Discussion in 'Φ Lifestyle' started by Rose, Jan 9, 2018.
I am thinking of recounting some of my experiences this year renovating my kitchen and bathroom by myself, with help from Zeus, on a shoestring. I realize many of you probably live in near palaces, or so it seemed when I went out into the nearby world around me purchasing a few used items of furniture for the project from Craiglist. But, modest as it may seem, this was how I spent most of my time while on a therapeutic internet sabbatical during 2017.
This is a photo of my new bathroom vanity cabinet with 11 drawers! And a gorgeous smoked glass vessel sink. I built the entire room around the sink I loved it so much. It is a cubist pattern all in it and has a tall golden brass faucet. The dresser was an item purchased on Craigslist for a bargain and Zeus cut the counter top for me. I arranged the plumbing behind it by cutting the back in places and shortening the right two drawers.
I have had that mirror for years from a Dallas mansion. It all feels very elegant. Low cabinets are not very practical for bathroom vanities in my opinion and I could not find any new prefabs nearly as nice as this second hand dresser. It feels very elegant and I now have a huge drawer for make-up, another for hair products, another for dental products, a full drawer of spare paper products, and so on. Very organized. This is the one place in my life I can keep organized and it has helped the feng shui of my brain.
We did new grey panel walls and I did a new floor, lighting, etc. I may speak more about that later.
I have taken some close up photos of the sink I like so much. I paid a lot for it because I just had to have it. Luckily. the home improvement store did not have a faucet I liked. After shopping online for days I found a fantastic closeout bargain on eBay, a quality heavy waterfall faucet.
The way the water hits the sparkles of the sink is a happy thing for me every time I use it.
This is the light fixture I chose. I was attracted to it and considered it while shopping around online at a couple hundred dollars, but I searched a while and found the exact one new on eBay for less than $50. It is heavy, well made with Italian ivory colored with a random goldish bubbly pattern sort of glass shades.
I will now mention how I designed the plumbing within the dresser for the sink:
The drain and water line valves are behind these top two shortened drawers:
I cut the length of the drawers, removed the back and replaced it on the shortened version. This is what the plumbing behind the drawers looks like. The pipes exit and take a turn to the left where the trap and connection to the wall exist in an area between the back of the dresser and the wall:
So, Zeus cut a hole in the top of the dresser and counter top for the drain pipe. Serendipitously, prior to this project the toilet annoyingly flushed slowly for years, blamed upon the necessity of needing an expensive new septic system that may or may not have been approved by the city. So, we tolerated that what I found to be very depressing situation. During the process of working with the plumbing system, I realized when the old sink was disconnected, the toilet flushed perfectly! But, after connecting the new plumbing, it didn't work anymore. It had been an air vent issue all the time! Zeus went up on the roof and removed obstructions in the existing air vent and all is well when now with the new sink connected! Such a pleasant and unexpected turn of events.
With that issue solved, we installed this new toilet. It has a push button mechanism flusher on top:
Returning once again to the dresser: two shortened drawers are small, but better than wasted space. Zeus uses this one for a few things:
And the wonderful makeup drawer I mentioned earlier :
Continuing on with the bathroom...
I painted the ceiling with a copper glaze and the trim a metallic silver:
You can see the flooring in this photo:
I ripped out several layers of old flooring including the original linoleum down to the sub floor and laid these floating vinyl planks. They are textured and have the look of ceramic tiles. The planks are about 1' X 3' and have an adhesive strip on one top edge and one side. So, they are adhered to each other but not adhered to the floor. They just form sort of a custom "rug" of vinyl that is held down by the trim on wall. I like the idea of easy removal if feel like a change. These planks are far superior to adhesive backed vinyl tiles I have installed in the past.
