WE DID IT! [insert man + woman clinking wine BOTTLES here]. Four months and a nearly impossible number of man hours later, we are sitting on our kitchen barstools gazing at our dream kitchen. And it is SO worth all the sleepless nights, months of takeout, months of DUSTING, and having pretty close to zero dollars in our bank account. #priorities
I want to take a moment to thank all of the incredible companies that sponsored our kitchen along the way, and made our dream kitchen possible. Without them, this space never could have been realized. As I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, we chose each of them and hand-picked their products. We are just so grateful they were willing to put their trust in us and give us ORC newbies a shot at making their products come to life. We are always very particular about the brands we collaborate with, and each of these companies should be lauded for their careful craftsmanship, top-of-the-line product, and a brand of approachability that is all but absent in today’s marketplace.
Perhaps the most gaze-attracting focal point of the kitchen is our graphic black and white tile wall from Riad Tile. The matte cement tiles are such a beautiful, organic texture and we’re just loving the way they pop in the room. We inserted a fairly neutral range hood into the picture to allow that tile to really have it’s moment, but added the cow skull to offer the space a bit of a focal balance. I have been dying to use their tiles for a project and we couldn’t be happier with how they came out – now I’m just dying to lay them everywhere! Hello, future mudroom!
Now, onto THAT HALLMAN INDUSTRIES RANGE. I mean, just GAH! There are no words. I fell in love with this range online without seeing it in person and loved that it’s pricepoint kicked lots of its competitors to the curb, without sacrificing an OUNCE of style. And I am beyond happy to report that this puppy cooks and bakes to a point of perfection that FAR exceeds my personal culinary capabilities. There is really no need to even speak beyond these basic facts, because this range does ALLLLL the speaking for itself.
That brings me to that gorgeous brushed gold Moen pot filler above the range. We went with Moen via Build.com for our pot filler, faucet and soap dispenser and these products were everything we had hoped for and more. I love how rich the finishes are and how they offer a complementary, but mild contrast to the raw brass finishes in the Pepe and Carols hardware and on the Hallman stove. It was important to me that we streamline the kitchen sink – I always find it aesthetically disruptive when there are too many things going on around the kitchen sink, and I loved that the Moen faucet had a pull down sprayer built in that is visually indiscernible. And I’m going to just be downright candid here: I’ve never owned a high-end faucet before and the difference in quality makes me want to throw out our crappy old leaky faucet 1,000 times over.
I just want to pause now and take a moment to talk about VINTAGE. Because, truly, no space of mine would ever be complete without lots and lots and lots of it. Kitchens are their own animal: as much as I am dedicated to purchasing and selling vintage for a variety of reasons (hello, climate change!), vintage kitchen fixtures and appliances are not only incredibly difficult to come across, but are also not always ideal to use (for probably obvious reasons). But when it came to nearly every single other item in the kitchen, we went vintage all the way.
Seeing as I am a vintage shop owner, I have been mostly hoarding anything remotely kitchen-related since we decided to move forward with this reno in January. But, I’ve also been shopping from some of my favorite dealers, including Anna Simpkins of BasketsandBrass and Joe Mauer of Secondhand Stories. I had been searching all ends of the earth for vintage brass cantilever counter height stools. I must have spent 20+ hours searching. This is not a joke. I take vintage hunts more seriously than a lion on a fox. And then, one day, BOOM. My man Joe over at Secondhand Stories just HAD them. It was pretty much magic.
Now seems to be a good time to chat about a topic that holds considerably less magic: our budget. I’m not going to get into too much detail other than to say that for a complete demolition and rebuild of a brand new kitchen, our budget was LOW. We sourced many of our building materials (including brand-new Marvin windows!) at insanely low prices at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. And as much as we’d love to have those high-end cabinets, we were forced to go with IKEA. This isn’t something I’ve cried myself to sleep over because 1. crying over such a thing would make me want to slap myself and 2. these cabinets are pretty, pretty rad for having cost under $3k!
I decided to give them a major upgrade by going with Pepe and Carols hardware. Krystal of Pepe and Carols dreamed these pulls up for me and was so kind as to custom make them for us. She’s now working on matching refrigerator pulls for our Cafe Appliances fridge and I’m beyond psyched about them! As a small aside, I spray painted the Cafe Appliances fridge handles in Rustoleum matte black finish for the time being.
