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My name says a lot about me already. Yes, we’re on our 3rd kitchen remodel.

The first one was pretty minimal as far as what we changed. The cabinets and countertops stayed. I had to reglue the vinyl tiles to the floor which I think ended up being worse than just getting new ones, long story as to why we didn’t. Anyhoo, I took off the dark blue wallpaper and repapered, added a chair rail and tiled the backsplash and soffit fronts. This was part of a whole-condo remodel and we just didn’t have the money to do a lot to the kitchen. We recarpeted and painted everywhere and I retiled the bathroom. In the front entry we ripped out the awful, uneven, cracking ceramic tiles and had sheet vinyl installed.

The second remodel was in the house we bought from my grandparents. They had lived in it since 1969 and hadn’t done any redecorating. Which turned out to be a good thing, we didn’t have any orange shag carpet, flocked foil wallpaper or harvest gold appliances of the 70s to deal with. With the help of "Handy Randy", a friend of my uncle’s, we gutted the 1950s kitchen to the studs and started over. A half wall came out to make the kitchen into an L (it had been just one 11’ wall of cabinets for 35 years). We put in frosted maple cabinets, the uppers went all the way to the ceiling. I was working for a ceramic tile distributor at the time so we used lots of ceramic tile (cost +3% pricing tends to make one want to tile all surfaces in sight). I put Epro handmade ceramic tile on the countertops and backsplash. Very pretty but I don’t think I’d want handmade tile on a countertop again. They were very uneven. The floor was 12x12 imported Italian ceramic in a white stone look, they were almost the same color as the cabinets. We had 5 recessed lights put in: one over the sink on a dimmer switch (which we always turned down and left on overnight as a nightlight) and 4 even spaced throughout the room. I don’t recommend this, the lighting was never where I needed it. I put in halogen puck lights but never really used them. We had put in a 2x4 stud wall behind the base cabinets so the counters were deeper than usual so the lights didn’t’ shine where I was working. If I had to do it over again I’d skip the undercounter lights and put the recessed lights over the countertops. Live and learn! The walls were painted white that was tinted with the barest hint of rosy peach to match the hue of the cabinets. All in all it turned out well. I did all the tile work, put in the cabinets with the help of my dad and FIL, and did the painting and a lot of the drywall finishing. FIL helped with the trim work (he’s into woodworking).

The 3rd kitchen remodel is in the end of planning stages as of 5/03. We bought a 1923 English Cottage style house last year that’s all of 750 square feet. We are adding on a living room and the current living room is going to become a bedroom. We are also combing 2 existing rooms into one for the new kitchen and the wall between the new kitchen and the addition will be opened up to make a sort of "great room". The total square footage will be about 1100 when we’re done, plus another 800 in the finished basement.

Here’s what we have chosen thus far:

cabinets - IKEA Kalsebo
counters - IKEA Pragl Stone (discontinued, black with grey flecks)
faucet - Delta waterfall in chrome (swiped it from our last house, long story)
sink - 33" drop in stainless steel (recycling the one already here)
floor - looking at cork laminate planks or stone look vinyl tiles
cabinet hardware - IKEA Signera knobs and pulls
paint - no clue, there isn’t much wall showing in the room anyway so probably something light
ceilings - considering painted beadboard
backsplash - ?? Probably tile, looking at pretty little mosaics in fun colors

pullout trash and recycling cans
built in desk area
stainless steel rails, hooks and hanging accessories on the backsplash
recessed lights
undercabinet lights
pendants over island sink and table height extension

So that’s what I’ve been doing since 1996. I love DIY remodeling and almost always have my hands in a project. My husband isn’t handy at all, good thing he married a handy woman!

Thanks for reading!


Picture of our addition and kitchen plans:

Pasted from the ’get to know you’ thread at the kitchen forum:

My name is Karen and I’m a 33 year old housewife and have been since I was 5 months pregnant with ds who is 5 1/2. My husband is Dave and he just turned the big four-oh last month. I started up an internet biz in 1999 and leased it out last year b/c I got tired of the day to day grind and my son needed more and more of my attention. He is autistic. We moved last year into a very cute (but very small) 1923 English Cottage type house in a wonderful neighborhood so we could be in a better school district for our son. We had purchased a lot in the horrible school district and planned to build a home and realized after we placed the deposit with the builder that the schools weren’t doing squat for him so we decided to move here.
In my previous life Before Kids I was in customer service/purchasing dept. for a wholesale flooring distributor and then worked at Florida Tile before becoming a mom. Through high school and college I worked at various fabric stores and I have also worked on and off for many years as a professional seamstress. I’ve made everything from pillows and drapes to wedding gowns, baptismal dresses and first communion dresses. I have a degree in music education and was a classical flutist and jazz saxophonist in college.

My serial remodeling history is outlined on ’my page’ so click there for the scoop on that. I love almost all aspects of DIY remodeling. My husband, on the other hand, doesn’t know which end of a hammer to use.

I found this forum only a month or so ago and I’m so glad I did! Between supervising the team of therspists that works with my son and taking care of household chores I come here and obsess over all the details of my third kitchen remodel.


Oh, and we live in Cincinnati, Ohio, where the closest IKEA is Pittsburgh, 4 hours away but we go there anyway....

I live in: United States

My favorite forum 1 is Home Repair.

First registered on April 13, 2003 .