Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Builder Basic Kitchen Makeover

My kitchen has had several layers of makeover.  As a single mom of twin boys, not only was money sparse, so was my attention span! I would make small improvements knowing someday I would have the kitchen of my dreams. When I built my house almost 14 years ago, I had no idea what heartache those “Honey Oak” cabinets would bring to me.  From the day I moved in, the honey no longer looked honey.  It looked more like rose gold…and not in the gorgeous rose gold pendant necklace way – in the I have ugly pink cabinets way. Just no.  I don’t even have a photo of them in all their glory! It didn’t take me long to whitewash the recessed panels thinking that would make them more bearable.  It did.  For a bit. 

Don't kill me, Lynette.  It's all in the name of design.



Don’t tell the boys you saw these photos. Apparently I didn't photograph the kitchen except when taking photos of others.

Something was still just off about them, so I finally bit the bullet and painted them a nice creamy white.  I also added cabinets to flank the kitchen window and sink.  I told myself I needed the storage and that it would be worth the loss of some natural light and that dead space in the corner. 


(Are you seeing the pattern here?)

At some point in the process, I also decided that painting the countertops would help me love my kitchen, so off I ran to Home Depot to purchase a mocha color countertop paint.  In my defense, they did not carry the product in black at the time.  I tried to get as dark as I could.  While it looked better for a while, I never loved it.  I even went so far as to paint one of the small sections with black countertop paint when it became available.  If you have ever painted with an oil based paint, you will understand why I never found the time to paint them all black, when clearly I could have.  I lived with patchwork countertops for probably over a year.  Try not to judge me.  It was a busy time.  Thank goodness there is no photographic proof of this time in my life.

When my boys went to grandma’s house for the summer last year, I finally decided it was time to do the kitchen the right way.  I had pinned at least 200 ideas for my dream kitchen.  Surely one of them would make me happy!  I found these lovely brick panels at Home Depot that remind most people of 1970s basements.  They spoke to me.  They begged to be turned into faux exposed brick walls that had been painted and then aged over time.  At first I thought they would make a terrific backsplash, but then decided they simply had to go to the ceiling on the window wall.  I think it was the perfect decision.  I am just about as ADD in my designing as I am in talking about it, so here is where I jumped off track in the best way.  I had to remove that ugly 4” laminate backsplash before I could do anything to install a new one.  When I did, I exposed about an inch of the original countertops (that I had painted over in a design delusion).  Somehow they were not nearly as bad as I remembered them.  In fact, they were pretty great!  Flashback to the photo of the boy with the mummy pumpkin above.  What was I thinking?  Hold on backsplash!  We are putting on the breaks!

No, how on earth am I going to get all this oil based paint off the countertops??  Well, treat it them like a piece of furniture, I guess.  Citristrip to the rescue!  I cannot tell you how much work this was.  I spread on the stripper, let it sit, then I scraped it with a plastic scraper.  Nope.  That didn’t do it.  Spread on the stripper again, scraped it, poured on more, and then scrubbed like Cinderella with a green scouring pad until every bit of that paint exposed a perfectly pretty countertop!  And just think… it had been protected from wear for all these years!  After working arm muscles I didn’t know I had to the point of tears, they were finally finished, and I could get back on track. 

My next step was to pull down those extra cabinets I put in and rip out the builder grade window sill.  With the addition of my island (post to come), I no longer had to sacrifice the space for storage, so they came down.  My Bestie and I had a good laugh at the mossy green paint and the wall decals we found behind them from my questionable design phase.  I swear they were cute when I put them up.  Ok – It was a terrible mistake.


I used my trusty Ryobi Jig Saw and cut the panels to fit.  I also measured and cut out all the holes where the electrical outlets would need to be.  I unscrewed the outlet, pulled them through the hole, and then screwed them back in on top of the brick panel so that the face plates sat flush with the brick.  You have to make sure the repeat meets up correctly kind of like with wallpaper, or your seams will not join.  That is the key to using this product.  That and using spackle to fill those edges.  I stood back and could not believe the difference.


