Hey there my friends! Today I am posting some kitchen makeover news that I have sort of been dreading. This past week during our kitchen renovation we had to make a very difficult decision to take out the corner “breakfast nook” window seat area. Yes, beloved readers and closest bloggy friends—-the adorable, cozy corner nook as seen below, no longer exists…
Since I am also joining my friend Cindy of County Road 407 and several blogging friends for a fun Pinterest Challenge tomorrow with a lemons theme, I thought I might as well go with that same theme for my kitchen makeover update. This update is “sweet and sour,” (ya know, like lemonade.) For this post, “sweet” is “Yay! and “sour” is “Nay.” So here goes!
Back in 2017 we had lived here about 3 years when I came up with the idea to build a little nook. It turned out to be my absolute favorite spot to decorate for the seasons. I could load the space full of vintage and farmhousey-fun and holiday kitsch! It added much needed charm to the kitchen while we lived with the basic cosmetic updates we originally made when we moved in. Those were just intended to get us through until the time came when we would do a real kitchen renovation. Well, now it’s actually happening! (Sweet!)
Many wonderful mornings and afternoons were spent here in the nook, reading magazines with a cup of tea, or sipping refreshing lemon water while dreamily gazing out the windows on a hot summer day. (Sweet) memories.
The nook bench was full of pretty pillows that were styled and arranged just so-so for instagram and blog posts. In reality, the pillows were a nuisance as far as keeping them looking good and clean. They were always squished up, falling off the benches, needed frequent laundering, and some are now stained with spaghetti sauce. (Sour.) Without the pillows the bench was terribly uncomfortable, well, truthfully almost unbearable for me to sit on for too long. (Sour.)
The table looked great for photos with lots of pretty things displayed on it, but it was so small that nothing more than a small centerpiece as decor was practical for daily use. Again, a “sour.” Only 3 of our 4 family members could eat together at the table (another sour).
The corner nook was definitely perfect for decorating and I enjoyed it while it lasted. Even with all of the negatives, I tried every way possible to keep it. I even had a contractor come out to see if we could do a bump out of just a few feet to enlarge the corner, but it wasn’t feasible or even worth the hassle. We could only have extended out a couple of feet at most, and that really wouldn’t have made much of a difference as far as opening up the corner for easy access into the bench behind the table.
As you can see, the reason for getting rid of the nook was actually just a simple matter of lack of space. As part of the renovation we recently removed the short, useless cabinet under the window that you can see here in this “before” photo, and replaced it with a 5 ft long cabinet base unit that was previously our island (it ate up the entire center of our kitchen.) The longer cabinet base now extends on over into the space where edge of the bench was. The window will also be gone soon and beautiful new cabinets with glass doors will be installed. This change also meant saying farewell to the vintage “Rae Dunn” cabinet (another reader favorite and one of my favorites too) SOUR!
Here you can see the first peek of the cabinet base with newly updated paint and trim. Love it! The new dark wood countertops have been ordered, and now I am busily making final decisions about the fun stuff, like wall paint and kitchen accessories. Removing the nook was certainly a tough decision, but one that the whole family agreed on. Now we are moving on to new and exciting things in the kitchen! (Sweet!)
The 1940’s-50’s Rae Dunn cabinet may be gone, but my dream of having a period appropriate 1920’s style butler pantry/china cabinet built-in (with a bit of French farmhouse flair) is in the works. (SWEET!!!) The cute corner nook was previously the focal point of the kitchen, but I think the built-in will be a real show stopper. It will be similar to the gorgeous examples I shared in my Dreamy Kitchens Built-ins post! By the way, I am not “Done with Dunn!” I did downsize my Rae Dunn collection a tad, but I have found a new spot for what remains. You will have to wait for the big reveal post to see it though!
And can we just stop and take a moment to enjoy this photo of my dream brick floor in-progress! AHH…SUH-WEEEET!
You are probably wondering what we are actually putting in place of the little corner bench and chairs. Well, as it turns out, there is ample space to put in breakfast bar that will face out the window. This will give us 5 more feet of counter top space to the right of the stove ( so helpful for cooking!) It will also give my teenage son the perfect place to do homework. (Sweet!) The photo below looks sort of similar to our kitchen and how the breakfast bar will be set up.
The current windows with 1990’s trim will be replaced with new windows that are bit smaller but will allow for more larger period appropriate trim. There will also be a new decorative window installed at the far right end of the bar where the black farmhouse country shelf with ironstone dishes previously hung (the dishes will be moved to the new built-in cabinet with glass doors.) The new window will let in more light! (Sweet!)
Instead of having negative space under the countertop, there will be a recessed cabinet which will still leave enough room for the stools to slide under. The cabinet will have beautiful trim to match the cabinets, with corbels on each end for decorative charm and to support the counter. (Sweet!) Right now I am on the hunt for some seriously perfect-chippy-“corbelage.” (Don’t worry if you haven’t heard that word, because it isn’t real that I know of, I just made it up. I like it though!) Corbelage (noun)-a pair or collection of swoonworthy decorative corbels (see corbels) with the perfect hint of vintage, chippy-shabby charm.
All the windows will have plantation shutters, which in addition to the new, larger trim will add some serious 1920’s historic charm back into our kitchen! (SO Sweet!) The breakfast bar will be far less cramped than the corner nook was, and while not as decorative, far more practical. Even though only three of us will fit at the bar at a time, the new smaller island we are putting in will actually have stools too, so whenever everyone wants to eat in the kitchen we can still all be together. (Definitely sweet!)
I am also on the hunt for the perfect stools. I will be sharing a breakfast bar and bar stool inspiration post later this week.
Well, that’s my “sweet and sour” kitchen update! Can you tell I have had to convince myself that saying “goodbye” to the nook was the right decision? I do plan to give the nook a proper farewell with a highlights post of how I decorated it seasonally over the years. I think that post might be a bit hard for me. Not only was it my favorite spot, it seemed to be YOURS as well, based on the feedback here on the blog and the fact that all of my nook posts have consistently received the highest engagment on all of my social media posts. As a blogger it concerns me since everyone enjoyed the nook so much and now it’s gone forever…(sour). Right now every time I see the empty corner I am a bit “sour” on not having a cute nook, but in the end, I know that this was the right choice and that we will ultimatley be making the best use of our kitchen space.
What are your thoughts on these major kitchen changes we are makng? Are you as sad to see the nook go as I expected? I love hearing from you, dear readers!
Thanks for visiting today!