Monday, 20 February 2012

Camping in a corner

This is another variation on the Camping-At-Home experience. This one isn't quite so much fun, and isn't so easy to tidy up once the kids are in bed. Yes, that is a piano under all the food. My singing group will not be meeting here this week. This is the week we've been waiting for, when our kitchen is reborn.

The house I currently own belonged to my parents for 29 years before I bought it. This is the house I grew up in, and now Ali and I are working to turn it into our family home. My father is both frugal and handy: when something broke, he'd fix it. Otherwise he'd leave it alone. Or occasionally paint it pink. This is how our kitchen came to look like this:

 It's a lovely kitchen - large and light with space to dine. But beware of turning on the cold tap. Not only does it spray out viciously and soak you, but you can't turn it off once you've removed it, which happens far more frequently than you'd expect. Now, to be fair, I don't think my parents like tiger-pattern cupboard doors, that's just what unvarnished '80s pine looks like after twenty years of grease. 

 Check out the pink handles on those doors. They were to match the (then) pink wall.

Watch this space. It's going to have a breakfast bar in it.

Yes, you saw that right. Our cupboards slant. For those of you not old enough to remember this phenomenon, there are nice examples in The Tiger Who Came To Tea (you have to scroll down for the picture I'm thinking of).

And here is a nice view inside the larder-cupboard. I have to admit, this cupboard is the one thing I'm going to miss. I feel doubtful that any modern cupboard is going to be quite as lardery and cupboardy as this pink and blue vinyl-laden beauty.

Our utility room is also going to have some work done. This is what it currently looks like. See that? That's the new kitchen. (Some of it, anyway. The rest of it is in the part of the living-room not occupied by all the things that belong in the kitchen.)


  1. Linked to your blog from Kindred of the Quiet Way. Looks like a fun project. We gutted a kitchen years ago, with four kids and electric skillet it was like a 2 month camping trip. Oh and I hope I never have to dishes in a bathtub again :) But when the kitchen was done it was wonderful and worth the sacrifice, plus the kids kind of enjoyed the novelty of camping in the house.

  2. cue dry ice... cue spooky noises... cue filtered spots circling aimlessly... cue voice of the ancestors...

    That's evolution, that is. You should have seen it when *we* moved in. Of the lower level cupboards, one set were navy blue and white melamine, one set olive green and one set sort of orange woodalike melamine. That left one set with no doors at all, just a fetching blue and orange curtain. The top set were black and white painted wood with copper door-knobs; the walls were vari-coloured, two being woodalike melamine (a totally different sort to that cupboard of course) the other two wallpaper with a pattern of large blue jug things and even larger green jug things. The lino was a 1960s design that was so traumatic I have succeeded in completely forgetting what it looked like.

    I liked the slanty cupboards though (after we'd stopped them being black-and-white-with-copper-knobs) because you can have reachable storage all the way down to the worktop without banging your head on it.

  3. Wow. I don't remember any of that, Kay, except for the wood-a-like stuff on the walls, which was quite bad enough. The curtain is ringing bells in the back of my memory though. ::shudder::
    It's all looking very different now, but I'm not going to post more pictures until we've finished it all off - I want the final transformation! We've got half the floor, some painting, and the blinds and lampshades to do.
    I wonder what the people who'll move in around 2030 will think. "Cor blimey, it's all so disgustingly bright. So 'teens'. Yuk, let's put some black and grey in."

  4. Oh yes - for the next seven years, we'll be living in the 'teens'. Do you think western humanity will grow up after that?

    Oh, and I remembered the lino. You know those woven grassy mat things with squares of wound-round-itself grassy stuff? It was printed with a design like that but the squares weren't grassy coloured, they were orange, blue, yellow and black.