First I want to say that the work on the subway tile is not completed. The reason is that some of the peel and stick tiles are white, and some are a gray-white.
Amazon is sending me more but they were not in stock and they’re sending them as soon as they get them in their warehouse.
We thought maybe it was just the light on Monday. But yesterday I looked at the walls in different light and dimness and the colors are definitely not the same.
My daughter is still working on the fine cracks around the sink. Yesterday she caulked again. She said she will keep adding layers of caulk and maybe it will at least be minimized. I think it’s looking much better. She’s a bit pickier than I am.
But I will still show you the kitchen today. Basically everything is finished but the remaining tiles and some caulking and maybe a little touch up painting. Get a cup of coffee or tea and sit down because there are lots of photos.
As you might be able to see, the tiles at the very end behind the far right white pitcher is not finished. That’s because we’re waiting on the new subway tiles to arrive before she does any more work.
No point in working with different shades of white when she’ll just have to turn around and take it down. Which, by the way, was her choice going forward.
Here’s the new dishwasher. I have not used it yet. And you can see the glossy countertop. It is nice and shiny. There are mistakes and imperfections, but it’s good enough for me.
Remember with DIY projects things don’t always come out perfect. You have to come to a place of acceptance and not be too upset when things don’t go exactly as planned.
My motto is to cover what bothers you that you can’t fix!
Below you see the new refrigerator. It fits the space better and I really like it a lot. Nothing fancy about it. But in my mind, that’s less stuff that will go out.
I don’t even have ice trays filled in the freezer right now because I typically get tea next door at Sonic during happy hour or drink bottled water.
Also note the gold drawer and door pulls that I changed out. The other ones were round and black.
In the above photo, you can see where she stopped with the peel and stick tiles when she had to leave Monday to attend to other commitments.
When she came over yesterday I told her about Amazon sending more tiles.
She has a lot going on right now and some family issues with their dad they’re quite worried about. Plus she has four closings this week. So it’s just as well we put it off a little longer.
I told her that I could live with the two variations of color in the subway tile, but my daughter is a perfectionist and she cannot. So this project is taking a little longer than initially expected as I let her make the decision to leave it be or change it out.
I really, really like the glossy surface of the countertops, imperfections and all. I also like the clean more streamlined look and the open shelving. I like things I can get to easily.
This all began when I took off the three cabinet doors and began to think about how I wanted the kitchen to look.
I made quite a few purchases for this kitchen redo. One is the thin coffee maker you see a few photos above. It was around $50 and takes up very little space and you can use both pods and ground coffee with it.
I also purchased a Simple Human trash can. The other one took up too much space and you had to keep it at least a foot from the wall.
I put the other one outside under the roof extension so I could throw things away outside instead of coming in with dirty hands and getting the door dirty and tracking dirt inside.
I don’t know if you’re familiar with Simple Human products. But they get rave reviews. As you see it sits right against the wall and opens fine.
Also you can store the trash bags, sized to fit each size trash can they sell, in the back of the trash can so that the bags are right there. You just pull one out. This way you don’t have to go get one when you need to put in a new liner.
Another plus is that you can pull up the top and put the bag in and it fits very tight and will not sag.
These trash cans do not come cheap. But in a small space, you need to make the best use of your space. And to me that was worth the price. I had been looking at one of these on Amazon that was $139.
Then the day I went shopping with my birthday gift certificate to Home Goods, I found this one for $99.99. And I snapped it up. The woman working there told me they cannot keep these trash cans in stock due to their popularity.
The one I bought holds 45 liters and takes an “M” size trash can liner. I ordered those from Amazon.
I just now looked and the price of this trash can has come down a bit. Here is the link.
You can see above where the peel and stick tiles have yet to be added.
Everything in this part of the kitchen is basically the same but for the new countertop and the gold drawer pulls and fresh paint.
I didn’t put the red microwave back on the countertop. Instead now this is my cooking station on the kitchen cart I bought from World Market years ago.
The microwave and the Breville Smart Oven is where I cook meals. I have the Breville Smart Oven pans situated in the middle of the two where I can get to them easily.
My electric skillet is stored on top of the microwave. When I want to use it, I move it to the countertop.
My oven mitts are hanging on the wall right next to where I cook.
Everything in my kitchen has been relocated for efficiency.
I have my dishes and glasses in the open cabinets. The cutting boards are right below as well as the knife block, silverware and kitchen utensils.
The spices are on the wall above the cutting boards.
Then there is a house plant and next to that is the thin coffee maker that is the best size for this small space kitchen.
And next to that are the white pitchers I’ve had forever holding the rest of my various kitchen utensils.
The open shelves hold my white and red dishes. Those are my featured colors in the kitchen. With a bit of gold and black.
Just so you can see the difference, here is how my kitchen looked before, about a month ago.
The photo above shows the old dishwasher. Thank goodness that’s gone.
When he took it out, the maintenance man said he told the manager it was well beyond its expiration date.
And below is how it looks now. Yes, I forgot to take the energy guide off the refrigerator. I will get around to that.
I’m going to attempt to break down the costs of my apartment kitchen redo.
The refrigerator, which I did not have to buy but chose to, was, after taxes and delivery fee, around $650. It is a Whirlpool.
I knew exactly what I wanted and walked into Appliance Solutions and said: “I want a white Whirlpool refrigerator that will fit within these measurements. It has to have a handle and plastic shelves instead of racks.”
The man said: “Well, we’ll have to order that.” I said fine. I paid for it, he ordered it, and it was installed a week later. I am very pleased with their service and the care the man took when he installed it last week.
The dishwasher was free courtesy of the apartment complex. About time I got something free.
The countertop kit from GianiGranite was $179.95 and I bought it on Amazon.com. Here is the link. I chose not to use the marble effect. I wanted plain white counters so I didn’t use the cans that would have created the marble look.
The drawer pulls were $38 and I had almost a full box left over. They came in packs of 10 and yeah, you guessed it, I needed 11. Here is the link to the drawer pulls. They had a five star rating.
I put a lot of stock in customer ratings. And I never buy anything that has less than four stars and then I’m picky about it.
The peel and stick subway tiles were $70 for the whole back splash wall. Of course now they’re sending me the replacements free due to the defect. We may not need them all, but I originally purchased two packets of 10. Here is the link to the peel and stick tiles.
The cabinet paint was $52. It pays to get quality paint. My daughter didn’t use much of the gallon I purchased. So I’ll be keeping it in the closet for touch ups.
The caulking used was courtesy of my daughter.
So the total for the supplies to DIY the kitchen comes to $330.00 (rounded up) if my addition is correct.
The other items, like the trash can, coffee maker and refrigerator comes to around $800.00. I don’t consider them necessary to the DIY project. But they’re new nonetheless.
If you live in a rental and hate it, do what you can to fix it up to your liking. There are many things you can do that you can take off should you move.
The peel and stick tiles are removable. Of course the drawer pulls you can remove. Just keep the originals, which I did.
The only thing that isn’t removable is the refinished countertop. But I’d rather lose my deposit than live with something I hate.