I missed last week’s update not due to lack of movement on our project but because of too much movement. I’m going to lay it all out there right now in a very non-gramable fashion. The juggling act is real. I’m barely able to keep up with my family and my work and this remodel. I’m definitely not ahead of it in the way that I would like to be. There are literally piles on my desk that have been moved from desk to floor to bed (because I have no office at the moment) to chair and back to the floor again since I returned from my double conference jaunt a month ago. It is a little bit like the cobbler’s children having no shoes. As I sit here encouraging you to clean things out and make the home around you the place you really want to live, I am constantly aware of the irony of my situation. This beige apartment is closing in on me almost literally because there is simply no place to put the stuff.
Moving on. When we last chatted about the Modern Southern Bungalow, the wood floors were almost in (install complete), the kitchen and master wall tile was almost here (it’s arrived), and the cabinet maker was scheduled to begin cabinet install (in process).
The kitchen cabinet boxes are installed and look fabulous. Except that they don’t actually function. Let’s back track. You may recall the discussion several weeks ago about kitchen planning. We talked about the best $65 ever spent and I showed you our (my husband’s) nice drawings of what all the cabinets would look like. The good news is that the north and east walls look great. We had some changes along the way based on measurements needing adjustment (like the gas for the stove being installed in the wrong place, resulting in the space for the stove being moved) but that all worked out. The pantry/breakfast station was another issue all together.
Let me say first that the cabinet builder is really good. And flexible. And true to our contractor’s word, the cabinet maker will build whatever you want. Even if what it looks like you want doesn’t actually work. So we come down to the age old human problem of communication. It is the key to relationships and success at work and evidently it is also key to successful cabinets.
See this picture here?
My husband clearly labeled that we wanted the upper shelves on the left hand side to be 14” depth. What’s missing from this drawing is that we wanted that 14” shelf measured from the BACK of the cabinet so that we could put nice little bins on the doors of the cabinets like this. The drawing was interpreted as our wanting 14” deep cabinets with a false back, so the shelves have been placed to the front of the cabinets. You can't see the 10" of empty space behind the top left cabinets in the picture below, but trust me, the gaps are there.
My husband's outside of the cabinet drawing shows that the doors of the cabinets should be 96”.
Well it turns out, 8' tall doors with bins on them in certain places but not others (i.e. above counter height only) might warp. Hmm. Maybe these issues should have been addressed before the cabinets were installed and all the drawers built?
Live and learn. The issue with the shelves being placed to the front of the cabinet boxes rather than to the back meant that the cabinet box for the left side of the pantry needed to be rebuilt entirely. This gave us the opportunity to solve for the potential warping doors by reducing the size of the doors and subbing in real drawers to the bottom of the pantry. Simple fix. But we also needed to fix the right side of the cabinet because (1) I wanted symmetry (Ha!) and (2) who wants to open the broom closet to make toast? I’ll admit that I totally missed that one until the boxes were built and I saw how the doors needed to open in order to get to the coffee/toaster section (the open box at counter height next to the little skinny box on the right).
So we have fixed our drawing of this section of the kitchen, which will now look like this:
I don’t love the fact that the sink and coffee maker are separated by the cabinet box, but that is not to be helped. Once again, remodeling a house is not perfect. The cabinets won't be symmetrical but they will be functional, and that's all I really care about at this point.
We’ve found a beautiful piece of cypress to use for shelving in the center area of the pantry and have some options for a cypress surround on the vent hood. The vent hood is inspired by my grandmother’s kitchen, which has a large rough cypress beam over the stove. We will end up wrapping a 1" x 12" rough cypress board around the vent hood kind of like this.
Next week, I'm hoping to update you on tile. Cross your fingers!
(P.S., I’m posting details of what’s going on in the house in real time on Instagram stories. You should follow along.).