Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Mini Kitchen Renovation -

NORTH Carolina is a great place to live. 
We've called it 'home' since 1977.
This house, 'the cottage', has been our home for 35 years.
Needless to say, a house always requires attention. Repairs and
renovations often rear their ugly heads. Things must be attended to 
in order to keep up one's property, especially as it ages. . . . just like
 its occupants!

My kitchen is OK, but having spent much of this pandemic year in
 said kitchen, cooking non-stop, I've noticed things in need of updating . . 
 . . . . and deep cleaning!!!
The words 'kitchen renovation' bring thoughts of a huge upheaval in the home.
 A total mess for weeks sometimes months, eating most meals out (we used
to be able to do that!), and an expense which could add up to
 thousands of dollars if replacing cabinets, appliances, flooring etc.
Yes, perhaps a beautiful new kitchen of your dreams . . . . . . eventually,
however it comes with a lot of work, disruption, and at a huge cost!

There are however smaller renovations which can be done . . . . . . and I've just
done one so small that most people, might not even notice it!  For me though
it's helping me enjoy my 35 year old kitchen a bit more!

Old Cabinet Pulls

For several years I've wanted a white kitchen - yes, paint all that
 oak woodwork - which was never going to happen as Bob loves "his wood."
Then I tried to cajole him into grey after he actually liked a kitchen 
we viewed at an IKEA store. With that not happening due to a mixed bag
 of reasons, I then fell in love with the amazing deVol English kitchen ads. . . . 
. . . . . beautiful spaces in dark blue, deep green, charcoal etc. Estimates
 to turn my kitchen into one of those requires winning the lottery, or
 inheriting a legacy, neither of which are in the cards!

Three awesome kitchens above all by deVol (UK)

New Cabinet Pulls

Looking at my cabinets I realized they were still in pretty good shape for 
their age, and apparently natural woods are becoming popular again, much
to Bob's joy.
What I really disliked the most were the door and and drawer 
pulls - old fashioned with their curlicues (see first photo), and losing their
 clean antiqued brass finish after being handled for so many years.

So, off I went to search for new hardware and, after looking at so many,
 I decided to try this one, bronze with just a smidgen of antiquing on the edges.
As the hinges are still pretty good looking - after a deep cleaning - and because 
removing and replacing over 50 hinges was beyond me, they are staying.
I bought one pull home to try and really liked it - went back the next day and
bought 25 more.

Together Bob and I removed all the old pulls, and I spent a long time cleaning
and touching up all the woodwork. The 26 new pulls for the doors and drawers
we put on together also.
Really pleased with the outcome which I think updates the kitchen a
little. As I said, this has to be the smallest 'kitchen reno' ever, but it
was easy, fast, caused no mess and upheaval, and cost under $150.00!

Kitchens get such a lot of heavy use, especially these days when we are
 cooking more than ever. Ours is not big by any means but it's comfortable
 to work in, has good light from the large windows, and the view to the back
 garden is lovely.

Speaking of views, my window above the kitchen sink faces the house
 next door across our adjoining driveways. Yes, the house I've recently
 featured which has been for sale. 
I'll have an update on that property very soon!

Any news from your kitchen?
What's cooking today?
I'm roasting veggies and making two Autumn soups.

I just have to add here that I'm overwhelmed by all the generous 
wishes you sent via comments and emails for my birthday on Monday.
Thank you everyone - you are such great friends.


  1. I'm Bob and I approve this post!

    1. better approve, haha!
      Thanks for the help on this huge reno Bob.

  2. Love the new pulls Mary! I have always spent a lot of time in the kitchen. We have never been big fans of going out to eat. We did find a good neighborhood pizza place about a mile from us that delivers, so I was very excited about that !

  3. Dearest Mary,
    Agreeing with Bob, if you happen to have this quality of wood in your kitchen; hold on to it!
    The new pulls worked miracles.

  4. Much more up to date, Mary. It's surprising what a small change can do for a kitchen. Tell Bob he did well on the enormous renovatin scheme!!

  5. Wow! That does make a difference. I like the wood and it is easier to care for than paint I think. My kitchen? Oh heavens, let's not go there. 🙃

  6. Looks good, Mary. Such a simple thing to do and so gratifying! My 20+ year old kitchen had a mini-makeover a few years ago and the handles went from sad and boring to things of beauty. Architectural hardware shops are like Aladdin's Cave, filled with gorgeousness, for me.

  7. It's amazing how such a small change (oops, huge reno :)) can update a kitchen. Your wooden cabinets look beautiful with the new hardware! Tonight we're having white bean and vegetable soup with sourdough toast.

  8. What a difference new hardware can make in a kitchen! You must be pleased with it Mary, and the oak wood is lovely too. The other kitchens you show are very appealing too, but short of a legacy I won't be getting a new kitchen either. Ours in 28 years old, and we are planning to get new bench tops and new hardware too. It has been difficult with the pandemic to have people in the house this year. Happy cooking Mary. xxx

  9. It does make a difference! I like natural woods, too, but I can also appreciate the aesthetics of those stylish grey painted kitchens. As for white, I would strongly advise against it... my Mum's kitchen is the best "negative" example for that!
    In my own kitchen, little to no cooking happens during the week. But I enjoy cooking nice meals for O.K. and myself on those weekends we spend at my place. This weekend, I plan to make Shakshouka.

  10. Dear Mary,
    You had a great idea. And the best part, it looks terrific. I do love the examples you have shown in kitchens which have been painted. Have you noticed how many kitchens feature painted and also have wooden cabinets. My kitchen is painted with 3 different glazes with the end result being a celadon finish. I'm still in love with it after 25 years.

  11. I love your coffee mugs Mary :) I like a white kitchen too. I find that wood is very dark. Right now our cabinets are painted green, not a fan, but one of these days (in 4-5 years) we'll be renovating the kitchen so green it is for now! I'm in the midst of Halloween baking and cooking! :)

  12. The new pulls look terrific. The old word charm is still intact with a hint of modern design. Regards Naomi Archangel Raphael Prayers


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