I recently moved into an 80 year old fixer upper in a small Kansas town. One of the biggest projects was to completely remodel the kitchen. The kitchen was large and had old oak cabinets in an “L” shape. It was dark, empty, lacked character and an island. With a limited budget, I needed to be creative with the remodel. I have always wanted a farmhouse style kitchen….So, I knew exactly what I was going to do! Below are a few of the photos of the kitchen before the remodel.
I picked out three beautiful colors that would complement each other. Two different colors for the cabinets and a wall color. The first task was to remove all the doors to the cabinets. The cabinet bottom under the kitchen sink had water damage and mold. That had to be fixed. The tall cabinet on the south side looked like some old canning items had exploded. Instead of cleaning up the mess they left it and placed a board over the top. Unfortunately, I had to remove the bottom of the cabinet and two shelves due to damage and mold. Good thing I stocked up on Kilz!
I wanted to be on the safe side, so all the cabinets needed to be painted with Kilz. Once that was complete, I could paint them with the chosen paint colors.
I tried painting the ceiling a nice white, but with every stroke of the paint roller bits and pieces of the popcorn ceiling would fall to the floor. Apparently, when they did the remodel they sprayed the popcorn on without priming and sealing. The only option I could think of was to completely remove all of the popcorn from the ceiling. It took me about 30 minutes to scrape it all off. Crazy easy! I placed drop cloths down on all of the appliances making cleanup easy. I used a 12″ taping knife to easily remove the popcorn. I used caution where the wall meets the ceiling in order to preserve the old drywall tape. I’m glad I wore goggles and a mask because that was a messy job.
After removing all of the popcorn and wiping it down with a damp cloth to remove residue, I was able to paint the ceiling rather quickly. I painted the kitchen walls a beautiful soft blue to give a nice contrast with the cabinets. Eventually, all of the trim would be painted white. This would give the kitchen a more modernize look.
All the bottom cabinets and doors were painted a gorgeous turquoise and the top cabinets and doors were painted an antique white. I removed the dishwasher and decided to use it for storing my trash can. I washed and re-used the original bronze colored handles.
I love how the two colors turned out. I later painted the top decorative piece above the sink antique white instead of the turquoise. I decided to keep the original countertop, it was still in good condition and my budget was already tight. The refrigerator was old and needed a little something to make it fit in with the rest of the kitchen. How about a chalkboard menu? Oh, yeah! I had picked up some sample tile from Home Depot over the summer and didn’t have room in my budget for doing a tile back splash. So, I decided to use it to dress up the chalkboard on the refrigerator. Wow, that turned out better than I thought!
Now for a kitchen island. I decided to pick up two 36″ (base) kitchen cabinets from Ikea…..meaning no cabinet doors or legs. I wanted the island to be similar to a farmhouse island with open storage. I also wanted to use casters so that it would look more industrial and could be moved. I liked the idea of adding a butcher block to the kitchen island to give me work space for baking and provide for seating. The butcher block needed to be at least 74″ long to accommodate two 36″ cabinets. It would also need to be at least 40″ deep to accommodate the cabinets and provide an overhang for seating. Every piece needed to be primed and painted with the same color as the lower kitchen cabinets. I then put it together, finished painting the cabinet, installed the casters and the butcher block countertop. It looks awesome! The kitchen is now fully functional with seating. I will eventually trim it with the same chicken coop boards that I used on the work space wall. This will give both of the spaces an industrial and farmhouse feel.
Now for seating! I wanted an industrial feel for the seating but also wanted something stylish. So, I went with counter height stools with a black seat and back support. They came with the standard stainless steel frame but I wanted them to match the water pipes that I used on the work space wall. So, I spray painted them with the same Rust-Oleum Metallic Flat Burnished Amber.
I cut a bronze colored curtain panel into two pieces, stitched them and used one for the window above the sink and the other to cover the dishwasher space. I installed a tension rod to the dishwasher space to hold the curtain in place. The curtain hides the trash can and gives the kitchen a farmhouse feel. I’ll add more photos later. On my list of to do’s is a farmhouse sink. Woot Woot…someday!
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When I first saw the interior of the house, I kept wondering where I was going to put an office work space. I work from home and need a space that will accommodate an office work area. I used the small room upstairs for a art/craft room and was limited on other options. My kitchen was long, empty, contained the laundry room closet and had an old set of the original cabinets on the stairway wall…Yuck! I could have used this space for a dining room table but it was small and the laundry room doors would open up into the table space. Not my favorite option for dining. I am a baker and would rather build a butcher block kitchen island. This would give me additional counter space and seating for the kitchen area.
The house sits on a little over an acre of land. An old 80 year old homestead wouldn’t be complete without a chicken coop. Well, I definitely didn’t want any chickens….so that chicken coop was going to be useful in other ways! Wait till you see what I did!
