Kitchen progress, looking good so far!

Even though I only have one coat of White Dove on the cabinets (but not all of the trim) it’s looking much closer to a finished project… however don’t even ask about the door fronts as they have technically been ready for painting for weeks I’ve just been neglectful and reluctant to paint in 90% humidity…

We also got the tile grouted this weekend as well. Have I ever told you that I have tiling anxiety? No, I’ve never been formally diagnosed, but I’m pretty sure it’s a real thing. You see tiling itself is not difficult at all, but you have to move pretty quick in order for the mastic and grout to not dry out and cause problems… SO I get anxious and pretty crazy about moving quick, quick, quick (like at a DEFCON 10) and my Super Awesome Hubby just wasn’t born equipped with anything over say DEFCON 7, so if you can imagine he’s moving at like a 4 and I’m at a full on 10! I’m so lucky he puts up with my crap sometimes I swear… but anyway on to the progress shots!

Kitchen cabinets painted and raised to ceiling

My favorite cabinet so far is the one over the refrigerator / oven area. At first I was not really thrilled about having to stage that area, but I have a plan and I’m super excited to get it finished!

Kitchen cabinets painted and raised to ceiling

And I don’t regret for one minute adding the tile over the window here, I think it really finishes off the area nicely.

Kitchen cabinets painted and raised to ceiling

I still have to caulk the crown molding and fix some areas that aren’t quite perfect before I can paint them. Also, the blue tape is marking areas I noticed after I painted that needed some additional repair so they have been fixed and re-primed and I will paint spot paint those areas when I paint the trim.

Also, a follow up on the cooktop I broke… we haven’t replaced it yet, but I did get “lucky” and was able to buy a replacement glass top for it instead of having to replace the whole cooktop. I would have much rather replaced it, but finding one that fit the exact cutout dimensions proved nearly impossible.

The rest of the to-do list consist of painting the ceiling, installing the range hood, reinstalling the under cabinet lighting, a few more coats of paint and painting the doors… so I think we’re on the downhill slope, right?!

Until next time…


The Evolution of a Walk-In Shower

I just realized I have not shared any master bathroom renovation updates in a L-O-N-G time! I have shared some pictures on Instagram, but have totally been behind posting updates here! So thank goodness we finished the master bathroom portion of the renovation a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving and I am super thrilled with the final results! It was a ton of work but well worth it in my opinion…

I wanted to take some time to run through the steps we went through in the shower building process. It was a first for us and I will share with you where we did get help from contractors and where it was just me and my hubby plugging away at the job.

This is what we started with, hubby took this picture on the original walk through of the house, it’s a toilet and shower “room/closet” inside of the bathroom space. So the vanities and tub were all in the main room, but the toilet and shower were in a “closet” inside of the room (I hope that makes sense). It was dark, I hated it and I thought it was just strange… it had to go!

Here is the original setup of the bathroom closet area.

Bathroom closet plans

Original bathroom shower toilet combination

So as part of the overall bathroom remodel we removed the shower and the wall separating the closet/room from the rest of the bathroom. It was pretty easy to demo, as a matter of fact I took out the shower by myself. The walls were that faux marble, heavy, but easy to break up with a little force and of course safety gear.

Bathroom shower renovation in progress

We laid out a rough outline of the new shower dimensions (6ft. deep x 7ft. wide) with spray paint to validate size and position within the space.

Bathroom shower renovation in progress

We did all of the demo ourselves, but did have a contactor come in and rebuild the walls. I helped him a lot (so I could pick up some tips for the future) and I really enjoyed working with him and learning from him as well. We also hired a insulation contractor to blow in more insulation in the floor (which is over the garage in some areas) and also wrap reflective insulation around the backside of all of the walls to help with deflecting heat off of the roof.

Bathroom shower renovation in progress

We also hired a plumbing contractor to add an additional shower head and move the drain. He had to tie the new head off of the incoming 3/4” copper pipe rather that running it straight off of the 1/2” pipe that was already there. This will allow 2 people to take a shower at the same time and get both get perfect water flow Send a kiss … just in case you were wondering why… We saved some money by locating the 3/4” junction ourselves and cutting the flooring for the plumber to gain access to the pipe.

My Super Awesome Hubby and I had to shore up the floor openings with 2×4’s attached to existing support beams in order to add plywood over the holes to close everything up. We also installed all of the bat insulation in the new spaces ourselves.