I know you are cringing, but I had a vision! I kept going - around the kitchen countertops and behind the oven. At this point, I realized I had to put it above the cabinets as well to make the window wall look complete.  When I finally got all the brick installed, it was becoming a reality for me.  I could not have been much happier! I used simple white spackle to fill in all the seams with a putty knife. It doesn't matter if they are a little rough.  Paint and sanding will take care of that.  Just make sure you can't see any seams. Let it dry and then sand smooth before you start painting.

Now for the paint.  I painstakingly painted all the bricks with an antique white paint and then distressed them until just the right amount was peeking out.  This was also a labor of love.  Sanding a cabinet is one thing.  2 walls is something else.  But man, was it worth it! After the paint, I sealed the walls with several coats of General Finishes High Performance Top Coat in flat finish.  This was crucial to ensure it would be easy to clean and water resistant. I also took this opportunity to trim out the window in the kitchen with a gorgeous Craftsman style trim that just makes my life complete.  I am updating all my windows in the house room by room to match. I will have a future post about how to make these happen!
After the walls were dry and ready, it was time for shelving.  Say what you will about open shelving.  They are work EVERY SINGLE MINUTE of dusting them off.  They are bright and airy, and the perfect place to display my favorite things.  And really, how hard is it to quickly dust 6 small shelves?  I’ll tell you.  It’s not.  I built my shelves to fit my space, and could not be happier.  I did not photograph the process, but will in a future post.  They make my heart smile.  After a quick coat of General Finishes Milk paint on the cabinets, the kitchen was ready to stage!  Full disclosure.  I added the cabinet above the refrigerator and also bumped up my cabinet and raised my microwave.  I think it gave the cabinets a much needed custom look.  No longer does it look builder basic!  I have plans to extend the brick along the back wall of my kitchen nook as well to make it look a bit more realistic.  It will end in a faux beam that will divide the kitchen from the family room.  I will take a lot more photos of that part of the process. I promise! 




What do you think?  Did I nail the old exposed brick look without breaking the bank with actual brick tiles?  I could not be more pleased with it.  Let me know if you have any questions!





64 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I has been by far my favorite update.

      Delete
  2. As I said on Hometalk, I LOVE the brick, just the right amount of aging/distressing and a bonus feature is the Craftsman trimmed window. How I love that look. You did a fab job!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I have done the windows and closet doors in my boys rooms too. It really brings a timeless look to a builder home :)

      Delete
  3. Your kitchen and your talent is awesome. Could you tell me how to "distress" the bricks after you hung the panels? This is amazing. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I actually just took my corner cat sander to it, and went to town! After it was done, I used a sponge sander to get any spots I thought needed more.

      Delete
    2. What did you paint over the bricks?

      Delete
    3. I painted them with General Finishes Milk Paint in Antique White, to match the cabinets.

      Delete
  4. This is gorgeous! I have been wanting to do this since I saw a faux brick kitchen display at IKEA. Did you remove the upper cabinets or just "brick" the exposed wall above? Is it really washable? I just hate that my tract home does not have a back splash and the paint comes off when I try to wipe it down! I consider myself a "crafty" person, but have never done anything like this. Do you think a beginner could do it or do I need to hire a carpenter? Sorry for all the questions, but I just love it!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I did not take the cabinets down. I just put the panels above and below. I didn't want to waste the product. I made sure to seal it with several coats of poly so that it would be washable. It is holding up beautifully. I hated my little 4" laminate back splash so much. This makes me so happy. I did this completely by myself, so it can be done. You just need to make sure you measure and measure again before you cut anything. If you are just doing a back splash, it should be a lot easier. Putting it around the window was the hardest part for me. Thank you so much for your questions!

