The kitchen in our house needs some attention and, like all problem children, I am unsure how much attention should be given.
The good things:
- there is enough space in the kitchen for the appliances
- double sink
- lots of floor space
- big window that opens
Believe me when I say that I am grateful for those good things. They are a HUGE improvement over our old house.
The bad things:
- the counter top is cracked and chipped and awful and needs to be replaced – it’s really hard to clean it and I’m pretty insistent on cleaning the space where I’m going to be making food
- the counter top is also too low (for Coffee to use comfortably)
- we may not be able to install our new dishwasher without raising the counter
- the sink leaks on one side (the drain rusted out)
- the faucet leaks, is too low, and the handles are awkward to use
- lack of useful storage for things we frequently use
- the cupboards are u-g-l-y and some of the shelves are sticky (and covered in stick-tack)
- some of the drawers don’t slide well
- the range hood vents inside, not outside
I keep waffling back and forth on what to do about these problems. I have organized and tidied and I have attempted to be creative with some of the storage. Coffee built a secondary (temporary) counter space to hold the toaster and other things – it’s a counter-top on 4 legs and not secured to the wall at all.
In my ideal world, I’d pay someone to just redo the entire thing.
In my almost-idea world I’d like to just rip out the existing kitchen and put in an Ikea kitchen – cabinets that work and drawers that pull out easily and storage that’s useful. The problem, of course, is that it’s expensive (less than a specialty kitchen place, I know, but still costly) and I’m a bit afraid of what will happen in the process – the ‘hidden surprises’ that pop up during renovations. (I have heard really good things about Ikea kitchens, so I have no worries about that part – it’s more the ripping-out of old cabinets that may cause ‘surprises’.)
So we talked about just painting the ugly cabinets and raising the counter (in a sort of cheating manner) and replacing the counter top. Doing our best to repair the drawers that don’t work. Maybe buy some Ikea cabinets just for the space where the temporary cabinet is. Replace the sink.
But I have this sneaking feeling that the half-measure isn’t going to work out – that, with time, I’ll hate that the two sides of the room don’t ‘match’ or the older part will get worse and we’ll need to replace it and then won’t be able to find something similar to the newer part.
I have a low tolerance for disaster – and I know I’d have to put that aside for a kitchen renovation. I’d have to accept not using the kitchen for a month (give or take) and deal with sawdust and whatever problems popped up. When it’s done, though, it’s got a 25 year warranty on it and all is well for the next 25 years or more.
In essence, I feel like we either do it now or we put it off and do it later. Either way, it’s going to have to get done.
What I’d really, really like is a way to DIY it in some really cheap way. Fix it up and make it look eclectic and fun and ‘us’ but also clean and useful and efficient. The key word is “cheaply” here – the less we have to spend on it, the more we can spend on other things in the next year.
Any advice? Thoughts?