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Excuses, excuses…

2012 November 5
by Gayle

I have been a bit of a slacker here lately.

But I have my reasons. And they are exciting!

No, not Hurricane Sandy exciting; that would be the bad kind of exciting. And we came through that like the rest of the District, relatively unscathed (thank goodness. And our hearts are breaking for those along the shore and in NYC who weren’t as lucky).

It’s a totally different brand of exciting…


[drumroll please!]


Mr. Kitchenette and I bought a house!

And it’s a a bit of a dump! So before we can even move in, it’s getting a major overhaul, particularly new pipes, wires and air conditioning system, among many other major projects. New pipes also means ripping out all the things in the places where pipes go, which means new bathrooms and… a new kitchen.

Oh, yes.

The biggest thing I have learned so far is that, much like planning a wedding, planning a dream kitchen is fun in theory but kind of a giant pain in the ass in practice. First off, Pintrest is a great time until you start looking up the prices of things. There’s the reality of a budget to contend with (and when a house needs this much work, both before and after you move in, it’s not advisable to go crazy on the kitchen and have nothing left for, you know, floors and walls and windows and things like that). And the reality of another person’s wants, needs and style to consider (luckily Mr. K and I are mostly on the same style wavelength).

Then there’s the reality of the house itself to deal with. We bought an old house that needed work in part because we wanted all of the great things that come with an old house — high ceilings, gorgeous woodwork, hardwood floors, beautiful old windows with wavy glass. But no one actually wants a 1928 kitchen (just like no one wants circa 1928 galvanized pipes. Trust me on this one).

Unless we rip out all the walls and turn the whole place into a big empty box to start over from — which we never wanted to do — we have to work with more or less the kitchen that was already there. Which is a not huge, but not frighteningly small galley kitchen. One wall will be partially open to the dining room so it doesn’t feel dark and cramped, and some fancy improvisation is in order to deal with radiator pipes, a bit of masonry that can’t be removed and the location of the ‘fridge. It’s all about working with what we’ve got and getting a vintage vibe while including modern conveniences.

So, never fear, The Kitchenette will still be wee. And we will forever have organizational challenges and be on the hunt for space saving tips. But it will be our wee kitchen! And by next year, it will be so long to bad lighting, the crappy 30-year-old electric stove, no pantry and all the other things that drive us crazy about our current rental kitchen.

Now its your turn! What do you love and hate about your kitchen? What seeming small detail can you not live without now that you have it? If you’ve ever had the chance to build one from the studs out, what do you know now that you wish you had known before you started? And if you are longing for the chance to rip out your cabinets and start from scratch, what neat little details are you planning for your dream kitchen? I need your help!

I’ll post the occasional kitchen trial and triumph here, but if you want to follow our renovation adventures, you can check out the kitchen and all the rest of it at (where Mr. Kitchenette aka Mr Rowhouse gets into the act a lot more than he does around here!).

One Response leave one →
  1. Anna C permalink
    November 8, 2012

    Congrats! You guys are much braver than I’ll ever be. I’m totally the buy it in the condition I want it person. But I love seeing before and after pics, so please post some! I went to the link you posted but it’s not working right now. Anyway, in my dream kitchen, I will have a sink in the island and a little faucet behind the stove. And also in my dream kitchen, there will be someone else to clean up behind me, so I can just have fun cooking and not worry about the mess!

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