      Delete
  5. What grit sandpaper did you use? I am trying to replicate this in my kitchen and I'm using 120. But it's taking it from white to brown, skipping the red brick color. I'd like to see some red underneath the white. I LOVE what did!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I used the finest grit I could get my hands on. I believe it was a 220. It seemed to get just the right amount of red. If you sand too much, I would just mix up some red and brown chalk paint to match the original and sponge it on to mimic the red before adding more white. On those places, I would probably just distress with a damp scouring pad. Then you would have more control on what you were rubbing back. :)

      Delete
  6. Thanks for the tip...that's really helpful. I am practicing on scraps before I attempt it on the walls that are installed already. I was thinking to dry brush it if I couldn't get the sanding to look just right. I tried that and it looks pretty good. But I'll get the fine grit today and see how I do with that! Thank you!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I absolutely love what you did. I am going to try something like this as a backsplash. Wish me luck.

    ReplyDelete
  8. You are beyond talented and brave. Very inspiring

    ReplyDelete
  9. wow this good but ,I like your post and good pics may be any peoples not like because defrent mind all poeple , electriccanopenerguide.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. very interesting post.this is my first time visit here.i found so mmany interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion..thanks for the post! here

    ReplyDelete
  11. Took me time to read all the comments, but I really enjoyed the article. It proved to be Very helpful to me and I am sure to all the commenters here! It’s always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! kitchen sink reviews

    ReplyDelete
  12. The data you have posted is extremely valuable. The locales you have alluded was great. A debt of gratitude is in order for sharing... kitchenfaucetguides

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog.. easy diy kitchen hacks

    ReplyDelete
  14. definately enjoy every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog! best blender for protein shakes

    ReplyDelete
  15. I real glad to uncover this web internet site on bing, just what I was searching for. https://particle-skull.com/refinishing-oak-kitchen-cabinets/

    ReplyDelete
  16. My friend mentioned to me your blog, so I thought I’d read it for myself. Very interesting insights, will be back for more! https://kitchencare101.com/how-to-make-orange-juice-with-a-blender/

    ReplyDelete
  17. At first I thought they would make a terrific backsplash, but then decided they simply had to go to the ceiling on the window wall. I think it was the perfect decision. I am just about as ADD in my designing as I am in talking about it, so here is where I jumped off track in the best way. small trash bags

    ReplyDelete
  18. Some home kitchen machines are intended to be worked in units. Some are intended to be put on a counter, and still others might be detached. best lunch boxes for kids

    ReplyDelete
  19. Before you go off half positioned, stacking up a lot of subjects, get your work done first.Elegant Themes Divi Builder Plugin v4.0.7

    ReplyDelete
  20. I was taking a gander at some of your posts on this site and I consider this site is truly informational! Keep setting up.. backsplash tile

    ReplyDelete
  21. In addition to your principal kitchen faucet, you may also like to incorporate an entertainment sink faucet for an extra water source on a kitchen island, a pot filler kitchen faucet or a water filtration faucet to make sure that you will be supplied with pure and the safest water.STOVE AND RANGE REPAIR in Fontana

    ReplyDelete
  22. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work. granite kitchen countertops

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hi, I find reading this article a joy. It is extremely helpful and interesting and very much looking forward to reading more of your work.. ecobee

    ReplyDelete
  24. Only aspire to mention ones content can be as incredible. This clarity with your post is superb and that i may think you’re a guru for this issue. High-quality along with your concur permit me to to seize your current give to keep modified by using approaching blog post. Thanks a lot hundreds of along with you should go on the pleasurable get the job done. Dacor, Viking, Wolf, KitchenAid, Ovens Repair SAN BERNANDINO

    ReplyDelete
  25. thanks for the tips and information..i really appreciate it.. Painters in La Crosse WI

    ReplyDelete
  26. In spite of the fact that not as productive as a cutting edge electric cooker, a gas cooker is ordinarily acceptable at lighting and preparing nourishment quicker. On the off chance that cooking time is certainly not a significant concern, you can consider obtaining present day electric cookers that accompany an entire host of cutting edge highlights.Top Rated Dishwasher Repair in Riverside

    ReplyDelete
  27. How delightfully every one of the sentiments have been passed on through composing.
    dinning set

    ReplyDelete
  28. Welcome to the party of my life here you will learn everything about me. ICE MACHINE REPAIR IN SAN DIEGO

    ReplyDelete
  29. It is less expensive to bake bread than to buy it and it becomes a great time saving feature as the machine does the work. bread maker

