home reno

Kitchen Renovation

Remember I said these blog updates would be random?  Well, nothing like silence after nine months and then the first house related post in four years.  I want to share some details about our kitchen renovation experience because, during our process, I was constantly looking for real-world examples and I found other writers’ blog posts  and photographs to be useful.  So here goes mine.

Our house was built as one of several in an area of military homes in circa 1955.  I always say circa because there are no records for the house at the land titles office until 1968, when the entire parcel of land that was owned by the military was broken up and sold as individual lots.  In aerial photos of Hillcrest (my neighbourhood) our house is present as of 1959.  When we started renovating and pulled down some walls, we found a a 1949 German Pfennig (coin) tucked in the ceiling. I usually split the difference between those two dates to come up with the approximate age of the house.

We knew that renovating the kitchen would be the most expensive and most time consuming, so we left this to the end of our renovations.  There will always be little things to do (is it possible for that not to be true as a home owner?) such as better trim, a new garage door, shelves just outside the kitchen area, painting the exterior, improving the garden, extending the deck, etc., but the kitchen was the last BIG item.

Here is what it looked like the day we got possession in 2009.kitchen1kitchen2



A party colored staircase

4:58 sunrise
23:15 sunset

Dare I? Ben and I both loved this staircase (as it appears in a mag called The World of Interiors July 2009) as soon as we saw it.

But after the initial rush of thinking we would do this to our stairs, we have paused. While I am not necessarily a fan of wood just for wood’s sake, I do wonder if painting over perfectly good stairs is insanity. This is what they look like now (with Mingus making a guest appearance en route to bed tonight):

So they need work regardless. They will have to be sanded and revarnished and they are currently a very different color than our floors. How do we decide?  If we paint now have we screwed ourselves for possibly going back to a natural finish in the future?  What do we do with the three steps after the landing at the top?  So many questions.  So much lack of action.

Bathroom paint job

9:06 sunrise
18:23 sunset

When we bought our house in 2009 we knew we would undertake a number of renovations and we have.  But the upstairs bathroom was redone just before we bought the place.  And, for the most part, I like the things that were chosen: white subway tile around the tub, mosaic tile on the floor, a white vanity cabinet, sink and toilet.

But the paint.  It was this awful baby yellow and it was everywhere.  Even the ceiling.  Who paints the ceiling yellow?!  Sorry if I am offending any lovers of yellow paint out there but it’s one of my least favourite shades.

Anyhow, so my project this week was to get rid of it.  But what colour to choose?  I love all the aquamarines and teal shades that make me think of Miami.  Colours like this:

But (a) Ben isn’t crazy about them and (b) I’m not actually convinced that this shades suit the house I live in and it’s location (ie: Whitehorse).  So instead I am going with white.  Yup, plain old boring Cloud White:

This is what it looks like so far (one coat on, one more to go).  And while I think it looks a TON better, I am not 100% sold on the white everywhere idea for my bathroom.  We’ll see how it looks after the towels and shower curtain get put back and once I hang some things on the walls but….. I dunno.

Anyone else out there love or hate the all white idea?  Love to hear from you!  (And yes, I appreciate the irony that while I say I hate yellow I am wearing a giant goldenrod knit dress. Whatever. Who says I can’t be fickle?).