A Six-Day Kitchen Renovation

JULIA AND GARRETT’S HOUSE

We’ve been over in Seattle this week remodeling our friends’ kitchen.  Julia and Garrett are some of our dearest friends, so when they decided to remodel their kitchen, we volunteered to help. And that would be totally selfless of us, except that these two have been helping on our properties for 8 years. About time we returned the favor, right?!

The craziest part about this project is the timeline. We are remodeling this kitchen in just six days. Yes, you read that right. Six days! I’m calling it the #6daykitchenreno and yes, we are totally crazy. In between kicking down walls and setting cabinets, I’ve been posting daily updates on Instagram, but I will share the entire project here after we catch our breaths.

the-grit-and-polish-julias-kitchen-family-2

Wish us luck…we are going to need it!

xoxo

-Cathy

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The Farmhouse | Pulling Up Carpets

THE FARMHOUSE

Last week at the farmhouse, we pulled up the carpets in the nursery.  And let me just say, it felt soooooo good!

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Nursery Carpet Pull

It is always exciting pulling up carpets (especially when they are stained and stinky) but you’re never quite sure what will be be lurking underneath.  Well here’s what was under our carpets…

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Nursery Floors post Carpet

Sure enough, those are hardwoods! But unfortunately, that white stuff that you see all over them is splattered paint.  It seems that a previous owner *forgot* to use a tarp when they last painted.  Ugh.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Nursery Post Paint and Carpet 2

After scraping and cleaning the floors, we were happy to see that the hardwoods are actually in good condition, except for that paint, which didn’t come up with all the scraping.  Double ugh.  These floors will need refinishing, a rare task we leave for the experts (like at Dexter and Ravenna).  But thankfully there are no top-nails in these floors, which can be a huge headache for refinishers.  Or crazy homeowners who are willing to set each nail, one-by-one, with a 1/32″ nail set, like yours truly 😉

Refinishing floors is disruptive and messy.  The chemicals they use are toxic and thus require the homeowners to be out of the house for at least three days. Basically a big inconvenience.  So we’ll wait on this job until all the carpets upstairs are removed. That will be more convenient for us, plus we’re more likely to meet a refinishers minimum square footage requirement with all three bedrooms included. The exact price that we’ve paid in the past is eluding me at the moment, but I think we’ve spent around $3.50/sf for refinishing. Not exactly cheap. But it’ll be worth it!

 

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Nursery Post Paint and Carpet 6The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Nursery Closet Post Paint

In the meantime, I’m planning to throw down a large area rug to cover the majority of these floors so we can get Brooks into this room. While the floors may be a bit of an eyesore, hardwood floors trump stinky carpets every single time. At least in my book.  Know what I mean?!

Next up in this room, we’ll be hanging curtain rods, updating outlets and switches, adding new lighting, retrofitting a full-size bed into a day-bed, adding in some kid-friendly activities, shoring up an antique dresser, and then putting the room together!  Okay, so we probably won’t be done by the time guests arrive for Labor Day, but this girl is definitely going to try;)

More on the nursery project here. The before pictures are here. And in case you missed it, the exterior photos of the farmhouse are here.  Still can’t believe this beautiful place is ours!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. The Greek Islands have been number one on my bucket list for pretty much forever. They are just so beautiful (at least in photos). So of course this gorgeous guesthouse would be there!

p.p.s. I’m dying over these little rhubarb cakes. I must find a recipe! And an occasion to make them for… 🙂

p.p.p.s. I LOVE it when bloggers travel to Seattle and show off what a beautiful city it is. Girl Meets Glam nailed it!

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Dexter Backyard: a space for summer

THE DEXTER HOUSE

With summer officially kicked off, it seems appropriate that todays post is about the Dexter House backyard.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Enter 2

We’ve been working on this 700sf-ish space sporadically through the Spring, and luckily it’s coming together in time for Summer.  If you’ve ever been to Seattle in the summer, you know how magical it is.  The weather is 80s or so and the city comes alive with pale, friendly faces, float planes and ferry boats.  Plus all that rain in the winter means green everywhere.  Yeah, so this family of pale faces is pretty happy to spend time in our little Seattle backyard.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Large 1The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard CouchThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Metal PanelThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Large 2
You may have noticed that the Dexter house is really urban (at least by Seattle standards). There are houses and apartments and balconies looking into our little property from every angle. That’s just how it goes in the city. But because of that, I really wanted this outdoor space to feel private, like a reprieve from the hustle and bustle, a space to escape and relax. So we built the fence 8′ tall (the maximum allowed) and topped the back section with an arbor, which will have wild, purple wisteria blooms weaving around it in a year or two.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard fence

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard HouseThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard DoorThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Couch close 1The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard planter detail

Once we realized that the old fountain was broken beyond reasonable repair, we converted it into a planter.  And I really dig the mix of flowers and green in the center of the yard. You may have noticed that we left a “hole” in the fence for our peek-a-boo of the lake. You can see a teensy tiny boat waaaayyyy down there.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard View

Did you see it?

