Monday, June 19, 2006

Trying to Live with my Kitchen

Our kitchen needs to be gutted and rebuilt from scratch, but that's years and years down the road for us, so I am trying to live with what I have, which is

a) horrible 1970s patterned vinyl floor covering that just about blinds you, and if it doesn't, slowly drives you insane, a la Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper crossed with the patterned carpet at the Overlook Hotel in Stephen King's The Shining

b) crumbling plaster and a hole where a doorway used to be (it's only closed permanently on the other side, the kitchen side has studs)

c) the ugliest cabinets you ever did see, made of warping particle board frames and PLASTIC (yes, you read that right) drawers that are falling apart.

There is nothing I can do about a) and b) for now, but I have been battling c) for quite awhile. I've been mending the drawers every time they crack but still some have disintegrated completely. The cabinets were an ucky dark woodgrain fake color until I painted them white a couple of years ago; I painted the doors and drawer fronts (those that had survived) yellow, added strawberry decals to the doors and put on drawer pulls in crystal glass. That looked okay for about 4 months, then they got grubby too, plus I didn't do a very good job of getting the doors back on the cabinets and they were sagging and wouldn't stay closed.

So last weekend I lost my temper with my kitchen and ripped all the doors and hardware off, painted all the drawer fronts a bright cherry gloss red and instead of cabinet doors I made curtains out of a couple of red and white gingham check bedsheets I'd bought at the Salvation Army (The Company Store donates lots of returns/irregulars to the SA and Goodwill stores here and you can get some real deals). I can now live with my kitchen for awhile longer! Barry said he'd make me some fake drawer fronts to stick in the holes where the deceased drawers used to be.

I'm thinking of watching the Salvation Army store for more of those sheets and adding more curtains to the butcherblock counter (8 feet long, mounted on a commercial steel frame, came out of a deli that was going out of business).

Of course everything clashes with my horrible vinyl floor, but I pretend not to notice, and just hand out Dramamine tablets to people as they enter the room for the first time.

1 comment:

Mrs. Mac said...

I remember that type of vinal flooring. Can it be painted as a last resort? The kitchen cabinets sound familiar ... are they faux wood grain? What were designers thinking back then??? In my Michigan house we had bus yellow laminate counters with carpet on the kitchen floor, and awful bright yellow and blue chickens with eggs on the wallpaper. Made one want to lose their lunch!! Hang in there. Your improvised cloth cabinet "doors" sound cute ... please post some pictures.