Thursday, September 6, 2012

Beginning the Kitchen Reveal

I'm so excited to finally reveal the first part of our new kitchen!  Those of you who regularly read my blog have seen pictures of this cabinet in various stages of construction, but this is the first time I've shown the finished product.  We waited so long to be able to have our kitchen re-modeled, and then the actual work itself took four months; our contractor was working another job during the week, so he could only work at our house on weekends.  The cabinet and tile man and the granite guys were able to work during the week, so eventually, it all came together.  I've been doing the happy dance for weeks now.  :)

The kitchen is totally complete except for hanging my pictures, etc. on the wall, and finding a rug that I like.  I'm just showing a small part of the kitchen tonight.  This is our new corner cabinet.

This corner of our eating area was dead space before; we had a cart (which was too small) for our microwave where this built-in cabinet is now.  It didn't match the finish on our cabinets or the rest of our kitchen pieces.  It wasn't a cheap piece; I bought it at an Unfinished Furniture World.  Their pieces were all unfinished (hence the name), but they were solid wood, no MDF or particle board.  It was plenty sturdy; it was just too short and looked too small for the big microwave.

  Here's a pic of this corner before the renovation...

These "before" pictures really make me cringe now.

For some reason, we didn't get a picture of the whole cart, but the bottom has a spot where I kept my cookbooks, or as many as I could fit into the space.  You can just see the tops of the cookbooks in this picture.  The cart has wheels and was actually meant to be a telephone table with the space below for magazines.  I just changed its purpose to hold our microwave oven, telephone books, and cookbooks.  We made it work for 16 years.

This is my new space for cookbooks...

I'm also storing our table napkins in here; before I had to cram them in the cabinet with my casserole dishes.

Our cabinet guy built the cabinet and Tim, our contractor painted it.  The shelf is adjustable so I can change the height if need be.  It's working out beautifully!  These are not all of my cookbooks, and I could actually get more in there, but I find it easier to use when it's not crammed totally full.

The space above the doors looks like a drawer, but it's actually a pull-down door.  We talked about making it a false drawer front, but this way, there's no wasted space.  It's big enough for me to store my phone book; a tray with pens, pencils, and message pads; my tape measure; and a few other odds and ends.

The door has a chain attached on the right side so it doesn't flop all the way down and damage the doors at the bottom.

When we first discussed the re-model with Tim, I wanted some extra space to display some of my pretty dishes and other items.  We talked about removing the soffit above the cabinets so I could display things on top of my cabinets.  That would have actually added to our costs because Tim pointed out that the ceiling would be unfinished under the soffit, and he'd have to finish that and paint it.  Later, his wife mentioned that Tim could build some display shelves for the wall instead, and I love them. 

Tim made a groove at the back of the shelves with his router so that I could stand plates there, and he cut a half-circle shaped hole at the back to accommodate the lamp cord.  Believe it or not, these shelves are actually stair treads.  Tim wanted to use something that wouldn't sag in the middle from the weight of whatever I might put on the shelves.  He said that almost every kind of wood would eventually sag.  The stair treads, however, are built for the purpose of holding much more weight.  He framed them out so they have a pretty shape, and you'd never know they're stair treads.

I purchased the blue and white lamp when I realized we would be getting these shelves; it was a bit of a splurge.  I bought it at a local lamp store; their prices are steep, but they have the best selection of quality lamps I've ever seen.  I bought the transferware creamer and the little delft candle holder at the same lamp store.

So after arranging some of my everyday blue and white dishes on the top shelf and adding the painted rooster my parents brought me from St. Augustine, I had two decorative shelves to go along with our new, functional cabinet.

The blue and white tea towel on the microwave was brought to me by my in-laws when they went to France.

This lamp only has a 25-watt candelabra bulb in it, but the light was blasting everything out in the photos.  I think for photography purposes, I'll have to put one of my 7-watt Christmas candle bulbs in the lamp so we can get our lighting right for the pictures.

As you can see in the picture below, Tim suggested we run a single layer of ceramic tiles, to match the rest of our tile backsplash, above this counter top.  That way this area ties in with the rest of the work area, and it looks like the new cabinet was always part of the kitchen.

 I can't wait to show you more of the kitchen, but for now, I'm linking this post to Tips, Tricks and Tutorials, hosted by Yvonne at Stone Gable.  I thought someone might find these tips useful if they have an area with dead space in their kitchen, they might wish to turn it into a useful and decorative space.  If you don't need a place to store your microwave like we did, you could use the counter top to display artfully stacked dishes, or pottery pieces -- whatever works for you.

You can see more "before" pictures of our kitchen Here, Here and Here.  Many thanks to all of you who visit my blog; I so appreciate your visits!  Have a wonderful week!


I'm also joining the following:


  1. Nice changes! Thank you for sharing your project at Potpourri Friday!

  2. beautiful, functional space Denise.. I know you'll be enjoying at the holidays with all the seasonal decor you can display..

  3. So happy that your kitchen remodel is your corner cabinet with the cute open shelves...Looks like you had a great time decorating the shelves with all of your "lovelies"...So happy for you Denise!!!...can't wait to see the rest of the kitchen!

  4. The kitchen corner is so pretty. Thank you for sharing. Visiting from 2805. Would love it if you would share this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope to see you at the bash! Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  5. Very nice update! Anything that adds storage space must certainly be welcome. I do love a yellow and blue color combination.

  6. Just gorgeous! I love the look, functionality and great new colors! Enjoy your new space Denise:@)

  7. I know you are happy with all the changes you are making to your kitchen. This corner is very functional and I like all your *pretties* on display. Great color. Enjoy!

  8. You look like you're making great changes!

    - The Tablescaper

  9. Wow, Denise, your kitchen is looking great. I love the new cabinet and ALL the Cha ges you've made. I have that same granite and love it.

  10. Oh, I love the new look of your corner cabinet! You are going to have such fun decorating those shelves for the different seasons! The storage inside looks very well-designed for maximum utility. I look forward to seeing the rest of your big reveal!

  11. Wow ~ that's a big difference. Love the cabinet and the shelves too. We can never, ever have enough storage can we?

    Susan and Bentley

  12. I love what you did in this space! So pretty but very functional and spacious. Your blue and white is so attractive. I know you are enjoying it. Look forward to the grand reveal. You have been very busy.

  13. Looks great. I wish I had a designated space to store my cookbooks. Right now they are here, there and everywhere. I'm still trying to figure out what will work best for me and our kitchen.

  14. That looks great! Thank you for joining me at Home Sweet Home!

  15. That really is a lovely transformation, the colours are gorgeous and I like the shelves.

  16. Visiting your home today. Love what you did to your kitchen corner.



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