Thursday, February 14, 2013

Kitchen/Dining Renovation Pt 1

Years before we were married, The Mister and I each lived in houses with fairly open floor plans where the kitchen flowed into the dining room which flowed into the living/family room. Our first house also had an eat-in kitchen and no formal dining space so we were well acquainted with cooking and dining in the same space. We only wished our first house had more access or openness to the living room. In our first house, the living room was located at the front of the house and the eat-in kitchen at the back. Oftentimes, when we had people visiting, we congregated in the kitchen rather than lounged in the living room.
Galley Kitchen Before
Dining Room with Louvered Door leading to Kitchen Before
Dining Room with Door leading to hallway Before
When The Mister and I toured our current home (our second house), the first thing we noticed was how narrow and shut off the kitchen was from the dining space. The dining room was open to the living room, but the kitchen was its own small separate room - a galley space connected to the dining room by a swinging door. We knew immediately that walls would be coming down to accommodate a larger, more open and airy kitchen and dining room.
Wall removed between Kitchen and Dining Rooms
One surprise was the discovery of the electrical panel in the kitchen. (It was hidden behind a picture during our walk-through.) The second surprise was the pine boards beneath the layers of vinyl in the kitchen. The second discovery led to a slight dilemma when we needed to decide what to do with the flooring for the two spaces since the adjacent dining room flooring contained oak boards. More on that in a separate post. The third issue we faced was the discovery that the existing kitchen and dining room ceilings were at different heights.
Dining room ceiling with furring strips
Kitchen ceiling with furring strips
The kitchen and dining room ceilings were covered with beautiful tongue in groove boards. The Mister and I had discussed keeping the ceiling as is, but it would require a great deal of time to refinish the boards, not only that, but sections of the ceiling were missing due to previous fixtures and appliances. In the end, we decided to cover the ceiling with drywall. In order to make the ceiling level in the two rooms, the contractors installed furring strips to which the drywall would later be attached.

An open floorplan between the kitchen and dining room
While the walls and ceiling were open, new electrical and plumbing were run through the rooms. Afterwards, the drywall crew entered and installed the drywall throughout the house. This process took longer than expected as the weather suddenly turned cold and the mud did not dry.
Drywall installed
After the drywall was installed, The Mister primed and painted the walls and ceilings. The walls received two coats of Behr Toasted Wheat and the ceilings received two coats of Behr Premium Ultra Pure White. During this time, The Mister also installed the casements around the openings that led to the laundry room, the hallway, and the living room.  
Cased openings
In the next post, we will talk about the floor and reveal the after pictures! See Part 2 of the Kitchen/Dining Renovation.

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