Friday, October 28, 2016

One Room Challenge: A Kitchen Remodel (Week 4)

One Room Challenge

The day has come... time to get things installed! 

I woke up every day this week, praying hard that all goes well. It is all about coordination, patience and very big smiles. Remember to keep smiling and stay positive. It is my job to think on my feet and make impromptu decisions along with finding solutions to problems and surprises. 

It was a big week and we sure got a hell of a lot done. The pictures below will give you a sense of the progress made and flavor of the the ultimate design.  

Immense coordination was needed to install the stone this week. I was practically at the fabrication shop everyday to ensure the stone was being fabricated in the right manner. I was very particular about getting the right pieces in the right spot. On the day of the installation, I got a call from the fabricator, "Please have the countertop loose and removed" were the instructions. Well, when they arrived, it was loose but not removed from its place and for a good reason; we had been using it till the last minute. That did not work very well for the installers since they were overworked and overbooked. All they want to see is a bare kitchen, work their magic in 10 minutes and race to their next job. Really?! Run away in 10 minutes from the stone that I so lovingly picked out after much research and procrastination. We had to improvise at the spot and be quick about it. If the old stone was not removed quickly, we would loose out on our installation slot and that would've put us significantly behind our project schedule. Thankfully it all worked out.

The installation of the perimeter was a bit challenging but the backsplash and the island went very smooth. The backsplash was the one I was the one area I was most nervous about. It required absolute precision, patients and perseverance to go in as such a large single unit. I wanted it to go in one piece despite the fabricators hesitation and concerns that the pre-installed cabinets might hinder the installation. 

The existing granite from the island has been repurposed and converted into a outdoor table on the patio.


Appliance deliveries, the installation teams, the electrician and the plumber need to be present during the installation of all appliances. 

Despite asking the installer to come to the project site and take the measurements in advance, we had a few problems during the final installation. A few lessons learned along the way -- the appliance delivery teams are not responsible for protecting the floors -- If you don't ask the right questions, you may not get the right answer. Somethings have to be learned through experience. 

The warming drawer pull did not match what we had requested, the Wolf kitchen vent would not fit as the depth was too much for the space available. Solve, solve, solve and solve now! I had to work with the sales and installation team to change the vent from Wolf to Best. We also needed to special order a 1" tubular handle for the wine cabinet to match the handles for the refrigerator.

Over the years, I have learned to work with local suppliers and dealers as it is easier to get quick and quality service from them vs. others that may offer higher discounts but the wing-to-wing implementation and service cost may not be the lowest. 

Removing the island was a bit tricky. It was a large and heavy piece of granite. We also wanted to reuse the piece, so we had to make sure their was no damage while taking it off and moving it to the patio. 

You can see that the new design is starting to show in the kitchen.

#Alaska #inspiration #color

Why does a picture of a glacier belong in a blog about remodeling a kitchen? Well, inspiration can come from anywhere. I happened to be on an Alaskan cruise this summer and was mesmerized by the pristine beauty of this glacier. The layers of ice accumulated over centuries had created a marvelous color that I have tried to capture in the paint used in the kitchen. A tough task that required endless samples and an enduring effort to mix colors, drop by drop, to create the perfect color needed. 


Well, we are on the home stretch. Next week is about lighting, fixtures and furnishings. 

Here is the link to my week 1, 2 & 3 blogs -- Please read, if you have not already.

A Kitchen Remodel (Week 2)

A Kitchen Remodel (week 3)

Please leave us all of your questions, comments and feedback as it's an inspiration to us and others.

#oneroomchallenge, #housebeautiful, #LakbirDesign, #home, #design, #kitchen, @oneroomchallenge, @housebeautiful, @LakbirDesign


  1. Wow. Now that's a kitchen! It looks stunning.

  2. Thank you so much Jess ,look forward to your review on week 5 and the final reveal.
    Really Appreciate your time.