Saturday, May 24, 2014

Final Kitchen Reno Video

Wowser....I'm quiet on here for months and months....and then I think I've typed out 7 posts having some fun with my kitchen reno videos.  It feels like the kitchen has been like this always sometimes....and then when I watch the videos...I think back at how ugly it was...oh looking for a project for this summer.  Should get into my sewing!  If I finish up my sewing projects, then I can de-clutter that room...that would be the final room to get ready before selling...umhhh and that's what's on the horizon for 2015 FOR SURE!

Ambrosia Salad Recipe

28 oz can fruit cocktail--drained
19 oz. can of pineapple tidbits--drained
2 small cans mandarin oranges--drained
3 C mini marshmallows
500 ml container of sour cream
slivered almonds (can be toasted)

Mix first five ingredients in a large into serving bowl...garnish with slivered almonds.  Cover and let set for minimum 4 hours...can easily be made the day before.


  • add to the mixed ingredients or additional garnish....flaked coconut
  • add cut up granny smith apples
  • green or red seedless grapes
  • sprig of mint on the top
Great any time of the year....light and favourite...ENJOY!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Kitchen Reno-Almost Half Done

....ok....keep in mind that this was last year, tho not quite twelve months ago.  This point last year we were getting estimates on a total kitchen was about mid June that we decided to go the least expensive route....just paint the kitchen cupboards.  That way we wouldn't have to change out the floors, which would have affect three rooms...which ultimately would have meant we would need to stay in this home for another ten years to recover the expense that we would invest in this home.....get it! bring it up to date....I would get my initial wish of moving the dishwasher...which we already did...I don't think I could live with the counter top....but at least the D/W was moved...on top of we needed a new D/W.  So I've found a video clip of our progress half way....this has actually brought me to finding the full video of our finished kitchen.  Which for the life of me, I'm having a hard time syncing my Black Berry Playbook to my lap top to transfer the video....which really in the big picture of this...I can easily take another one on my iPad and then it sync's here's my half way looking at these old clips...seems so long ago that we reno'd the kitchen when in fact it's been less than ten months...must be cause we stayed home this winter! to transfer my video clips from my PB to the laptop....good grief...why is all this techy stuff so hard!!!

Kitchen "Before" with Video

While looking for my 'after' movie of our kitchen....I found two clips of is so hard to find things on this Windows 8!!!  Drives me nuts....but fun to's what the kitchen looked like before and a short clip of Chico :-)

....and now Chico, a clip filmed on July 24, 2013...Bob is 'mudding' by the stove area where he took down ceramic tiles....a clip of my furry cutie!

....and with a haircut!

More Kitchen Reno....

Bob first took down our old hood fan (a dead mouse too!)...then removed the ceramic tiles and mudded what he could.  Our carpenter still had to come and make that overhead cupboard my painting was on hold for that corner....but I continued to paint the rest of the kitchen.  During that time we had a new fridge and stove delivered.....sent back...and new ones delivered/installed.  Still waiting for the carpenter, but keeping busy while he recuperated from knee surgery.

Bob installed pot lights in the overhang bulkhead, along with a new plug.  The pot lights are on a dimmer switch and a beautiful addition to our kitchen.

I tried one paint colour....we were going from a deep medium green....wanted neutral, but with the tan floor it turned out too pink so before painting the WHOLE room...changed to another colour. Wwent with the same colour that's in the basement and two spare rooms...and bathroom!  I love this's like a mud colour, and turns into a green'ish colour or grey colour depending on what else is in that room and the light coming in.

Painting Laminate Cupboards...start to finish...

Again I'm writing and posting this out of order....we did this last year, and I've talked a bit about it....this post I'll be more precise on what we did to update our cupboards....after I'm completely done I'll upload a short video of all our changes to our kitchen....

First pictures....this was how our kitchen looked...after the overhead cupboards were removed and before we took the cupboard and drawer fronts down.  Before we did all that our dishwasher had already been removed from the penninsula and new stainless D/W installed and running.  These are the 'best' BEFORE pictures I have.....

And now our process of painting our cupboards and then applying a faux finish to them...

First I made a chart of the layout of the cupboards....when each door and drawer front was removed I marked it....on the door I marked it where the hinges were.  We brought everything outside and in one day we washed all the front with TSP, sanded them...then washed them with Lestoil....rinsed them. And brought them into the house for painting....painted the backs first the dark brown melamine paint....they only needed one good the back were already a dull brown finish.  The next day flipped them....and started on painting the fronts....and while I was waiting for them to dry I painted the frames of the cupboards two coats.  This took probably four days....for the wait time to dry and the amount of painting I was doing.  Not steady work....taking the time for the paint to cure.

During this time we soaked all the hinges and knobs in a lestoil combination....Lestoil really removes grease.  Took a steel brush to the hingest...even soaked the screws that we removed....knowing that they fit our cupboards exactly.  We prepared all the hinges for painting....using a Restoleum Dark Brown.  We eventually used a black that they were also antiqued to match the wood graining on the cupboards.  We wanted the hinges to 'disapear' into our cupboards.  We spray painted the knobs...just the circle piece a satin nickel Rustoleum.

I then took a litre size can of the same brand of paint...the melamine in Espresso.....and I can't remember exactly my ratio of adding glaze....I'm thinking equal parts of paint and glaze....made enough of it which I stored in a covered 2 quart ice cream that I could do my graining.  With gloved hands I used a painted door....which I purposely did for a 'practise' door before graining the real doors.  Using a sponge brush.....covered the whole front of the door and the sides.....using the graining tool went over the front....up and down covering the whole surface....then using a lint free rag...lightly going over what I grained to soften the paint and also touching up the sides of the door.  I waiting till my practise door was dry....knew right away that it was going to look AWESOME!....and then tackled the 'real' doors....matching up the pairs that went side by side....working on two doors at a time so my graining would match....completed all the fronts....then went on to the cupboard frame....this was fast...taking not more than two hours...then left alone for two days to cure before the hinges were put on.  That's when I knew the hinges needed to be dusted with the black spray dull the brown.  I didn't grain the drawer fronts with the door fronts...waiting for pull they could be attached then removed....then are the pics!

