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Diary of a Mad Renovator: Kitchen Quandary

Written by Jaqui Lividini

This week’s post gets down to one of the fun parts of renovating – the kitchen. I’ve done many kitchens in the past and it always seems to slip my mind how difficult this process can be until the task is before me (yet again). Designing a kitchen is like putting together a jigsaw puzzle.  Since my cottage has limited kitchen space, the trick is fitting all the appliances in effortlessly.  Today, appliances are available in so many different shapes and sizes that the choices are practically limitless. Do you get a large refrigerator and a smaller dishwasher? A tiny microwave and a big oven? (I’ll spare you all the exact sizing in inches – but it becomes quite mind boggling). All in all, it’s a Rubik’s Cube (I always found those things impossible).


The Original Kitchen 

The appliances are the stars of the show so to speak – once you decide on those you then build your kitchen around them. They are so sophisticated now with an abundance of options. There are gas ranges vs. dual ranges vs. induction ranges, French door fridges vs. side-by-side fridges vs. refrigerator drawers.  There are a host of add-ons to choose from, including icemakers, coffeemakers, juicers, etc. –so many vexing decisions -- I miss the days when a refrigerator was just a refrigerator!

Then more dilemmas arise, such as whether or not to install upper cabinets or just shelves. Lower cabinets or just drawers, space saving or space maximizing -- UGH! We decided to put shelves above the counter rather than cabinets, so our kitchen isn’t so “kitcheny” looking (I promise there are methods to this madness!).

The Gutted Kitchen

There was also the epic debate of marble vs. Caesarstone for the countertops. Over the past few weeks marble vs. Caesarstone has been my own personal version of the Montagues vs. the Capulets. I found a Caesarstone that’s so beautiful, called “Ocean Foam”--even the name is a perfect fit.  It’s made of quartz and looks like sea glass embedded into an ocean drift.  I think it’s the clear winner: with its authentic nautical appeal, It’s much more interesting than my usual fall back -- Carrara marble.  

Caesarstone "Ocean Foam"

The other big dilemma was whether or not to install a range hood. Do we really need a range hood? There are so many windows making for great ventilation, therefore we deemed the hood unnecessary (we haven’t told the Design Development team yet – they may object!).  Instead, we’ve decided to mirror the back of the stove so that the water view is even more present (if that’s possible) --  truly the houseboat feel inherent in this house.  I’ve literally been dreaming about kitchens at night, counting appliances rather than sheep. Seems on par for this renovator, right?

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