The Bulk of the Budget

Don't we all love budgets?! And kitchens aren't cheap! But we have a budget, and we're sticking to it (so far...). We decided that the bulk of it was going to go toward cabinets, since we use them every day, several times a day. 

I started by getting quotes from a couple of kitchen design centers near us, and after removing all of the options that we really wanted, we finally got down to a number that was affordable for us - but that left us with the basics, and no personality. Not extacly what we had in mind!

So, my father-in-law suggested to meet with the guy who was renting their old store, because they make custom furniture and cabinetry. Great idea! Well, that is until we met with the guy. I won't go into details, but let's just say sometimes I am as easy to read as a picture book, and my husband could sense I wasn't exactly impressed. Yeah, the cabinets actually came in at a workable price "$350 per cabinet!", and the quality was decent, but something just diiiiiidn't feel right!  

My hubby tried to convince me that this was a great deal, and that we could get what we wanted, but I wouldn't budge! There were filler strips on each cabinet, when we went to see a model house. Gosh!  I sound snobby!  But, if you're paying for custom cabinets, I would rather not see a 2" piece of wood that could otherwise be useable storage space!

From the start, our friend (and wonderful electrician!) Mike kept telling us about a guy up in Hart who could have done his cabinets for thousand less than he paid, and he regrets not going with him. He's seen his work, and it's awesome stuff! (my words, not exactly Mikes) After our previous meeting with... "Bob" we'll call him, I'll be honest, I wasn't thrilled to meet with another cabinet maker.

Jeff called and scheduled a meeting with him anyway, and I tried my darnest to keep an open mind! Well turns out Mike and Jeff were both right!  We got to his shop (a barn about 20 feet from his house), and he had a kitchen full of cabinets that were ready to be painted and installed in a house on Lake Michigan. They were FABULOUS! All solid wood, dovetailed joints, NO FILLERS! The wood was sanded so nicely, it was as smooth as a baby's behind! :)

We discussed the drawings of our kitchen, and got a quote from him a few days later. It fit within our budget wonderfully! What a relieving feeling to have finally found the backbone of our kitchen. Greg is not only talented, but easy to work with as well! 

My father-in-law and I went up to visit our cabinets a few weeks ago, because that's what Greg expects his clients to do - super exciting! You're probably thinking, quit typing, and start uploading pictures! Because really, it's all about the pictures, right? Here ya go....

These fabulous cabinets are the sink and fridge wall, and that tall giant cabinet off to the right will be the wall oven's future home. Greg also added extra special roll out shelves just for kicks!

Again, the wall oven, and to the right of that, the cooktop's future home.

The cooktop cabinet, with plenty of storage below for pots, pans, and cutting boards, and above the tall skinny cabinets will be roll-out "pantrys" for spices and sauces. No more emptying the spice cabinet to find the beloved dillweed hiding in the back!

On the far left is the peninsula (with the flip side on top, "junk-drawers!"), and to the right, the base drawers of the pantry. The top of the pantry is behind these cabinets, but it just looks like a large rectangle for now!

A nice shot of the corner cabinet which will sit to the left of the sink.

It's a box! No, no, no!  It's the wine rack!  Imagine two X's installed, flip it on it's side, and fill it with a few dozen bottles! :)  Artwork at it's finest!

A detailed shot of the cooktop again.  Check out those cute little feet on the furniture base!

And again, the pantry base, with it's cute little feet! :)
The cabinets were originally supposed to be installed the first full week of April, but it looks like Greg will be done spraying next week, and plans to install the base cabinets at the end of next week! Don't you LOVE when contractors come in ahead of schedule?! Then we can get the countertops measured and installed, the upper cabinets installed, and the backsplash tile! Ooooh the backsplash tile.... hmph, that's another story, which I think we're actually winning (as Sheen would say) this one.

The wonderful (I'm not being sarcatic when I say that!) people over at Virginia Tile ordered a few tiles wrong. For the frame around the accent behind the cooktop, 2 corners were ordered instead of 4. Mind you, these tiles took 6 weeks to come in, and we don't have another 6 weeks to wait. They are made to order... eek! But they assured me that they will be made in a week, and shipped to us within 4-5 days! And with an aditional discount! Hey, that works for me!  As long as the UPS man doesn't break them, we're good to go! :) Check out the tiles....

How lovely are these?! Ah!
Okay, I gotta go paint now!!  Updates of that to come!

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