Monday, January 30, 2012

Room for baby

We have a pretty cool room for baby.  Back when we bought the house, this large bedroom was painted with very random royal blue paint, but had a twee window that was so cute and a nice built-in shelving unit. 
It only took us a month of living there to get that mess primed over, and the gross carpet ripped out. 
Shortly after, I let Shaun pick the paint color (Behr Simple Silhouette), and it became sort of a 'man room' with my old tube tv while we saved up for a flat screen for the living room. 
My old futon set is not anything I would buy today, but it was very 'IN' when I bought it in 2000.  Luckily, I unloaded it on CL for almost $500!  I love Craigslist. 
In 2009, we moved our old bed in here when we got our TempurPedic, and it's been basically a random stuff/guest room since then.  Here it is today, with our living and dining room rugs on the bed.  See, random stuff.  
Check the difference the wide angle lens makes!  Love it.  We are not changing the wall color when it becomes baby's room, it's so bright in here I think the dark color works well.
The closet has some very awkward organization added by the previous owners, not sure if that is going to be redone or not.  It's almost impossible to get to the back right portion.  And ooops, I forgot about some blue inside that door!
My thrift store campaign style dresser will be the changing table, when I get around to picking a paint color.  
I love the ceiling light and matching sconce above the dresser.  They are stylish but still nursery-appropriate.  I just made that criteria up.  
I got them from LunaWarehouse for a great price, they always offer extra coupons.  Sconce here, ceiling fixture here
I'm looking forward to baby H having a nice big play area when we get that queen bed and huge tv out of here! 
I've picked up a bigger rug, the zebra is a too-small 5x7.  I found a brand new 8x10 of this Pottery Barn Henley rug (in Sailor Blue) on eBay for $300.  
Holla!  Now I just need to figure out what else I'm doing in this room.  That is the hard part. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Somebody get the smelling salts

I have just fainted from the awesomeness of my new 'Phantom Green' granite.  Like, it is absolutely incredible.  Nobody has granite like this, at least no one I know, so I am just about the coolest kid on this playground.
It's almost embarrassing how much I love it.
The veining is...a miracle of nature.
When these first couple pieces went in, I made a fool of myself with the installers there, taking pictures, jumping around, stroking it, oohing and aaaaahing. 
I love how every bit is different, yet the same.  This piece by the microwave area even has a shiny bit in the front that is so interesting, like a big crystal that got cut in half.
We chose a 'sueded' finish because I definitely didn't want polished.  Sueded (or leathered) granite has more texture and movement than other finishes.  While matte, there is still a good amount of reflection, and it's not as dull and smooth as a honed finish.
I couldn't get the faucet spout to stick in the hole with all the gobeldy gook on the end, so you get the sink, handles, and sprayer.  This sink is 10 inches deep!  It is the Kraus KBU14 30" stainless sink from here and I love it.  I was able to score an additional 15% off, so I paid just $170 for this 16 gauge sink.  At the granite installers suggestion, I went with a positive reveal of the sink and it looks flawless. 
For the granite edge, we wanted it to be eased and mostly straight, but with a slight rounding of the corners. 
Like all projects, we had some problems.  We ran into some issues with our uneven walls, specifically by the door....
And on that same wall, but the opposite end....
This piece is almost 1/2 inch away from the wall, so we will have to be careful when tiling.  Oh well, such is life in a 70-year-old house. 
If you are looking for this granite, it goes by a couple names....Phantom Green, and Aqua Grantique.  I couldn't be happier with our choice! 

We have 42 square feet of granite in the kitchen, it set us back $3590 total.  And I'd pay it again!  Well, not twice, but you know what I mean.

The new gas line is being installed AS WE SPEAK and range should be up and running in about an hour - holla to a home cooked meal!  And here is Lucius in the sink, because it's soooo funny and I would always find him here.  Too bad he lost his favorite hangout spot now that it's installed.  

Monday, January 23, 2012

Air Gap??

Our granite fabricator told me we need an air gap for the dishwasher.  So did the lady at Home Depot when I was buying the dishwasher installation kit.  An air gap is one of these guys that sit on the counter next to your faucet...
My plumber (a friend of ours) says that they aren't really necessary for controlling backflow if you have the hose positioned properly, and he doesn't have one in his own kitchen.  In looking at other's kitchens online, I cannot find any examples of kitchens with one installed.  Well, here is one...
And that's about all I found.  It seems most people do not use one.  WI plumbing code requires one, but luckily we are not having an inspector come through. 