Isnt' it amazing...what a little bit of graining will do??....took a flat brown colour and gave it so much dimension and texture.

When shopping for the drawer pulls...found a great deal on the cupboard we took off the spray painted knobs and attached the new ones...and then one afternoon Bob put them all back up.  At this point we were waiting for our carpenter to install our new over the range microwave hood-fan before we could finish painting that cupboard box....and he had taken three door fronts to make new ones as we were making the cupboard over the stove there was more room for the new hood fan/microwave and he created a cupboard and drawer for the spot next to the dishwasher.  He also made a cupboard/new door for the spot where the old dishwasher was.  So I couldn't finish painting/graining the penninsul until that was all installed and finished.  Here's some pics before I painted the penninsula...

At this point the new counter top had been installed along with a new stainless sink....these pictures show the painted door knobs....we hadn't purchased our drawer pulls I had said, once we purchased our pulls we also purchased new door knobs.

NEXT....taking down the ceramic next to the stove....painting the kitchen...installing new appliances...then finishing the penninsula.

Painting Laminate Kitchen Cupboards

Finally I have my pictures on my lap top so that I can insert as I type.  First I have to say I've done this before...but with classic white.  Our kitchen floor is a tan linoleum.  It also is dated, and actually not even in good shape...but certainly livable.  In pictures it actually looks yellow, when in fact it is tan.  To replace our kitchen flooring...not only would it be a pain and messy....but it would mean we would have to change flooring in the living room and the stairs going down to the basement...that's why we chose note to replace the kitchen floor....unless we were gutting the kitchen/dinette.  To get back to my cupboards....I love, love white cupboards...clean and bright...have painted two previous kitchen cupboards white, I love the look so much.  BUT...if we had gone white cupboards in this would have made the floors look worse than they already are.  These 70's laminate cupboards....were only laminated on the front (and of course the sides)...,they were painted a flat dark brown on the back of the doors.  I had never seen that before....but because they were dark brown, I was able to take a door and place it against stainless steel, and our flooring, and it was then that I thought...let's go espresso.  It's a very popular colour, and then we would be able to 'putty' the hole in the middle of the door....and I also thought that if the paint chips, the chip would show a oaky brown....a chip would stand out way more on a white door...I've been there, done that.  Painting kitchen cupboards are so reasonable that new replacements....even refacing..but painting is definitely a temporary thing.  It did help us sell one house I'm sure these cupboards will ultimately help us sell this house also.

So here's what I started with....minus the knob...I never thought of blogging all this....

Then these are the supplies I had...actually this is what we did before we even touched them with paint..

  • Made a map or a chart of each cupboard door, and gave it a letter.
  • When each door was taken off I sticky noted the letter of the door until all doors were down/off.
  • Removed all hardware....when each hinge was taken off I marked the letter of the door under where the hinge was with a permanent marker...under each hinge, just in case we couldn't make out what the letter was.
  • Then we covered each of those letters with green painters masking tape.
  • Each door was washed and scrubbed with Lestoil....we did this twice...especially the scrubbing.  All grease has to be off your painting surface.
  • Then we (my husband and I) took sanding blocks and lightly sanded each door, edges and all and the cupboard frames and boxes.
  • Then we wiped everything down completely....we had fifteen doors...we will have more once our carpenter brings us back our doors that he has had to repurpose.
  • This only took half a day....since our kitchen is relatively small.
  • First I painted all the boxes and frames....then covered our new counter top with drop cloths, sheets and we prepared a painting surface....put our leaf into our table, brought in saw horses....all doors were front side I could easily roll on one coat of our melamine paint which I did in that one day.  Once your cupbaords are prepped your first coat of paint goes on very fast.  I used a 1 1/2 " angle brush for the frames and we used a small dense roller.
  • Waited till the next morning and I put the second coat of base colour on the frames and boxes.
  • We then turned all the cupbaords so we could paint the sides and front.  Knowing that since they were dark brown already on the back any chips we would touch up once hung...we had to leave more space around each cupboard so we could access the sides.  The second day we only put one coat of base colour on the fronts and sides of each cupboard and drawer.
  • Day three we put a second coat of base on each side and front of the cupboard doors and drawers.
  • On day four I prepared the glaze mixture for antiquing and graining.

Out of Order....our Kitchen Reno...first things first!

I'm typing this almost a whole year after we completed out kitchen 'reno'...I'll upload my pics and then type out what our process was.....

I'm actually going backwards here....this was the FIRST thing we did to improve our very outdated kitchen.  Remove the cupboards that we hanging over the penninsula.  For the three previous years I had lived here I had emptied those cupboards, as I didn't like them....they made the kitchen/dinette appear smaller....and completely shadowed any time I was working at the counter.  As you can see they were very l970'ish.  So they sat empty for quite some time....just waiting to come down. One day shortly after coming home from our winter Mexican vacation I said to Bob....can you take down those overhead cupboards???...he took one look inside where they were attached to the wall...and voila!  within one hour down they came!  Everyone who knew us that were familiar with our home....the first thing they said when they entered the!  what a completely opened up that room...gave us tons of light and such an airy feel.  Next job....moving the dishwasher!  Yeahhhhh!