Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Old Kitchen Before

Kitchen in the house we bought, the room was not part of the original 1892 house. The two back rooms were added on when the house was moved and reoriented on the lot, sometime around 1913. 

Kitchen looking north into the second room
 added after 1913 move

The  original all wood cabinetry was made by Napanee Kitchens. It was a orange tan, and it had particle board back.  The cabinetry was updated in the 1950s with white paint and gold French provincial trim and pulls.   Some of the original finish shows on the cabinet over the stove. Countertops had a pink and gray boomerang design. The edge was crimped metal. Impossible to keep the edge seam clean. The metal rim on drop-in sink had the same problem. Gunk would get under the metal and it wouldn't come out.

Looking west toward a very busy street.
Garage to the left, door to other back room to the right.

The layout was very inefficient. Sink and stove on one side of the room, and the refrigerator on the other. The room was rearranged endlessly-everything that wasn't built in-in many futile attempts to improve the efficiency and increase work space. There was not enough storage.  Cabinets were very difficult to open or close.

Looking east toward the front door.
In the hall, the basement door (not seen) is immediately to the left.
A bedroom door is at the foot of the stairs to the right.
The new old kitchen is on the left side of the hall.

The west facing, windows have never been operable. Mr. C caulked around the sashes in 1982. It is still very cold in that room! Desperate for workspace, a handy man put in a very cheap island with DW c. 1984. I started trying improve the appearance to remove the gold trim applied to cabinet doors.  In 1986, we hired a couple to work on the walls. They pulled the masonite from the lower half of the walls, repaired the plaster, and wallpapered. 1980s pin, and big flowered valances! Ah, well, it looked good twenty-something years ago.   Cold air in the crawl space and inadequate heat kept the floors and our feet freezing in winter. We put in commercial carpet in an attempt to warm up the floor. (yuck!) I would never do that again!!

Looking southeast. Garage door is to the right. Hallway door to the left.

I started suggesting a remodel about 1990, but Mr. C, having never cooked, didn't understand why new cabinets, countertops, appliances and floor didn't do it.  I continued rearranging, and resisted new appliances hoping for a gut remodel project.  I got a new dishwasher in 1996. We replaced wobbly fan/light with halogen light over the island ten years later.  The only overhead light in the kitchen. 

By 2006 the dishwasher was broken, the oven heated, but the self clean didn't work. One burner on the stove worked, sometimes. See the induction burner on the counter next to the stove? I cooked on that for 3 years. Doing laundry and cooking at the same time was a challenge.  A previous owner pushed the wall into the Model-T size garage. Really, the turn lock is still on the garage floor. The cupboards above the washer and dryer are three feet deep.  Finally, in 2008 plans began for a new kitchen and a new garage.  We replaced out 20 year old washer and dryer as well as a new refrigerator.  

Mr. C's grandmother's Napanee Kitchenet was the only treasure. My one absolute requirement was that it have a useful place in the new kitchen.

Mr. C's grandmother's Napanee Kitchenet.
She lived in West Virginia.
The same company that made
the kitchen cabinets.

Most of my baking supplies.


rita said...

This is so interesting. I am amazed at your designing abilities. Your expertise as historic preservationist came in handy here.
So, where is the kitchenette?

Cotehele said...

Rita, Thanks, but I am just stubborn enough to know what I like. lol The Napanee Kitchenet is in the bakery. Mammaw always used it for that purpose, so I suppose it found the right home.

Anonymous said...

I congratulate, what words..., a brilliant idea

Anonymous said...

спасибо большое было очень интересно читать