Kitchen Reno Update & Bye Bye Chalkboard Fridge

One-a-Week / 6
November 2, 2012
A Good Old Fashioned Update
November 7, 2012

Kitchen Reno Update & Bye Bye Chalkboard Fridge

We have been chipping away at the kitchen very, very slowly over the last three years. We found an architect, have been using the temp Ikea floors, chalkboarded the fridge that came with the house, replaced countertops, selected flooring we love (about to buy!), and finalllllllly bought and installed all our new appliances. We last has reached $2,793.11 so far in renovations, but our latest purchase upped that number quite a bit. The last “official update” was back in January and we figured now was good as time as any to see how our past decisions are working out for us. We also had to buy a new fridge unexpectedly, and we had to make it fit! Buying new was quite a big expense, so I certainly understand why some people just prefer to replace faulty parts of their fridge. In fact, my friend found some frigidaire parts for her fridge that really helped save her money.

The Ikea floors we put in about 2.5 years ago are beginning to buckle and warp a little. For temp floors (we never planned on the being there forever) they did a pretty good job, and if I recall were only a few hundred dollars. The new floors are way more expensive, so we will live with these as long as we can before we get fancy.

Last thing we did was install the microwave vent above the stove and have the moldy drywall removed and replaced. So far the Samsung microwave is doing a good job, and so is the vent. We did recently learn we can’t have the crockpot and the microwave going at the same time or the power turns off! Oops! It was worth the $287.99 (on sale at Best Buy).

The countertops we got from Ikea were by far the best deal ever. $258 TOTAL! Happy dance! I have to be honest though, they aren’t perfect. They need CONSTANT maintenance and coating. That means taking everything off the counter and oiling then waiting for it to dry. The tile and grout we got at Home Depot, and it does exactly what tile and grout should. The switch plates are finally on their way! We found some stainless steel ones online and hope they are as nice as the others we got (I forgot where we bought the ones for the bedroom, oops!).

The $21 we spent to chalkboard the fridge was pretty awesome, but fast forward a year…

Here, let’s get closer…

Yep, things started getting junky looking. The fridge was in pretty decent shape where the chalkboard paint was, but the handle and corner by the handle was a mess. We were in the middle of researching fridges when we left for our Florida trip and the day we left the fridge decided to die. Then we returned and were in full force to find a fridge and right when we found the one we wanted at a great price, Superstorm Sandy hit. After some delay and the anticipation of power turning back on, the new fridge finally showed up, but didn’t quite fit through the front or inside doors.

Joey knew what needed to get done, so he promptly removed the front door and screen door, got a plank of wood from his shop, laid the fridge on it and slid it into the house sideways. Whew.

Now on to the next challenge, the fridge wouldn’t it between the swing door leading into the kitchen. Doh. Once again, Joey got to work. This time he took the fridge apart.

The fridge we decided on is the Samsung Frenchdoor with the water dispenser on the inside. It was pretty much the same size as our old fridge, but we knew the nook where he would live needed to be edited. What we thought would be a few hour task, was quickly turning into an all day event. Joey got to work busting out the wall to make more room, and I got a peek at two layers below floor.

Finally things started looking up, like this fridge may actually take center stage before bedtime, when we made one really big mistake. The water connection below connected perfect after a few tests. The space Joey carved out was a great fit. The ground pin from the plug broke off into the plug while Joey and a friend were pushing it into it’s nook. D-E-V-I-S-T-A-T-E-D! We will do a while fresh post about how to fix that soon. Let’s just say that moment didn’t feel awesome.

fridge water connection

But this did feel awesome.

Samsung Frenchdoor

White Kitchen

Samsung frenchdoor

The kitchen is starting to actually feel complete. All the appliances are new and ours and I am so excited to start knocking down walls and adding the floor! We are adding about 25% space to our kitchen in 2013.

We got really lucky with this purchase due to some research and timing. The best price we saw was on sale at Best Buy at $1599 + shipping + tax. We thought that was pretty good, but then Joey found the same exact fridge, new, on Ebay for $1439 + free shipping. Done!

This is the temporary kitchen while we address moving the laundry room up a level, so there are a few hacks we had to do to make this livable The fridge does fit in the nook, but the french door action makes the right door hit the counter top a little. Joey had the idea of putting those furniture foot protector things on the edge of the counter so we don’t sent the fridge handle and it works perfectly.

The purchase of the fridge has our grand total at $4,232 to date. This includes temp floors, a dishwasher, a stove, a microwave with vent, countertops, subway tiles, grout, a fridge, and refinishing the cabinets. The rest of the renovation is where things are going to start getting expensive, but for now we are super happy with what’s going on in kitchen town!



  1. Mindy says:

    Your kitchen looks great so far! I wish we had room for a french door model but for our tiny kitchen I had to settle for a side by side. So far I am loving it though. Best wishes with the rest of your updates!

  2. Ah, gotta love when things don’t fit through doors! The new frig looks great, and that floor protector solution is pretty genius.

  3. Jennifer says:

    How funny is it that we just replace our painted fridge with the exact same Samsung fridge!

  4. […] renovation work is being DIY’ed, we are no kitchen experts and we even messed up a few times (here with painting the fridge and then painting everything with matte white). Also, do you know how to […]

  5. […] Replaced appliances  (fridge, dishwasher & stove)(and installed a vent microwave) […]

  6. […] Replaced appliances  (fridge, dishwasher & stove)(and installed a vent microwave) […]

  7. Chad R says:

    Before and after pictures are always so inspiring! Nice work on your kitchen overhaul. Now that it has been almost a year later, are you still happy with the flooring and fridge?

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