Google+ House Revivals: The Kitchen Island

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Kitchen Island

Here is the island I built for our kitchen renovation for the house we are selling. I absolutely loved my classic fifties steel and chrome kitchen, but my realtors suggested it was a little "dated". One realtor actually called it "functionally obsolete"! The main reason for the "obsolescence" was it's little bitty fridge. When the kitchen was installed sixty years ago, a custom niche had been built into the wall under the stairwell for a recessed fridge. Unfortunately, that custom niche was much too small for today's behemoth fridges.

Soooo, I called my trusted handyman and had him redo the opening to fit a larger refrigerator. Because of the stairway behind that wall, the new fridge opening needed to be moved about a foot to the right in order to have the height needed for today's refrigerators. Changing the location of the fridge opening was going to require the removal of several 12" deep upper and lower cabinets on that wall. I was heartbroken over the loss of storage! But when the carpenter removed those cabinets, we were both amazed by how much more space we had in the kitchen -- enough space for a small island! Of course, my budget would not allow me to hire the handyman to build a new island, and my husband was already working out of state. So, what's a girl to do? Build it herself, of course!

After spending a few hours designing several options for the project using SketchUp, and polling several of my girlfriends about which option they liked best, I decided on an adaptation of one of the concepts. The island cost a little over one-hundred dollars to build. Materials included a butcher block type top from Home Depot, a plywood base, some beaded board paneling leftover from another project, casters, nuts, bolts, screws, wood trim, construction adhesive, reused wine racks, and wood stain. And, of course the cabinets my contractor removed! The whole process took about three loooooong evenings, not counting the time it took to design it and collect the materials. But, everybody loves it, and I'm just thrilled with how it turned out! And because we reused the existing cabinets, it looks like its always been there.

(P. S. I laid that floor, too! All by myself. Without my handyman, or my husband. But that's another story. And we were able to add a cute little pantry around the corner from the fridge, by partitioning off the fridge inside the stairwell closet, and adding shelving. Now, when you open the door to what used to be a poorly functioning under stairway closet, you just see pantry shelving. More storage-- I love it!

I've linked this post to the the blog party I Made it Without My Husband over at Shanty2Chic
and Strut Your Stuff over at Somewhat Simple
and The DIY Show Off, here.
and to Vintage Thingie Thursday at The Colorado Lady. 

Here are a couple more "afters":

20 comments:

  1. WOW! That is a big job to tackle! Your kitchen is darling!

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  2. Looks terrific! I'd love to buy a house with function and some 50's style! Good luck with the sale!

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  3. Wow you really did a remodel. I am sure all of your efforts will help sell the house. I have moved quite a bit and have fixed up things to make the houses more appealing. It's too bad we have to move and can't enjoy the house with all the new and better decorating.

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  4. Thanks for the nice comments, and for the encouragement!

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  5. i am here from shanty to chic. :) i love your island! in fact, i am in the design part of building my own. what exactly did you use for the "butcher block type top from home depot"? i was in hd the other day and couldn't find anything that i thought would work, but i would love to know what you used!

    thanks! kristin (kmc.love @ gmail.com)

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  6. Amanda,
    You created a total WOW, I love it!
    Cathy

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  7. Oh boy. I hope we don't run into that same problem when our fridge dies! Ours is in a little niche made for it too. I've often wondered if a new fridge would fit in there. Hopefully we won't need to deal with that for a long while. Love your island and your kitchen!
    Happy VTT!
    Carol

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  8. your island is just wonderful! Looks like a big job you're tackling.

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  9. Wonderful island! You're all that girl!

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  10. I like the way you used the old cabinets for the island so it matches the rest of the kitchen.

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  11. It is perfect and I love it! You can tell your realtor many of us would be happy to have your cabinets!

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  12. I love your kitchen...I can not believe my kitchen was all original sorta like yours, and I took it to the studs and updated the whole thing...now, after seeing your great kitchen, I am kicking myself....literally. Great kitchen. Happy VTT.

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  13. your kitchen is perfect!..i love the 50s green and your cabinets are delightful!

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  14. I LOVE your kitchen! Aren't you cleaver and resourceful with that island?! Now, too bad you have to leave it. Thanks for sharing.
    Mary Lou

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  15. You are very talented! Your island looks amazing. I LOVE that kitchen. The little shelves on the end of the cabinet is so nice. Hopefully new owners will appreciate the true beauty and not rip up the kitchen. Great job!

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  16. woweee! job well done! very nice kitchen island.. wish i know how to do one! happy VTT

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  17. Wow! What a wonderful kitchen you have now!

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  18. I love your island!!! and the fact that you did it without help.

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  19. Wow! This was a huge job--Bravo!

    Thanks for your comment yesterday on my blog. I am pro-education but another 4 year degree is not in my immediate future. ;-) Styling and decorating is more for me at this time and I really appreciated your feedback!
    abby

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