We call it our view. Yeah. That’s just how we roll.

We found some furniture from Craigslist for this backyard.  First came the small table with four chairs a couple months ago.  I may still pick up an umbrella for a little shade to help on those few days above 90.  But either way, this is a great spot for alfresco dinning.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Table

As I mentioned last week, I also found the wicker couch on Craigslist.  And although it will not likely stay in this spot for long (I have a much better spot for this one, just wait…!!!) it’s been nice to have a cozy spot to hang out back here for now.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Couch detailThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Couch close 2

Up next we’re going to build a narrow shed on the side of the house.  Plus we have a few more plants to put in.  And then there’s the small matter of that fresh growler of beer, those golden string lights, and that cozy new couch.  I’m looking at you Garrett!

Happy Summer to you all!

Previous posts on the backyard project here and here and here.

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. There are just so many amazing backyards.  Seriously! So I’ve pinned a bunch of them and compiled them here.

p.p.s. This brownstone renovation is stunning.  Add in the fact that that house was built in 1804 and I have big heart eyes all over it!

p.p.p.s. one thing that I’m loving in kitchens right now is shelf rail like in this kitchen. How lovely is that?!   You’re with me, right?!

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Renovation Inspiration | 6.9.16

Life has been really good lately.  We’ve been spending more time out-of-doors than in, and more time together as a family than apart.  And when debating whether to tackle the basement renovation or go on an adventure, the later always wins out.  So while we may be a little behind schedule on the renovation (read: we haven’t started it yet), we’re miles ahead with summer memories.  And that’s a win in my book.

Naturally, we’re off on another adventure this weekend.  And even though I’m a no-show on progress, other folks from around the world wide web have been busy renovating old homes.  Here are a few of my favorite renovations and happenings from this week:
Jersey Ice Cream Co Old Chatham Renovation Bedroom 6-6-16
The fabulous renovation duo known as Jersey Ice Cream Co is at it again.  And no, I’m not talking about ice cream.  Check out the rest of this stunner on Remodelista.

Elle Decor Rustic Farmhouse Renovation Living Room 6-6-16

Old farmhouses are on my brain lately (okay, always) and this Elle Décor feature does not disappoint.  Rustic farmhouse style at it’s best!

A Country Famrhouse in Beekman Boys Book 6-6-16

One of my all-time favorite renovations is in the new Beekman Boys book!  But actually my favorite thing about Catherine’s announcement post is the last few lines: “The only thing I can say is that I am not so sure people necessarily choose the homes they buy. For in both our cases, I feel as if our homes chose us.”  Sooooo right!

Coco Kelley Kitchen Renovation Plan 6-6-16

Last, but not least, Cassandra of coco+kelley started on her kitchen renovation this week!  I can’t wait to see how her simple and natural and soothing design takes shape.   I’m 100% confident that it’s going to be a stunner!

Sources: one | two | three | four

xoxo
-Cathy

p.s.  I hope to photograph the Dexter House’s backyard soon for a reveal post!  But in the meantime, you can catch sneak peaks on Instagram, where you may also glimpse my wild boys…you know, in case you miss us 😉

p.p.s. speaking of Instagram, I went down renovation memory lane at the Ravenna House yesterday.  I forgot just how bad that basement was…!

p.p.p.s. Wilder is turning three next week. Three! I’m just striving for no tears (on my part), lots of dinosaurs and chocolate cake.  And did I mention chocolate cake?  Lots and lots of chocolate cake. Hopefully something like this one.

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Vintage Sinks in the Kitchen

THE DEXTER HOUSE

Let’s talk about vintage kitchen sinks for a minute.  I LOVE the look of vintage sinks in kitchens, especially in remodeled kitchens in older homes.  So when we began the kitchen remodel at the Dexter House, I scoured salvage stores and stalked Craigslist daily.  But I just couldn’t find the right one.