Bathroom shower renovation in progress

We hired out the drywall installation and finishing, we’ve done drywall work before… it sucks and we done do a good enough job at it so we almost always leave the large drywall jobs to the professionals… just like rough-in plumbing…

Our contractor then came back in and he and I  installed the shower liner on the shower base. Making sure that the base was free of debris and all screws were countersunk in the plywood so that nothing could puncture the liner. By the way we used a pond liner here because I couldn’t find a shower liner big enough locally. It’s made of the exact same material, but it’s a lot cheaper and was plenty big!

Bathroom shower floor installation in progress

We then mixed the Mississippi Mud base together by placing the dry material in the center of a tarp and adding the water to it in the center and shifting it back and forth by lifting the tarp up and down from the 4 corners. It’s a neat trick he learned and it made mixing the product super easy. He laid all of the mud down and using a level made sure it sloped properly towards the drain… I just watched him Open-mouthed smile

Bathroom shower installation in progress

After a few days he came back in and installed all of the concrete backer board. I then added the mesh tape to all of the seams and then filled the seams, holes and any low spots on the floor with thinset.

Bathroom shower installation in progress

After everything was dry and smooth I painted 3 coats of RedGuard over all of the walls, floors etc.

Bathroom shower installation in progress, RedGuard

We then dry-laid out our tile pattern on the floor to determine layout.

Shower tile dry fit layout

We then used a laser level and marked a level line about 3” off the floor to ensure a nice straight line, we temporarily installed a 1×2 on this line to ensure we maintained a level line. We then started applying thinset and laying the tile. We found it worked best to apply the thinset to the wall in about a 3ft square and then affix the tile to the wall. It also helped that we broke up the responsibilities, I laid the tile and my hubby marked and made all of the cuts… this was definitely a team effort!

Tiling master bathroom shower walls

I’m not going to lie to you… the herringbone tile part was a HUGE pain, I didn’t have to figure out the cuts, but it was a lot of little tile to lay and it took a long time!

Tiling master bathroom shower, herringbone subway

We installed the Carrera Marble 3” hexagon floor tiles next, which compared to the herringbone tiling it was a walk in the park! Then after the tile was set, 72 hours I think, we went back and installed the last row of wall tile.

Tiling master bathroom shower, herringbone subway and carrera marble

The shower sat ungrouted for a VERY long time while we worked on flooring and other projects, but we finally got it grouted with a white grout. I had originally wanted grey grout but changed my mind pretty much at the last minute…

Tiling master bathroom shower, herringbone subway and carrera marble

We were then in a holding pattern for over a month waiting for the marble to arrive for the vanity tops and the shower curbing, but it was worth the wait to get exactly what we wanted!

The hardware is all polished chrome and its as frameless as the glass guys could build it considering the size…

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors

The setup we chose for the shower heads was very simple, 2 heads one on either side of the shower. We gave this a ton of thought and we decided that we wouldn’t use a bunch of different spray heads or a rain shower head often enough to justify the additional cost.

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors

Each of the heads has it’s own max temperature setting, mine VERY hot, my hubby luke warm… The heads and trim package are a chrome American Standard set.

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors

We actually used a marble threshold for the bottom of the niches, it worked perfectly and was significantly cheaper than other options.

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors

I really love how the curb turned out. It coordinates with the Carrera marble but because it is so thick and solid I think it really shows well! The curbs are White Danby Vermont Marble in a honed finish.

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors and White Mountain Danby Marble curb

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors and White Mountain Danby Marble curb

Master bathroom shower stall, white ceramic herringbone and subway with Carrera hexagon tile floors and White Mountain Danby Marble curb

Even though I’m more of a bather than a shower-er I really do love this setup! It’s obliviously plenty big for two of us to shower at the same time and with the ability to have our own temperature settings it makes it that much more enjoyable.

I do have one “complaint” with the shower, which at first when I saw it I thought I would cry, but I have sense gotten used to it… you see the glass surround distorts the color of the tile! I had no idea that the glass would have a slight green/blue hue to it so the tile doesn’t look white. I was not given the option of a pure colorless glass and when I spoke to the glass guy he indicated that this glass was the norm. I researched it a bit and found that colorless glass is available (not sure at what expense) so do consider that option if you are going to install glass in your shower… just a thought!

Thanks so much for stopping by!


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Kitchen Updates, Tile, Lights, Paint

Hey all! This post has been stuck in my “to finish” pile for a while but I wanted to share with you the kitchen updates we have completed so far. We still have some cabinet painting to do, but that is a project that I might get started this winter.

So here is a BEFORE shot my hubby took while doing the home inspection (that’s the inspector at the island).

kitchen before

This I took just after we moved in, we had not yet replaced any appliances or done any work.

kitchen before

Here it is after we had replaced the dishwasher, microwave, refrigerator, sink, faucet, added pendant lights and painted (Chelsea Gray by Benjamin Moore). I had a VERY difficult time deciding on a paint color, I kept trying to go light but I didn’t like any of the combinations. As soon as I saw this color I was smitten, but a little concerned it may be too dark…  I loved it the moment I started painting. It was the perfect choice for us!

