COLOR IN THE KITCHEN: PART 1

How long have you been wanting to peek into the kitchen here at the Retro Ranch Revamp? I know I have been teasing you a lot with peeks and promises of looking more at the inside of the ranch. I started getting this post together and realized two things.

One – there are way to many stages of change and photos to cram into one post. The kitchen is one of those rooms that has a lot going on in it. Therefore, I have decided to show the progress we have made to date in two easy to digest parts.

Two – I need to start making sure I take better pictures. Some of the pictures on this post (and others) are a bit blurry. Or the lighting is inconsistent. Or they are a little tipsy looking. I know I get caught up in the excitement of the revamp and sometimes am a bit hasty with my picture-taking. I will make a point to try harder to capture the room in a less blurry and more light friendly way…and to use my tripod. My apologies for the older photos that will appear on the blog that are not “up to par.” My photography skills are a work in progress!

Anyway, let’s take a look at how the kitchen looked when we had our walk through. (I only took one photo! Eek!)

There is my husband Jim making sure there is a dishwasher like the info paper said there would be.

Now let’s see what the kitchen looked like when we moved our stuff in:

We realized right away that there were several cool things about this kitchen and several uncool things as well.

Cool things about the kitchen:
Built in ironing board with sleeve board as well!
(not that I iron much, but it is a very cool original feature)
Plenty of counter space (about 3 times what we had in our old house)
A million cabinets! (ok, not a million, but a lot of cabinet space)
Many convenient outlets (our last kitchen had about 2 until we gut rehabbed it so this is exciting to us)
Dishwasher & Garbage disposal (once again, we had to add these to our last place so having them already there to greet us was exciting)
A “breakfast bar” (not sure if it really is meant for that or not, but our diner stools fit under the counter)
Food Pick up window (I even have a bell for when your order is ready…isn’t it fun to pretend? See below:)

And that brings us to the Uncool things about the kitchen:
The fridge
– Sounds like a clucking chicken when running, broken shelves, pinches you finger inbetween the handles when you close the door, freezer on top (I am a freezer on bottom kinda girl)
Light fixtures (can you say UGLY?)
Vertical Blinds on the windows (yuck yuck and double yuck)
Weird hooks all over (yank those out!)
Back door hits closet door and makes a hole in it (every time you open it!)
Weird laminate shelf that just makes the kitchen look more cluttered
It’s greige-white (eww)
Knobs on cabinets look too traditional for this mid-century mod kitchen

Luckily all those uncool things about the kitchen were things that could easily be changed. Some of the first things I tackled was to take out the vertical blinds, remove the hooks, and take out the laminate junk shelf.

Hmmm….there was wallpaper in this kitchen at some point…looks like the shelf came after the wallpaper:

Yep, they didn’t remove the shelf to make sure they removed all the wallpaper…nice!

Above is a close up of the too traditional knobs that didn’t quite fit the scheme.

These are the original 2.5 inch knobs that are in the laundry room…I wanted something like this for the kitchen. I looked online and found some at Rejuvenation, but they didn’t fit my budget ($5 per knob) Rats! Then I looked on ebay but I couldn’t find enough knobs that were definitely all the same style and in good condition (I needed 31 knobs!) Finally I decided to go to Home Depot to see what they had and low and behold, I found the exact knobs like in the laundry room only they were 1.5 inch knobs and they were affordable! (only $1.19 per knob!) So I bought all the knobs they had (which was only 23) and then waited for them to restock so I could get the rest of my precious retro knobs!

While I was waiting for Home Depot to restock the knobs I needed, I picked out a color and painted the kitchen. I chose the low VOC paint from Sherwin Williams that I used in the living room and the dining room and in the den. The color I chose for the kitchen is Waterfall. By the time the paint dried, I had my knobs!

Doesn’t that look better already?

But wait – there’s more!

There is still that issue of having nothing on the windows…the windows are quite large (4ft wide and 3ft high) and my budget is quite small (Can I do it for less than $50?). I did some research by looking for pictures of 1950s and 1960s kitchens online and decided on cafe style curtains. Since the windows were high enough that no one could peek in if at least the bottom half of the window was covered, and since the room was a kitchen and not a bathroom or bedroom (where more privacy is required) I decided to go for it. Once I found the hardware (3 rods and 6 packages of clip on hooks at Menards – about $30 total) I needed some fabric. I headed out to our local fabric store where I got the cute red and white odd shaped polka dot material (7 yards for about $19) and the no-sew magic stitch witchery (for about $1). That puts my total at $50 for three windows. Not bad!

Now to get the job done.

1. Hang the mounting brackets. I decided to make them be at about half the height of my window. I had to hang them on the inside of the window because of my trim and the fact that there isn’t enough wall space on either side of any of the three windows. I cut a block of wood from some scrap in the garage, mounted it on the inside of the window frame and then mounted the bracket to the wood. Not to hard if you ask me! Sorry for the blurry photo!

2. Hang the rods and put the clip rings in place.

3. Cut the fabric to size. Simple – measure the width of the window, divide by 2 and then add a little extra for bunching and finishing the edges. Then measure how far between where the material hangs from and the bottom of your window, also leaving extra for the finished edges. Cut 6 panels (two for each window) and you are all set for the next step!)

4. Use the stitch witchery and your trusty iron/ironing board to finish the edges. If you are like me and not a big seamstress, then stitch witchery is your new best friend. All you have to do it cut it to length, fold the material over it, put a wet rag over the fabric (see package instructions) and iron. Easy!

Once you have all four sides done I recommend ironing the whole panel to get rid of any folds.

5. Hang your curtains and admire! This part is super easy. Just clip the panels to the clips and ta-da! Curtains!

There’s one….

There’s the other!

Closed and….

Milton! Um…I mean Open! Remember Milton? He is the more curious of my two cats. (Leo was outside looking in)

So there we go! This post took care of several of the uncool things about the kitchen! Let’s see where we stand on the list:

The fridge – Sounds like a clucking chicken when running, broken shelves, pinches you finger inbetween the handles when you close the door, freezer on top (I am a freezer on bottom kinda girl)
Light fixtures (can you say UGLY?)
Vertical Blinds on the windows (yuck yuck and double yuck)
Weird hooks all over (yank those out!)
Back door hits closet door and makes a hole in it (every time you open it!)
Weird laminate shelf that just makes the kitchen look more cluttered
It’s greige-white (eww)
Knobs on cabinets look too traditional for this mid-century mod kitchen

Tune in next time where we try to address the last few uncool things about the kitchen.

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6 thoughts on “COLOR IN THE KITCHEN: PART 1

  1. You are doing a fantastic job, Kate! I love the blue paint and the new knobs. Isn’t it amazing what a few simple changes can do? Thanks for the tip on the no-sew tape, too. I have lots of little fabric projects I really should be doing, yet I’m too intimidated to get out my machine and learn how to use it! Can’t wait to see what you do next 🙂

  2. P.S. Do you have a “Follow” or “RSS feed” button somewhere where I can subscribe in my Google Reader? Getting email updates doesn’t work for me, so I hope you do!

    • Hi Tikimama! Thanks for reading!

      I am relatively new to this blogging stuff…I never thought of putting an RSS feed button on my site! Thanks for the tip. I added one just for you, let me know if it works! (like I said, new to this!)

  3. Pingback: Painting ideas -- Kitchen paint colors to showcase a vintage pink and gray dinette — Retro Renovation

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