September 2, 2013

This post should have had about twelve titles…Why We Chose Laminate Countertops, Destruction, We Never Thought We’d Have Laminate Countertops, Updates,…you get the picture.

When we originally wanted the yellow house, I knew I wanted to gut the kitchen…well, because there wasn’t much of a kitchen anyway. One of the reasons I didn’t pursue the house so much at first was because of the chimney separating the kitchen and dining room. I had no idea it was possible to knock it down.

Drum roll, please.IMG_7854 IMG_7853 IMG_7852

My contractor wasn’t scared.

This is the view from the back door.


This is the view from the front door. The cabinets are the right side of the chimney.


They took that baby down and it changed my world.

Slowly, the brick came down.

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Deep breath….it’s coming down!!!!!

IMG_1035 IMG_1034 And the view from the front door minus the chimney!IMG_1038 IMG_1037


Now, I realize some of you are probably cursing me because of the beauty of the exposed brick. And trust me, it was a thought. This was not a fast process  by any means. But the brick was not beautiful. There were lots of holes, plus the biggie…it was pulling on the ceiling and the floor so honestly, it was best to take it all down.

The floor was patched….slowly….hardwoods were refinished and patched…the kitchen had to get all new floor because of the beautiful plywood you see in there…

Walls were put up back up but with sheetrock instead of plaster!

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A coffered ceiling was then installed to cover wires…which ended up being something I loved!

Now that it was an empty slate we thought back to our plans. Originally, we had a quote for custom cabinets and quartz countertops. HA! What were we thinking!?!?

As our budget dwindled smaller and smaller for all the updates that no one can see because they are hidden in the walls, in the floor, and on the roof, the budget for the kitchen began to shrink, too.

Enter unfinished stock cabinets and the cheapest countertops you can buy.

We got unfinished oak cabinets (that’s a funny story for another day).

And we asked for the cheapest countertops money could buy.

Originally (it must be my word of the day), Lowe’s gave us an unbelievable price for recycled glass but we misunderstood and turns out the total he gave us was NOT for the entire kitchen like we thought. It was for ONLY the countertops. Aigh! No way that would work. (Side note: our entire kitchen, including appliances, cost LESS than that quote!) We discussed solid surface but we still didn’t love it so we didn’t want to pay that much for solid surface for something we weren’t in love with….

Enter laminate. Y’all. They were $800. It was worth every bit of the $400 extra to have them installed. I know, don’t kill me for not attempting it ourselves….Russ was already working 12 hour days over there (He worked.all.summer.).

$800 for all these countertops and they look amazing (well, we think so anyway)!!!

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We did go with butcher block from Lumber Liquidators. We went with maple and then my ahhmmazing father pushed them together and stained it. Again, another story for another day.

Update: Here is the latest picture of the kitchen

White Kitchen hood Kitchen Transformation

You can read about the hood here.

The kitchen is almost finished but for now, I wanted you to see that a) laminate really can turn out well and b) it’s slowly coming together!  I promise, promise more pictures are coming soon but I wanted you to see progress!

What do you think? Are you choosing laminate over granite for budget/aesthetic purposes? Have you torn down walls for an open floor plan? Tell me all about it, please!