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My Kitchen - Great Room Makeover

Friday, September 28, 2012

After living in my starter home and fixing it up for 10 years, I finally moved into my dream home in February 2011. My dream home is a 1984 brick house with the 2 things I wanted most, a large kitchen-great room and a master bath. It has tons of built-ins and cabinets, but they are all honey oak. Needless to say, I have had my work cut out for me, but it has been fun. 5 months after moving in I started to go a bit insane with all of the honey oak in the kitchen-great room, so I started a makeover that took about a year to finish.
As I blog about each project involving the kitchen-great room makeover I will post it here:

How to Refinish a Solid Surface Counter Top
Don't worry if you have burn marks or scratches on your solid surface counter top, they are easy to get rid of.

156th Penny Pinching Party

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

It took me all day, but I finally posted my kitchen remodel! I have tons of other projects that I need to post and will eventually get to all of them, but this kitchen was a BIG one. I am so glad it is done!
Click the link below for all of the before and after pictures:

Kitchen Remodel - Painting Cabinets

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Last summer, we decided to paint our kitchen cabinets which led to painting and re-building our entertainment center, painting our built-in bookcases and mantel, ripping out the tile and installing a laminate floor, and all sorts of other projects. I put off writing this post, because this was a very involved project that led to many other projects and I just haven't had time to write up everything.

We bought our 1984 house 18 months ago and it had a TON of honey oak cabinets everywhere. After about 6 months I couldn't take it anymore and decided to paint all the honey oak in the kitchen-greatroom.

Here are the Before and Afters:
Hover your mouse over this photo to see what it looks like now.

One of my cabinets was built for a garbage can and has a fancy pull out bottom, but I like having my recycling bin and garbage out for easy access.

Hover your mouse over the photo below.

Hover your mouse over the photo below.

We moved the light fixture with a swag kit which you can read about here: Spray Painting and Moving a Light Fixture
Hover your mouse over the photo below.

I kept the doors off the cabinet above the desk to give it a more open feel. I keep my cookbooks here and like to have quick and easy access.
I used paint stripper, sanded the top of the desk and bought the darkest stain I could find. I applied several coats of stain to get it nice and dark and then I applied several coats of polyurethane.
This is what I originally planned for this desk, but I soon decided that I didn't like the computer in the kitchen and would rather have a bulletin board and bright red retro phone.

I bought this phone at Amazon for free with my Swag Bucks and I LOVE it! The cordless phones in my house seem to disappear and I can never find one when I need it. No one can walk away with this phone and I no longer miss calls. I installed a talking caller id (also from Amazon) under the cabinet which is the round looking thing. I LOVE having my calendar, phone, phone numbers, and other important papers right here in the heart of the home.

Hover your mouse over this photo to see what it looks like now.

The Process:
Since our tile floor was a 90s pink salmon color and cracked in many places, we decided not to worry about getting paint on it. Later on in the remodel we discovered the floor was uneven due to water damage, which is why the tile was cracked in so many places. You can see that post here: Laminate Floor
Instead of sanding, I cleaned all the cabinets with TSP. We also did the entertainment center, mantel, and built-in bookcases at the same time and there is no way I was going to sand all of that oak!
Painting all of the cabinets with a brush would have taken forever, so we bought this Wagner Control Spray for around $50. We had to thin out the paint with water, but we did several coats and it gave us a beautiful and smooth finish.

I didn't like the placement of the knobs, so we filled in all the holes (My husband and I are both short and the knobs on the taller upper cabinets were way too high for us).

We took off all the doors and taped up the countertops.

I bought lots of paint samples and experimented before deciding on the right colors. Since there are a LOT of cabinets (one of the reasons I fell in love with this house) I thought I should break up the monotony and do the bottom cabinets a different color.

We used Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Primer and had it tinted for the bottom cabinets. The primer claims to work on glossy surfaces with no sanding necessary and it did.

Here is everything we used:
1. TSP to clean the cabinets and prep for painting.
2. Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Primer (had some tinted to match the bottom cabinets).
3. Behr flat paint matched to Martha Stewart Mourning Dove for the bottom cabinets.
We sprayed 3 coats and used flat paint since we painted polyurethane on top.
4. Behr flat paint matched to Sherwin-Williams Alabaster for the top cabinets. We sprayed 3 coats.
5. MinWax water based oil-modified polyurethane clear semi-gloss. We tried to spray this, but it ran and looked terrible. We brushed 3 coats of this on all the cabinets creating a nice hard finish. This did darken the paint making the alabaster white a much darker cream, which I was planning on when I chose alabaster.
6. A contractors pack of stainless steel knobs and some Martha Stewart pulls for the drawers.

It has now been a year since we painted these cabinets and they are still beautiful and durable. Painting all those coats of polyurethane has really paid off and makes cleaning the cabinets easy.

Link Parties:
Handy Man, Crafty Woman, Organize and Decorate Everything, Southern Lovely, Trendy Treehouse, Savvy Southern Style,
Mad about Organizing, Adorned from Above


Stainless Steel Shelf Above Range Top

Monday, September 24, 2012

I posted about replacing my microwave with a hood and fixing up my tile a few months ago here:

I felt that the space above the range top needed something, but wasn't sure what until now. I decided that a shelf would be the most useful thing I could put there and I found the perfect one at Pottery Barn. Now this project is complete. Well, I would really like a stainless steel range top, but I'll be happy for now.

You can find the Pottery Barn shelf here:
Pottery Barn Stainless-Steel Kitchen Accessories

155th Penny Pinching Party

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

After a year and a half of living in my new home, I finally went out and bought a swag kit and my husband moved the light over our table. It took less than an hour to move the light and it looks so much better! You can read about it here:

I have had some complaints about the requirement to link back to my site in order to join my Penny Pinching Party. I have it set to require this as a way to reward those who link back to this site by having less competing links. If I didn't require it I would get over 100 links. I thought it was nice to keep the party smaller as a way of rewarding those who link back. What do you think? Would you rather not have that requirement? Comment and tell me what you think.

Spray Painting and Moving a Light Fixture

The light in my kitchen dining area was right in the middle of the ceiling, but I like my table offset so that I can have a walkway to the family room area. The light fixture was also a gold tone that I didn't care for. The previous owners had left a bunch of different paint in our basement and I found a great metallic dark brown that was perfect. My wonderful husband took the light fixture down, painted it and put it back up using a swag kit that we bought at Lowes for $12. I wasn't even home when my husband painted it so my 5 year old took pictures for me.

I bought this swag kit at Lowes in the lighting department for $12. It came with a 12 ft. chain, wire, and hooks. This whole project cost only $12 and now I have the light fixture where I want it.

154th Penny Pinching Party

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

153rd Penny Pinching Party

Tuesday, September 4, 2012