Cabinet Fever

Last week we got the call. Our cabinets are on their way! They’re arriving on Monday the 26th- which means we’re finally able to schedule all the installation details. So now it’s looking like we’ll have a kitchen before the end of the year. Happy New Year to us.

When we first walked into Home Depot eons ago (i.e. September) we knew two things about our cabinets: we wanted white and we wanted KraftMaid. White because, duh, our dream kitchen says so. KraftMaid because our friend who works for a home decorating magazine swears by them. They’re close to the most expensive cabinet brand both Home Depot and Lowe’s carry, but Nancy Kulik CKD agreed wholeheartedly with our friend’s assessment. Her point was basically that you’re going to spend a lot of money on cabinets no matter what, so we should spend a little bit extra to get something really durable. In fact she even demonstrated how a child could hang on one of the open doors with no cabinet breakage- she had us at child could hang. And heck, it’s what they use on Extreme Makeover Home Edition (and those people always look so happy). Done deal.

Initially, our mouths watered at the idea of saying “our kitchen features solid oak cabinets” until Nancy burst our bubble. If we wanted white, solid wood cabinets we’d basically be paying a 15% upcharge for KraftMaid to paint their oak cabinets. And that paint would be prone to chipping and revealing the wood grain beneath it. So, we stopped drooling and went with her suggestion – Thermofoil. It’s a fancy term for a plastic coating that’s baked on, making cabinets virtually wear-proof for decades. Plus it meant keeping our costs down by 15%. Now if we could just train ourselves to drool over Thermofoil. It actually looks just like painted oak, so maybe we’ll just forget about the magical plastic coating in a decade or two, and just talk about how well our painted oak cabinets are holding up.

With the brand and the finish decided, it was then down to selecting a door style. When first flipping through the options both Sherry and I immediately fell for one style called the Bel Air. We loved its clean lines and slightly modern feel. But it was a little pricier than some of the other white options, so we kept looking. That’s when we found an option called the Monticello. It was a bit more traditional (thicker grooves, rounder edges), a bit more ornate than the Bel Air and also a bit cheaper. And after checking seeing it look pretty good in one of their display kitchens we went with it.

Our cabinets Not Our Cabinets
Bel Air …………………………………………. Monticello

Until we changed our minds. Eventually Sherry and I admitted to each other that we were worried about the “horsiness” of the Monticello. It wasn’t as subtle and timeless as the Bel Air. And the in-store kitchen just looked a little bit shabby to us. When we outlined our dilemma to Nancy, she convinced us that the Bel Air would only be a few hundred dollars extra. Sold. In the scheme of a kitchen remodel, a few hundred dollars is nothing. Trust us.

So we went with our first love. Monticello Out. Bel Air in.

Overall, the cabinet selection process was a bit more complicated than either of us anticipated, especially since we thought we knew exactly what we wanted going in. Let’s just hope that when our white Thermofoil KraftMaid Bel Air cabinets show up next week they’re still the perfect choice. We can hardly wait.

Images courtesy of KraftMaid



Richmond Gets Some TLC

As I type this we’re watching a historic Richmond home undergo a dramatic restoration. TLC is airing a special episode of their “Flip That House” series (the first of its kind) called “Flip It Back.” The hour-long special documents the historic renovation of a 19th-century folk victorian duplex in good ol’ Richmond, Virginia.

Flip It Back

When the flipper bought it in 1999 it was only $11,000… and a crack house that was littered with “needles, condoms and porn” according to this article. Don’t worry, the drug den is nowhere near our ‘hood, it’s closer downtown in an area called Union Hill that, according to this show, has the largest collection of folk victorians in the US. If that matters to any of you…

Anyway, historic renovation isn’t usually our cup of tea, but it’s actually really fascinating – and of course it’s fun seeing our hometown on TV. They chose to feature a Richmond restoration since the city is seeing a big trend in reclaiming and rebuilding hundred+ year old homes. In fact, Bon Air, our cute and quaint neighborhood also features many old victorian homes from the late 1800s.

I’m missing the final walk-through of the restoration so I gotta finish typing. But if you’re interested in catching a house flipping show with a historic twist – or just want to get a taste of Richmond – here’s a link to future show times.

Image courtesy of Church Hill People’s News