Updated kitchen

We installed the backsplash using Queen Beige tumbled Amalfi marble. It is a nice neutral color that worked well with the existing counter. I normally would have removed the 4” granite backsplash and tiled all of the way down to the countertop but they had also installed the backsplashes on the sides of the oven cabinets and I wasn’t sure what would happen to the cabinets if I tried to remove it…

Updated kitchen backsplash

My Hubby replaced all of the outdated florescent under cabinet lighting with new LED lights. I like the cool bright light here vs. the warm yellow hue. Also, I LOVE using my vintage tool box to hold the tools, oils and vinegars that I use most frequently.

Useful decor in kitchen, vintage toolbox caddy

I “shopped” in my storage room and found this antique scale which was the perfect color to coordinate with my toolbox. The measuring cups I purchase from Anthropology several years ago and are not only pretty to look at but it is handy being able to have them setting out.

Useful decor in kitchen

This was the original sink and faucet setup (and no I didn’t bother to clean it before I took this picture)…

kitchen sink before

We hired a plumber to come replace the sink, faucet and garbage disposal… my sweetie is very handy but plumbing is not his best skill set so we usually leave the pluming up to the professionals Laughing out loud

I cannot begin to describe how much I L-O-V-E this sink! It is SUPER deep which is great for leaving dishes in and the single bowl just works so much better than double bowls for us. I can fit sheet pans, baking pans or a child or two in here… (just sayin’ it’s awesome)! We also had an extra hole (where the sprayer was) so we now we have a hand soap dispenser and a dish soap dispenser!

Single bowl deep kitchen sink

I bought a set of the new blue jars and frog inserts to go with them. Eventually I hope to have pretty, fresh flowers from the garden in them, but for now I just adore the way the sunlight from the Sunroom filters through the blue glass.

Blue ball jar kitchen decor

This little area to the right if the refrigerator we have setup for all of our drinking “tools”, coffee maker, Magic Bullet, Soda Stream. We keep all of the coffee mugs above and the blender cups and big blender below. Having a drink / coffee bar area just works so well for our family.

Coffee and drink bar area

This is what the original eat in area of the kitchen looked like. This light was in such a weird place for the traffic pattern to work. I think they had it setup for a round table there…

Before eat in kitchen area

The whole kitchen / eat-in area are painted the same Chelsea Gray, I took down the light blocking valances and put up curtains and rods. I just cannot get rid of our farm table even though it’s just the 3 of us most of the time eating there. We bought the table 13 years ago and it is made by Hoskins Creek Table Company. The tables are made in Virginia, by hand, and are put together like they were long ago with beautiful joinery and old looking nails. There is a bench on the one side (for lots of little kid butts Open-mouthed smile) but the chairs are vintage hand carved with original rush seats. The rug is from FLOR and is really carpet tiles, easy to care for and they can be cut to fit ANY area.

Eat in kitchen area, Farmhouse Table

I do love the beaded chandelier we purchased to replace the oriental looking one that was here. It’s hard to see but the beads are a washed out gray color, I bought it at World Market and I thought it was a great price considering what similar ones are being sold for elsewhere.

Beaded chandelier from World Market

From the kitchen you can see somewhat into the Family room. I originally thought I’d want to remove the wall that the bar is on, but I really have come to like the setup as it is now.

Updated kitchen in progress

We bought this bar set from Pottery Barn about 4 years ago and it fit in this space like we built around it!

Wine bar area in kitchen with chalkboard

I will eventually paint this pantry area as well, but I’m still on the fence with a couple of choices I need to make. The speaker above the cabinets is wired in from the TV in the family room so we can listen to music or whatever.

Butlers pantry

We added these pendant lights where there used to be can lights and I really love the way they look. We found them at Shades of Light if you’re interested in them. I wrote a previous post on the island update we did and you can find it here.

Kitchen renovation, painted island

One of these days I would LOVE a new Thermador gas stove and double oven combination, but I’m thinking that might not happen in this house (or ever), but I can still dream right?!

Kitchen renovation, painted island

We have come a long ways with our kitchen, but to finish it up I need to get these cabinets painted. I painted the cabinets in our last home 5 years ago and I still remember the “pain” of it, so I’m pretty much putting it off until I can’t put it off any longer…

Hope you all are feeling some Fall weather, it’s just gorgeous here today in Louisville, KY!

Thanks as always for stopping by,

Until next time!


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