If you have seen my manic tweets you will know that ten days before Christmas Day we decided that our kitchen in our new home had reached it’s limit and it was going to be ready by Christmas Day. Yes Christmas Day 2014. It’s now Monday the 22nd and there are 3 sleeps before Christmas and well will it happen? Will our kitchen be in, eh only if some magical fairies help in the middle of the night. Anyone know how to get me some of them?
Our kitchen started out as a solid wood, custom made chestnut kitchen. Yip those awful pics are all I have of it. It came with our gorgeous old house and like everything in this house, we are coming to learn that it was in fact built by a bunch of lazy ass drunken monkeys. Nothing in this house (gorgeous as it is) was done with any amount of forethought or care. Which is fine, we bought an old house ready to roll up our sleeves and dive right in. It’s what my DH was longing for, a DIY project that he could put his stamp on. Now 5 months down the line, I’m not quite sure this is what he had in mind with a 5 month old in tow.
Like many of the kitchens on Pinterest, we decided to paint ours with Annie Sloan Chalk paint. So I started ten days ago by pulling off all the doors and scrubbing them down along with the carcass and units. DH came home with chalk paint and we each grabbed a brush and started the first coat. It was bliss. T was asleep, there was nothing but painting and peace. The first coat went on a bit patchy as you can see in the above picture but on Tuesday the doors where ready for a second coat so between T’s naps I got some done and we finished these Tuesday night. Now doesn’t this sound like we are right on track???
Wednesday I started painting the 44 ornate hinges (yip those little round ones in the picture) that needed to be painted in metalwork paint. It took all day, all T’s naps and till about 10 pm. Thursday was carcass second coat day and it came and went in a blur. By Friday I was dragging myself out of bed to get T’s breakfast, then get to her nap time and start on Project Kitchen. Friday was touch up and lacquer day. So I touched up the doors and well I’m terrified of using lacquer so I chickened out and waited for DH to come home and use it. I ended up giving it a go and I did some of the brush work and end gables. Still sounding pretty good and on track right?? Keep reading.
Saturday was the day of no project work. I was in TIK and DH was conducting an IKEA trip with T in tow. So Sunday (yesterday) we started back into it (after a quick Santa visit to ask for some kitchen help).DH drilled all the new holes for the handles and I fitted them and we both popped them back onto the newly painted units.
Next we decided to swap out an integrated under the counter fridge for a drawer unit. The are the same size so we thought sure why not. We started to pull out the integrated fridge by removing the kickboards and all the screws and fixings on the unit and yip you remember those drunken monkeys I mentioned, well they reared their ugly heads again. They had built this kitchen over the rubble of the old kitchen. Yip lots of concrete rubble, old wall board and a toy golf club all had to be cleaned out from behind and under our current kitchen units. This took precious time. The integrated fridge finally came out to find it was being propped up by an old piece of worktop screwed into the tiled floor. Yip into the floor. About an hour later DH had that up and I was cleaning underneath so that the space was ready for our new unit.
Now we tried to pop in the new IKEA cabinet, we had measured it. It was perfect, snug even. But in an old house nothing is simple. We found out that the wall was not finished at the back and there was cement build up, meaning that the space we are trying to fit this unit into was bigger at the top than the bottom. Great. We tried everything to make that bad boy fit. It was midnight by then, so using a saw was out of the question. So right now, I have an open carcass of a drawer unit that needs to be pulled out again, cut along the back, popped back in and the drawer units all built and put in. Simple. Yip I’ll let you know how tonight turns out.
On the other side of our kitchen there is still a wall unit carcass to strip and paint. This will not be done before Xmas but I don’t really need it so I didn’t mind.We have 4 doors that need lacquer and handles and a worktop that needs to be fixed to the wall and a carcass unit that needs kickboards, spacers and a door. Oh and that door needs to have hinges bored into it. Why so much work on that side of the kitchen you ask? Well those drunken monkeys had fixed these units and worktop to an exterior wall without any protection what so ever and the wall was leaking from the roof right into those units! Yip those bad babies got turfed right out and put us back a bit as we had to build new ones and salvage what we could from the existing units.
People we have 2 nights to do all of the above. I don’t see it all happening to be honest but if the bulk of the work is done, I can make a Christmas dinner in there. I’ll let you know how we get on but I’m thinking we will find something else lurking in there that will eat up all our time. But here is where we stand right now, It’s starting to take shape and seeing what the finished pieces look like gives you such a kick to complete the rest.