The not-perfect house: kitchen

Before I continue with the Not-Perfect House series of blog entries, I’d like to clarify something: I’m calling it not-perfect because of the way I maintain it, not because I don’t think that the renovation created a darn near perfect house for us. It’s imperfect because it will never be show-room ready. It can’t be–we’re too busy living here. I count myself extraordinarily lucky to have had a chance to re-do a kitchen and bathrooms exactly how I want, though, and I’m nothing but pleased with the outcome. We all wish for bigger pantries/linen closets/laundry rooms, and I don’t know that anyone would turn down another bedroom, but after so many years of playing with home design software like it was a video game… I finally have My House. I am content and delighted.

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Anyway, on to our not-perfect kitchen, which I photographed right after the daily cleanup, and which I feel very happy with. The fridge has all kinds of stuff stuck to it and there are baby bottles waiting to be washed; but look at that attractive coffee machine and that beautiful bowl of fruit. It all evens out.

The kitchen has IKEA cabinet with white Adel doors. The refrigerator and stove (its burners heat up SO FAST for being electric, I love them) predate me, the dishwasher (quiet Bosch!) and microwave we bought new. We also have, not visible in these pictures, a pink Kitchenaid stand mixer and a garage sale 1980s vintage toaster oven that we love.

The floors in the kitchen and also in the master and guest bathrooms are commercial vinyl tile. Our floor installer ordered them for us. The bathroom floors are both pretty tame (master is white with brown flecks, guest is white with turquoise flecks) but the kitchen floor is turquoise-turquoise-turquoise and we love it. Other people ask us if it’s the original 1974 floor, and we have to say noooooo, we have a turquoise floor on purpose.

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Here’s a nice view of one side of the kitchen. The microwave has a vent built into it. Say hello to my wooden spoons. Say hello to my cooking necessities (salt, pepper, oils).

This wall originally had a door to the bedroom hallways on it, and that was the only entrance to the kitchen. The wide-open entrance, through which the first picture was taken, was cabinets and countertop and a breakfast bar. We took that out, as well as the door.

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Here’s a nice view of the other side. Say hello to the fancy coffee machine (we justify the cost by calculating up how much it would cost to drink as many lattes from Starbucks. Turns out we’re saving money with the fancy machine… like, lots of money). Say hello to the attractive bowl of fruit. Say hello to the baby bottles. This wall also had a door in it–a glass one. We took that out too.

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The dish cabinets on this wall are 39″ tall, like all of the upper cabinets in the kitchen. The room originally had a soffit, but that seemed like a shameful waste of space to us, so we took it out. Now it holds dishes we never use, and we feel much happier about our waste of space. The dish cabinets also have glass fronts, which works well for us because all of my dishes–bought in the days when I was doing English Country instead of Scandinavian Eclectic–are blue and white, all matchy-matchy.

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The bottom cabinets are all deep drawers instead of doors and shelves (except for the sink cabinet, which can’t be drawers because of the sink’s plumbing inside it). I love the drawers so much, and hate doors and shelves so much, that I can’t imagine doing anything different. I have always shied away from open shelving because anything that isn’t used on a weekly basis will get covered in greasy kitchen dust (yuck!), but drawers I love. When I open them, I see absolutely everything, which means I use absolutely everything. I never have to get down on my knees. Nothing gets forgotten.

The nonstick skillets, by the way, are Anolon and we love them. They heat evenly and have worn well over more than a year of daily use. We got the pair for about $30 on eBay. Consider them.

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We have a whole cabinet devoted to canning jars. Longtime readers may remember that we had blue jar votives for our wedding, which is where most of those come from–the big gallon-sized ones are gifts from a friend who loves estate sales and loves us enough to buy them for us when he sees them.

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The doorway beside the Keep Calm And Carry On poster leads to the laundry room. It is very small. It is wide enough for the washer, dryer, and cat box. Other than that, there is a small closet where we keep the kitchen trash can and a few small appliances, and space to walk. That’s it.

I hope you enjoyed the kitchen tour. We LOVE our kitchen.

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