That’s when I stumbled upon vintage replica sinks…

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen After

This 42″ washboard sink looks old but is actually brand new.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen After Sink Wall

The sink fit perfectly in my kitchen design.  And we were able to tuck the dishwasher underneath the washboard side to save space.  And while I would have preferred to use an old sink (that’s just how I roll…), I love that this sink improved upon some of the pitfalls of antique sinks: it has a deeper basin and the drain hole is wide enough to accommodate a garbage disposal.  So even though the sink was over $700, it was a no brainer for this remodel.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Sink Flowers

We’ve been using this kitchen for six months now and are pretty happy with it.  I wish the basin was still a little deeper, and Garrett wishes we picked a lower faucet so water wouldn’t splash outside the sink as much.  But we both love the integral backsplash and the built-in drainboard for drying dishes and baby stuff.  I would definitely consider using this sink in another remodel, and of course I would definitely consider using a vintage sink, should the right one come along.

Here are three other kitchens who I think are using vintage sinks (or well-done replicas) awesomely:

Dexter Kitchen Sink Inspiration 1 Dexter Kitchen Sink Inspiration 2 Dexter Kitchen Sink Inspiration 3

Sources: One | Two | Three

That first image is my all-time dream antique sink.  A washboard and an apron front (!).  Which I would put in my dream country house, of course.

I’d love to hear what you guys think.  Would you ever use a vintage sink in your kitchen? How about a vintage replica sink?

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. I spend my time reading about historic kitchen materials.  It’s cool.  Get on board!

p.p.s. Loving the idea of a fireplace in a dining room.  It seems so cozy.  You’d never have to leave the table in a room like this!

p.p.p.s. And speaking of dream dining rooms…oh weren’t we?! Mine would definitely have a table like this one in it. Must see if Garrett can build me one!

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Guest Bedroom: Finally Getting Around to It

THE DEXTER HOUSE

The third bedroom at the Dexter House has been a huge question mark since the we moved in last September.  At first, this room was left intentionally empty in order to set up a labor tub for Brooks’ home birth.  After our littlest was born, we started storing stuff in here, until so much stuff accumulated that I simply closed the door and ignored the room altogether (I know, I know, not a good strategy when space is tight!).  But with the threat of house guests over Thanksgiving, we finally had no choice but to clear the clutter.  So we cleaned the room up (threw stuff away or stored it in the basement), tossed a bed in here, and called it good…until now.  Because the least we can do is have a guest bedroom that guests actually like to be in.

The Grit and Polish - Guest Bedroom Progress Collage

At 8.5’x9′, our guest bedroom is a cozy 77sf.  Cozy as in realtor speak for tiny. But worse yet, the only window in this room is north-facing and not particularly large, meaning it’s dark in here all day long.  The only storage in the space is a two-foot wide closet in the corner.  All in all, this room is a design headache and it’s taken me a few months to wrap my mind around what we can possibly do to make it better.

Like it usually does, inspiration struck like lighting last week.  We were showing the Bryant House (our second house) to new tenants, and had one of those “ah ha” moments when I walked into the second bedroom.  See, I actually love the second bedroom at the Bryant house.  And it’s tiny.  Like 70sf tiny.  But it’s a great little room.  And not because of great architectural bones or huge windows (it doesn’t have either).  It’s lovely because it’s cozy (cozy as in actually cozy).  It has tall wainscot and hardwood floors, and the walls are painted a lovely shade of gray, which all enhances the comfort of the space. Basically, it’s a great room despite being only 70sf.  And I thought, hey we can do this!

Back at the Dexter House house, I turned my focus back to the guest bedroom.  Our plan is simple: tall wainscoting, paint, an antique bed frame, white linens, cozy blankets, a hanging pendant, and a side table.  At 77sf, that’s about all this room can hold.  And did I mention that I want to go dark with the paint.  Like really dark.  I debated about dark teal but ultimately decided on black paint.  I know that dark paint colors can sometimes make rooms feel smaller, but I also think that dark colors can help spaces feel more comfortable, welcoming, and well…cozy.  So here’s the design board for our little guest bedroom:

Black and White Bedroom
Blanket, Anthropologie | Bedroom image, via Design Sponge |Chair, Industry West | Light socket, Vintage Wire and Supply | Lightbulb, Amazon | Sheet, One Kings Lane

What do you think?  Would you ever paint your walls black?

