Woohoo! We're finally getting the ball rolling on the kitchen/dining/living room remodel! We spend all day Saturday ripping our house apart.
My kids spent the day with my parents. When my two year old got home that night, she took one look around and with her most concerned, cutest pouty face said, "Our house is ruined!"
Let's look at the damage, shall we?
Here's the very first before pic:
Goodbye to the world's worst kitchen floor! It doesn't look so bad in the pics, right? Well, trust me. It is. It's actually not wood flooring at all, but tongue and groove siding that you'd use in a log cabin or something. Food and junk gets into the cracks and won't come out. You can't really mop it because the top coat finish isn't strong enough. It dents and scuffs and scratches like crazy. It IS AWFUL!
We finally removed that random pillar and we think we figured out why it was there in the first place. The original room had a full wall that went all the way to the pillar and we think rather than having to rewire the electrical, the previous homeowners added this "decorative" pillar to hold the cables for the light switch and outlet. Here's what I'll call The Collage of Shoddy Workmanship to show you why I hated this pillar and the attached beams so much:
I can just hear them saying, "Cut the wood wrong? Meh... just fill it with wood putty. Crooked? Who cares!" GAH! It drove me crazy!
I was so happy to rip the whole thing out! It really opened up the room. Check it out:
We finished drywalling the wall by the fridge and we're still working on filling in the hole in the ceiling that was under the beam. Then we'll texture and paint before we install the flooring.
And one more shot of the cursed pillar. Don't mind our realtor trying to jump out of the shot. Ha!
I've come up with an exciting plan for our kitchen layout too. I already removed the hanging cabinets above the peninsula (see those pics here). But it's funny. Removing that pillar made me rethink the way the space is used. After lots of brainstorming and drawing things out on graph paper, I think I'm going to get rid of the peninsula/bar area and trade it for an island!
Here's a photo that gives you a good idea of the layout:
And here's a sketch to show you how it would work:
I think we can turn the existing peninsula cabinets 90 degrees to be in line with the back wall and dishwasher. Then that'll give us the space for an island! We would fill the empty wall space above the turned cabinets with open shelving.
Why change the layout? Here are my reasons:
1. With the current layout, you can't reach the upper cabinet when you open the dishwasher. It's really hard to put the dishes away! You also can't access the cabinets in the peninsula when the dishwasher is open. That corner is just awkward!
2. When we're hosting a crowd and have people sitting at the table and the bar, the barstools and chairs are too close together and people can't walk through that space. Moving the barstools to face a different direction means the walkway around the table will be free and clear. Scroll up to the picture with the couch in it and you'll see how tight it can be between the table and the bar stools.
3. More storage and more counterspace! We have to replace the countertops and the flooring anyway, so this is our chance to go for it and you can never have enough storage in the kitchen, right? The island would have two cabinets with drawers and one cabinet with a pull out garbage can.
What do you think? I'd love feedback on the island vs. peninsula idea especially.