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the kitchen: before

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Who doesn’t love a great before and after?  I live for them (don’t worry, pics coming soon).  I always knew our kitchen pics were going to be dramatic, basically because – well look, have you ever seen a worse ‘before’ kitchen?

It wasn’t even a question of not liking the kitchen beforehand – there simply wasn’t a kitchen.  God only knows what had happened to it, but someone, at some point had pulled out almost all the cabinets and removed/sold all the appliances, probably to buy crack or something (more on our neighbourhood later).  Well, that’s what it felt like standing in there – like bad shit had happened and everything of value had been pilfered a long time ago.  I’m assuming of course that there was something of value in there, once upon a time, long, long ago.

Anyway, we were left with some unreachable upper cabinets, a sink, and two cupboards of questionable origins.  Grossest of the gross was the interior of one with what looked like animal scratch marks.  Yes, really.

We wondered (not for too long obviously or we might never have returned) what could have got stuck in the cupboard.  A cat?  Too big.  A mouse?  Too small.  The R word was left unspoken (as in – AT).  Ugh.  I prefer not to speculate further.  In any case, that was the first thing in our newly hired dumpster (skip for my UK friends – I will outline later the trouble your language got me into when I would completely forget the North American word for renovation-specific terms – learned during my developing addiction to UK renovation programmes.  More on my TV renovation addiction later too…).  This is why there are no pics of the actual cabinet itself, just the disgusting interior – the cabinet itself didn’t last long enough!

The upside of all this was that of course, whatever we did was going to look better than before.  I could sponge paint the walls for Christ’s sake and it would still be an improvement (sponge painting makes me want to barf in case that’s unclear).  Really, the best part was that we could screw up however badly and it wouldn’t really matter – quite a relief when you have absolutely no idea what you’re doing.

The biggest challenge was the size, and the second biggest challenge was not being able to really do anything about the size due to a) the bathroom being on the other side of one wall, b) the basement stairwell being behind the other wall, and c) the chimney – in use for the furnace – being in the middle of the wall and beside the plumbing.  So we were stuck with dimensions 12ft 9 in. long x 7ft 1in. wide.  Yes, TINY.  And of course some of the length is taken up with the hallway that runs through to the back door so isn’t usable in terms of workspace.

So what did we do?  Photos coming next post…


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