We’re on a tight, two-week turnaround before more guests arrive, so wish us luck!  I’ll give you an update later this week.

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. Emily Henderson’s recommended colors for rooms like our guest bedroom (aka small and dark).

p.p.s. I was really inspired by this dark teal bedroom.  Don’t you think the wall color just makes that room?!

p.p.p.s. The secret to long lasting love from…celebrities?!  Okay, so maybe not the most authoritative source, but it’s a fun little read!

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Dexter Backyard: the Finished Patio Door

THE DEXTER HOUSE

We’ve had a couple of sunny moments here in Seattle (in between rain storms), and it’s gotten me excited for warmer weather.  And dinners on the patio.  With twinkle lights.  And drinking wine on the patio under twinkling lights:)

But before we can get to all that, there’s the small matter of the backyard renovation.  I’ll be sharing all the details when we move forward with that project (hopefully this Spring), but for the time being, I wanted to followup on the patio door, a project we started last Fall and just got around to finishing.

You may recall that we enlarged the master bedroom window to accommodate a patio door last Fall.

The Grit and Polish - Master Window

The Grit and Polish - Cutting a new doorway

I really, really wanted to put in a steel door, but that wasn’t in the budget, so I picked a simple fiberglass french door from Home Depot.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Door Install

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Door Install 2

We finally got to trimming the door out and adding a light last weekend. Unfortunately the light couldn’t be centered due to where the wiring came out.  Brick isn’t the easiest siding material to work with…

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Door Trim

And here’s a look from the other side of the yard.  Like I said, we have a big project back here…

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Backyard Door Trim 2

…but I think it’s going to be a lovely backyard space come this summer!  I’m hoping to create a cozy seating area just off the master bedroom so Garrett and I can enjoy some quiet time outside after we put the boys to bed.  But more on that to come.  Let’s all hope for some nice weather, so we can get this backyard project started!

xoxo
-Cathy

p.s. we’re doing a quickie bedroom makeover in our tiny guest bedroom.  I’m thinking warm and cozy…something like this except way way smaller and with less natural light.  I’ll share more next week!

p.p.s. Check out this eclectic apartment in Seattle.  Love it!

p.p.p.s. Tales from an Anthopologie stylist.  What a lovely scene that plaster and wallpaper wall make with the flower garlands!

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A Room for Living + the Finished Fireplace

THE DEXTER HOUSE

It’s been a while (a long while) since I showed you the living room at the Dexter House.  So today, I want to show you what this space looks like now and how the fireplace turned out.
Dexter House Living Room

The living room is a powerhouse room for us.  We relax here.  We play here.  We live here.  Everyday this space is strewn with dinosaurs and trucks and train sets and baby books.  And when we put those away (they’re stored in a bedroom closet), we pull out blankets to build forts or hunt the imaginary big bad wolf at the window or watch dinosaur train on the TV.  I tell you all this so that you understand when I say, this room does not look like what it would have looked like pre-children.  There’s no long coffee table or cozy hanging chair by the window – two things I would love to add – because that would cut into the boys’ play space.  And we can’t have that.

So our living room is a minimalist design.  Something I’ll just call unfinished-but-finished, a.k.a. kid-friendly.

The Dexter House - Living Room BIGDexter House - Front Door

The living room is made eternally more cozy by the addition of a fireplace.  As you may recall, there was no fireplace in this room originally, so we added one.  We picked out a gas insert, framed a structure around it, tiled the surround, and added a mantle.

The Grit and Polish - Fireplace Construction 1The Grit and Polish - Fireplace Construction 7

The Grit and Polish - fireplace tile 5

And this is a look at the finished fireplace:

Dexter House - Living Room Fireplace

So that’s how our living room/family room/play room turned out.  What do you think of the fireplace and our minimalist-because-we-had-to-leave-space-to-play look?

Resources: Rug Pad, RugPadUSA | Rug (Mirabelle in Cobalt), Lulu and Georgia| Couch (Rose in Narwahl velvet), Interior Define | Cement tiles, Overstock | Mantle, oak, Hardwood Industries | Gas insert (Lopi), Armstrong’s Stove and Spa | Rocking chair, Industry West (out of stock; similar) | Black and white throw, Anthropologie | Curtains, Ikea | Animal head, Ebay

xoxo
-Cathy

p.s. there are so many living rooms that I love, like this one and this one!  You’ll probably not be surprised to know that I have a whole board of living rooms on Pinterest.

p.p.s. we’ve been cooking with a whole lot less sugar around here.  And I’m dying to try these!

p.p.p.s. Need a pick-me-up on this gray, winter day?  How about this amazing kitchen!