    ReplyDelete
  30. The price may vary between one plate and another. It depends on many factors; Alyson

    ReplyDelete
  31. This is my first visit to your web journal! We are a group of volunteers and new activities in the same specialty. Website gave us helpful data to work. best dvd players

    ReplyDelete
  32. Be that as it may, in the event that you feel strange in a painter's coverall, you can purchase appealing paintings as backdrop and apply these to the entryway. Kithen Utensils

    ReplyDelete
  33. The water filtration experts may or may not be able to install the filtration system themselves. countertop water filters

    ReplyDelete
  34. Wow its impressive blog and its useful information for us. as we provide Granite countertops toledo at affordable prices. for more info visit our website.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Leaving ample space for cabinetry between appliances will make the kitchen much more functional. Kitchen design

    ReplyDelete
  36. I high appreciate this post. It’s hard to find the good from the bad sometimes, but I think you’ve nailed it! would you mind updating your blog with more information? เครื่องครัวสแตนเลส

    ReplyDelete
  37. The 13-gallon size is the most popular size trash bags in the 10- to 20-gallon size range. garbage bag

    ReplyDelete
  38. Hand mixers will average around eighty dollars while a stand mixer will average around two hundred dollars. If you are looking for a basic top quality hand mixer, then you will not be disappointed with any KitchenAid model. electric whisk

    ReplyDelete
  39. I high appreciate this post. It’s hard to find the good from the bad sometimes, but I think you’ve nailed it! would you mind updating your blog with more information
    mini toaster

    ReplyDelete
  40. Very interesting blog. Alot of blogs I see these days don't really provide anything that I'm interested in, but I'm most definately interested in this one. Just thought that I would post and let you know. instagram likes cheap

    ReplyDelete
  41. Thank you for the update, very nice site.. kitchen equipment

    ReplyDelete
  42. What a fantabulous post this has been. Never seen this kind of useful post. I am grateful to you and expect more number of posts like these. Thank you very much. Fullstar Chopper

    ReplyDelete
  43. http://www.rutiling.com/2014/12/600x600-porcelain-body-with-marble.html

    ReplyDelete
  44. In the event that you pick inside waterproofing, the storm cellar waterproofing temporary worker will introduce sobbing tiles to guide the water from the storm cellar to a sump siphon framework. marble tiles

    ReplyDelete
  45. The superb highly informative blog I’m about to share this with all my contacts.
    click here for more info

    ReplyDelete
  46. If we do have items blocking the centre of the kitchen we may find that positive energy is blocked from flowing around the kitchen and we may find that we ourselves have difficulty in digesting our food.this website

    ReplyDelete
  47. Friend, this web site might be fabolous, i just like it. outdoor kitchen

    ReplyDelete
  48. An interesting dialogue is value comment. I believe that it is best to write more on this matter, it may not be a taboo subject but typically persons are not enough to speak on such topics. To the next. Cheers Phoenix Water Damage Restoration

    ReplyDelete
  49. Eggs are extremely wealthy in supplements, for example, protein. Protein is such a basic aspect of our body. Best electric egg boiler

    ReplyDelete
  50. I went over this site and I trust you have a ton of awesome data, spared to my bookmarks buy best bread maker online in India

    ReplyDelete
  51. These are the most important varieties of major appliances which are used in almost everyone's home. But there are even some appliances which though are considered to be major appliances are not so. Soup maker online in India

    ReplyDelete
  52. Many of them are designed to be placed on contradict, and still, others might be freestanding. You should forever keep in mind to select the Microwave Ovens Online which finely fits your requirements. Margaretville machine

    ReplyDelete
  53. Hanging lights can create practical illumination and provide atmosphere without losing any wall space. If you have windowless kitchen that need natural light, think about installing a skylight. bathroom design northern beaches

    ReplyDelete
  54. This is very interesting content! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your points and have come to the conclusion that you are right about many of them. You are great. dark red splashback

    ReplyDelete
  55. Triple bunk beds are a very useful space saving furniture for your kids. They are also vastly used in hostels and dormitories. l shaped triple bunk bed

    ReplyDelete