I don't know if you remember from the MLS photo tour that I shared when we first moved into our place, but our kitchen leaves a little something to be desired. See what I mean:
We made some cosmetic changes the moment we moved in - removing the crazy amber sconces over the sink, some of the wallpaper (we stalled above the cabinets) and most of the galley rail on the upper cabinets (also stalled). We got a new stove and freshened up the walls with paint. And it goes without saying that the old owner's furniture is gone. I had high hopes when we bought the house that we'd be able to live with the kitchen long-term. The cabinets weren't in bad shape and while they are cream (not white, which is my preference), that could be easily remedied.
But the reality is that the kitchen just doesn't function well for us. We have dry food crammed in the peninsula (which, mind you, is only 12 inches deep) and in the upper cabinet to the left of the stove. That doesn't include cereal, which is too big to fit in either of those spaces and lives in the dining room instead. And our pots and pans are crammed into the lazy susan in the corner to the right of the range. It looks spacious, but looks can be deceiving as there's actually a lot of dead space behind that cabinet. And to boot, our dishwasher just recently died. Whomp, whomp, whomp...
So I was really excited when I heard that Ikea is currently doing a kitchen sale. My dad is a little skeptical about Ikea cabinets, but everything I've read says their boxes are better than competitors', as is their drawer hardware. And their frameless construction means you get more space than you would from a framed cabinet with the same dimensions. Not to mention that even though you have to put them together yourself, they're something that I might be able to install myself (well, with the help of Mark and my dad). So I've been using their planner to come up with a possible floorplan. Here's the current frontrunner:
Check out that U-shaped wonderfulness! This plan has us relocating all the appliances either a little bit in the case of the range and dishwasher (it's hidden by the cabinet door just to the right of the sink) or a lot in the case of the fridge. And we gain four (yes 4!!!) cabinets, including a tall pullout pantry to the right of the fridge, an appliance garage in the far right corner and a trash pullout to the left of the range. All while still leaving some breathing room around the window for fun curtains or artwork. In addition, I've mapped out what items will go in which cabinets and we have an entire cabinet empty right now. Yay for room to grow!
I priced out my first floorplan in an Ikea store. This one's been modified a bit since that 2+ hour pricing session, but not enough to make a huge difference in cost. The cabinets and appliances are within the budget. Now I just need to find a contractor and price out the electrical, plumbing and drywall work that we'll need done. And see if they can build a custom baking sheet cabinet to go in that grey filler space to the left of the sink. Speaking of the sink, I realize it's not centered on the window. This would normally bother my supremely anal-retentive self, but what you can't see is the vertical piece that runs down the center of the window (look back at the MLS photo), which makes it so that the sink is centered on the left pane. Love that this move allows for a nice long expanse of countertop to the right of it!
I'm beyond excited, in case you can't tell!! And thinking that I missed my calling. I'm so addicted to this kitchen planner that I think I should change careers to kitchen design. ;)