Minimalist Scandinavian Kitchen Renovation
When we first bought our home, the kitchen wasn't really what we had in mind, but we were so busy focusing on other areas of the home that it was left the way we bought it. After a year and a half we finally decided it was time to upgrade, but we didn't know exactly where to start. We are super fortunate since Matt's cousin Dom works in the renovation and home building world and he came up with a design that worked for us and it looked amazing! The problem was, it involved a full gut, and being on a tight budget ($10k) we had to do almost all the work ourselves. No problem, that's where youtube and Home Depot videos came in handy!
We started with some help from my dad to remove all the existing cabinets, ripped up the floor and relocate the plumbing since our new layout had the sink in front of the window. The second major job, with the help of Dom, was to rip out the old window, build up the wall, reframe and install a new one. We also took this time to screw down the subfloor to all the joists so that there was no chance the floor would squeak when we walked on it.
Living in a 90 year old home, we knew all the walls were lath and plaster...except the kitchen. Whoever had redone the kitchen failed to add insulation in the exterior walls. With that in mind, and knowing that we wanted to open the space up as much as possible by eliminating upper cabinets, we got creative with installing recessed shelves on one of the walls. To do this we ended up removing all of the dry wall, installing some insulation and vapour barrier on the exterior walls and framing the other wall for the shelves. Then my brother-in-law helped us by dry walling the kitchen which took him a little over an hour but would have taken us multiple days.
Now we were ready to tile the floor. It was our first tile job and a difficult one because of the tile we chose, but we're so glad we did it. The cabinets were custom, which Matt installed along with the new cast iron sink (which was SO HEAVY OMG) before the marble countertop was installed. Then it was down to finishing touches: installing the subway tile wall, faucet, oven hood & shelves. To maximize the space, since it is a 10x10 ft room, we relocated the fridge to an alcove where the back door / basement stairs are located. That is the next area we are planning to tackle with some shiplap & a whole lot of white paint. By relocating the fridge, we didn't have to design around a fridge and it's still within 5 steps of the stove. We are so happy with how everything turned out and even more happy that when all was said and done (even with new appliances, which we got at a discount since the side of the oven was dented) we were able to complete our kitchen just over budget at $11k.