A blog about the restoration, remodel and renovation of a 1929 Chicago-style brick bungalow


Ah, the kitchen. Lots of transformations here from June 2007 until August 2012. Some were stopgap measures to appease my drive for aesthetics, such as painting over bright blue-and-yellow tile just to neutralize the backsplash, and others were gradual changes that improved the way we use the kitchen. Is it my dream kitchen? No. But it’s finally something I can live with for a long while. To read in more detail about various Kitchen projects and changes, visit the Kitchen category page.

Summer 2007

June 2007. We were in the process of moving in. No, I hadn’t started painting over the yellow. This is how much of the wall the previous owner (PO) had painted before stopping.

The blue-and-yellow backsplash is the same tile that was used in the first floor bathroom.

The blue door and window trim also were only partially painted. First I painted the walls a pale green to try to complement the tile, but I quickly decided to paint the backsplash to match the countertop as a temporary fix (I wasn’t too concerned about a lasting finish).

Fall 2007

We had the painted pine trim replaced to match the rest of the house when we did all the woodwork, but used a lighter, natural oak color stain here. We also started replacing the almond-colored appliances with stainless steel. It’s starting to look a little more modern and clean.

The layout was a major drawback for me. The refrigerator and pantry stuck out way too far in the room on this wall and cut off the path from the back door and breakfast room/home office to the rest of the house.

We tried keeping an eat-in area near the back door, but as much as we tried we just didn’t have a need for it. It always felt a little cramped and awkward.

Summer 2009

It’s attic renovation time! The stairs leading to the attic had to be widened to meet code so the best option was to steal 6″ from the kitchen. This meant that the cabinets on this wall had to be removed so it was a perfect time to rethink the layout.

Soon, no more fridge/pantry on this wall!

Master bathroom plumbing went into this wall to the basement.

Fall 2009

The contractors were gone and it was up to us to put the kitchen back together. Unable to afford new cabinets, we made as many small upgrades as we could, such as a farmhouse sink and range hood. We bought an unfinished cabinet from Home Depot that we modified to accommodate the sink, knowing that we’d eventually paint all the cabinets to match.

The rest of the cabinets getting installed. We eliminated the triangle-shaped corner cabinets (which I found fairly useless) and later made use of open storage shelves and pot racks to make up for the loss.

The fridge and pantry in the dark corner where the kitchen table used to be (and where a separate pantry originally sat but was torn out long ago by the previous owner).

In part two, the upper cabinets and open shelving are installed, I go looking for the original ironing board built-in and the cabinets finally get painted! You don’t want to miss it, so keep reading…

Leave a Comment