Here is what the kitchen wall looked like before the demo. An addition was completed about 15 years ago to make the home handicap accessible. The kitchen was extended with new cabinetry, the original main floor bedroom was made into a master bathroom and to the east of the kitchen a new bedroom was added. So, what you are seeing in the photo was the original cabinetry of the kitchen….Yuck! To the left you can see bi-fold doors and some shelving inside a closet. That was part of the original kitchen as well. After the addition, they built a closet to house a washing machine, dryer and additional storage. Old houses have very few closets and minimal space for storage…I found out! The opening on the right side leads into the parlor or seating area. In the second photo you can see a door that leads into the master bedroom. Yep, right off the kitchen!
The original cabinet was broken down and removed to reveal a four inch drop to the original floor height. This wall still had the original lath and plaster…that was a messy and dusty demo. It also had some very scary electrical work that was hanging out of the wall. Below are some of the demo photos. The first shows the original lath after most of the plaster was removed. The second photo is after all the lath and plaster was removed from the kitchen wall.
Once the mess from the lath and plaster was cleaned up, new electrical wiring was added and additional outlets were installed to make it more efficient for a work space. There was no stairwell light, so wiring was routed up this wall to the top of the stairs. A light switch was also added at the top of the stairs and one at the bottom. Wiring was added for a light fixture that would be mounted above the work space. I installed roofing tar to the original wall framing so that you wouldn’t be able to see the inside of the wall. This would also prevent shadows. Remember that four inch drop on the floor….plywood was installed to fill the drop and bring it level with the kitchen floor.
Here is where that 80 year old chicken coop would come in handy. I removed some of the boards from the chicken coop in varying heights and lengths. An electric planer was used to clean off all the icky stuff from the back of the boards. I measured and cut the boards to stagger up the wall. I know you’ve seen all those barn wood walls that cost a fortune on HGTV…This wall was built with very little investment and used recycled materials!
Once all the boards were installed, the outlet covers were installed, bronze lighting fixture installed, and recycled trim was cut to fit, painted white and installed.
I envisioned having a rustic industrial style desk for this space. After hours and hours of searching for the perfect desk, I gave up! I envisioned something built out of water pipes and painted bronze to match the wall fixture. I found a plan online that I loved but it just needed some changes. I wanted a desk that was mounted to the wall and floor to minimize the floor footprint…something clean and stylish. Below is the shelving design that would be made out of varying water pipe pieces. I added flanges that would be used to mount onto the wall. I also added 3-way tee’s on the wall mounted section, this would be used to keep the shelf board level. The shelf board will have drill holes on both ends and be placed over the close pipe piece. The end caps will secure the board to the shelf frame.
Once the correct supplies were chosen, I put them together and spray painted them with Rust-Oleum Metallic Flat Burnished Amber to match the light fixture.
I wanted a desk that would be taller than a normal desk. I am tall and tend to hunch forward when sitting at a desk that is too low. I wanted the design to be similar to the bookshelf so that everything would be consistent. I added flanges that would mount to the floor and the wall. This allowed for support and a clean design. I used 3-way tees again to level the board for the desk and a close pipe piece with an end cap to secure the board. The first photo shows the variation in height from a standard desk. I installed vinyl flooring over the plywood and used bronze colored carpet trim to separate the two styles of flooring. Both pieces of the desk frame were spray painted with the same Rust-Oleum Metallic Flat Burnished Amber.
I started the install with the shelving frame. I mounted it so that the top shelf would be about 12 inches from the bottom of the light fixture mount. I installed a vintage bulb into the light fixture to keep with the rustic theme.
Once the shelving unit was installed, I moved onto the desk. Here is a progress photo. I installed the bottom shelf and completed the desk so that I could get some work done. I had a small piece of wood left over from the shelf and used that to build a stand for my computer tower. I used industrial strength brackets to mount the stand to the wall and used pvc pipe for the legs. I spray painted them with the same Rust-Oleum color used for the water pipes. I will eventually install two half shelves on the top portion of the shelving unit. The different flooring and carpet trim separates it from the kitchen space.
I finally added the top portion of the shelving unit by cutting a long board into two smaller boards. I wanted to leave an opening for the light fixture. Check out that awesome galvanized steel windmill that I picked up from an estate auction! I found the antique ball jars and insulators at a different auction. They added a little color to the shelf and fit with the rustic theme. The baskets were added to provide me with some hidden storage.
I have mild OCD and the basket in the above photo was driving me nuts, so I found the matching basket and added it to the shelving unit. Ah…it looks so much better now. I also added another windmill that was handmade out of copper tubing, brass and bolts. What a beautiful addition to the space. Here is the full view of the work completed work space.
I love, love, love my new work space! Plus it was built with my own two hands.
Thank you for viewing!