July 31, 2009

The Thing About Inspiration

I have no photos for you today. And this time it's not the fault of the camera, or the user forgetting to take photos before the food has been eaten. I took several photos with my new camera (thanks mom and dad!) of the Halloumi, sweet potato and bacon tray bake I made for dinner and even more of the kitchen in its together but not stage of creation. Sadly I also downloaded the Aristocats on Itunes so that Evelyn could watch it on my phone when we needed to distract her and apparently, my computer is now full to bursting and it does not want to download my pretty new photos. I could simply run though my computer and delete things but today we are moving. No really, MOVING. As in couch, TV, bed, junk being hauled across the street to the new house. So I don't have time. And on top of moving all our belongings over the next two (or more) days, we are also painting our new and now almost all assembled, kitchen cabinets.

These cabinets have been the bain of my existence for the past three weeks. When we first offered for the house we were going to keep the old cabinets. They were ugly, but they were solid. And with a new counter top, paint and maybe even new doors, they would have been fine. Or so I thought. Will, hated them. They were crooked, they were dirty, they were just plain wrong. So we made a deal. Instead of buying counter tops and living with the cabinets, we'd buy cabinets and make counter tops. Specifically concrete counter tops.

But then I couldn't find the cabinets we wanted. And here is where the problem of inspiration comes in. Long before we even closed on the house, I went thorough all my old Domino magazines, Pottery Barn and West Elm catalogues, and vast stacks of the Architectural books will has laying around the house and created a pin board of inspiration. I liked the trim in that photo, the paint in this one, and the kitchen in that one over there. It's all well and good to have inspiration until you can't find what you want. And that;s what happened with the cabinets.

Originally we'd planned on getting cabinets from IKEA. For the money they are pretty good, and when you walk though the sample kitchens you kind of get sucked into the pretty organized spaces and find yourself thinking, "I want all of these, just like this!" But the kitchen I had found had one little detail that made IKEA cabinets impossible. The color blue. Not just any blue. A beautiful, steely gray blue on all the clean, shaker style cabinets. I was in love. And surprisingly, so was Will. It's not anything like the kitchen style we usually go with. Usually we lean toward old fashioned. Yellow walls, white cabinets, pots from the ceiling, could be your grandmothers kitchen type of kitchens. The style fit the bungalows we've often lived in. This kitchen was slightly modern, lots of clean lines. Lots of exposed things. But IKEA does not sell steely blue cabinets. And we couldn't afford to have any custom made. And the Lowes ready to take home ones were, well, I'll be nice, not my style. SO I spent the better part of a week searching the Internet for unfinished shaker cabinets that could be delivered before September. In the end I found the style I wanted and the delivery date I wanted in a finished maple that we decided "eh, we can just sand them and then paint."



Sanding and painting has taken over our lives for the past two days. Will's hair looks gray at the end of the day from all the dust. And we're only on coat one. Of three. So this morning we are sanding the first coat and painting the second. And tomorrow we'll sand the second and paint the third. And then Sunday night, after they have had time to dry, we will try to finish putting them together.

And then we have to deal with the overly heavy farm sink I had to have that will need some serious support to keep it up. And there is also the making of the counter tops which I fear is a few weeks away, meaning that we'll have a plywood counter top, if we have any counter top at all, for a while. Oh, and we have to move all the plugs lowers for our cool but unusual all under counter appliances. And we have to plumb for a dishwasher in what will be the island and hope that turns out.

It will be worth it. I know, in the end, I will love having what I wanted. But sometimes I wish that I hadn't found that picture to be inspired by so we could have had something nice and simple and ready formed to plug into the empty space where our kitchen will be. Sometimes. Now it's off to paint. I wonder if my fingernails will ever stop being blue.