July 11, 2010

Cottage Kitchen Reveal (Part 2)

It’s time for part 2 of our cottage kitchen reveal! Grab a cool beverage and sit down for a spell.

I have said this before and I’ll say it again. This is our last home! We don’t EVER want to move again. Heavens to Betsy! The next stop for us is either the grave or a retirement home. And we want the kitchen to be the anchor of our home. With that in mind, we designed a kitchen of our dreams, yet still within our budget.

The kitchen cabinets were made by Kemper. The main cabinets are cherry with a natural stain and the island is distressed black. We opted for upgrades that are not readily apparent, but make life in the kitchen so much easier and the cabinets more durable. First, we selected above-standard box construction. We also incorporated drawers and roll-out trays in base cabinets that completely extend. The drawers also have what is called “blumotion”. The mechanism automatically closes a drawer when it is returned within an inch or so of the cabinet base. (Like magic, LOL.) Except for a tray organizer in one of the base cabinet rollouts and trash basket base, we didn’t choose any of fancy insert accessories. On the end of the cooking area cabinets, side panels provide extra decoration.

We wanted the design to include a wall cabinet that had a glass front to showcase special glassware and china. Instead of plain glass, we had an antique-style bubble glass inserted in the door. A little puck light at the top also shines down through the glass shelves. Different sizes of crown moulding were incorporated in the design, along with undercabinet moulding. We chose not to have decorative lighting over the cabinets, but we were glad to get practical undercabinet LED lighting. We made sure that the entire kitchen got plenty of lights! One neat thing about the can-style lights we used throughout the house is that they are convertible for LED lighting, once that type of bulb gets lower in price.

A large Kitchenaide refrigerator is tucked in at the end of the butler’s pantry side of the room. We are enjoying the design features of the French doors on the top fridge section and a rollout freezer drawer. To optimize inside space, we didn’t want the option of a water and ice dispenser in the door. This beauty sticks out a little more than we expected, but that’s okay. We had originally planned to have a cabinet-depth refrigerator, but we about had heart failure when we saw the price difference. And since the cabinet design was dependent upon the refrigerator style, we would have always committed to that style refrigerator. We had to draw the line! By the way, the little black section seen in the baseboard over in the butler's pantry area is a central vacuum floor sweep. It's handy for brushing crumbs away quickly without dragging out the central vacuum hose. 

It is no small secret that hubby is the chief cook around here, and he is an excellent one. He enjoys cooking even better with good equipment. After much research, he selected a Dacor cooktop stove, stainless steel hood, and wall oven/microwave combination, all in the Epicure line. Dacor has been making exceptional kitchen appliances for decades. The company is family owned, their products are made in the USA, and their company value is to “honor God in all that we do”. How many companies do you know that publically wear their faith on their sleeve? Not many, I bet! Hubby has already been marveling on smart design details and ease of use.

I am smitten with our walk-in pantry. We had one at our last cottage, but this one is decidedly bigger and better equipped. Instead of wire shelving, we upgraded to solid construction and incorporated a couple of handy roll-out drawers. Would you believe that we already have this baby filled up? We have enough room in here to store appliances that are infrequently used, in addition to food items.

So that completes your kitchen tour! We had a great kitchen designer. She carefully listened to us and made sure that the design reflected our personalities and incorporated our wish list of features. We also enjoyed working closely with the appliance and lighting sales staff to get selections made easily and ensure that everything coordinated.

If you ever get a chance to design a new kitchen or remodel an older one, I hope you do a lot of research ahead of time and have a clear vision of what the end result should look like. Of course, you have to start out with a budget and know what you can afford. That is a given! Once you get committed, you have to be able to make quick decisions too! There was very little in second-guessing ourselves on this endeavor. We waffled for a couple of days on the vent hood style over the cooktop (free-standing unit versus cabinet insert). And we later changed our refrigerator selection from a cabinet depth model to a regular model once we got the cost estimates. That was it! Our suppliers and builder made the whole thing as painless as possible, and we returned the favor by being decisive.

Now that we have been settled in for over a month, we are thoroughly enjoying this special room and know that we will continue to do so for many years to come.


  1. Oh, my word, Donna! What a beautiful kitchen! Your husband must be in heaven, working in there!
    Love your choices, and especially love the pantry!

  2. Green....I am green with envy!!! lol!!!!
    I love kitchens! We eat ,cook,craft,do kids homework and things all from our kitchen,This is the first time the hub of my home is so bland small and uninteresting!
    That will change eventually when we finally extend!
    You have left no stones unturned and made great choices and decisions

  3. Looks and sounds great Donna! Great planning, and a wonderful end result. Hope you both enjoy it for many years! I am sure you will!

    By the way, the larger font is good. Much easier to read (as we get older)! ;-)

    And the "chinese" spam..someone told me it was something to do with computers being weird...I get some too, but just delete it. But yes, good to have comment authorization. I presume the word verification gets rid of it?

    Best of luck with the job and commuting also..have fun! Hope it won't be long before you can work at home.

  4. How wonderful that you are a month in and have no complaints. There are very few times that I have heard that...so many soon learn the flaws and failings of too little planning. I get the sense that you planned very well indeed. Beautiful kitchen and I'm delighted to know that it is as functional as it is beautiful. I took note of the appliance company...they sound great...you know, just in case I ever win the lottery. And a little butler sweep thingy...amazing.

  5. It's beautiful!! Now you must take photos of your hubby preparing some delicious meals there. :-)

  6. Beautiful kitchen and so spacious!

  7. heaven to betsy, you never should have to move from this beautiful home! wowzah! it is so much work and so many decision, but sounds like you built with your future in mind (like bottom cabinets with full-extended pull out shelves - soooo smart).

  8. Lovely kitchen, we recently re did our kitchen and you are so right, research is definitely needed, I even made myself a list of what I wanted so to make sure that everything that belonged in the kitchen was there, and I wasn't running up and down the stairs to the basement to get stuff that should have room in the kitchen, we didn't have room for a pantry, but I wish...

  9. Your new kitchen is a dream! So beautiful, and I love the special features you included. Hope we can see pictures of the decorated room someday. Thanks for sharing - I'm inspired and will come back again when my dream to remodel my little kitchen comes true!

  10. OKay, I am not afraid to admit that I have COMPLETE kitchen envy. There I said it. LOL! Oh and PANTRY envy. YUP! It's gorgeous. EXACTLY how I would do mine. Oh and the central vacuum is such a bonus. How wonderful.
    You all did a great job on everything. When can we come visit? LOL!

  11. Oh Donna! It's Gorgeous!! You two planned WELL!! I Love the old timey look and blue paint!
    Enjoy! Y'all deserve it!

  12. BRA-VO to both of you !

    i must bbe honest here and tell you that i am both thrilled to death for y'all, and at the same time jealous as i could ever be. well. maybe not jealous. not in the sense that i want what's yours. but i sure wouldn't mind a twin cottage. your home is absolutely amazing. and btw-- make mine a single story :))

    ijust love it. i think i need another pic of the porch. :)) i know i love it- but the image is fading from my fuzzy mind.

    y'all did a wonderful job. i do hope you get to enjoy it for many many years !

    and yeh - i know you haven't singled me out for torture with the word verification-- and i also know- as you should too -- you are worth the effort of the struggle to endure it :))
    hugs buddy -

  13. I now have to battle "kitchen envy" for a couple days. Your new kitchen is just beautiful! There is not one thing I don't love about it! I'm so happy for you!


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