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Part 2 of our kitchen remodel.  If you haven’t read part 1 you can do so HERE.

We have countertops again!  The backsplash was put in immediately after the countertops.  See the pretty under-cabinet lights?  It was my husband’s idea and I love it.  Starting to move along to more fun details…We replaced the recessed light over the sink with a pendant which added some pizazz.

We replaced our sink with a single-basin sink.  This is the Kraus 31-1/2 single-basin undercount sink.  I had been obsessing over sinks for the longest time.  For us this deeper single-basin sink has been a kitchen blessing. (#dirtydishes am I right?) An added bonus of our new stove top is that it has much less depth under the counter so we were able to convert our false panels into 2 drawers that I desperately needed.  For the panels under the sink we added hinges to the false fronts and made compartments to hide sink clutter.

Next up was the subway tile.  I have a straight up love for subway tile.  As far as I’m concerned, its perfect in every way and will never go out of style.  It’s like a white shirt that goes with everything.  I really liked the bronze hardware on the black island.  I wasn’t sure about this at first, but I love the richness of it.  Oh…If your looking at my floor grout wondering if I ever clean it, I’ll save you the trouble…No, I don’t.

Next up, the $15 builder-grade light over the table was gone and replaced with this sparkly, fun little light from Pottery Barn.

Then we installed roman shades.  Over in our breakfast nook we would find ourselves raising the mini-blinds up everyday because we love seeing outside and hated the obstructed view from the blinds.  Since all my wood tone was gone I craved the warmth of bamboo shades.  These are lined from blinds.com, the shade is Malay Umber E394.  We did an outside mount to make the windows appear taller.  My daughter always ended up practicing violin in the kitchen so I bought a violin hook and decided to mount it.  So now instead of constantly asking her to put it away its kitchen decor.  Plus, seeing it is a reminder to practice.

The kitchen window has a rounded top which I do not care for so an over mount works here as well.  I love mounting outside windows because you can tweak things that bother you.  This is a new pic I took…pretend you don’t see the new kitchen floor. Its supposed to be a surprise….oh well.  I had to go back and retake some missing photos so we just have to roll with it.

Well, here is the finished kitchen look.  We were going to replace the kitchen floor, but we decided to wait until we redid the hardwood and do it all at once.  I was actually fine waiting a while because I wasn’t sure what I wanted.  My original plan was to have hardwood put in the kitchen when we replaced the downstairs floors.  I listened to my gut and decided with our family that was a disaster waiting to happen.  I started noticing how often we have water on the floor, so back to square one on the floor.

I also started noticing when the sun came through the window each day the island had a blue grey tint.  No!!

This was supposed to be a true black!  Every day when the west sun came in I had a blueish gray island.  After a few days of noticing this, my OCD had reached its breaking point.  I completely repainted the island.  It was better but something was still off.  The kitchen was pretty much finished except the floor, and I wasn’t happy with it.  What was it?  Looking at floor samples frustrated me because I knew that whatever was wrong with the kitchen it wouldn’t be solved by the floor.  While sipping coffee one morning just staring at the kitchen a light bulb went off.  I hated the island.  Not just a little bit either, A LOT.  It was builder-grade, too boxy, and I needed some charm.  Since we had scrapped our wood floors I was also craving more wood tone.  I had to break the news to my husband.  I’m sorry I made you beadboard the island,  I’m sorry I wasted paint by painting it twice, and I’m sorry we bought granite for it.  I must of sold him a good story because he soon agreed with me.  We wanted a free standing island with a wood top.  I was able to sell the granite island top quick and easily on Craigslist.

Now, I’m so glad we waited on the floor!  I ended up finding a wood worker on Etsy who made custom furniture and also kitchen islands.  He took the measurements of the old island and created exactly what I wanted.  It took a really long time for him to make it but it was worth it in the end.  While the island was being made we had the floors replaced.  If you noticed the plug in the old island, we had the wires cut off and sealed up under the new tile.  We realized that we really didn’t use that plug much anyway.  After the floors were replaced the island was delivered.

With the removal of the old island, I was worried about losing my cabinet space.  It turned out fine for me.  Its actually easier to reach my stuff with the open shelves, and I have baskets to hide clutter.  I do have to be disciplined and keep it organized though.  I love how the drawers now open from both sides, much more functional for me.  I wanted to stain the maple butcher block, but I wanted it to be food safe.  I wasn’t planning on actually cutting on the wood top, but I knew I would have food on it.  After lots of internet research I ended up using a 50/50 blend of dark tung oil and citrus solvent from www.realmilkpaint.com.  Lots of helpful info on their website.  I love the products here and they have great customer service.  I sometimes email them annoying questions and they’re always happy to help me out.  It took me several applications to get a deep enough color, but I’m very happy with the results.  The best part about this is that any stains or future wood flaws can easily be sanded out, and then I just re-oil, it’s so easy.

Not to frighten you but here’s the before pictures again.  The dirty dishes add a nice homey touch right?

If your eyes are really good you might be able to make out our grocery list. Haha.

I had always wanted a double oven in our kitchen. I was so excited when I found this GE double oven that would fit in my single oven space.  Its great.  The top is best for smaller items like roasting vegetables or rolls, the bottom works good for bigger items.

This kitchen organizer had been a life saver when dealing with paper clutter.  I now have file folders for coupons, important papers, and recipes.

So here I finally present to you our finished kitchen.  Oh by the way I have new “special” grout.  Special grout is for people who hate cleaning grout but who want clean looking grout.  So far its working but I’ll keep you posted.  I hope you enjoyed our kitchen remodel, what a journey it was!  If you are interested in purchasing any of the products in this article, you can use the links at the bottom of this page.  Thanks for reading!