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Wilder’s Third Bedroom

THE DEXTER HOUSE

Today I want to introduce you guys to one of my favorite rooms at the Dexter House: Wilder’s bedroom.  I shared a little about my son’s room yesterday on coco+kelley, but before you head over there to see the finished space, let’s talk about the renovation.

This is what Wilder’s bedroom looked like when we bought the Dexter House last April:

The Dexter House - Wilder's Room BEFORE

I planned minimal renovations for this bedroom: paint the floors black, new lighting, redo the electrical, repaint the walls and ceiling, and install a chalkboard wall.  The chalkboard wall – a must for my two-and-a-half-year-old who loves art and drawing on walls – is on an exterior wall of the Dexter House, which had prior water damage.  Years of neglect had left the paint bubbling away from the wall behind it, so after we checked it for lead with a home kit, we started peeling off the paint.  The plaster hidden behind the paint was the stuff of old house love.  It was art without trying to be art, a 110-year-old canvas of wall colors from tenants past.  So naturally, I decided to leave the plaster exposed and cover only the bottom half of the wall with chalkboard paneling.

The Grit and Polish - Plaster Wall progress 1

After exposing the plaster, we started on the chalkboard paneling and paint.

The Grit and Polish - Wilder's Room Progress Collage
With the bulk of the renovation work done, I began decorating.   Since this room is just over 100sf, play space and toy storage are at a premium.  But that hasn’t kept us from designing a kids room that we love.  If anything, it’s helped us avoid the too-much-kid-stuff trap and focus on the things that really matter.  Like a comfy bed that’s big enough for cuddling during story time, a bookcase that holds Wilder’s beloved Dinotopia and The Eleventh Hour, and space-conscious activities like the chalkboard wall and a folding trampoline in the closet.  Here’s a peak at the finished space:

The Grit and Polish - Wilder's Room Wide The Dexter House - Wilder's Room Bookcase

I’m almost embarrassed to admit that this is Wilder’s third bedroom in the past two-and-a-half years.  I guess you could say that we have a little ‘house-buying/moving problem’.  Or if you’re of my mindset, a ‘heathy renovation addiction’.  Either way, practice has made me better and this is our favorite of Wilder’s bedrooms to date (you can see his last bedroom here).  Pretty soon this room will transition into Wilder and Brooks shared bedroom, which will be a brand new challenge for a whole slew of reasons.  But more on that later.

The Dexter House - Wilder's Dresser 2The Dexter House - Wilder's Dresser

Now jump on over to coco+kelley for tons more photos of Wilder’s bedroom and a DIY on the chalkboard wall!

The Grit and Polish - Wilder's Room 1

Resources: animal heads, Target (discontinued) | Rocking chair, Industry West | Bed and dresser, vintage from Craigslist | Antique quilt, from my mama | Sheepskin, Ikea | Turkish towel, Amazon | Hanging light, Ikea | Alphabet Blocks, Land of Nod | Whale, Land of Nod | Jellycat stuffies: Lion and Monkey, Amazon | Painted ‘W’, Anthropologie (discontinued)

xoxo
-Cathy

p.s. The next room I do for Wilder (cause let’s be honest…there will be another house) this wallpaper is going in it!   Or maybe this dinosaur wallpaper!

p.p.s. Ever since having kids, I’ve love kids rooms.  I have a whole Pinterest board dedicated to them.  But lately I’m even more excited about shared kids rooms.  Here are two of my current favorites (this one and that one).

p.p.s. I’ve been getting into Ted talks as of late and this one on kids and school and creativity is a must!  Dance people. Dance!

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Dexter Kitchen Renovation Part 2: the Reveal

THE DEXTER HOUSE

This is part 2 of a series on the Dexter House kitchen renovation.  Part 1 (the Renovation Process) can be found here.

After months of hard work, it’s finally time to share the renovated Dexter House kitchen with you.  And let me just say that no one is more excited about the finished space than me!  I love this kitchen – it is simple, elegant, efficient, and totally approachable.  And best of all, it’s 100% done!  Well 95%, but who’s counting…

I already told you guys about the renovation process in part 1, so lets get down to the main attraction.  The ‘after’ photos of the Dexter kitchen…

The Grit and Polish - Dexter KitchenThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel northThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel south

Early in the design process, I decided to go with a ‘decidedly-not-white’ approach for this space, opting instead for a tuxedo plan that called for black lower cabinets.  The look is quite a bit different then our previous all-white kitchens (like the kitchens at the Ravenna and Bryant houses), but one that we really like.  In fact, this is both Garrett and my favorite kitchen renovation to date.

