Budget Kitchen Makeover, During


Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations in Espresso

As I was finishing with the Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations on our kitchen island, our dishwasher went all rogue and SOAKED the floor.  I called a plumber who replaced the disposal and told me all was well.  He didn’t remove a cap inside the disposal, so when I ran the dishwasher it had nowhere to drain but the floor.  I called him back.  He removed the cap and said the way to drain a dishwasher is by running it again, and he pushed the button.  My floor just got wetter and wetter.

I became more depressed.  Finally another plumber diagnosed the real problem, a new dishwasher was installed and I had to call in the professionals to deal with the wet floor.  Here’s the Servpro machines in action.

Serv-Pro at Work in my Kitchen

It’s not pretty, and it’s REALLY, REALLY LOUD, but they really get the job done.  And the guys we dealt with were all the nicest people.  My floor felt better, my kitchen felt better, and I felt better, too. If you ever have a water disaster like this, call Servpro.  For real, they are wonderful.

It’s still pretty ugly in there, but we’re making progress.  The floor gets measured in a couple days for new vinyl flooring and my “budget makeover” has extended way beyond what I’d imagined.

I tell myself that in six months or a year, the new disposal/dishwasher/floor will be really nice to have.  For now, UGH.

Somewhere in the midst of all this, I got a new rug for the little eating area.

New Rug

(It’s from Amazon, if you need one for yourself.)  In the photo above, I’d just done the first layer of sealer on the concrete counter.  I chose Buddy Rhodes sealers because they’re food safe.  In my online studies of Ardex concrete counters, I found a lot of people using sealers that weren’t food safe.  This was kind of a sticking point for me, and so far I’m really happy with the system.  It was easy to use and I really like the finish.  Here’s a couple pictures of the island fully sealed.

Ardex Feather Finish Counter

Ardex Feather Finish Concrete Countertops

This weekend I may be able to get back to painting.  I’m happy with the Rustoluem Cabinet Transformations kit, although that top coat is pretty tricky.  Eventually I’ll take better pictures, but phone pics will have to do for now.

Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations Before and After

This makes a good before and after picture, with the cabinets in the back still in their “before” state.

This is taking weeks longer (and lots more money) than expected, but we’re getting there.


Chalkboard Kitchen Island


The plan is to eventually paint the kitchen island black and the other cabinets white.  (It sounds strange, but I’ve seen other kitchens with dark islands/light cabinets and loved it.)  I think it’s best to replace our counters before painting, but I wanted to have a little fun while I waited for “someday”.  Here’s the island before:

Kitchen Before

(No surprise that our 23 pound cat is eating again.)

I primed the back first with Zinsser’s Cover Stain Primer, which doesn’t require sanding of glossy surfaces.  I swear, I can almost hear angels sing when I get out of sanding something.  Then I layered on a gray primer, just because I already had it and figured it couldn’t hurt when going to such a dark color.  (Phone pic here, sorry.)

Primed Kitchen Island (iPhone Pic)

After three coats of chalkboard paint, and then patiently waiting three days as per the paint can’s directions, I rubbed a piece of chalk all over the paint, then “erased” it to give the entire thing a little coat of chalk dust.  This looks so wrong at first, messing up that perfect black finish.

Chalkboard Paint on Kitchen Island

I do think we’re going to have a lot of fun with this.  I imagine it as a place to leave messages that we can’t miss, since we usually enter through the garage into the kitchen.  Or a new way to decorate for the holidays or express ourselves for important events or just everyday life.  It’s a part of the house that is capable of changing any time we feel the urge.

When I tried to think of a few words it might want to start off with, all I had was:

Chalkboard Paint, Kitchen Island

Bonus points if you understand.  :)