And perhaps my favorite vintage item in the space is that stunner of a June + Blue Boujaad runner. Becca of June + Blue has long been my favorite Moroccan rug dealer. She has such an incredible eye, but her authentic experience and deep knowledge of these rugs and the cultures surrounding them are a true breath of fresh air in a world that has become overrun with a brand of mass-marketed global consumerism that so easily disposes of a sincere cultural appreciation. I love how this piece, in particular, ties the entire room together by picking up the colors in the Hallman range at eye level, and again from above with the roman shades (expertly crafted by Interiors by Robert, with fabric via Boho Luxe Home).
Speaking of those roman shades! I had originally envisioned a black, transparent linen fabric for our roman shades (much like the one used in our bathroom renovation) and then this fabric walked along and popped into my brain and I just couldn’t get it out! The deep, rich dyes coupled with the Moroccan asilah pattern played so well into the eclectic vibe we were going for in this kitchen. I had worked with Boho Luxe Home before on their pillow line (MAJOR swoon factor), and when they offered to sponsor the fabric for these shades I was beyond excited. Unsurprisingly, they’ve been a favorite feature amongst visitors to the new kitchen!
Ok, and now I wanna get real with you for a minute. We’ve been home owners for seven years now and we know what it’s like to dream of kitchens that don’t leak, break, and put sores in our eyeballs. And part of me wishes we had done one of those “How to Transform Your Kitchen for $500” type renovations, because that’s where the true creativity starts to play in. But we were lucky enough to have sponsors hop on board, and I am so BEYOND lucky to have a not-by-trade husband who just happens to not only know how to do finish carpentry, plumbing and electric work but is ALSO willing to work 30 hours/week on a kitchen for four months after coming home from his 70 hour/week job.
Oh, and FREE LABOR IS EVERYTHING. I do NOT mean for that to sound like a plug for indentured servitude. What I’m getting at is the fact that I am the luckiest person on earth to have not just these super sponsors get behind me, but also a most magical dude who has skills up the wazoo and the willingness to put LITERALLY his entire life aside to build a kitchen for his family for four straight months. Billy, you are our world, and now we owe YOU the world.
And before we part ways, I just want to give a shoutout to some local artisans and shops that did some incredible work for us (note: not sponsored!). E&S Marble & Granite Co. really nailed the look I was going for on the countertops. I wanted marble, but marble doesn’t want me (hello, red wine stains!). Stephanie at E&S steered us toward using quartz slabs that mimic Calacatta marble, but have the durability of quartzite, and damn was she spot on.
The next local shop was Reclaim Everything – an absolute powerhouse in the reclaimed wood department. We knew we wanted touches of reclaimed throughout the kitchen and we worked closely with Reclaim Everything to source the appropriate wood from a 100+ year-old barn. They carefully dry the wood out to a specific humidity level before cutting and staining the pieces to your tone of choice. I drooled like Homer Simpson on a donut when I saw these wood pieces installed.
I’d also like to give a shout-out to the uber-talented Cristina Marino of Harbor and Heart Studios. Cristina is a mega-talented photographer and she squeezed us into her hectic schedule and edited these photos for us in a time crunch because well, ORC deadlines aren’t very forgiving. We are especially loving the family portrait she snapped in the kitchen – a rare family shot that will be cherished forever!
And the last shop I want to throw some major props to is Bob Boccard of Interiors by Robert. If you’re in the New York City area, he should be your go-to for any upholstery project. His painstaking attention to detail and unmatched skill in his field are the reason celebrities and high-end designers use him for their most important projects. He’s pretty much NYC’s best kept secret since he does not have any online or social media presence – but he’s really not a secret at all to those NYC interior design insiders. His work on our roman shades and vintage barstools was pretty much mind-blowing.
Well, that pretty much does it for our first One Room Challenge and I have to say it was such a high! I am so excited to check out all of the other incredible reveals over at the One Room Challenge blog – I sure do hope you’ll pop over there too. All the designers work their butts off for six straight weeks, and the result is some really delicious eye candy for us all to devour!
We can’t thank you enough for popping by to check out our reveal, and we hope you’ll sign up for more notifications! We’re definitely addicted to One Room Challenge-ing and are already dreaming up our Fall 2019 ORC plans. Or at least I am. I’m guessing the husband is probably more focused on his upcoming golf trip….