My reception parlor has looked like this since the first part of December…
Total chaos… but totally worth it.
My kitchen is about 400 square feet. In the distant past a previous owner took out the wall between the butlers pantry and the formal dining to create one large space.
Not sure how I feel about this personally but what’s done is done. This house used to be a girl’s home so we have some freaky things happening – like 2 bathtubs and 2 toilets in the bathroom upstairs … and yes I am serious. It is a little weird but we haven’t gotten to that yet.
Any way. I say that because for some reason nearly all of the historic stuff was removed from the house. The stained glass transoms over the doors, woodwork, a marble mantle, the back staircase (holds the water heater now, and no stairs), and all the fireplaces except the one in the dining room.
And that one has been seriously compromised with a look-alike-antique mantle totally inappropriate for the time period that the house was built in. Not much we can do about that right now but I did want to get a more Greene and Greene-arts and crafts-prairie style tile for the fireplace. It was, after all, just a plywood hearth. Not very safe.
I had bought two antique tiles and I chose a tile at Home Depot (I think they should give us our own parking spot at this point, thank God they are only 3 miles away.) that I felt would look good in the room and reflect the history of the house. It took Marc about 2 hours to tile the hearth.
Then he made me a window seat.
Originally many, if not most, Arts and Crafts style homes had built in china cabinets. I believe our house once had one but someone pulled it out and put in kitchen cupboards. I wanted to get that original china cabinet look back but we couldn’t afford to replace the top cabinets – there was really nothing wrong with them except they were painted white.
Matt and Ethan, in fact all of the kids, have been amazing help during this project.
When Marc pulled out the cabinets we found the first (of what was to be many) big holes in the floor.
What we did was put in cabinets on the bottom and rather than a tile countertop Marc put on a piece of really nice oak. It is stained to look like the rest of the cabinets and has beadboard, also stained, on the back wall.
The upper cabinets will remain but will get sanded down and painted with a tan/gold undercoat and then an overcoat of black. I will distress the black to allow a lot of the undercoat to show through.
The doors will then get crystal style knobs while the bottom cabinet drawers and doors will get these, very classic Arts and Crafts style
I prefer drawers to cabinets. It is easier for me to find things in large, deep drawers and easier to keep them organized. So, as you will see, nearly all of the cabinets I got are filled with drawers and very few are traditional cabinets.
The grain in these cabinets is gorgeous. I custom mixed the stain – Gun barrel and Red mahogany and then I finish coated with amber shellac to keep it warm and antique it a little. Marc installed several lights under the top counter – His degree is in electrical engineering so you know I have plenty of new lights and electric boxes.