April 9, 2013

Space, space, beautiful space!

No, not the kind astronauts work in, space in my kitchen. Besides having the world's ugliest floor and counters, the kitchen in this house is small. Here is the area available to work in:
There is very little room to work in. The sink is so small it won't hold regular sized pots or pans and the cupboards are so high only the lowest shelf is reachable by me. At the house we moved from there was space on top of the cupboards to set out seldom used or decorative items, but that's not the case here. Things were crammed in everywhere, falling out if you opened a door without being careful. We needed more space. Last week while at the Guild Shop I found this:
and this:
We don't have a truck, so I made sure to find out the sections could be separated. Saturday Mr. B and I went back and somehow got the whole thing into his Toyota. More amazing, we got it home again without breaking the glass in the doors, no minor miracle. 
This is how it looks set up:
Unfortunately, the upper shelves aren't wide enough to stack plates on, but they are fine for crystal, silver and a few other items. The top of the cabinet section holds dishes, a vintage tray and the cute birdhouse bought before Christmas that looks like it's made from an old cook book. The lower section has a huge stack of trays, baking pans, vases and more. Best of all, there is a drawer for dish towels, that for the past four years have been in a variety of baskets and other containers, none in the least satisfactory. The top has two birdcages on it and an old tin tray.
One of the pulls was broken, so I replaced both with these cute ceramic checked ones from our neighborhood hardware store. This piece is behind the back door off to one side of the kitchen. The chest/wine station that was there before has been moved to one side of the refrigerator, not a great solution, but it works well enough. The whole thing was dirty and hard to clean. We think it was in a house with a smoker or smokers, there seems to be a sticky invisible residue on it. Once it's cleaned well it may get a paint job at some point. Oh, I almost forgot to give Mr. B credit. He made and installed a third shelf in the upper section, so it holds even more now.

This is great progress to upping our quality of life in general. A crummy kitchen is hard to deal with, especially if it's rented and there is little you can do to improve things because you don't own it. More space for storage with easier access is a wonderful aid. The Guild Shop is generally very expensive, so I seldom shop there. I'm very glad I went by last week. The furniture is by Thomasville and in generally good condition, so it all worked out well.

Have you sought solutions in rented homes before? Do you have any great tips to share? 

Have a great evening,


Tricia said...

Michele, the new piece looks great in its place and decorated so beautifully! It is a two-fer -- great for storage AND for display. I just wish you'd taken a photo of how y'all fit it in Mr. B's Toyota!

Manuela@A Cultivated Nest said...

That is the perfect size piece! If the one I saw at the thrift store had been this size I would have bought it!

Great piece and looks lovely!