with for 2 years!!!   Auughhhh!   Well their time has come.
This is where the KITCHEN CHRONICLES begins……  Stay tuned!!

Friday, January 15, 2010

rad cover - radically different

I came across this old radiator cover.  Too beautiful to be discarded after its intended purpose.  There were definite flaws, water rings on top, chips, and scratches. 

To be perfectly honest, this got a coat of white before I decided to go with black. Here it is before it got roughed up with a sanding block.

I stapled burlap to the inside front and sides.

I took a couple of strands of Christmas lights

I stapled the lights to all the inside  framed edges, (which proved to be MUCH easier said than done)

Then I covered the open back with another piece of burlap stretched tight to finish it off.

a little peek lit up from behind..

..and from the front..finished...
sunlight from the front door pouring in

It makes a great addition to the front entrance. 

Participating in Vintage Black Friday at the French Cupboard!
Linked up here  @ Sunday Favorites
Click HERE for the DIY Show & Tell Party
SNS @ Funky Junk Interiors
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Just Something I Whipped Up @ The Girl Creative
Todays Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Motivate Me Monday @ Keeping It Simple

Friday, January 1, 2010

letting go

As I have the week off between Christmas and New Years, I usually make sure I have Christmas packed away before I get back to work.  The house is Christmas-free.

So today.... I am in the kitchen preparing an early dinner for my family... no one is home at this moment, I have my lap top on, and Christmas music playing.  You would think since the stores have been playing Christmas Carols since October that I would have had enough.  I adore Christmas Carols.  It's the one part of the Holiday's I have trouble letting go of.

All that remains is a little bit of Christmas still on my kitchen table, and the songs in my heart

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