The original kitchen was located in the back of the house with an entrance off the back porch. It was about 10’x10′ and had 2 windows and 5 doors, making it nearly impossible to find enough wall space to make it work as a modern kitchen.
There were two rooms in the kitchen space. One was a pantry…
and one was a bathroom.
We decided that we wanted to keep the kitchen in the back of the house, but that we would need to get rid of the pantry and relocate the bathroom somewhere else so that we could have a reasonably sized kitchen. The demo of these two small rooms was our very first project inside the house and we were excited to get going!
Once we really got going we noticed that the condition of the plaster was pretty rough in the bathroom and kitchen, so we decided to take those down to the studs.
We soon decided that it would be a good idea to take down all the plaster and lath in the kitchen, just because of all the new plumbing, electrical, and hanging of cabinets that would need to happen.
There were two doors (one to the old stairs and one to the basement) that were really in the way of designing a practical kitchen. We were going to build a new staircase, so that door in the kitchen could just be walled off. The door the basement would need to be moved to the other side so that we could use that wall space for the fridge (or that is what we originally thought).
We cut a hole in the wall opposite of that door to create a space for a new door to the basement (that staircase would later be removed).
BUT, once we saw what it looked like with a new hallway directly to the kitchen we decided to just keep this area open and have a door to the basement at the top of the stairs instead of blocking this new passageway. It was one of the best changes we made to our original design and it happened completely by accident. If we hadn’t done this, it would have meant that all traffic to the kitchen would be routed through the dining room. Now there is an entrance to the kitchen from the dining room and an additional new hallway that provides more logical access to the downstairs bathroom, playroom, and stairs to the 2nd floor.
Of course this meant additional work. We needed to remove the stairs, create a new ceiling, raise the floor at the top of the basement steps (so we wouldn’t have to step down and then back up to get into the kitchen), frame out a new door to the basement, and build new stairs to the basement. Like I said, a lot of additional work, but well worth the effort.
We have always planned on refinishing the kitchen floors, but the original footprint of the old pantry and bathroom left us with some holes in the floor.
It’s not perfect and it will still be obvious that there used to be a different floor plan, but we kind of like that the floor will retain the history of the house.
The electrical work for the kitchen took Amy a long time to complete. Besides the normal outlets and power for appliances, we also included 6 recessed lights, 4 pendant lights, and under-cabinet lighting.
Before drywall could be installed, we needed to cut furring strips that would bring the wall depth back to where it was with the lath. If we didn’t do this there would have been a substantial gap between window/door trim and the drywall.
The walls of the kitchen were insulated with a skim coat of closed-cell spray foam with fiberglass on top. The roof deck was sprayed with open-cell foam
Finally, the big event we have been waiting for… drywall!
The taping and mudding cleaned up all the lines and brought us another step closer to paint!
Once the drywall was complete we could finally re-install the windows. These were the first windows to be re-installed and the only windows that had the casing removed. The re-installation included all new spring bronze weather stripping and sash cord.
The walls were then primed and the floors were sanded
The kitchen floor is definitely a little rough and contains a hodge-podge of wood, patches, and markings from old ovens and linoleum staples, but you can’t say it lacks character!