Do you have an air gap? 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

All about hardware

Folks, I got my cabinet hardware.  After much frustration trying to find LONG pulls for our bigger drawers, I finally decided on the Lugarno pulls and knobs from Restoration Hardware. 
I really wanted to find something cheaper, but all the cheaper options that come in sizes longer than 4 inches were very modern or only came in brushed finishes, like Ikea.  I didn't want to do two smaller pulls on the wider drawers, so Lugarno it was.  I got 8 inch pulls for the 33" drawers.
And 6 inch pulls for the 24" and smaller drawers and trash pull out.  
I think they look perfect!  Simple 1 1/4" Lugarno knobs for all the doors. 
I chose polished chrome to match our faucet, rather than the ORB of the lights.  They look fantastic with the faucet!  It is like sparkly jewelry for our kitchen. 
Installing these large pulls what a huge pain in the butt.  I'm not going to lie, it was a good thing Shaun was ice fishing while I was doing this project because I was sweating like a pig (as per usual during this pregnancy) and swearing most of the time.  First, I taped all the cabinets to avoid marking the wood.
The trick was to find the center point on the cabinet, mark 3 (or 4) inches on either side, then use a hardware template to make sure the holes are exactly 1.25 inches from the top of the cabinet since the shaker trim is 2.5 inches thick.  This turned out to be an almost foolproof plan.  See, perfect!  {and, hello!}
This piece of styrofoam totally worked to keep the drawer far enough away from the cabinet frame while drilling. 
The styrofoam also worked like a charm while installing the knobs. 
I drilled an extra hole in my desired location on this cabinet knob template to make sure the knobs were exactly 1.25 inches from the side and bottom of the cabinet.  I'm super picky about placement!
No matter what I did, taping the back of the door/drawer, backing the door with a scrap piece of wood, etc...the backs would splinter. 
I tried to not beat myself up too much, and just dabbed some of my trim paint on the spot, wiped the excess, and called it good.  You can hardly tell when the screw is in place. 
Here is a better shot of our granite, subway tile, and two contenders for paint colors (Behr Pier, Behr Lotus Leaf).  Once we get the granite installed, I'll be testing out these colors on the wall. 
And, we got the appliances yesterday - they are fabulous! 
I'm drooling over the sleek frig and cool microwave drawer.  Who has a microwave drawer?  It's ridiculous.  The slide-in range and dishwasher aren't unwrapped yet, but hopefully they will be installed and ready to go soon. 
I paid $320 for the hardware, that is for 22 knobs, three 8" pulls, and seven 6" pulls on sale.  An average of $10 per piece isn't a steal, but I'm so happy with the sizes, and they are very high quality...totally worth it to me!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

How I've BIN

Whoops, that was pretty cheesy.  Sorry.  I love BIN, it's no secret.  It's my first love of renovation supplies. 
We primed the kitchen windows this weekend.  They were pretty rough, but we couldn't afford new wood windows and I'd rather watch Jersey Shore than put vinyl windows in my house.  Did I mention I hate reality tv?  I guess I'm a wood window snob.  I only snapped this one pic of the before...the paint was chipping off all over, so Shaun sanded and scraped well first. 
And after the magic of BIN, we have this:
I just can't believe what this stuff can do.  Too bad it can't clean the glass.  Unfortunately, BIN fumes have the ability to singe your nosehairs, so I wore a mask and only worked in short bursts to protect baby Hilton.  We also used throw-away foam brushes to make sure no cleanup was necessary.  The windows are officially ready for paint!
I will be using the always-delightful Benjamin Moore Satin Impervo (waterborne) paint in Decorator's White to finish the windows, and all the trim in the room.  It's a very close match to the cabinetry, thank goodness.
Someone asked me what the dimensions of the kitchen are.  The room is 16ft from windows to dining room, 12ft from sink wall to range wall, and the microwave nook is about 5ft by 5ft.  I love my kitchen, I just wish it was ONE FOOT wider so I could have a small island.  It's just too narrow at 90 inches from counter to counter.  Too narrow for this most beautiful French Kitchen Island that I covet from Crate and Barrel.  WHYYYYY? 
Oh wells.  Here is my 20-week belly to distract me from the pain.  I'm feeling good, looking less chubby and more pregnant!   
For my pregnant peeps, don't you just love Target 'Long and Lean' tanks?  They are perfect for baby bellies!  Luckily I own about a million of them... 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Bright and white

This week we got our cabinets, they are looking very good to a chick dealing with a frig in her living room.  I really love the shaker doors and deep drawers!
I talk more about the Koch cabinets here
And today, our wonderful electrician came back to install all the outlets and ceiling lights.  I almost peed my pants when I got home and saw how gorgeous my Rejuvenation schoolhouse lights look in here...
The can lights and main lights are all on dimmers, as well as the (not yet installed) under-cabinet lights.  It is amazing how much better the kitchen looks with those can lights!  Wow.  I'm so glad we installed those, as I originally didn't think we needed them.
The kitchen lights I purchased are:
5 - EcoSmart 6 in. LED downlights from Home Depot
2 - Jefferson flushmounts in ORB with 12 in. opal shades from Rejuvenation
1 - Bryant flushmount in ORB with 10 in. opal shade from Rejuvenation
1 - Rhone pendant in ORB with 8 in. opal shade from Rejuvenation

Luckily, we found the LED downlights for $40 and WE Energies was running a rebate for buying LEDs ($25 each!) so I will be getting those babies for $15 each.  The Rejuvenation was purchased on sale, so I ended up spending under $400 for all four lights.  They are well worth it!  Next up is picking cabinet hardware and getting appliances and window/door trim installed.  Never-ending, I tell ya.