More about cabinets. Since, I opted for the vanity with all drawers, I was minus anywhere for towels or taller items and decided I wanted to rip out the wall that led to the back of a closet in the adjoining bedroom I was not using and use half of it for the bath. This presented a problem since I am not a woodworker cabinet maker. I searched for a prefab tall, but not deep, cabinet for weeks. Then I wised up again and began searching Craig's List for furniture items. Still it was an unusual size to find. Finally, for only $40, I found someone selling a solid oak modular entertainment center with 2 cabinets that would work. I used one for my inserted into the wall linen cabinet and the other in the kitchen for my microwave and toaster oven. One glass panel was broken on one cabinet so I cut some mirror for the linen cabinet doors. I can use an open door to see the back of my hair if need be.
Here is the cabinet again and you can see the new tub surround and Moen shower fittings:
I had plans to re-stain that cabinet dark cherry like the dresser and maybe change the hardware, but haven't gotten around to it yet. I really wanted to replace the heavy old tub that is probably original to the house, but it was going to be too much of a job for the two of us, so it stayed where it was. I wish I had taken before pictures, but I had no idea at the time I would be doing this and they would have been embarrassing anyway.
I guess that explains the bathroom. I will move on to the kitchen...
This is the other cabinet next to the refrigerator.
And I have one more photo today.
That rock wallpaper has been there forever and I may change it someday. But the counter and cabinet to the left by the stove replaced a tall shelf that held the microwave and toaster oven obscuring the stained glass window I made maybe 25 years ago. I am enjoying seeing it again. That top blue pyramid is 3D with a beveled beam shining out from the top. The background behind it is mirrored picking up the rock wallpaper. The beveled tears below the surface the pyramid rests upon should be self explanatory. A panel got broken out on the top right and I never replaced it. The accordian door and silver blind blocking out a view of the laundry area are new. As is the dark copper trim.
ok, getting back to this thread...
I am placing a copy of this Introverted Intuition here because I wasn't sure where is should go:
Now, what happened next, or previously?
(I know this all makes me sound as if I am a country bumpkin. No, I have lived in mansions before. I am where I am by free choice.)
So, I ripped out the booth and moved in my antique sideboard as a cabinet base to hold a counter top for a food preparation area. This was actually the first thing that happened and I didn't know where it would go from there. For who knows how many years I had been complaining I was stymied because I only had an area the size of a "postage stamp" to prepare food. (Zeus is happy he hasn't had to listen to those comments any more.)
Then, we ripped out all the floor and cabinets, plumbing, and sink. I purchased pre-fab unfinished oak cabinets to fit the space of the old kitchen cabinets. Patched the floor and placed them. Cut a beautiful marble look formica countertop and a hole for a new wonderful large and deep stainless steel sink and installed it.
Spoke to Moen about problems with my previous faucet, complained that the parts they sent were incorrect (because they were), and received a brand new wonderful $200 Moen faucet with a pull out sprayer free of charge because they have a lifetime guarantee. (If you have one, they really do mean this. They had already sent me numerous replacement parts over the years.)
Then, I learned how to install plumbing pipes and electric wires for or the sink, a disposal (the first ever here), and best of all a brand new Maytag stainless steel, in and out, dishwasher (the first ever here). All are wonderful and I am enjoying them very much. I had always been told our septic system would never allow these items, but everything is working better than ever since installing them.
Then, we replaced the floor with floating vinyl planks like the ones in the bathroom that look like cherry wood and are very water resistant and cleanable.
It took me a long time to decide on a color for the unstained cabinets. I finally, which started the entire trend, used the same metallic silver as a stain type wash on the cabinets, because I wanted it to be "fresh" and not too shiny, but blend with the stainless sink and dishwasher.
The upper cabinets were a real problem, because they may have been original to the house and had an amazingly large amount of very sloppily done paint jobs with runs and everything. Just imagine 40 years of that! They are also a unique size and as I stated in another place here, I am not a woodworker cabinet maker.
I will take photos and continue this later .
NOTE: Up until this post in this thread I was here by myself and writing and posting for myself... basically a personal journal. I never looked back to read what I had written until now. Last night I realized some things I have said in my threads can not be understood without taking the time and circumstances they were written into consideration. Please feel free to continue here with any comments or information you may have on this topic. (Sit on the sides of your chairs was a comment made because there was no one else here. It was an attempt at a joke.)
wow. I am so impressed by your creativity and resourcefulness! Beautiful job!