The day we moved into our house, my mom went out to the store and bought us a card table & folding chairs to put in the kitchen as a space holder. The main reason for this was that there are lights at the PERFECT height for my forehead in the middle of the area--meaning I had already slammed my forehead into the glass lights 3-4 times within the first 2 hours of owning the house. Ouch.
That card table has been the platform to serve several holiday meals (i.e. Mother's Day & Thanksgiving) & to hold the food for our parties and gatherings. But due to the short height & the flimsy structure, it was difficult to do much food prep on.
We lived with the card table for over a year while we were researching various options for the island (prefab, build with recycled cabinets, have it built, etc). A few months ago my parents offered a very generous gift--to let us design & build a custom island for our kitchen for our first anniversary. While we felt guilty accepting such a huge gift, we were really excited.
|What we were doing before...|
To help us mock out the footprint of our island, my dad gave us a TV box to put on top of the table that was roughly the size of the surface of the island we were thinking would work well in the space, along with being the similar combined height of a counter. The TV box stayed on the card table in our kitchen for 1-2 months...it was always fun to explain to people why we had a cardboard box in our kitchen.
|"Is that a..?" "Why Yes...it is a cardboard|
box in our kitchen."
The design process was really fun. We ended up going with one large cabinet section with a shelf on the bottom & 2 huge drawers on top that have "soft close" mechanisms on them (impossible to slam them shut, they close slowly). The cabinet is painted the same shade of white that the rest of our cabinets are painted, and it is trimmed with the same style of bead board that is used in our family room & guest bathroom. We had it topped with restaurant grade stainless steel. We bought these stools from Crate & Barrel to finish off the look.
We. Love. Our. Island. We had the option of about any type of counter top material we wanted...but I wanted to go with stainless. A) Heat Resistant B) Stain Resistant C) Break Resistant D) Super Sanitary. It is also a great work surface to do things like candy/chocolate making or bread kneading. The only con is that it scratches easily...but once it gets a little more wear on it, that won't be noticeable at all.
I am so grateful for this wonderful gift...and the years of enjoyment we are going to get out of the island. Thank you Mom & Dad!!
|New Island: View 1|
|New Island: View 2|
|New Island: View 3|
|Bottom Cabinet--Yay for pot & pan storage close to the stove!!|
|Closeup of the pan side of the cabinet.|
As a side note, the pan stacker/organizer
from Rubbermaid (bottom left) is awesome,
and I highly suggest you get one.
|Drawer 1: Yay for my spices being away from the heat of|
the stove! I can't wait to finish organizing this drawer.
Eventually all of the spices will be in the same type of bottles,
and in alphabetical order.
|Drawer #2...organization still a work in progress.|
Demonstration of the "soft close" drawers