It took us a good 5 months to complete this room in tandem with the rest of the Dexter House renovation.  We did all of the work ourselves with some help from family and friends.  And by ‘family’ I mean mostly Papa, my father-in-law, and by ‘some’ I mean all of his nights and all of his weekends for the better part of half a year.  I know, you’re wondering where to get yourself a Papa right about now…what can I say, you’ve got to marry in 😉

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel open shelvesThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen AfterThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen After Sink BigThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Renovation Details Collage 2

There’s a lot that I love about this kitchen.  I love the warmth of the wood, the sleekness of the stove, and vintage-feel of the sink.  I love that we can fit two adults plus a sweet baby and a toddler nicknamed “the tornado” in here and still manage to cook dinner.  I love that the kitchen is open enough to the dining room that you can sit and have a conversation with the chef (aka Garrett) but it’s not open so much that it feels like your whole house is a mess if there’s a bowl left out on the counter.  There’s also something not too precious about this space (as opposed to the Ravenna kitchen, which always felt a bit on the precious side), like you could render a duck in here and that’d be cool.  But what I love the most is that the kitchen feels cohesive with the rest of our 1905 Spanish-style house, which was my number one goal.

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel AllThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Renovation Shelf Details CollageThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel mudroom

At the end of every renovation, I like to take a look at the before and afters.  It really puts into perspective just how much work we’ve done.  So without further ado, here’s a look back to the Dexter House in May 2015 compared with how it looks today.

The Grit and Polish - Before and After Collage EastThe Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Before and After South The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Before and After North Wall

Back in June, I wrote this description of what I wanted this kitchen renovation to turn out like:

“…I’m going for something a bit more cozy and rustic and old world.  A space that may look a bit more chaotic, but always feels like the heart of our family.  Basically I want the Dexter kitchen to feel like the kitchen of a 50-year-old Italian/Spanish/French mother of six, where you roll out biscuits right on the countertop, stir boiling pots of homemade marinara with your kids (your great grandmother’s recipe, obviously), and wear a cotton apron all day long.  Or perhaps an efficient, newer version of that.  Do you feel me?”

I summed it up as a “warm European feel” in August.  And while I think we achieved that generally, along the way, we also drifted off the mark a bit (like painting the lowers in high-gloss and installing an pro-style range).  But ultimately, we ended up with what we wanted.  Something efficient, welcoming, and ‘decidedly not-white’.  And most importantly, we ended up with a kitchen that we love!

The Grit and Polish - Dexter Kitchen Remodel W and Mama

And in case you’re wondering why I said we’re only 95% done, well there’s still some paint touchup and caulking left to do.  But if you didn’t notice, I’m not going to point it out! 😉

Here’s a recap of all the Dexter kitchen posts… Campaign hardware | Butcher Block Countertops | Tuxedo Kitchen Progress | Cement Tile Backsplash | Tuxedo kitchen plan | Drywall and Cabinets | Rough In | Dexter Kitchen Plan | Framing and Final Demo | and all about the Mudroom

Next up is the budget and resources for this renovation.  But in the meantime, lay it on me.  What do you guys think about our tuxedo kitchen renovation?  I’d love to hear it…the good, the bad, and the I-would-never-ever-EVER-do-that!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. I’ve been pretty obsessed with “I’ll Have What Phil’s Having” lately.  Not that obsession is a bad thing.  Have you seen it?  In another life, I think I might have married Phil and weighed 300 pounds and laughed so hard every day that I had a wrinkly face and killer abs.  ps It’s on Netflix!

p.p.s. Need a home tour fix?  Here’s another great Amber Interiors project, and check out how these newlyweds redid Grandpa’s Hollywood home.  And for something a little more sophisticated, check out this Brooklyn townhouse!

p.p.p.s. Planet 9.  The never seen, newly discovered planet in our solar system.  And shucks, they want to name it after one of my favorite nephews! 😉

p.p.p.p.s. I’m going on 30 days of clean eating and I’m loving it!  Actually the whole family has been loving it…our 2-year-old included!  Have any meal suggestions or tips for sticking with it?  I’ve got a small collection on Pinterest but would love more recipies!

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