Kitchen (In Progress) Reveal

Although our house was a new build, we decided to make some changes to the bathrooms and primarily to the kitchen. I know, you must be thinking why would we make changes to a brand new kitchen. Well, the answer is simple - upgrades are expensive, so in order to save costs and get the look that we were after, we decided to tackle them ourselves. And yes, I realize that these changes could have easily been done down the road, but let's face it - there will always be something that will require our attention (and our money), and we would hate to have these changes fall by the wayside. Plus, there were a few issues with the kitchen that needed to be addressed asap when we moved in.

Let me remind you what our kitchen looks like now (although still in progress)...

But, it looked far from this when we first moved in...

I don't need to explain to you that there were a number of things to tackle in this kitchen such as the laminate countertop, sink, faucet, pendant lighting, etc. But, the two most pressing issues were the vent hood, and the 40" upper cabinets installed with crosspieces. 

Here's a rundown of those two issues. Firstly, the vent hood. When we were choosing our finishes and upgrades, we had decided that we wanted to have a gas range instead of the standard electric option. We were quoted $600 by the builder to install the gas connection for our stove. We thought that was exceedingly expense, and decided to get the gas connection installed after we took possession by a different company. Perfect. We saved money and still got what we wanted. Except for one issue that we realized a few months before taking possession and after we had ordered all our appliances, including a vent hood. Since the builder thought we would have an electric stove, they didn't offer enough clearance for a gas stove to the bottom of the upper cabinet. So, we were facing the realization that no matter what vent hood we chose, it wouldn't have enough clearance - the upper cabinet had to go and a chimney vent hood had to be installed in its place. 

When we removed the existing vent hood and upper cabinet, we found out that the hole for ventilation to the outside was not centered above the stove. Instead, it was so far off to the right, that in order to install the chimney properly, we would have to move the hole. So, we called an HVAC guy to come and move the hole to a central location above the range and patch the original hole. But, there was another problem - we had crown moulding (custom stained to match the cabinets) running the length of the upper cabinet. By installing a chimney vent hood, we had to fix the moulding. But the moulding had to be cut on a 45 degree angle on both sides, so we didn't have enough existing moulding to get the job down. Another issue. Another headache. So, we called a kitchen company to get a hold of the remnants of our crown moulding - for a fee for purchase and install. Once all of this was said and done, we could finally start to tile the backsplash before we could install the vent hood. (I'll wait while you scroll back up to see the kitchen without the upper cabinet above the stove and a chimney vent hood in its place).

The second issue was the upper cabinets with the crosspieces. When we upgraded our cabinets to this particular door style and stain, we were advised that the upper cabinets came standard at 40" tall. However, we weren't told that the tall upper cabinets came with a crosspiece. We were only made aware of this after the kitchen had been ordered. It turns out that the builder failed to advise us of the crosspiece and that we were allowed to have our kitchen installed without this piece provided we sign a waiver that the cabinets may warp (although we confirmed after the doors were swapped out that with 3 hinges installed, these doors would not warp). We hated the crosspiece. So, after several weeks of back and forth between us, our lawyer, the builder, and the builder's lawyers, they finally agreed to replace the 5 cabinet doors at a fee of $700. Take it or leave it. We took it. We had no choice. The cabinet doors then had to be replaced an additional 3 times since the stain colour never matched the rest of the cabinets. Quality control, people!

 After we had the granite installed, we decided to change out the existing standard faucet and sink with a widespread pull-out faucet and double undermount sink.

We also swapped out the cabinet hardware with something more substantial.

The backsplash is an interlocking mosaic of travertine tile. My very talented husband installed this all by himself!

There are still a few things that we want to do to this room. We especially want to paint (and throughout the house as well). I also want to DIY a window valance, and maybe add some art over the door to our mudroom (beside the pantry). And maybe change out the corbels on the island.

Have any of you made changes to a room that you weren't expecting to have to make? What about the great discovery of uncovering sloppy workmanship when you are trying to complete a small renovation?

Happy Monday!

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