Following on from the saga of The Floor in the extension, and the sneak preview in Tying up the Loose Ends, I think it is time that I finally (and may I say - nervously?) reveal to you my Homemade Kitchen.
Before I do unveil the result, I should add that there are still a couple of little tasks to be done, such as two small bits of skirting board to be fitted. I had been holding off on this post until all was completely finished, but from experience I know that these minor little jobs could take months before they are finished, (just like I had to wait for a whole year before William fitted a door handle to the door in my bedroom).
So as I peer out of the kitchen window at the Clematis that I planted a few weeks ago;
Clematis Guernsey Cream
I have decided to go ahead and reveal all, regardless of these trifling issues.
This is the kitchen that all my men-folk, (with the exception of one), were highly sceptical and scathing about, when I broke the news to them that I was not going to go down the conventional route of a fitted kitchen (purchased from a kitchen supplier); uttering - after an awful silence, prophesies of doom as I announced my intention to make it myself (with a little assistance of course).
For anyone who knows my family, this announcement will not appear to be unusual, as I have come to the conclusion that there is a family curse that instils in us all the compulsion that at every opportunity we must use our talents and creativity to make something ourselves, (preferrably out of recycled materials rather than buying new), no matter how time consuming and difficult, instead of taking the easier option and purchasing it ready made off the shelf. Something we have been doing long before Kirstie Allsopp and Great British Sewing Bees came along.
Anyway here goes; the new kitchen / living area extension to La Petite Maison as it evolved;
mud everywhere, as foundations are laid on a day when after a week of sunshine, the heavens opened and poured forth a deluge of torrential rain. (A warning of things to come perhaps?)
With walls in place - a new structure begins to materialise.
Breaking through the existing house wall resulted in more than the old blockwork being smashed -
two of my toes were also broken when an old concrete block took revenge.
The Floor goes in - a story (or nightmare!) in its own right.
And finally, several months later - my new kitchen................
put together by The Elder of the Much Appreciated Men-Folk along with Yours Truly, otherwise known as Dad and Me.
The curtains and tablecloth made with linen fabric from Cabbages and Roses, that I have painstakingly sewn during the snatched moments when I wasn't wielding a paintbrush.
(I painted all the woodwork in Slaked Lime Eggshell from Little Greene Paint Company.)
An old beam above the range - sourced from a reclamation yard then sanded and treated with lye and oil.
A cupboard made out of old floorboards.
The solid wood Oak Worktops - treated using the same lye that I used on the floor and then oiled using white worktop oil and a lot of elbow grease.
A brand new Belfast sink - found on Gumtree.
In the corner is a wood-burning stove, that has already provided a source of warmth and comfort on a cold, grey day when everything seems to be going wrong,
(and if the atrocious and unseasonable weather continues throughout June, then the gardening that I am desperate to be doing, will be postponed once more, and I shall toast my feet in front of the stove again before the week is out.)
My Men-Folk appear to have forgotten their ominous predictions and although still looking for faults and criticising something that is not exactly one hundred percent square, funnily enough they appear to be happy to claim the credit for My Homemade Kitchen themselves!